We need to educate and train the future professionals in the private sector and administration, as well as decision-makers in the EU driving and implementing innovation throughout our cities. This requires new (integrated) knowledge and skills. As a technical engineer, you need to be aware of the social and economic conditions and impacts; as a social engineer, you need to work closely with the technical people in the construction and planning department in your municipality. It is important, therefore, that the knowledge and experience gained in Innovation Actions are translated into the educational curricula. At the same time, student, teachers, and developers of courses and curricula could benefit strongly from the wealth of practical experience that the implementation of Innovation Actions provides. No surprise that this implies in particular to the Positive Energy Districts of the future.

A project like ATELIER gives us the great opportunity to involve students into state of the art science and practice on energy transition. Also professionals, working in the field of energy, policy, sustainability, stakeholder involvement or energy business, could benefit from our experience and learnings in developing positive energy districts.

Our ambition is to gather learnings in the project and develop a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC). This is an online course aimed at unlimited participation and open access via the web. In addition to traditional course materials, such as filmed lectures, readings, and problem sets, we will provide interactive courses with user forums or social media discussions to support community interactions among students, professors, and teaching assistants, as well as immediate feedback to quick quizzes and assignment. Given the multi-faceted and multi-disciplinary aspects of PED development, MOOCs are very suitable for this topic. Students in Amsterdam and Bilbao will be involved in the project, working e.g. on the organisation of citizen involvement and making producing multi-media information.

Also, we will develop some teaching modules, which can be used in education and trainings. In addition, the Amsterdam University of Applied Science is developing a minor subject on Positive Energy Districts. Students will learn about the technical and organisational aspects of PEDs in multidisciplinary teams. Finally, the gathering of learnings and sharing experience is also important for the replication in Fellow Cities. That is why collaboration with the replication work package, especially with the activity of capacity building, is foreseen.

We hope this project will be able to connect with many (future) professionals, wanting to gain multidisciplinary knowledge on Positive Energy Districts. We believe that by learning about different technical, social and economic aspects involving the development of PED’s, professionals will be able to better collaborate and innovate. And therefore make well-balanced decisions and PED city visions.

We invite SCC01 projects, in particular those on PEDs that are also interested in developing education materials, to contact us to explore cooperation.

Marije Poel

Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences