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The massive open online course (MOOC) has been produced by the Interdisciplinary Distance Learning Programme in Environmental Sciences (infernum) at Hagen University, Germany, in collaboration with the Department of Political Science at Lund University in Sweden. “Climate Change: A Question of Justice?” will be held in English, is open to all, is free of charge, and comes with no obligations.

“2015 is a big year for the international politics of climate change. If you want to know what’s going on in Paris and beyond, you are welcome to take our course,” says Dr. Angela Oels, visiting professor at the Lund University.

Lectures begin on September 28 and run until November 23. Students who complete a multiple choice quiz after taking the lectures can get a certificate of participation free of charge.

Great line-up of speakers

“We are hoping to harness the great public interest in the UN climate summit in Paris by running the MOOC this autumn,” says Daniel Otto, research fellow at infernum, Hagen University.

“We have a great line-up of speakers for our MOOC,” says Oels, who has been responsible for putting the program together. The MOOC focuses on social science perspectives of climate change and features well-known experts and activists in the field of climate justice. Lennart Olssen, Johannes Stripple, Fariborz Zelli, Tobias Nielsen and Angela Oels from Lund University, and Doreen Stabinsky from College of the Atlantic are speakers in the MOOC.

The topics to be covered include the role of non-governmental organizations, the European emissions trading system, land-grabbing, divestment and de-growth. “We are keen to show that the politics of climate change is more than the international negotiations,” says Oels.

Interactive format

“We are trying to make this MOOC as interactive as possible,” says Sara Becker, research fellow, who works alongside Daniel Otto at Hagen University. “We challenged our professors to translate their research into everyday language and to be brief – no more than 15 minutes each.” Besides the short video lectures, which are accessible at any time, there will be lively discussions in the online fora. Each week, one professor will be online for one hour to engage with the questions raised in the online fora.

A Swedish-German collaboration project

The MOOC was initiated by Oels, former Scientific Director of the Interdisciplinary Distance Learning Programme in Environmental Sciences (infernum) at Hagen University. In 2015, Oels won a scholarship, the Humboldt Stipend from Riksbankens Jubileumsfond to work at the Department of Political Science at Lund University and Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies for one year. The filming for the MOOC was led by the Centre for Media and IT (ZMI) at Hagen University in collaboration with the Swedish media developer eduVID. On the German side, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research has sponsored the production of the MOOC. 

Free registration

Anyone interested in participating, or just curious, can register here.