Helen Muga Co-Edits Textbook

February 14, 2013

ALLIANCE, Ohio — University of Mount Union professor Dr. Helen Muga can add co-editing a textbook to her list of accomplishments.

Muga, assistant professor of civil engineering, co-edited “Cases on Diffusion and Adoption of Sustainable Development Practices” with Dr. Kent Thomas, professor at Auburn University. The textbook was published by IGI Global in January.

The book, designed to be a resource for in-classroom learning, includes reports on various case studies on the concepts, theories and practices of successful sustainable practices. The book’s sustainability theme came out of doctoral studies Muga conducted.

“Sustainability is related to practices that reduce our impact on the environment and society,” she said. “Where engineering is concerned, sustainable engineering considers the social, environmental and economic aspects of a process, product, technology or activity. As engineers, technical aspects of a product, process or activity is one of the things we consider, however we fail to recognize that the social, environmental and economic aspects are just as important. In a global economy where we are interacting with a culturally-diverse society, the cultural and political aspects also become important.  If we fail to understand that then we have in a way set our products up for failure.”

Muga, an Alliance resident, is working on two additional textbooks, the first of which will focus on sustainability practices in the mining industry. Her third book will be based on sustainable practices in both formal and informal education.

“It comes back to teaching our students not just engineering but how to design with sustainability in mind and to be better stewards of our environment and society,” Muga said. “In engineering, we teach students a lot of tools they need to go out to practice to be engineers. Sustainable engineering is one of those tools.”

The book is available at http://www.igi-global.com/ and on Amazon.

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