This year, Leiden-Delft-Erasmus is introducing three new minors: Space Missions, (Re)imagining Port Cities: Understanding Space, and Living Education Lab. Marja Verstelle, Project Manager for Teaching at Leiden-Delft-Erasmus, talks about the importance of multidisciplinary collaboration for the new generation of academics who will soon be entering the labour market.
She says: 'Whenever I ask graduates what they felt was lacking from their degree programme, it is not knowledge that they answer, but how you can actually make an impact with it. A district no longer using gas?'
Technically possible versus implementation strategy
'There is plenty of knowledge about what is technically possible, but how do you get people on board with the changes? What factors have an influence on this? And how do you decide what your implementation strategy should be in such a highly-pressurised field?”
Competence to enact change
'The competence to enact change – that is what we want to teach students as well. And this is exactly where the joint Leiden-Delft-Erasmus minors offer unique opportunities. They involve students working on an assignment with others from completely different backgrounds. This makes them realise that even though you have knowledge to contribute, you also have the limitations of one single perspective.'
From the three universities, we can bring a wide range of perspectives together, such as engineers, behavioural scientists, public administration experts and economists.
'You learn how much you need the various perspectives, even in your later career, in order to reach solutions that have a real impact. For example, you can replace a coal-fired power station by wind turbines, but that means an awful lot of them, and nobody wants them in their backyard.'
Wide range of perspectives
So how do you create support for the idea? From the three universities, we can bring a wide range of perspectives together, such as engineers, behavioural scientists, public administration experts and economists.’
Ten years ago the LDE alliance was founded and in 2014 it launched its first joint minor, Responsible Innovation. The range of options has since increased to twelve multidisciplinary minors on present-day social issues. More than 1000 students from Leiden, Delft and Erasmus take the minors every year, and the aim is for many more students to benefit from these opportunities.
Three new Leiden-Delft-Erasmus minors:
(Re)Imagining Port Cities: Understanding Space, Society and Culture:
Port cities and the areas around them have traditionally been places where people, goods and ideas come and go, and where economic development and liveability both collide and go hand-in-hand. Against this background, the new LDE minor ‘(Re)Imagining Port Cities: Understanding Space, Society and Culture’ offers Bachelor’s students from all kinds of fields the opportunity to learn about observing, designing, and multidisciplinary cooperation. Read more
Space Missions is a new minor offered by the TU Delft Faculty of Aerospace Engineering in partnership with the Leiden Observatory and the Faculty of Science of Leiden University. During this minor, students will experience the interdisciplinary relationship between the engineering and scientific domain of spaceflight through theory and challenge-based mission assignments. Read more
Living Education Lab:
Living Education lab is a new minor offered by the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre for Education and Learning in partnership with ICLON Leiden and ErasmusX. During this minor, students develop into skilled educational innovators and researchers who know their way in the worlds of Education, Technology and Design. Read more