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Course Format: online/internet based
Duration of course: 1 week (with maximum of completion of 2 weeks)
Fee: Free
Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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If you are concerned about the challenges facing the world today and you are keen to live more sustainably and more in harmony with your planet and fellow citizens, this taster course may be the stimulus you have been looking for.



Gaia Education has been delivering both in person, and online programmes in Design for Sustainability and beyond for over a decade. With over 180 programmes in 41 countries in 5 continents, we have reached more than 7,000 people – many of who have gone on to become edge workers in different spheres. They have deployed their skills and insights in a range of settings ranging from tribal and traditional communities to intentional ecovillages, from urban slum settings to universities and training centers. As well as positively impacting the lives of others, they have made more sense of their own lives and experienced greater wellbeing.

This taster week is a wonderful opportunity to get a glimpse of the four core areas of social, economic, and ecological design seen through a variety of different worldviews. The course is highly dynamic, with videos and other features designed to make learning enjoyable and engaging, but also long lasting. There is something there for everyone, and above all it is an opportunity to connect with other like-minded and like-hearted progressive individuals. If you successfully complete this week you will earn credits that you can redeem for one of our longer online course.

Gaia Education is an active partner of the UN Global Action Programme for People, Planet and Prosperity that also seeks to strengthen universal peace in larger freedom. We work towards a resilient future within planetary boundaries where no one is left behind. A world of safe and nutritious food; of clean drinking water; of universal access to sustainability education; of physical, mental and social well-being. A world which uses energy and materials with greater efficiency, distributes wealth fairly and strives to eliminate the concept of waste. A world of universal respect for human rights and human dignity; of justice and equality; of respect for race and ethnicity; and of equal opportunity permitting the full realisation of human potential while promoting shared prosperity.


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Course Methodology

Although it may be challenging in a virtual environment, this taster course integrates elements of the five components that characterize the Gaia Education approach to learning. It accomplishes this by providing:

  • Collaborative learning opportunities – opportunities to collaborate with other online learners, ideally in small groups or pairs as well as in the discussion forums
  • Reflection – carefully crafted questions to prompt reflection and help learners structure their posts in the discussion forum
  • Learning through the arts – exploring the use of artistic expression to provoke deeper thinking. Inviting you to share your ideas through creative media, including digital media
  • Analysis of real-life examples – sharing stories, testimonies, and case studies from ecovillages and other eco-conscious communities around the globe.
  • Networking – encouraging you to identify and engage with communities and action-oriented groups in their local area.


Content and Structure

The course will only require about 10 hours to complete over a 5 day period. It will remain open for two weeks so as to facilitate its completion.

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Challenges and opportunities facing humanity today: Social, Ecological, Economic, Cultural.

"What are the major challenges facing humanity today and how do sustainable communities address these challenges?"
Day One Activity: Economic Awareness Forum

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Introduction to some eco-conscious community groups around the world and their Social Entrepreneurship ideas.

"What do we see when we visit a sustainable community – How do the Dimensions of the Mandala look like in practice?"
Day Two Activity: Roles We Play Forum

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Case studies, stories and testimonies from ecovillages with focus on Economic and Cultural aspects

"How can the arts help to bring about social and personal transformation in sustainable communities?”
Day Three Activity: Our Ecological Impact Forum

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The Design Process & Principles of Wholistic Design

"How do we organise our local resources to integrate them in designing sustainable settlements and organisations?”
Day Four Activity: Bioregional Mapping Forum
A look at design examples from previous GEDS online courses

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"What strategies and actions can we take right now to live more consciously in community?”
Day Five Activity: Recording Our Dreams Forum
Course Evaluation with short SURVEY to let us know what you think about the course and to earn credits for our other programmes

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To register please provide your details below and we will can send you the access codes to get started.

(Please ensure you validate our confirmation email and/or check your spam if you cannot see it)

Some of our Partners

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