Add to watchlist


41829-01 - Lecture with practical courses: Perspectives of Social Sciences on Sustainability 3 CP

Semester fall semester 2019
Course frequency Every fall sem.
Lecturers Rony Emmenegger (, Assessor)
Content The lecture is offered within the scope of the "Transfaculty cross section program Sustainable Development" (Transfakultäres Querschnittsprogramm TQ NE). The program consists of 3 introductory lectures with practical courses (lecture A + B, respectively, offered in fall semesters, C offered in spring semesters) dedicated to conveying the foundations of sustainable development. An additional integration seminar (D, offered in spring semesters) engages with interdisciplinary work. The assignment and completion of D requires the successful completion of two lectures from A, B, C.
This lecture with practical courses (lecture B) deals with the analysis of sustainability problems and problem solving from different social science perspectives. It seeks to clarify the prerequisites and conditions, as well as the possibilities and limits of dealing with sustainability problems and fostering societal transformations toward sustainability.
The topic "Food and Sustainability" serves as an integration focus for the entire TQ NE and, thus, also for this lecture. Food is analyzed as a social, cultural and political phenomenon in relation to sustainable development: What can social sciences contribute to a differentiated understanding of food-related sustainability problems and their solutions? (e.g., mass husbandry, famine, overfishing, urban gardening, etc.)
The class includes a lecture and topic-specific practical course. While the lecture deals with systematic overview knowledge, the practical course focus on empirical case studies.
Learning objectives The lecture aims at the acquisition of the following competences:
- Professional competences: Students are familiar with selected social science perspectives relevant to the analysis of the link between sustainability and food. In addition, they have exemplary empirical knowledge on selected sustainability problems in the subject area of food and sustainability.
- Methodological competences: Students are able to develop and apply strategies and techniques for the research and structuring of information. They are also able to apply specific social science perspectives to the analysis of a sustainability problem and to reflect the knowledge gained thereby.
- Social and self-competences: Students can organize group work and organize and carry out results-oriented activities. They can argue their own positions in a small group and in front of a larger audience, defend against objections and reflect on the basis of critical objections by others
Bibliography tba
Comments The kick-off event is organized together with lecture A (41828) on Tuesday, 17.09.19 from 14.15 until 18.00. Content: What is sustainability? Role of science in sustainability; How can I develop a sound judgment on a topic of the sustainability without risking a one-sided assessment?

Practical course
Each student has to attend 3 sessions of practical course (each 90 minutes) and 1 lesson with presentation in the course of the lecture taking place on pre-determined dates according to the announcement in the lecture itself.
The groups are organized together with the enrolled students at the beginning of the teaching period.
Venue: Vesalianum, Vesalgasse 1, 2nd floor, meeting room 02.03a (exceptions will be communicated).

Extra certificate
Students who successfully complete all four classes of the TQ NE can apply for an additional certificate at the end of their studies (final degree diploma must be ready and available). Please send an email to, with details of first and last name, student number, postal address.

MSD 2017
Students who have already attended a similar class are supposed to contact Prof. Dr. P. Burger and determine with him a substitute. Don’t forget to fix the learning agreement (see template on the website MSD/downloads MSD 2017). Also, students with an academic background in the fields of social sciences but without the focus area in social sciences are supposed to contact Prof. Burger.

This lecture is offered by the "Transfaculty cross section program Sustainable Development" (TQ NE), Dr. Rony Emmenegger is staff member of the Sustainability Research Group, Department of Social Sciences.


Admission requirements This class is open to students from the University of Basel who at least are studying in their third semester!
Language of instruction English
Use of digital media No specific media used


Interval weekly
Date 17.09.2019 – 21.01.2020
Time Tuesday, 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114

Kick-off: 17.09.19: 14.15 - 18.00h (together with lecture 41828).
Exam: 21.01.2020: 16.15 to 17.15 h (60 min.)

Date Time Room
Tuesday 17.09.2019 14.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, (zusammen mit 41828)
Tuesday 24.09.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 01.10.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 08.10.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 15.10.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 22.10.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 29.10.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 05.11.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 12.11.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 19.11.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 26.11.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 03.12.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 10.12.2019 16.15-18.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 17.12.2019 16.15-17.45 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 114
Tuesday 21.01.2020 16.15-17.00 Kollegienhaus, Hörsaal 115
Modules Grundkurse (Transfakultäre Querschnittsprogramme im freien Kreditpunkte-Bereich)
Modul Grundlagenbereich Gesellschaftswissenschaften (Master's Studies: Sustainable Development (Start of studies before 01.08.2017))
Modul: Vertiefung Landschaft und Umwelt (Bachelor's degree subject Geography)
Modul: Vertiefung Politikwissenschaft M.A. (Master's degree subject Political Science)
Module: Complementary Knowledge in Social Sciences (Master's Studies: Sustainable Development)
Vertiefungsmodul Global Europe: Umwelt und Nachhaltigkeit (Master's Studies: European Global Studies)
Assessment format proof of course participation
Assessment details Regular attendance of lecture and practical course, written examination: Tuesday, 21.01.2020: 16.15 to 17.15 h (60 min.), room tba.
Assessment registration/deregistration Reg./dereg.: course registr./cancel registr. via MOnA
Repeat examination one repetition, best attempt counts
Scale 1-6 0,1
Repeated registration as often as necessary
Responsible faculty University of Basel
Offered by Departement Umweltwissenschaften