The first Climate University courses open to all the students at the network universities will start in January 2022 and registration for them is open now. Specialists from the different universities have collaborated to design the instruction within the courses. INAR, the Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research at the University of Helsinki, is the organisation administering the network.
– The climate is a convoluted system and climate change will affect all of us. This is why it is vital to increase awareness and understanding. The Climate University is a very good tool for that, says Academy Professor Markku Kulmala, director of INAR.
The first Climate University courses to open are:
- Leadership for sustainable change (University of Helsinki is primarily in charge)
- SystemsChange.now (Aalto University)
- ClimateComms.now / Ilmastoviestintä.nyt (University of Oulu)
The course materials are open for everybody, but to get credits for the courses, you must be registered as a student at one of the partnering universities or the Open University. The courses mainly run online, but in addition to remote assignments, the instructors responsible for each course will offer real-time instruction, as well, and will grade the students' performances.
The Climate University courses are geared towards students, teachers, and anyone already in the labour market, who are interested in themes of climate change and sustainability. The main language of the courses is English, but they are also being translated into Finnish and Swedish.
The other partnering universities besides the University of Helsinki are Aalto University, Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences, Häme University of Applied Sciences, the University of Eastern Finland, the University of Jyväskylä, LAB University of Applied Sciences, the University of Lapland, LUT University, Laurea University of Applied Sciences, Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, the University of Oulu, Hanken School of Economics, Uniarts Helsinki, the University of Tampere, Turku University of Applied Sciences, the University of Turku, and the University of Vaasa.
The academic rector of the University of Eastern Finland, Tapio Määttä, has worked for establishing the operations of the network and promoting the collaboration contract. He considers the principles of the network exemplary.
– The courses produced by different universities are widely available to all the students at the networked universities. The network has also inspired instructors to develop courses together, Määttä says.
– It is very good that nearly all Finnish universities of applied sciences and universities are partners in CU. This is a good place to set off towards being a global influencer, adds Kulmala.
The Climate University, open since the start of the year, is a network of Finnish universities offering the sustainability- and climate-themed courses of 18 universities on one website.