Syllabus academic year 2010/2011
(Created 2010-07-25.)
Credits: 7,5. Grading scale: UG. Cycle: G2 (First Cycle). Main field: Technology. Language of instruction: The course will be given in Swedish. Compulsory for: N3. Course coordinator: Knut Deppert,,, and Elisabeth Nilsson,, Department of Physics. Recommended prerequisits: 120 credits within the Engineering Nanoscience programme or corresponding. The number of participants is limited to 50 Selection criteria: Priority is given to students within the Engineering Nanoscience programme. Other students are admitted on the basis of credits remaining for the degree. Assessment: Mandatory presence and active participation in lectures, group discussions, final conference and follow-up of conference. Mandatory written reports.

The course is aiming at giving the student the ability to work for a sustainable development by problematizing around and by adopting a critical attitude towards his/her role within, and influence on, society.

Knowledge and understanding
For a passing grade the student must

* have a fundamental knowledge of sustainable development.

* be able to describe different aspects on sustainable development and their respective connection to certain problems within nanotechnology, especially

* have fundamental knowledge of meeting modes and rethorics.

* have an understanding of how group-processes are used for and work to reach agreement in decisions.

Skills and abilities
For a passing grade the student must

be able to

* find and value information of immediate importance concerning sustainable development.

* relate earlier achieved knowledge to a sustainable development.

* identify and, from different aspects/interests, describe problems which can lead to a non-sustainable development.

* formulate and present arguments in smaller group-discussions as well as in big official meetings.

Judgement and approach
For a passing grade the student must

be able to

* independently as well as in a group situation create a sustainable and from relevant aspects well illustrated solution to a problem.

* critically analyze and assess the sustainability in solutions presented to her.

The student is trained in critical thinking and awareness on the basis of his/her future role as an engineer. This is done by dividing the students into groups representing "stakeholders", i.e. groups with different interests within the international community. Examples of groups can be researchers (within nanotechnology), government representatives from industrial nations and/or developing countries, lobbyists from multinational companies, health organizations, NGO:s with interests in environmental questions and/or human rights or (inter)national regulation agencies. A question at issue concerning nanotechnology is given to all groups of interest. The groups are then supposed to take a position on the issue on basis of the interests of the respective group. The goal is that all groups at the end agree on a roadmap concerning the question at issue. Negotiations in inter-group meetings and on the concluding 24h-conference have to lead to agreement on a common document, a roadmap. The students are supposed to present and defend the roadmap at a press-meeting in immediate connection to the concluding conference. Students, teachers, journalists and special guests are invited to attend this press-meeting.

Lectures are given to inspire the students and to give them an insight to the parts of society mainly affected from problems within the area of sustainable development. The lectures can discuss e.g. rethorics, meeting modes, ethics, practical environmental work, regulations of chemicals, economics, jurisprudence, politics and global environmental justice.

Since great importance is attached to every student's individual development concerning attitudes towards the issue of sustainability, the course ends with a follow-up-discussion. Questions about the quality and the planning of the course are raised and discussed. Every student should reflect over standpoints taken and the background for taking these standpoints.

Written material from lectures and groupwork are distributed via the course web-page. Group discussions and comments can be followed via the course web-forum.