In September 2014, the Ecologic Institute and the College of Liberal Arts and Science at the University of Colorado Denver (CU Denver) launch a new cooperation, the study program "Sustainability in Berlin". The program is unique as it combines actual coursework with an internship at relevant environmental institutions where students can experience first-hand what they have been learning. The two courses also combine academic reflections about global environmental challenges with field trips to local projects in and around Berlin.
The program has been developed in response to the high interest in the ways Germany – often considered a global leader in sustainability – tackles global challenges with regional initiatives and national policies. As the centre of policy-making, Berlin often acts as a "laboratory" of innovative solutions and is an ideal place to study cutting-edge applied environmental research, policy analysis, and social innovation.
The graduate and undergraduate students from UC Denver will come from many different fields of study such as architecture, economics, and political science. During the program the students will participate in two courses:
- Stephanie Wunder, Senior Fellow at Ecologic Institute, will teach a course on "The Global Ecological Crisis". The students will further engage with the course topics within field trips to sustainability projects in and around Berlin.
- The course "Comparative Governance: Environment and Society" will be taught by Christoph H. Stefes, Ph.D. He is a Senior Fellow at Ecologic Institute and has been Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Colorado Denver College of Liberal Arts and Sciences since 2002.
In addition, students will have the opportunity to reflect and deepen their knowledge in internships at relevant institutions such as The Nature Conservancy, the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, WWF, Slow Food, the Ecologic Institute and others.