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ACE2077 : Sustainable Solutions

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Elisa Lopez-Capel
  • Lecturer: Miss Helen Atkinson, Dr Mark Ireland, Ms Abby French, Dr James Donarski, Mrs Helen Adamson, Mrs Julia Robinson, Dr Amy Proctor, Dr Ankush Prashar, Dr Maureen Wakefield
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The overall purpose of the module is to develop students’ understanding of the complex challenges faced by organisations / companies in the arena of sustainability and the linkages between these specific challenges and the wider UN Sustainable Development Goals. The module provides students with the opportunity to work with an external organisation on a problem and generate a sustainable solution. The students will work in small teams with colleagues from other degree programmes and bring principles and practice from their own disciplines to application within the solution. At the end of an intense week of development the team will pitch their idea to the challenge sponsor having considered social, economic and environmental aspects of their proposal. The module allows students to participate in a problem based, experiential learning challenge, as part of the ‘Engaged Newcastle’ scheme and to consider future career development opportunities.

Outline Of Syllabus

Module content week 7 to week 9) prior to challenge
Introduction to the module and career opportunities / skills development.
Placement opportunities event
Global citizenship, study abroad event
Careers fair / Future Worlds of Work
Your disciplinary focus within interdisciplinary teams, Belbin type exercise
Announcement of companies and organisations that will provide challenges. Students submit their application to participate, including evidence (skills profile and cv) on what they will contribute to a team based challenge.
Project planning, management and the skills required for responsible innovation.

Challenge activities week 10 and week 12
Wk10 Day 1: Company challenges are presented, Students split into groups to work on specific challenges. Lecture and activities on problem solving, enterprise, and the UN sustainable development approach.

Week 10 Day 2: Research skills (finding information on innovations) and development of research ideas; student teams meet / skype their challenge sponsors to discuss ideas and gain early feedback. Independent team based study

Week 10 Day 3: Skills development on how to pitch ideas and how to write a business case. independent team based study.

Week 12 Day 4: Development of ideas / case supported by meeting / skype call with challenge sponsors and pitch practice.

Week 12 Day 5: Student teams pitch their ideas (sponsor feedback). Selected groups compete in final elevator pitches (students / sponsors vote for category winners); followed by celebration / networking event.

Post challenge week
Business case submission and self-reflection (skills profile and CV update)

Teaching Methods

Module leaders are revising this content in light of the Covid 19 restrictions.
Revised and approved detail information will be available by 17 August.

Assessment Methods

Module leaders are revising this content in light of the Covid 19 restrictions.
Revised and approved detail information will be available by 17 August.

Reading Lists