ASU-Leuphana joint master's degree program gains German accreditation

By

Skip Derra

A joint master's degree program in sustainability science between Arizona State University and Leuphana University of Lüneburg, Germany, has been approved by Acquin, the German Accreditation Agency.

This marks a major milestone for the joint program, which is part of ASU’s global education efforts. The program, a first of its kind at ASU with a foreign university, is in global sustainability science. As part of their studies, students spend time at both universities, work on joint projects and receive a degree from both.

“Reaching sustainable development goals requires a different type of international education and new forms of institutional collaborations among universities and other institutions of higher learning,” said ASU President’s Professor Manfred Laubichler, who directs the joint ASU-Leuphana Center for Global Sustainability and Cultural Transformation. “Students need to learn to engage complex societal problems collaboratively and within a global setting that includes awareness of intercultural differences. This is exactly what this program attempts to do.”

ASU and Leuphana have a history of collaboration. In addition to the dual master's degree program and the Center for Global Sustainability and Cultural Transformation, they have worked on a “global classroom” project taught by professors from both institutions, and they continue to work together on an increasing number of joint research projects.

“Universities, as places for both education and research, have to learn how to work and collaborate in networks that actively utilize differences, as a focus on exclusivity and exclusion is preventing us from reaching the full potential of creative solutions needed to address the challenges of sustainable development,” Laubichler said. “In that sense the collaboration between ASU and Leuphana is breaking much-needed new ground.”