During the 4th World Congress of Biosphere Reserve, the Clayoquot Biosphere Reserve Trust with the support of universities from Australia, Canada, France and Sweden organized a side event on Designing Interdisciplinary University Courses for Biosphere Reserves to enhance the contribution of universities to the implementation of the Lima Action Plan for UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere (MAB) programme and its World Network of Biosphere Reserves (2016–2025).
Key messages of this side event are:
- There is agreement on the fundamental principles of building relationships and co-designing successful research and education projects – wherein all participants are co-learners – and university course curricula to promote sustainability science in biosphere reserves.
- New networking technologies are needed to share course curricula, provide for student exchanges, and cross-pollinate to generate a cultural transformation in learning together.
A number of universities and biosphere reserves offer university-level courses and programmes aimed at achieving, in particular, output A4.2 of the Lima Action Plan (Establish partnerships with educational and training institutions, especially UNESCO Chairs, Centres and Associated Schools, to undertake education, training and capacity-building activities aimed at biosphere reserve stakeholders, including managers and rights holders, taking into account the SDGs):
- University of Saskatchewan, Canada
Programme(s): Master of Sustainable Environmental Management (MSEM), Master of Environment and Sustainability (MES) and PhD programme. Has also a new programme that will use this course, Master of Water Security.
Course title: Field Skills in Environment and Sustainability
- UNESCO Chair in Sustainable Development and Environmental Education at the Universidad del País Vasco, Bilbao, Spain. Postgraduate degree ‘Expert in Environment and Sustainability’
- Postgraduate Study in Mountain Development - University of the Highlands and Island, Perth College, UK
- Le Master MAB - Université Paul Sabatier, Toulouse, France
- Centre for International Postgraduate Studies of Environmental Management (CIPSEM) - Technische Universität Dresden
- AgroParisTech and Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle :
Master 2: 'DEBATs', for 'Développement Durable, Biodiversité et Aménagement des Territoires'.