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Sustainability Studies

Sustainability Studies

Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. That is perhaps the most common definition of ‘sustainable development’, as laid down in the 1987 report “Our Common Future” by the World Commission on Environment and Development (commonly known as the “Brundtland Report”). Sustainable development has three different dimensions; ecological, social and economic sustainability. Today, many believe that ecological sustainability constitutes a basis and a prerequisite for the other two.

Sustainability issues are a hot topic, debated both on a local, national and global level. We all must think about how we can contribute to a sustainable future – how to increase awareness and knowledge about sustainable use of natural resources, sustainable production and consumption, sustainable housing and transportation, social well-being, questions about peace, democracy equality and gender equality.

In 2015, almost 200 nations approved the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. These goals guide all of our work towards a sustainable world through Agenda 2030.

Sustainable Development is an interdisciplinary study entity at ÅAU. The courses can be completed according to your own interest or you can choose the subject as a minor subject for your degree.

Concepts of sustainability (5 ects), online

Link to the Study guide for more information about the course.
Time: 14.9–23.11.2022.
Teacher: MSc Sinikka Suomalainen, MSc Ea Blomqvist.
Enrollment no later than 1.9.2022 at: http://www.unipid.fi/students/virtual-studies/

Introduction to ESD – Education for Sustainable Development (5 ects), online

Link to the Study guide for more information about the course.
Time: 20.9.–9.12.2022.
Teacher: Cecilia Lundberg and Annina Kainu.
Enrolment 8.8.-11.9.2022.

Course Registration

Climate Change in the Baltic Sea Region

(5 ects), online

Link to the Study guide for more information about the course.
Time: 22.2-12.5 2023.
Teacher: Anders Sirén.
Enrolment 21.11.2022-12.2.2023.

Social Sustainability (5 ects), online

Link to the Study guide for more information about the course.
Time: 28.2.–21.5.2023.
Teacher: Annina Kainu.
Enrolment 21.11.2022-19.2.2023.

Course Registration

The minor subject in Sustainability Studies 25 cr

From the autumn of 2019, at least two out of the the following “basic studies” must be included in the minor subject Sustainability Studies:

  1. Ecogolical Sustainability 5 cr
  2. Social Sustianability 5 cr
  3. Sustainable and Circular Economy 5 cr

You can freely choose the rest of the courses. Below, you will find a list of courses in English offered by the Open University. Click here to see a list of all courses offered by the Open University, including those in Swedish. You can also choose courses offered by Åbo Akademi University, click here to see a list of courses.

Send your application for participation in the minor subject to education planner Johanna Fredenberg.

More information about fees, registration and studying at the Open University.

The complete list of sustainability courses offered in both English and Swedish.

Fredenberg, Johanna

Education Planner
Fabriksgatan 2, 20500 ÅBO
+3582 215 4177


Kainu, Annina

Education Planner
Fabriksgatan 2, 20500 ÅBO
+3582 215 4535, +35850 469 8219