UNESCO Chair Hochschulbildung für nachhaltige Entwicklung
Mission / Vision
The INFU - Institute for Environmental and Sustainability Communication is embedded into Faculty III (Environment and Technics) at the Leuphana University Lüneburg, Germany. The institute consists of 3 working areas (Environmental and Sustainability Communication / Environmental Informatics / Participation and Sustainable Development). The common frame of all the institutes interdisciplinary research and educational activities is formed by the concept of Sustainability.
With its core focus on communication and education for sustainable development, INFU staff provides lectures to students, conducts a variety of inter- and transdisciplinary projects in an academic context. Additionally, INFU offers advisory functions to public authorities and private stakeholders on the sustainable organizational development and participation and cooperation. The research group for environmental informatics and new media focuses inter alia on virtual communities, blended learning and e-learning, man-machine communication, sustainable development in the information age, new media in the domain of sustainability communication.
The main objective of the UNESCO Chair Higher Education for Sustainable Development is the promotion and inclusion of sustainable development as a paradigm for higher education at all relevant levels.
Since its inauguration, the UNESCO Chair Higher Education for Sustainable Development is active to stimulate international debate about the meaning of sustainability as a paradigm for higher education institutions. Two international conferences in 2005 and 2007 discussed various aspects, among them regional interpretations of sustainability needs. Both conferences helped starting a global network of higher education representatives active or interested in sustainability issues.
On national and European level, the activities of the UNESCO Chair Higher Education for Sustaianable Development helped bringing forward the concepts of inter- and transdisciplinary education and research, to counterbalance disciplinary approaches which are equally needed to achieve sustainability.
On a regional level, activities led to the successful restructuring of the curriculum at Lüneburg University. On a broader level, the UNESCO Chair has been influencing national and international policy on higher education for sustainable development. As a member of the German working group on higher education of the UN Decade Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), the Chair continuously works on the inclusion of sustainability as a paradigm for higher education in Germany and Europe.