International TD Summer School – Transdisciplinarity methods and tools for dealing with sustainability and land use conflicts

  • 25 September - 01 October 2022
  • Spain
  • Communication & Societal Impact, Transdisciplinarity

We live in a world in transformation in which we are faced with complex global problems such as climate change, loss of biodiversity, hunger and social inequality. The urgent need for a sustainable transformation forces us to take decisions in situations of uncertainty and to continuously adapt our societal strategies.

As professionals, as researchers, and ultimately as citizens we want to embrace this process of transformation. We need to be able to design, build, create, but also to listen, observe, understand to make sustainability changes happen. We have to recuperate the culture of ‘re-‘: reimagining our ways of living, re-evaluating what matters, regenerating social relations to fit to the new values, reducing and reusing products and materials, and, last but not least, reflecting on how to do science.

A disciplinary approach will not be enough to solve the complex problems we are faced with in the 21st century. Academia does not have all the answers, neither does politics, economy or civil society. We rather need a collaborative endeavour to be able to reach a truly sustainable society.

Transdisciplinary research and practice is an approach that allows to bring together different perspectives from sciences and society and to catalyze the solution of real-world problems. In the summer school we want to convey the basics of co-designing solutions, co-producing knowledge and co-evaluating the results of such research practice to Master and PhD students from technologically-oriented disciplines (e.g. engineering, planning, environmental studies) as well as from other fields (e.g. social sciences). To ensure the link to the ‘real-world’, we will apply what we learn to sustainability problems in the region.

Aim of the course

The aim of the summer school is to gain insight into the basics and challenges of transdisciplinary research and practice, that is to enable the facilitation of mutual learning environments where students, researchers, practitioners, activists and citizens (‘quadruple helix’) can engage together during the different steps of the transdisciplinary research process to contribute to sustainability transitions of their organisations or communities.

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