Industrial Ecology is an interdisciplinary scientific field aiming at analysing sustainability problems and designing and implementing solutions for such problems. Industrial Ecology field studies the technosphere, also known as the physical economy. In almost all cases, flows of energy and materials are the connection between economic activities and environmental problems. These energy and material flows are the core object of Industrial Ecology, as well as the technologies generating those flows and the socio-economic context driving technology development. The educational programme focuses on the analysis, design, and implementation of industrial systems on the analogy of ecological systems and with the least possible adverse sustainability impacts.
The master’s programme Industrial Ecology consists of three parts, providing basic concepts and theories:
1. Natural Sciences of Industrial Ecology – Environmental science, Industrial Ecology analysis of technosphere systems and their relation with biosphere systems, in view of ecological sustainability, using tools such as Life Cycle Assessment, Material Flow Analysis, and ecological models.
2. Technical Sciences of Industrial Ecology – Design of technological systems, with a view on sustainable development, using tools from the realm of Design for Sustainability, Ecodesign, and Complex Adaptive Systems.
3. Social Sciences of Industrial Ecology – Implementation of sociotechnological systems, among others eco-industrial parks, and implementation of sustainably sound industrial practice.
Overview of the curriculum (120 EC, two years of 60 EC):
First year: Core Modules (54 EC) + Specialisation Modules (6 EC)
Second year: Specialisation Modules (12 EC) + Interdisciplinary Project Groups (12 EC) +Thesis Preparation Module (6EC) + Thesis Research Project (30 EC)