Enhancing European Civic Practices and Sustainability (Sustain4EU)

Project manager at SASS: Assoc. Prof. Tea Golob, Ph.D.

Programme: Erasmus+
Action: Jean Monnet Activities, Modules

Project duration: 36 months
Project start: 1. 9. 2020
Project end: 31. 8. 2023

Website of the projet

Short description of the project:

The aim of the modules is to promote research and educational methods among young researchers in the European Union. Priority modules accelerate work on academic research and increase interest in the EU, mainly based on graduates’ questions related to their professional life. Jean Monnet Modules are shorter teaching programs, courses or individual subjects in the field of European Studies, which are carried out at higher education institutions and provide support for research activity.

The Sustain4EU module is a learning program that aims to strengthen
a) awareness of the challenges faced by the European Union, which are primarily related to the consequences of a lack of responsible action in the social and natural environment;
b) the role of EU citizens in mitigating these consequences and their contribution to social cohesion and environmental sustainability.

The thematic foundations of the module are built on the recognition of problems related to the degradation of the social environment (inequality, exclusion, poverty…), the natural environment (pollution, loss of biodiversity, forest…) and individuals who are struggling with increasing personal risks that are mainly due to individualization and career disorientation.

The very title of the module in English reflects the purpose of the activity – to activate sustainable behavior at the individual level, which will enable the sustainable development of the EU, namely through:

  • Learning: offer the latest knowledge, freely available learning materials, research results, etc. in a way that reflects the co-creative creation of knowledge between academia, stakeholders and students
  • Operation: to encourage action research on the topic of sustainability and the EU of civic practices in the way of transferring theory and knowledge into practice through student research activities and thereby also encouraging civic involvement
  • Connecting: to offer opportunities for sharing experience and knowledge between all actors based on the organization of active social cooperation at the local and transnational European level.

The activities are directly linked to recent social science research and texts that emphasize the role of social relations and reflexivity (cf. Archer/Donati 2015 – Relational Subject), which enable the creation of common goods and ensure a more cohesive, inclusive and sustainable environment. Here, there is a special emphasis on the individual’s personal development, skills and competences, which are key to adapting to the demands of the market, employment and modern risks. Sustain4EU is based on the existing theoretical and research experience of the head of the Module and the rest of the team, who enrich the content with interdisciplinary knowledge.

Sustain4EU is a learning activity that includes two research-oriented courses at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels. It enables the involvement of students in different programs and levels of study in various learning activities and connects academic theory and knowledge with research activities that promote the socio-civil component. All activities are based on innovative learning tools and communication approaches.