nl en

Area study Sustainability Netherlands


Admission requirements

This course is part of the Minor Sustainable Development. To take part in the course Area Study Sustainability, students must have followed the previous courses Big Issues New Answers and Resilient Cities.


In this course you will explore a real-world and current sustainability challenge in a local city. In groups you will analyse the problem, its solutions and the factors that obstruct these solutions. This course gives ownership to the students in structuring the course and stimulates creative and critical thinking and dealing with complex issues. The area study will enable you to put into practice the theories and methods you have learned in class.

In groups, you provide sustainability advise to the City Councils of Leiden or The Hague. These cities have set ambitious goals and initiatives to become a much more sustainable city. When implementing these initiatives, the councils often realise that there are additional challenges. They therefore reach out to you, future sustainability experts, to provide recommendations on how to overcome some of the barriers or how they can have a larger impact.


The course runs from 9 January – 3 February 2023.

You will find the timetables for all courses and degree programmes of Leiden University in the tool MyTimetable (login). Any teaching activities that you have sucessfully registered for in MyStudyMap will automatically be displayed in MyTimeTable. Any timetables that you add manually, will be saved and automatically displayed the next time you sign in.

MyTimetable allows you to integrate your timetable with your calendar apps such as Outlook, Google Calendar, Apple Calendar and other calendar apps on your smartphone. Any timetable changes will be automatically synced with your calendar. If you wish, you can also receive an email notification of the change. You can turn notifications on in ‘Settings’ (after login).

For more information, watch the video or go the the 'help-page' in MyTimetable. Please note: Joint Degree students Leiden/Delft have to merge their two different timetables into one. This video explains how to do this.

Mode of instruction

The main component of the course is the interdisciplinary group work, which is crucial to resolving sustainability challenges. There will also be lectures to provide additional content regarding the themes under study, field trips to provide context and opportunities for discussion.

Assessment Method

Students contribute to a blog, write a comprehensive advisory report and present their findings in a final presentation on 3 February.


From the academic year 2022-2023 on every student has to register for courses with the new enrollment tool MyStudyMap. There are two registration periods per year: registration for the fall semester opens in July and registration for the spring semester opens in December. Please see this page for more information. Exemptions are minor students and fall semester for 1st year bachelor students: the student administration will enroll these groups for courses.

Please note that it is compulsory to both preregister and confirm your participation for every exam and retake. Not being registered for a course means that you are not allowed to participate in the final exam of the course. Confirming your exam participation is possible until ten days before the exam.

Extensive FAQ's on MyStudymap can be found here.


Students are enrolled in Brightspace. All the lecture notes, announcements, the schedule, assignments, etc. can be found there.