Conceptual Foundation

The PhD study program of the Robert-Bosch research group “Processes of Sustainability Transformation” aims for the best support of each individual PhD student. As a “Community of Practice”, it is our collaborative effort and responsibility to make that happen. Thus, each individual study program is aligned with the overall research design and coordinated within the group. All PhD students have been actively involved in the planning and implementation process. This PhD program is guided by Leuphana’s conviction that a promising way to solve the complex problems of the 21st century is to enable students to assess problems and solutions from many perspectives. The framework of the educational program is aligned with the PhD Program of Leuphana’s Graduate School, responds to international recommendations for the support of doctoral education (EUA Council for Doctoral Education 2005), and is based on the concept of core sustainability competencies (Wiek et al. 2011). The framework still allows for flexibility to respond to individual needs and challenges of the students and scholars.

Innovative Pathways for Conducting a PhD Research

Our PhD study program offers the option to do an internship (up to 12 months) in a national research institution or an international partner university that adds benefit to the overall program objectives and the students’ prospective careers as sustainability change agents. Each host institution supports conceptual, theoretical, and empirical studies and the development of intercultural and transdisciplinary competencies of the participants.

Seminars and Workshops

The study program makes use of a large variety of learning formats in order to respond to varying needs and thus support the progress of each individual PhD.
  • Workshops are held regularly to engage with the foundations of transdisciplinary sustainability science and theories of transformation processes. These workshops are complemented by talks given by guest professors and invited speakers
  • Bi-weekly research colloquia offer the opportunity to present and discuss the progress on the individual PhD studies
  • Invited experts from various disciplines provide their expertise in methods, contexts and disciplines through interactive talks
  • Research symposia allow for an exchange with academic and non-academic stakeholders