Zur Merkliste hinzufügen


72607-01 - Seminar: Sustainability From the Bottom-Up: How Grassroots Innovations Contribute to Societal Transitions 3 KP

Semester Herbstsemester 2024
Angebotsmuster einmalig
Dozierende Nadine Brühwiler (nadine.bruehwiler@unibas.ch)
Jens Köhrsen (jens.koehrsen@unibas.ch)
Lasse Kos (lasse.kos@unibas.ch)
Rebeca Roysen (rebeca.roysen@unibas.ch, BeurteilerIn)
Inhalt What for?
Against the backdrop of socio-ecological challenges such as climate change, current societies pursue transitions to become more sustainable in their lifestyles and forms of production. Scholarship on sustainability transitions regards grassroots innovations (GIs) as important sources of alternatives and good practices towards this goal. Examples of GIs are ecovillages, Transition Towns, urban gardens, community currencies and community energy. Local initiatives developing GIs (GI initiatives) are groups from civil society that experiment with social, cultural, economic or technological innovations in diverse fields such as energy, food, agriculture, housing, governance, communication, and economy. However, the potential of GIs as incubators for sustainability transitions is highly contested. In order to stimulate transition processes in the broader society, there is a need for successful exchanges between GI initiatives and other social actors. Creating successful exchanges with external actors is challenging, as these initiatives are likely to differ in their values and worldviews, organize their activities along dissimilar structures, and develop substantially different lifestyles. Therefore, in order to realize successful collaborations across these boundaries, GI initiatives and other actors (e.g. academics and politicians) need to learn how to work together. Only with successful collaborations with external actors can GI initiatives diffuse their innovations to broader society. In this seminar, we are going to discuss the challenges and potentials of GI initiatives in promoting transition processes towards more sustainable societies.

Course Structure
This seminar is organised around the conference Grassroots Innovations as Incubators for Sustainability Transitions (GIIST), which will take place at the University of Basel between September 25 and 27, 2024. In this conference, renowned scholars from the academic field related to GIs and sustainability transitions will present and discuss their research. Students will receive an introduction on the topic before the conference, attend the conference, and engage in critical reflection afterwards. Students will also be supervised in the task of peer-reviewing one of the presenters’ papers and/or presentations. At the end of the course, students will be asked to present their peer-reviews in small groups. Students have to send their final peer-reviews to rebeca.roysen@unibas.ch by 27.10.24, 23:55.
Lernziele Upon the completion of this course, you will be able to:
- Explain the main characteristics of grassroots innovations (GIs);
- Understand the challenges and potentials of GIs as incubators for transitions towards more sustainable societies;
- Critically reflect on the varied ways GI initiatives influence societies at large; and
- Peer-review academic papers and/or presentations.
Literatur Basic bibliography
1. Seyfang, G., Smith, A., 2007. Grassroots innovations for sustainable development:
towards a new research and policy agenda. Environ. Polit. 16, 584–603. https://doi.org/10.1080/09644010701419121.
2. Roysen, R., Bruehwiler, N., Kos, L., Boyer, R., Koehrsen, J., 2024. Rethinking the diffusion of grassroots innovations: An embedding framework. Technological Forecasting & Social Change, 200. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2023.123156.
3. PLOS (n/d). How to write a peer review. Available at: https://plos.org/resource/how-to-write-a-peer-review/. Access on: 29.02.2024.


Teilnahmebedingungen This seminar can have a maximum of 20 students
Unterrichtssprache Englisch
Einsatz digitaler Medien kein spezifischer Einsatz
HörerInnen willkommen


Intervall Wochentag Zeit Raum
wöchentlich Montag 14.15-16.00 Kollegienhaus, Seminarraum 103


Datum Zeit Raum
Montag 16.09.2024 14.15-16.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Seminarraum 103
Montag 23.09.2024 14.15-16.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Seminarraum 103
Mittwoch 25.09.2024 14.15-19.30 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 120
Donnerstag 26.09.2024 09.00-13.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 120
Donnerstag 26.09.2024 12.00-19.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Freitag 27.09.2024 09.00-12.30 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 120
Montag 30.09.2024 14.15-16.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Seminarraum 103
Montag 21.10.2024 14.15-16.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Seminarraum 103
Montag 28.10.2024 14.15-16.00 Uhr Kollegienhaus, Seminarraum 103
Module Modul: Institutionen, Verbände, Religionsgemeinschaften (Masterstudium: Religion - Wirtschaft - Politik)
Modul: Kernbereich Gesellschaftswissenschaften (Masterstudium: Sustainable Development)
Modul: Theologie im Kontext des Weltchristentums (Masterstudium: Theologie)
Vertiefungsmodul Global Europe: Arbeit, Migration und Gesellschaft (Masterstudium: European Global Studies)
Vertiefungsmodul Global Europe: Umwelt und Nachhaltigkeit (Masterstudium: European Global Studies)
Leistungsüberprüfung Leistungsnachweis
Hinweise zur Leistungsüberprüfung Evaluation:
The evaluation of the course will be on a pass/fail basis. In order to pass the course, students are required to (a) attend and participate in class and at the conference, and (b) write and present a peer-review (see details below).

Assignment: Peer review (2-3 pages)
Read the guide on how to conduct a peer-review and write a peer-review report on the selected paper/presentation. In this report, you need to summarise the paper/presentation and critically evaluate it.
Assessment Criteria
– The student accurately summarises the scholar’s paper and/or presentation;
– The student identifies the contributions of the paper/presentation and specific areas for improvement;
– The student justifies his/her recommendations;
– The student uses clear and respectful language.
An-/Abmeldung zur Leistungsüberprüfung Anmelden: Belegen; Abmelden: Dozierende
Wiederholungsprüfung eine Wiederholung, bester Versuch zählt
Skala Pass / Fail
Wiederholtes Belegen nicht wiederholbar
Zuständige Fakultät Theologische Fakultät, studiendekanat-theol@unibas.ch
Anbietende Organisationseinheit Zentr. Religion, Wirtschaft und Politik