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Training sessions fostering transdisciplinary collaboration for sustainable development: Albania and Kosovo case studies

Jonas Meyer (Regional Centre of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development (RCE) Graz-Styria, University of Graz, Austria)
Marlene Mader (UNESCO Chair in Higher Education for Sustainable Development, Leuphana University of Lüneburg, Lüneburg, Germany)
Friedrich Zimmermann (Regional Centre of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development (RCE) Graz-Styria, University of Graz, Austria)
Ketrina Çabiri (Department of Political Sciences, Universiteti Europian i Tiranes, Tirana, Albania)

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education

ISSN: 1467-6370

Article publication date: 3 July 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine sustainability-related challenges in the two Western Balkan countries – Albania and Kosovo. It discusses the opportunities of local higher education institutions (HEIs) taking responsibility to tackle these challenges by providing professional development through science–society collaboration in innovative training sessions for university educators.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review on actual challenges and transformations of higher education for sustainable development (ESD) in Albania and Kosovo will be the starting point of this paper. Subsequently, experiences from the on-going European Union (EU) project “ConSus” will be used to draw both a competence framework for ESD within science–society collaboration based on the training sessions, as well as possible scaling opportunities.

Findings

The paper draws possible approaches of training sessions for university educators promoting sustainable development and science–society collaboration in higher education. They will be concluded by addressing possible scaling opportunities of the project’s activities.

Practical implications

The experiences of the ConSus training sessions will outline competences of university educators in ESD gained in relation to transdisciplinary collaboration in research and teaching.

Originality/value

The paper will contribute to ESD approaches in higher education in Albania and Kosovo. Furthermore, scaling possibilities will be discussed to systematically implement ESD approaches also in higher hierarchical levels and other HEIs.

Keywords

Citation

Meyer, J., Mader, M., Zimmermann, F. and Çabiri, K. (2017), "Training sessions fostering transdisciplinary collaboration for sustainable development: Albania and Kosovo case studies", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 18 No. 5, pp. 738-757. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSHE-02-2016-0032

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited