Trifels Summer School

6th Trifels Summer School

Global Challenges and Systems Thinking

In the face of big global challenges, like the financial crisis, the refugee crisis or climate crisis, we have to ask ourselves whether our predominant approaches to analysis and action are sufficient to address the relevant changes and problems. In science in particular, we can see the dominance of fragmented and linear analytical approaches and the courses of action that are recommended based on scientific results are usually also fragmented and incremental. Can scientists use a sensible alternative approach in their analyses and for formulating recommendations for social actions based on their results? How can they tackle the challenge of complexity that they commonly face? How can they learn and teach such alternative approaches and communicate their relevant findings in public? (see Topic).

Young Scientists can learn about the systems thinking approach as well as experience and test it at the Trifels Summer School 2019 (see Program). Experts introduce them in a transdisciplinary manner to key aspects and examples from an international perspective (see Expert Speakers). The primary language is English. The whole summer school takes place at a very special venue, which offers a unique learning environment (see Kurhaus Trifels). Young scientists can participate for free, which will include room and board, they only have to cover their travel expenses to and from the venue. At the end of the Summer School each participant will receive the Certificate of the Trifels Summer School (see Participation).

6th Trifels Talk

Systems Thinking in Education and Schools:
The Example of Climate Change and Fridays for Future

Climate change has not only been at the forefront of the public debate since the last elections. In particular, the "Fridays for Future" movement and its actions have repeatedly highlighted the issue in the public and the media. One part of the debate has focused o the question who should concern themselves with climate change, only "real experts" or anybody, i.e. also "simple" pupils or citizens? This question points to a fundamental challenge for our modern society. 

Clearly, the world faces complex developments and risks. But our societies' predominant modes of thinking are fragmented and linear, leading to incremental courses of action. There is a growing consensus that this approach is inadequate to tackle effectively our global challenges. Against this background, the approach of systems thinking has (again) become popular with different organizations in recent years. If this development is linked to the climate debate and the Fridays for Future movement, the question arises whether systems thinking can lead to better analyses and courses of action and whether it can actually be taught and learned in schools and beyond ("lifelong learning").

These questions will be discussed with the experts speakers of the 6th Trifels Summer School and further guests from science, politics, and schools, including pupil representatives. 

The panel debate belongs to the "Trifels Talk" series, which is public and can be attended for free. The language of the debate will be German. 

Kurhaus Trifels from 7.30 to 9 pm
Kurhausstr. 25, 76855 Annweiler

Annual Training Event of a University Network

Future Issues for Science and Society

The Trifels Summer School is an annual training event for young scientists offered by the Association "Kurhaus Trifels Meeting Center", whose members include the following universities: Technical University of Darmstadt, University of Heidelberg, Technical University of Kaiserslautern, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, University of Koblenz-Landau, University of Mannheim. Each year another university takes the lead in organizing the Summer School.

The topics of the Summer School Series are chosen for their transdsiciplinary relevance for the future development of science and society. The topics of previous Summer Schools included: Chances und Risks of Synthetic Biology, organized by the University of Heidelberg, The Restructuring of our Energy Systems, organized by the Technical University of Darmstadt, Risk-literacy in Society, organized by the University of Koblenz-Landau, Future Cities – Research for a Sustainable Urban Development, organized by the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, und Digital Transformation, organized by the Technical University of Kaiserslautern and the Science and Innovation Alliance Kaiserslautern.

The annual Trifels Talk is a public panel discussion, which is an integral part of the qualification concept of the Trifels Summer School series.