Philipps University Marburg

Students as change agents for innovative sustainability pedagogy


Philipps University Marburg





founding year


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Institutional Approach

Phillips University Marburg in Germany has pioneered a new study structure and approach to foster students as change agents for sustainable futures using a so-called 'Nutshell Strategy' for bottom-up organizational change. The Nutshell was conceived as a nucleus of sustainability in education, in the program 'NetworkCoaching FutureDesigner', which seeks to shape students' ability to address sustainable futures using a train-the-trainer approach. Successive cohorts of c. 200 Bachelor of Education students are divided into 'Coaches' and 'Peers', and self-organized into small peer-peer coaching groups to train in sustainability education. The program also emphasizes training in individual reflexivity and critical perspectives on their habitual beleifs and patterns, as well as developing a sense of possibility and crafting their own vision of sustainable futures. In the broader university context, bachelor programs are designed to maximize interdisciplinarity and allow for multiple (and inclusive) possible combinations of disciplines. In addition, all students take 'MarSkills' courses, ungraded courses on e.g. climate protection.


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