Environmental Competences

Since the foundation of our University attitude towards the environment has always been an important part of our leading edge science. The environmental competences of our university consist of four strong elements: 

Study and early researcher programmes

Environmental education is an important element of the environmental profile of the University of Kassel. Over 200 lectures and seminars and around 20 study programmes have a clear environmental focus. Currently, in 16 master programmes students are educated in environmental sciences, may it be in organic agricultural science or renewable energy and energy efficiency. Most of these master degrees are integrated in the Graduate Center for Environmental Sciences (gradC). The gradC offers an additional programme to enhance the environmental competences of the students by organising study trips, certificates, and networking opportunities. The annual summer and winter universities especially aim at attracting international student to get to know the University of Kassel. 

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Research

The University of Kassel excels as a strong advocate of environmental research. For an extensive understanding of complex problems we integrate expertise from natural, technical and cultural sciences. This allows advanced interdisciplinary cooperation. Innovative problem solving methods are developed and applied leading to solutions for diverse aspects of life. Thematic sub-groups of the environmental research network accelerate the development of interdisciplinary research projects bringing together researcher from different backgrounds. Environmental sciences contribute  to the overall third funded projects with around twenty-five percent. 

Complementary to the University's competences, a number of cooperation agreements with other leading environmental research institutions have been signed.

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Activities and knowledge transfer

Activities such as children's university, student projects and public lectures that pick up an environmental topic of public interest or investigated at the University help to communicate the environmental competence of the University of Kassel to a wider public. The project course Solarcampus has established citizen funded PV plants on the roofs of some buidlings and thus made the public aware of the University's green profile. Activities such as  Hessen-Solarcup where young people build solar driven vehicles for a local competition aim at sensitising children and pupils to opt for a careers in some environmental field. Another focus is to communicate science by presenting research at fairs or local festivals such as the "Tag der Erde" (Earth Day Festival in Kassel). 

The University of Kassel guarantees knowledge transfer also through the cooperation with a number of local and regional political or business actors in Kassel and North Hesse.  The University and its spin offs have made North Hesse to a unique centre for renewable energy related industry, research and education activities of important regional value and beyond.  

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Sustainable @ Campus

An encompassing environmental profile requires to take action also at the campus of the University and thus to demonstrate that a sustainable lifestyle is not only theory. There are already some activities that contribute to a sustainable management of resources. A successful project is a student group under the supervision of two professors that help greening the campus in the field of energy consumption. PV plants had been installed at some roofs and energy efficiency measures are currently implemented. Offering organic and fair trade products at the university's cafeterias and restaurants, job ticket and green procurement are only some areas where the University of Kassel is making an effort of improving its overall footprint. Further measures need to be developed and implemented to achieve the target of a sustainable campus management.

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