Course Syllabus for

The Designer/Engineer and Sustainable Development
Designern/ingenjören och hållbar utveckling

IDE035F, 7.5 credits

Valid from: Spring 2016
Decided by: FN3/Per Tunestål
Date of establishment: 2015-11-12

General Information

Division: Department of Design Sciences
Course type: Third-cycle course
Teaching language: English


An overall aim is to create an understanding of complex socio-ecological systems and the importance of multi-disciplinary efforts and how to deal with current and future uncertainties. Sustainable development in the course refers to the development at the global, regional and local levels as defined in the Brundtland Commission report ‘Our common future’, with the three pillars of environmental, social and economic sustainability. The aim of part I of the course is to give PhD students in depth knowledge of sustainable development. This knowledge will increase the student’s ability to identify possibilities and risks associated with sustainability when developing products, processes and systems. The aim of Part II is that the doctoral student acquires knowledge specific to the student's research subject.


Knowledge and Understanding

For a passing grade the doctoral student must

Competences and Skills

For a passing grade the doctoral student must

Judgement and Approach

For a passing grade the doctoral student must

Course Contents

The course is divided into two parts. Part 1 consists of essential knowledge in sustainable development (5hp). Part 2 provides in depth knowledge in the doctoral student’s own discipline (2.5 hp). Part 1 is divided into modules. Some modules have online video-introductions, some have introductory seminars and others introductory reading materials and group discussions. Definition of sustainable development. History. Climate change and its effects. Planetary boundaries. Circular economy. Lice-cycle analysis. Food security. Social aspects. Health and Occupational Health. Sustainable city. Poverty. Complex systems. The designer/engineer and sustainable development. Part 2. A literature review of ongoing research in sustainability in relation to the student’s own discipline. Project work.

Course Literature

Braungart, M. & McDonough, W.: Cradle to Cradle. Remaking the way we make things. VINTAGE, 2009. ISBN 9780099535478.
The course will include a variety of literature, from scientific journals to online video's.

Instruction Details

Types of instruction: Lectures, seminars, project, self-study literature review. Introductions by teachers in the classroom and in online video's.

Examination Details

Examination formats: Written report, written assignments, miscellaneous. Active participation in introductions in lecture rooms, workshops and seminars. Presentation of the literature review and project work.
Grading scale: Failed, pass

Admission Details

Admission requirements: Accepted to PhD education at a technical faculty

Further Information

The course will go ahead when there is enough interested PhD students. Maximum 20 participants. The course is planned to start January 2016.

Course Occasion Information

Contact and Other Information

Course coordinator: Jessica Wadin <>
Web page:

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