Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Students explore the ‘smartcitiesworld’ website, looking for innovations that meet a need for their school or personal life and are ecologically an improvement. Examples from the site: ‘modular construction, home-sharing platforms and rental tools could be the answer to housing challenges’; ‘the public must be fully engaged in the UK’s net-zero transition’.

Discuss and/or research in personal life and/or school: ‘how do I deal with home-, car- or tool- etc. sharing? How can I improve my behaviour on that? How can I diminish my energy consumption, even try to get it net-zero? What are possibilities in my school when it comes to sharing car, bike, tools etc.? How can the school support students housing by setting up modular apartment constructions? Is my school net-zero? Can we diminish energy consumption?

Questions like that lead to action plans – and action plans lead to action!
If the ‘smartcitiesworld’ website does not give enough clues to work with, students can look for other sites (Het Groene Brein, Green Deals etc.).

The results of the research, raised questions, action plans and (hopefully and eventually) actions are evaluated. It is important to include as many stakeholders as possible in the process!

Small group activity: use ‘placemat’ methodology: Each member writes down his/her favourite items in their room at home. Compared together highlighting similarities.

The group chooses one of the similar items (e.g. laptop, bookshelf, smartphone, pictures).

Group research information about that item e.g. production, transport, trading, labour, added value; and the effects on people (e.g. Who produces, transports and in what circumstances?), planet (e.g. What are the ecological effects?) and economy (e.g. Who benefits? Who loses?).
Group discussion on positive and negative impact of the item. Brainstorm how to turn the negatives into positives and reflect on the effects these changes would have on the personal life of the group members (higher prices, different colours/ shapes; less sophisticated).

Possible further activities