Becoming an Agent of Sustainable Change

Do you wish to make your life and environment more sustainable, but don’t know where to start? Do you want to grow your influence and create sustainable change? This MOOC will provide you with the skills and knowledge that you need, and will empower you to start your journey as an agent of sustainable change, together with learners/change-makers from all over the world!

Organised by Wageningen University & Research
Registration period

Fri 17 April 2020 until Tue 2 February 2021

Tue 6 October 2020 until Tue 1 June 2021


Tue 6 October 2020 until Tue 30 March 2021

Tue 2 February 2021 until Tue 27 July 2021

Duration 7 weeks, 2-4 hours per week
Venue Online
Certificate Course materials free, add a verified certificate for €43

Content of the course

Nowadays there is a lot of talk about sustainability, yet it has come to mean many different things in different contexts. Although defining sustainability is complicated, understanding it is crucial in helping us solve urgent global issues. With this free online course, you will not only develop a better understanding of the complexities of sustainability, you will be able to start making sustainable change in your own life, in your own environment, right now.

The newly emerging field of ‘sustainability science’ has identified skills that are critical in analysing and solving sustainability problems. This MOOC introduces you to these essential skills in an applied and interactive way. Through assignments, real-world inspirational cases of sustainable changemakers, self-reflection, and discussions with fellow learners will sharpen and personalise your skills.

You will directly be able to start making sustainable change by applying your newly acquired skill set to a real-world problem in your own environment. You will work on a personal project of your choice, which can be any sustainability issue in your life - big or small – that you wish to effect and change! For example, starting a weekly community to clean up/reducing food waste in your neighbourhood through raising awareness among your fellow residents.

So, do you want to become a change-agent and a leader in sustainability, and contribute to solving the complex issues our world faces today? It all starts with you! Start making a change today, enrol now.

What you will learn

  • Tools to understand the concept of sustainability
  • To reflect on the use of sustainability by different actors in society
  • To develop essential skills to achieve sustainable change
  • To directly apply these skills to a sustainability issue in your own environment


Module 1: Dissecting sustainability

Here you will be introduced to the concept of sustainability and its uses within society. We will also explain the sustainability competencies which are your tools for this MOOC.

Module 2: Understanding Complexity

You will now define problems related to sustainability, identifying the direct and indirect causes and effects. This will be done at different scales, from the political arena, to your community, in order to illustrate how complicated these issues can be. Systems thinking tools shall then be explained as a way of tackling this complexity.

Module 3: Challenging Norms and Values

There are many different cultural understandings of sustainability, and our personal values influence our views and behaviours. You will learn to recognize these differences and biases and how these can influence your understanding.

Module 4: Collaboration for Sustainable Change

In this module, you will see how communication can bring different worldviews together to solve problems related to sustainability.

Module 5: Thinking about the Future

You will now look to the future; how do you envision it? Using forecasting, back casting and scenario development, you will learn about the tools that will help make that future a reality.

Module 6: Making your plan work

Now it’s time to create an action plan for your personal project. You will identify the limitations of action taking and the feasibility of tackling your problem.

Module 7: Wrapping up: Being an Agent of Sustainable Change

This module is about reflecting upon the competencies and understanding how they can help achieve sustainable change. You will also look at how you have integrated them into their personal project.

Meet the instructors