Personal learning environment for competence in economic and societal impacts of local weather, air quality and climate
Rapidly growing urbanisation, deterioration of environment, and climate change make people and organisations ever more vulnerable to environmental factors. Since 2009, the world has become more urban than rural: the number of people living in urban areas had surpassed the number of rural dwellers. Urban agglomerations, rapidly growing in size and number, form artificial environments with nature and properties poorly comprehended by the society.
With increasing complexity and heterogeneity of urban infrastructure, the modern life and economy progressively depend on local weather, air/water/soil quality, and microclimate. These comprise “personal environments”, controlled by physical and chemical processes in the lower atmospheric planetary boundary layer, directly interacting with the Earth’s surface and affected by industrial emissions and anthropogenic warming.
However, managers in weather-sensitive economic sectors, not to mention wide public, often do not possess sufficient knowledge about local environment and its impacts on their activities. The consequent damage and lost profit due to a non-optimal management decisions are already large and, if ignored, will inevitably become systematic.
The problem is addressed through development of personal learning environment (PLE) for enhancing competence in economic and societal impacts of local weather, air quality and climate. The PLE features custom-tailored learning materials, “smart” weather observation instruments, and learning management software – all integrated into a single system. Such approach allows for learning in contact with a studied physical environment and develops competences required for today’s modern life.
At first hand, the PLE is for university students of hydrometerology and economics profiles, hydrometeorology professionals, and managers at weather-sensitive firms and public bodies. Prospectively, it might prove useful to a wide range of customers, including secondary schools and private individuals.