Human induced soil degradation is a very actual and increasing problem all over the world. Population growth, unsustainable management of natural resources as well as increasing amounts of harmful chemicals in the environment lead to severe land and soil degradation. The phenomenon of soil degradation has to be considered in a socio-ecological context with respect to economic, cultural and social conditions. In this course, we use an interdisciplinary approach to learn about the different syndromes of soil degradation in different countries of the world and their consequences for people and the environment. Furthermore, we look for solutions and sustainable management strategies.
The course is interactive, that means that students present a special soil degradation syndrome that occurs in their home country, its effects on people and environment and work out possible methods for scientific research and practical solutions. Therefore, we get an overview of the soil degradation phenomena in different countries and compare these with the syndromes present in Nepal. Discussions with stakeholders in affected areas in Nepal will lead to interdisciplinary visions of the situation and how possible solutions could be implemented in real live.
The main goals are:
- Theory of the different soil threats and syndromes of soil degradation and their effects on people and the environment
- Applying an intercultural and interdisciplinary approach to compare the syndromes in the different countries of the world, their consequences and possible prevention and remediation strategies
- Practical experience with soil degradation and its consequences and designing solutions in Nepal
- Learning to distinguish between theoretical and realistic solutions.