Summer School
© Enrique
Blue Science - Social and Ecological Responsibility across disciplines
On-Campus:17.7 - 11.8.20235 ECTS

max. 24 participants
Registration Deadline: June 19th, 2023

Register now!


TU Berlin Summer & Winter School
+49 30 4472 0230


Blue Science is a module that allows students to experience interactive university teaching and learning by dealing with their social and ecological responsibility in concrete and active ways. It came up as an transdisciplinary extension of the seminar Blue Engineering, which has been offered for over 10 years, promoting socially and ecologically responsible engineering through a variety of alternative teaching methods. Blue Science is open for students of all areas and backgrounds with an interest in technology. / Science and its relation to technology, individuals, nature and society is reflected, analyzed and questioned in interdisciplinary discussions facilitated through diverse methods. Students are encouraged to think and learn independently and creatively, and therefore teacher-centered instruction does not occur in this module. Students acquire the competence to unveil the complex interdependency of their social, political, ecological and economic surroundings. This includes the consideration of different values, interests and needs within a global perspective as well as within one class(room). The course design encourages democratic decision-making not only to solve but also to define problems within the course itself and moreover outside of the classroom. / By developing and carrying out their own teaching units, students are actively involved in the teaching process and co-create the course. This allows students to bring in their own areas of interest and to share their findings and points of view with others, creating learning material that may be used in future editions of the module.

Learning Goals & Syllabus

By the end of the module, students will...

  • have developed a framework to reflect on scientific achievements in general and their own personal responsibility;
  • have acquired the competence to unveil the complex interdependence of their social, political, ecological and economic surroundings;
  • have developed and strengthened competences such as perspective-taking, interdisciplinary knowledge acquisition, dealing with incomplete and over-complex information, cooperation and coping with individual decision dilemmas;
  • be able to structure and develop interactive learning units to mediate contents and facilitate discussions on topics of their interest;
  • be able to recognize potential spaces to democratically change their own learning experience within their university.

Main course components

The course consists of a few regular lectures and mostly of building blocks which will be conducted by the lecturers and the students themselves. In addition, the students will create, conduct and finally document their own building block for further use. There will also be one excursion per week. / Building blocks, i.e., self-contained study-elements, are the core of the Blue Engineering and the Blue Science courses. They provide clear didactical instructions to facilitate a 90 minutes class as well as compact, yet multiple perspectives on a complex topic, e.g., ethical codes, recycling, pre-implementation diagnostics, social businesses and cooperatives. Some of these study elements help to thoroughly analyze single technologies, e.g., energy saving light bulbs, in respect to the ecological, social, economical, political and gender related impacts of these technologies. In other building blocks, students learn to shift away from the general paradigm of their areas of study. They are encouraged to become problem definers in all areas, including their own proper working conditions. Along with the wide variety of topics, every single building block uses a specific set of wide-spread teaching formats such as case studies, story-telling and station learning. Most building-blocks, however, rely on a specific adaptation and new combination of known methods, e.g. learning cascades, advocatus diaboli, triangular method, evaluation sculpture, crime scene investigations and court trials, educational games and challenges. On top, several building blocks make use of newly created methods or are built according to specific forms of pedagogy.


A detailed syllabus with information on the schedule will be made available to registered participants.
You may find the syllabus useful when discussing with your home university whether the ECTS credits attainable for this course are accepted by them.

Please note this is a full-time, intensive course and participants will be expected to attend lectures (18 hours of class per week) and complete independent study Monday through Friday. Additional study may also be required on weekends. The activities of the cultural program are also shown in the syllabus.

Target Audience

Blue Science is open to students with an interest in the workings of science on technology, individuals, nature and society with regards to socio-ecological responsibility. Participants from all fields and disciplines are welcome.


To participate in the Blue Science module it is necessary to take on an active role in the process of learning and teaching. The highly interactive character of the module requires participation with video and audio throughout the whole module.


André Baier is a philosopher and democracy educator. He has a Master Degree in Philosophy of TU Berlin as well as of Université Rennes 1. His dissertation is on Education for Sustainable Development within the Engineering Sciences. He currently holds a postdoc position at TU Berlin, where he is responsible for the study reform project "Blue Engineering - Engineers with social and ecological responsibility". In addition, he is coordinator of the Sustainability Certificate for Students and vice chairman of the Sustainability Council at TU Berlin. He is a teaching fellow for excellence in higher education of the Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft and member of the teaching excellence network Lehren. In 2019 the European Society for Engineering Education awarded him the SEFI Francesco Maffioli Award of Excellence for Developing Learning and Teaching in Engineering Education. He has been visiting lecturer at TU Delft, Aalborg University, University of Cape Town and Sharif University of Technology Tehran.

Anton Schaefer has been a shaping member of the Blue Engineering team since 2014. He likes to explore innovative formats such as exhibitions, soirées and university courses to foster discussion on the many facets of social and ecological responsibility. He holds a Master’s degree in Computational Engineering Science from TU Berlin and works as a research assistant and lecturer at the same university.

Lucía Alvarez is an educator with experience in language teaching, teacher’s training and digitalization of educational processes. She graduated in German Studies at the Federal University of Paraná and defended her master thesis in Education at the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro. At the moment, she is working on her PhD research at the Technische Universität Berlin on education for sustainability in engineering careers. She is one of the facilitators of the Critical Sustainability module, which is offered by TU-Berlin as part of the sustainability certificate for students.

Vanessa Schaller has been a student tutor for Blue Engineering since 2021 and has brought the course concept to TU Delft, the first university of the Blue Engineering family outside of Germany. She holds a Master’s degree in Condensed Matter Physics from TU Munich and is currently visiting the National University of Colombia in Bogotá as a guest lecturer. In parallel, she is pursuing a double MSc degree in Environmental Engineering and Industrial Ecology at TU Delft and Leiden University.

Course fees

Course fees for Blue Science - Social and Ecological Responsibility are as follows:

  • Student: 1950 Euro
  • Working professional/Non-student: 2340 Euro

Please note that students will be required to upload proof of their student status (student card/ enrollment information) during the registration process.

Summer School On-Campus:17 July - 11 August, 20235 ECTS credit points