July 17, 2012
Arizona State University, in coordination with Leuphana University in Germany, has launched an educational pilot project that will lay the groundwork for an intensive institutional collaboration in undergraduate education. Sustainability Scientist Manfred Laubichler will lead the project with input from numerous other sustainability scientists from across ASU.
Funded by a $900,000 award from the Mercator Foundation, the ASU-Leuphana program will focus on the topic “Sustainable Cities: Contradiction of Terms?” The program will utilize virtual conferencing using the technology of Vidyo, a revolutionary video conferencing platform; intensive writing assignments and student writing workshops; online exhibits; peer-to-peer mentoring and in-person international exchange.
"We asked, ‘what if as we teach about sustainability, conservation biology, science, humanities and culture, we have students from Europe, South America, China, and the U.S. all talking together?’” said ASU vice provost Robert Page. “There would be differing views and the sharing of those views might allow students to develop solutions to challenges that none could have conceived of individually. And so was born the concept of a global classroom.”