Sustainability in Teaching

Our Vision

Issues related to sustainability and sustainability research play a key role in teaching. We are developing new learning offerings, which are being incorporated into the various subject curricula. Sustainability is visible as an integral part of our degree programs. Our University offers all students various ways in which they can address sustainability issues in an interdisciplinary and practically focused manner.

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© Universität Bonn

We are formulating our sustainability strategy in a continuous participatory process as part of the University’s own sustainability platform, known as BOOST (Bonn Program for Sustainable Transformation). Strategic objectives and measures for teaching are being developed in a dedicated working group.

Service Learning

Service learning combines research-based learning, real-life experience and social engagement. This specific teaching and learning format opens up inter- and transdisciplinary perspectives and raises awareness of problems and issues facing society. 

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Kira Gatzemeier

Project seminar entitled “Climate Change—Learning for Future”

Participants in this interdisciplinary seminar series devised suggestions as to what students of all subjects should learn in order to be able to tackle the complex challenges posed by the climate crisis.

The seminar content that it produced will be trialled in teaching for the first time in the 2022/23 winter semester. 

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© George Milton via prexels.com

Communicating sustainability

The Bachelor’s course in Film/Video Media Practice looked at sustainability issues in the day-to-day life of a student, awareness of healthy eating and food waste. In partnership with Slow Food Deutschland e.V. and the Verbraucherzentrale NRW consumer association, this produced two films that explain the various topics.  

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© jp

Coffee grounds—tough luck for the trash

In a project entitled “Das interessiert uns die Bohne!” (“We do give two beans!”), Agricultural Sciences students led by Dr. Thorsten Kraska created a sustainable barbecue lighter out of coffee grounds. 

The project acted as a springboard for other student-led research projects on using coffee grounds.

UNESCO Chair

The University of Bonn hosts one of only 14 UNESCO Chairs in Germany, which are characterized by outstanding research and teaching in the areas in which UNESCO works. At the UNESCO Chair in Human Water Systems, Prof. Dr. Mariele Evers and her team are studying the sustainable use of water as a resource from a transdisciplinary perspective. 

Interdisciplinary Activities

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Gregor Hübl/ Uni Bonn

Campus Ackerdemie

Run in partnership with Acker e.V., the CampusAckerdemie program shows future teachers how to set up their own school garden and integrate it effectively into the everyday life of their school.

Research-based teaching focuses on topics such as environmental interrelationships, food production and sustainable eating.

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Volker Lannert

Lecture series

All students are given the opportunity to tackle sustainability issues regardless of their degree program. Various inter- and transdisciplinary lecture series are organized that interested members of the public are welcome to attend as well as students.

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Mimi Thian/Unsplash

Joint degree program with the United Nations University (UNU)

The Master’s degree program in the Geography of Environmental Risk and Human Security is offered jointly with the Institute for Environment and Human Security at the United Nations University. It is research-based and focuses on the issues of vulnerability, resilience and adaptation.

Funding Instruments

Förderlinie
© Colourbox

A grant program that’s diverse, sustainable and digital

The “vielfältig.nachhaltig.digital” (“diverse.sustainable.digital”) internal grant program is designed to further develop studying and teaching at the University of Bonn with an eye on the future.

Funding is awarded on an annual basis.

Plakatwettbewerb
© Universität Bonn / Barbara Frommann

Sustainability poster competition

Students from all faculties and departments whose courses included aspects of sustainability were able to enter this competition and showcase their projects to a wide audience by presenting a poster.

2020

Establishment of the Service-Learning Coordination Office

2021

Establishment of the UNESCO Chair of Human-Water Systems

2022

Launch of the Campus Ackerdemie pilot project

Work in progress

This web page will be added to gradually.

See also

Sustainability in research at the University of Bonn

Vice Rectorate for Sustainability and Sustainability Unit

Bonn Program for Sustainable Transformation—BOOST

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