Academic and professional knowledge and skills
As a Sustainable Development student, you will learn to:
- analyse, describe, and explain sustainability issues in terms of cause and effect, and place these issues in their societal context;
- apply scientific instruments in the areas of analysis, evaluation, and design;
- engage in a scientific debate on the issue of sustainable development and the international dimension of it;
- understand the often complex path to achieve sustainability, dealing with diverse interests, parties, and organisations; and
- communicate knowledge from the fields of natural sciences or social sciences on the issue of sustainable development verbally and in writing to a wide audience.
Energy and Materials
To a large extent, this track makes use of knowledge, methods, and techniques derived from the natural sciences. To a lesser extent, the track also applies knowledge and methods derived from the social sciences. As a graduate, you will have insight in the importance of both the natural and social science aspects of sustainability issues and you will have the skills to work in a multidisciplinary environment. You will learn to conduct independent research and design strategies to make energy and materials systems sustainable.
Environmental Change and Ecosystems
As a graduate of this track, you will be able to apply the knowledge, methods, and techniques (for instance mathematical simulation models) of the natural sciences in an effort to improve the quality of the environment and ecosystems by way of changes in human activities. Furthermore, you will have insight into the importance of conducting social science analyses of sustainability issues and have the skills to work in a multidisciplinary team.
Earth System Governance
As a graduate of this track, you will be able to apply concepts, paradigms, and theories from the social sciences to analyse and explain issues of sustainable development, and to design socially acceptable solutions for those issues. Furthermore, you will have insight into the importance of conducting both social and natural science analysis of sustainability issues and you will have the skills to work in a multidisciplinary team.
As a graduate of this track, you will be able to apply the knowledge, methods, and techniques of the social sciences to practical and policy issues of sustainable development in a developing country context. You will combine a solid grasp of natural resource management with the ability to analyse and plan for economic and social development in societies in the Global South. An important feature of the track is a concern with policy interventions in order to promote sustainable livelihoods.