Dr. rer. nat. Tanja Behrendt

University of Oldenburg

Leena Karrasch, Malena Ripken and Tanja Behrendt

Aalborg University

Lise Schrøder

Henning Sten Hansen

University of the Aegean

Iosif Botetzagias

Open University of the Netherlands

Raoul Beunen

University of Aberta

Sandra Sofia Ferreira da Silva Caeiro

Sara Pereira

University of Bucharest

Alexandru Andrasanu

Cristina Toma

Content and Schedule

Content and Schedule

You will profit from the specific topical expertise of the lecturers from the partner universities as well as invited experts. Topical foundation and stimulus and insights in current management practices will be provided in virtual talks, discussions and case study topics.


You can expect:

1. Lecture series

  • Recorded lectures for flexible, asynchronous learning
  • interactive group discussions on the topics every two weeks


Introduction - University Oldenburg

In the beginning a general introduction into the idea and structure of the lecture series will be given. The students of the course get to know each other and the different experts from the partner universities.

1. Environmental Governance - Open University of the Netherlands

Environmental governance is a term that refers to the way in which communities – e.g. different countries – organise planning, steering, and decision-making about a particular environmental issue. Governance concerns, among other things, decisions about the problems that need to be addressed, the actors that need to be involved and their role in the process, the knowledge that is mobilised, and the instruments that are used for planning, steering and coordination. This lecture will give a general introduction to environmental governance and elaborate on some key concepts for analysing and comparing governance practices in different European countries.

2. Environmental Justice - University Oldenburg

This lecture will provide a basic introduction to the concept of environmental justice, its origins and subsequent evolution and international proliferation. Main focus of the lecture is to shed light on the distributive and procedural aspects of environmental justice, and to examine interlinkages between these two concepts.

3. Spatial Planning - Aalborg University

Spatial planning aims at balancing the use and protection of areas in support of a sustainable development, both in an environmental, societal as well as economic perspective. Holistic spatial planning systems are needed regarding land areas, at sea as well as in the interconnecting areas of land and sea, the coasts. This lecture will introduce spatial planning its processes in general.

4. Marine Spatial Planning - Oldenburg University

European Seas belong to the busiest ones for transport and maritime industries, being at the same time an important environmental asset. Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) has become increasingly important in recent years, as it offers an operational framework to maintain the value of marine biodiversity, while simultaneously allowing sustainable use of the economic potential. This lecture will introduce MSP and its processes to balance conflicting interests of maritime stakeholders and the marine environment towards healthy, resilient and productive oceans.

5. Marine Litter and Waste Management - University of Aberta

Ocean pollution, in particular debris in the marine and coastal environment - marine litter -, is a global challenge with remarkable environmental, social, and economic impacts. The problem is mainly attributed to society through its activities and behaviors. With this lecture, the marine litter topic is introduced together with its impacts and how individual and collective practices and waste management actions can be adopted to curb the problem.

6. Climate Change Science Basics and Modelling - Oldenburg University

Ongoing research on the climate system (e.g. paleoclimatology, radiative/heat transfer, circulation patterns) made global climate change as well as the influence of human emissions of greenhouse gases evident. The lecture will give an overview of the models and observations used to understand present and re-construct past climate, identify and quantify drivers for the global energy (im)balance and their effects on temperature, atmospheric circulations and water systems. Based on future emission scenarios, projections on the future climate as well as impact and risk assessment can be performed on global, regional and local scale.

7. Communicating Climate Change - University of the Aegean

Getting people to act on any issue has an essential prerequisite: to inform them about the issue and make them perceive it as a “problem” requiring some kind of action or solution. The main venue where interested or affected parties are presenting their (conflicting) views on CC mitigation/adaptation are the mass media. Quite different strategies and approaches should be developed, depending on the interests and purpose of the emitter of the message and the target group and the approach chosen. In this lecture we will discuss how environmental claims are presented (and covered) in printed media with a special emphasis on how best (and most effectively) communicate CC action.

8. Coastal Management: Resilience - Oldenburg University

Management of coastal regions is a complex task. When such a vulnerable social-ecological system is disturbed by a flood event, returning to the state prior to disaster is often undesirable. Unimproved re-establishing would put the area at the same risk. Instead, the imperative is to learn individual´s and society´s lessons from experience and to transform to a less vulnerable and more resilient state. The topic of this lecture is, how transformation towards flood resilient coastal areas can be promoted.

9. Climate Change Adaptation - Aalborg University

Climate change has a lot of awareness all over the world, and not least in the coastal areas, where sea level rise and flooding become more and more challenging, climate change adaptation plays an important role.

Traditionally, climate change adaptation has taken place by means of engineering solutions as dikes against sea level rise and river flooding, though the focus on nature-based solutions, which also contributes to the mitigation efforts, is now becoming further developed.

This lecture will introduce the various types of solutions and how they fit to different conditions and prioritisations.

10. Lock-ins in coastal adaptation policy in the Netherlands, Germany and England - Open University of the Netherlands

In this lecture, you will learn about the ways in which climate adaptation in the Netherlands, Germany and England is constrained in the area of coastal risk management. In this context, the concept of lock-in will be introduced and applied. Lock-in refers to a situation in which the status quo is actively kept in place, which hampers change. This lock-in is brought about by a combination of factors relating to behaviour, institutions, and infrastructure & technology, which reinforce a certain way of working through time.

11. Water and Climate Change in UNESCO Global Geoparks - University of Bucharest

UNESCO Global Geoparks are single, unified geographical areas where geological, biological and cultural heritages are managed with a holistic concept of protection, education and sustainable development. In their bottom-up approach two of the key subjects are climate changes issue and water management while involving local communities. The topic will focus on strategies, activities and examples from Romania and Global Geoparks.

12. TBA


2. Seminar

(limited number of students; 30 students in total)

  • Six small international, interdisciplinary groups for each topic of about 5 students
  • Problem-based, self-directed and research based learning by students
  • Each group is supervised by the lecturer of that topic
  • Presentation of results in written form and podcast or video

Open University of the Netherlands

Environmental Governance

Each country deals with environmental issues such as water and climate in their own specific way, often facing particular challenges and developing their own policies and governance approaches. Comparing governance in different countries is a useful means to learn about innovative solutions and effective approaches. In this case study you will therefore analyse and compare the way different countries govern water and climate issues to identify strengths and weaknesses of each governance approach and to formulate recommendations to improve governance.

Aalborg University

Climate change measures in a holistic planning setting

Spatial planning aims at balancing the use and protection of areas in support of a sustainable development. In many coastal areas climate change measures are becoming more and more crucial to deal with, and it has to be considered in a holistic planning setup taking into account environmental, societal as well as economic issues. In this case study you are going to analyse the needs regarding a climate change challenge in a coastal planning context. Based on an analysis of these needs, different possible solutions should be identified and assessed in order to suggest a sustainable and resilient solution.

Oldenburg University

Multi-use at sea for a sustainable and healthy North Sea region

The Sea, and especially European Seas are characterized by an increasing amount of activities, interests and uses. Ranging from traditional ones like shipping and fisheries all the way to new emerging uses like offshore wind and aquaculture. At the same time, the marine space is also an important environmental asset. As many users compete for limited space, planning must be systematic and coordinated to account for existing uses and future needs. In this case study you will have a detailed look at multi-use at sea and its opportunities and barriers for future development in marine planning.

University of Aberta

Marine litter and waste management

Marine litter is a serious and global issue that poses remarkable environmental, economic, and social impacts. The problem is mainly attributed to society through its activities and behaviors. In this case study, you are asked to select a region, identify the main problems, chose the actors, and propose individual and collective practices and waste management actions that can be adopted to curb the problem.

University of the Aegean

Communicating Climate Change

In this case study your goal is to identify and analyze how formal actor(s) (i.e. government, industry, ENGOs etc) shape their message about Climate Change in a mass-media context (newspapers, radio, Facebook, twitter etc) as well as to which extent they engage in an activating sustainability communication strategy, i.e., a strategy that “gets people to act on the issue”.

University of Bucharest

Water and climate change in UNESCO global geoparks

The course will discuss the geopark approach concerning the management capacity, the planning dimension (including for water and climate change), all in concordance with 2030 SDG and UNESCO priorities. The case studies will be focused on research activities related to UNESCO Geoparks in their own countries taking into consideration the following research questions:

  1. How did the geopark approach the climate change mitigation and/or adaptation?
  2. How did the geopark approach water related SDGs?
  3. How did the geopark approach climate change and water issue based on education, tourism (interpretation, communication, and businesses as new geoproducts, accommodation, and restaurants), relationship with local authorities and stakeholders?
Information, data and contacts will be provided and the students will be guided in order to identify the main geoparks issues.


(Stand: 20.04.2022)