Moving Universities: A Case Study on the Use of Unconferencing for Facilitating Sustainability Learning in a Swiss University
Unconferencing is a method for organizing social learning which could be suitable to trigger sustainability learning processes. An unconference is defined as participant-driven meeting that tries to avoid one or more aspects of a conventional conference, such as top-down organization, one-way communication and power-relationships based on titles, formal hierarchies and status. This paper presents a case study on the application of unconferencing in a large Swiss university (ETH Zurich) where an unconference was conducted to engage students, academics, staff and external experts in a mutual learning process aimed at the development of project ideas for reducing its CO 2 emissions. The study analyzes how the unconferencing format initiated and promoted sustainability oriented group processes during the unconference, and in how far the projects which were developed contributed to a reduction of the university’s CO 2 emissions.
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