Two new Leiden-Delft-Erasmus minors will begin in September 2017: ‘Frugal Innovation for Sustainable Global Development’ and ‘Geo-resources for the Future’. Both multidisciplinary minors are easily accessible for Bachelor’s students at Leiden University, TU Delft and Erasmus University Rotterdam. Lecturers from these three universities all contribute expertise from their respective disciplines. In both minors, participants have the opportunity to work with students from other universities and fields, allowing them to step outside of their monodisciplinary frame of reference.
In addition to academic modules in both minors, the students will also attend (guest) lectures from experts from the business community, government bodies and NGOs. And in the second quarter they will work in small multidisciplinary groups on a case. In the minor Frugal Innovation for Sustainable Global Development students will work in a so-called pressure-cooker environment on a real-life case. They will integrate economic, sustainability and developmental perspectives. In the second part of these minor, students will put their acquired expertise into practice during an internship in Kenya, South Africa or India. In the minor Geo-resources for the Future: Social, Economic, Environmental, and Political Challenges students deepen their knowledge by working on a case they chose themselves. This minor is offered in a so-called ‘blended’ form (a combination of lectures and online materials) and contains many interactive teaching methods in which students learn together, for example in debates, games and workshops.
‘Frugal Innovation for Sustainable Global Development’ minor.
Frugal Innovation concerns the (re)development of products, services and systems for the lowest possible cost price, while retaining user quality. Frugal Innovation can therefore make a substantial difference to the quality of life of consumers and producers at the lower levels of the socio-economic pyramid. This burgeoning innovation concept is also linked to issues of economic and ecological sustainability and social inclusion – not only in developing countries, but also in Europe. This minor introduces students from a range of degree programmes to the concept of Frugal Innovation, the underlying principle of ‘frugality’ and the applicability of the concept within the framework of the United Nations’ sustainable development objectives. This minor was developed by the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre for Frugal Innovation in Africa.
‘Geo-resources for the Future: Social, Economic, Environmental and Political Challenges’ minor
Geo-resources play a role in numerous aspects of our daily lives. Consider not only the petrol that fuels our cars and buses, or gas that warms our homes, but also applications such as the metals in solar panels, wind turbines, electrical motors and mobile telephones. This minor teaches students to draw on various disciplines to explore the responsible use and trade of geological resources.
We are facing challenges: increasing CO2 emissions are causing climate change and call for an energy transition towards renewable energy sources. In addition, the supplies of fossil fuels and minerals are limited and their availability and prices strongly depend on global politics. In order to tackle this complex societal challenge, various viewpoints have to be considered. In this Minor, you will learn about the various disciplines that are involved in a responsible exploitation and trading of geo-resources and practice their integration. You will work on economic, environmental and social aspects that are needed to achieve a ‘licence to operate’. How is it done today and what do we need to change tomorrow?