Agroecologists without borders

A transdisciplinary seminar at ETH Zurich that combines teaching and a research project.

“Agroecologists without borders” is a seminar for Master Students in Agricultural and environmental sciences in ETH Zürich. The goal of this class is to introduce students to the complexity and challenges, both biophysical as well as socio-economic, inherent in agricultural development interventions and to develop their science communication skills by producing outreach materials in the context of a given case study. In 2021, the course focused on the ongoing research and development project “The Rural-Urban Nexus: Establishing a nutrient loop to improve city region food systems resilience” (RUNRES).

Moving all teaching activities to an online format provided the perfect opportunity to keep the participatory spirit of RUNRES itself. It was decided to exchange more closely with a wide range of key actors engaged in the transition towards sustainable and equitable community development based on a circular bioeconomy. A multi-stakeholder group (i.e., project manager, agricultural extension officer, local university students, school community and staff, etc.) worked intensively with the ETH students in an innovative transdisciplinary framework (using design thinking). The lecture format also enabled the development of social and personal competencies such as creative and critical thinking, cooperation and teamwork, sensitivity to diversity, self-awareness and self-reflection.

Need more information? Don’t hesitate to contact Kenza Benabderrazik directly!

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Agroecologists without borders