Online International Bachelor & Master Summer School

Co-designing solutions for transformative change

Online International Summer School on Sustainable Development for Bachelor’s and Master’s Students

25 August to 2 September 2022

Centre for Development and Environment (CDE), University of Bern, Switzerland
3 ECTS

Scope

Do you want to be part of the solution? Achieving human well-being and eradicating poverty for all people on earth – while protecting our planet’s climate and biodiversity – will require transformative change. To bring about this change we first need to understand the complex global challenges we face. The International Summer School on Sustainable Development is an opportunity to deepen your understanding of these issues – through creative, interactive, and participatory learning.

Current global sustainability challenges are increasingly complex. Really understanding what’s at stake requires knowledge on systemic interactions and on competing claims by different actors. Science, thus, has a major role to play in informing negotiations and solutions to guide the societal transformations needed to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The purpose of this Summer School is to empower participants to act in the face of these challenges. In this nine-day online course, experienced sustainability researchers will highlight the most important development issues in their respective fields. These presentations will alternate with study time where participants can deepen their knowledge individually or in groups. Moreover, participants will form interdisciplinary teams in which they will co-design solutions to concrete sustainability challenges.

Structure of the Summer School

The course involves the following main elements:

  • Preparatory reading/activities prior to the course
  • Interactive thematic sessions with presentations by distinguished experts
  • Student projects in intercultural and interdisciplinary teams
  • Interactive Slack workspace and peer-to-peer exchange and learning
  • Presentation and discussion of student projects
  • Reflection on learnings for your bachelor/master studies

Learning outcomes and competences

The Summer School is designed to produce the following learning outcomes and competences:

Professional competences

  • You can explain the different concepts of sustainable development and are able to analyse and critically reflect on the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda and the related trade-offs.
  • You understand the urgency of action and are able to explain different entry points for sustainability transformation – illustrated through different examples.
  • You understand the complex and dynamic society–nature interactions involved in sustainability transformations.
  • You have honed your methodological skills for tackling complex questions of sustainable development.
  • You are able to identify sustainability challenges in your own living environment and, together with others, you explore possible solutions and work out appropriate strategies.
  • You critically reflect on how your specific fields of study can contribute to sustainability transformation in interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary contexts.

Social competences

  • You are able to communicate in an intercultural and interdisciplinary team, to argue clearly and comprehensibly, and to meet other students’ arguments and contributions with openness and curiosity.
  • You are able to perceive facts from different perspectives and deal with complex questions and problems.

Interpersonal competences

  • You are aware of global uncertainties, your perceptions, and your options for contributing to sustainability transformations, and you are empowered to initiate action.
  • You are able to develop positive visions of how your own living environment could be made more sustainable.