GREENT project releases desk research report

GREENT Desk research report – the full report is available here

 

The desk research report is part of the activities within the GREENT project. It is focused on investigating the three key areas for the project: green entrepreneurship education, blended learning models and practices, and online platforms for learning. The desk report will be used to develop the GREENT syllabus, blended learning methodology and sample lessons.

The five partners have each delved into their country’s educational system to produce a thorough analysis of the current situation regarding the presence of green entrepreneurship topics on the high school level. The opinions of teachers working “on the field” were also sought through a questionnaire. The general conclusion is that none of the five countries’ educational systems has integrated green entrepreneurship into the high school curricula. Some countries are well on their way to integrating entrepreneurship classes as a compulsory element. In each country several elements of sustainable development, entrepreneurial competencies and environmental awareness are present in different subjects (ranging from Geography, Biology and Chemistry through Economy and Entrepreneurship to Philosophy, Arts and Crafts and Foreign Languages) which means that there is a good interdisciplinary foundation for green entrepreneurship which can be used wisely in the future. The aim of the research was also to observe what are the potential platforms (as separate subjects or types of classes in the high schools) through which green entrepreneurship learning can be integrated into European high schools in the future years. Each country has its specific educational system and the research indicates that in some countries it would be possible to include green entrepreneurship into economics and entrepreneurship classes, while in others it may be more appropriate to look for a more interdisciplinary solution through integrating topics into a number of different subjects. Green entrepreneurship as an extracurricular activity is also an opportunity not to be overlooked.

The report has tried to identify the most appropriate topics to be included in a future green entrepreneurship syllabus, based on the feedback received by teachers and on the five organizations’ expert opinions. Common suggestions for topics which were identified as important for all five countries include:

  • Global environmental problems, most importantly the depletion of natural resources and the implications for economic growth—these need to go hand in hand with possible solutions
  • Renewable energy
  • Environmental impact of business and solutions to protect the environment
  • Recycling of waste
  • Creating responsible attitude towards the environmental resources both as a consumer and a potential entrepreneur
  • Entrepreneurial mindset, leadership, creativity, idea generation and managerial skills

It is recognized that the future GREENT content needs to be very hands-on and to facilitate teachers in turning the classroom into a field for experimentation and practice. Meetings and case studies with real-life green entrepreneurs are considered an especially suitable format.

The project team has also identified a number of online learning tools (in English and the national languages), as well as blended learning models. There was only one blended learning tool and methodology in green entrepreneurship which was found in Bulgaria and was developed by JA Bulgaria and Ungt Entreprenorskap Sogn og Fjordane as part of the their pilot project “Green entrepreneurship for sustainable development”. The other example that came close to the concept of a green entrepreneurship blended learning methodology is the series of innovation camps on renewable energy organized by JA Norway annually throughout the country. Some tools for lower classes, 1 to 9, were found to be under development in Latvia.

The desk research for online learning platforms showed that there are hundreds of available platforms, both nationally in each country, and on international level. They could also provide green entrepreneurship courses, although so far none have been identified by our team. There are courses in subject areas which are intertwined with green entrepreneurship – for instance, Edx.org offers a course on sustainable everyday life. The analysis of online learning platforms and blended learning models begs the conclusion that the future GREENT tools (syllabus, methodology and lessons) need to be very flexible in terms of “packaging” and format so that they could be applied in various platforms. The project team is still unclear whether it should be looking for a common platform to place the future GREENT course or should try to shape the content in such a way that it would be “uploadable” on any online platform, or usable in any classroom that has a multimedia projector, screen and internet access.


GREENT Desk research report – the full report is available here

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