Transforming Boundaries By Crossing Them
3. Interkulturelle und International Vergleichende Erziehungswissenschaft, Sektion 3, Kommission Vergleichende und Internationale Erziehungswissenschaft, Sektion 3, Kommission Bildung für nachhaltige Entwicklung, qualitativ, quantitativ, theoretisch, Englisch
Transforming Boundaries By Crossing Them
The participants of this symposium are bound together by their involvement in a project on research and teaching for development, funded by BMBF. The content focus is research and development on sustainable modular energy grids for better grid stability (ART-D Grids) in East African Countries. The speciality of the project is that we do not simply want to implement sustainable energy technology in East Africa, but rather intend to contribute to and strengthen a multidisciplinary and globalised approach to sustainability of microgrid projects. We are jointly studying the impact of sustainability and sustainable thought on people’s lifeworlds, and thus offer discursive and co-constructive pathways to education.Whilst sustainable energy technology may seem to be crossing borders easily, we are trying to look at the conditions of its implementation as a process of translation.
Beiträge des Panels
• Researching different aspects of translation processes when crossing borders in a globalised world
For some people, the idea of the project may seem a simple process of (physical) translation, i.e. taking sustainable energy technology to Africa and thus bringing light to that part of the world. But we consider translation to be a far more complex process with many more aspects. This contribution will not elaborate on questions of a locally suitable and thus ‘applied’ technology, but rather illuminate the social and educational sides of the intended translation process. Firstly, the normativity of wanting to act sustainably, brings in tensions between the overall aims and the steps to be taken at a certain time and in a certain place. Needs, context and targets will have to be matched, always considering differences and tensions between the local and the translocal. Thus we come to focus translation mainly as a process of negotiation between target groups’ demands, project stakeholders and socio-technical solutions of local community problems. We are addressing local communities directly, mainly through local researchers. Still we will be crossing borders that may be seen as cultural, but by referring to cultures as spaces of negotiation, we are hoping to transform existing boundaries into productive communitisation processes. Educational strategies will address and interlink communities as well as different institutional levels. In order to keep that focus, all activities will be oriented to conflict sensitivity, thus hoping to detect and actively work on boundaries.
• Researching Lifeworlds And Conflict
Globalisation envisions great development strides transcending across borders which enhance digitalization and welfare of populations both in developed and developing countries. These potential benefits are translated to societies each unique in context and dynamics. Unless assessed with the beneficiaries’ participation, capitalizing existing capacities and intricacies is neglected and rather societies clutch on to their destructive trends and meet with opposition to that which is envisaged to benefit them. In East Africa, amidst low electrification rates, the main energy sources are biomass and fossil fuels in spite of the vast largely unexploited energy resources. The high population growth rates increase wood fuel demand hence continued forest cover endanger and effects to global climate change. There are apparent needs and opportunities to address the status quo yet a number of invested interventions to the looming energy crisis meet resistance from beneficiary populations, civil society organisations and, or state institutions. While other interventions have failed at sustainability, lasting not long after investors´ departure. Through an interdisciplinary lens inclusive of conflict sensitivity, the ART-D project using micogrid projects in East Africa will examine points at which socialization, digitalisation and globalisation complement and differ, and pedagogy of institutional and community education for sustainable development for transfer knowledge across all levels.
• Discursive Analyses on Globalization, Gender and Education for Sustainable Renewable Energy Development
Globalization and digitalization of information including education have created enormous opportunities majorly resulting from technology transfer. However, due to the digital divide partly brought by unbalanced international systems, dependency relations and constrained mobility, the global south has found itself at the losing end. The benefits accruing from global systems may not be sustainable as long as a large percentage of this south become passive observers. Migration which is often seen as a last resort affects women to a large extend. Additionally, as a result of unbalanced gender relation characterized by a complex culture dominated by patriarchal structures, women comparatively benefit less particularly from technological progress. One of the major tools to stimulate women participation would be through education, which unfortunately is also gendered limiting female participation, especially in the STEM subjects. Thus, basing on the ongoing Art-D Grids research on Sustainable Energy Development, this presentation focuses on the lifeworlds and gender with the major focus on the gendered barriers and enablers and how they interact in diverse ways to enable or disable women participation in sustainable technological development in East Africa. As part of the translation process, gender perspectives from different educational systems and programmes will be studied to trigger mutual learning processes in order to find and produce possible options.
• Developing participatory education formats and materials for sustainable modular electrical energy grids
Modular Electrical Energy Grids (MEEGs) are a cost effective solution to the low electrical energy access levels in developing countries. Although many MEEG projects have been funded in Africa, a considerable number is not sustainable beyond the funding period. Interdisciplinary approach is envisioned as a vital sustainability pillar for MEEGs. In the ART-D Grids project, a multidisciplinary participatory approach was considered for the transfer of MEEGs knowledge. For sustainability, it is not only the technical knowledge transfer. Crossing boundaries between aspects like conflicts, social, gender, economical, and didactics is as important as crossing the national boundaries between all African and European partners. To this end, instructional materials for transferring knowledge to: secondary school children, rural communities, engineering and technical teacher students are being developed. Additionally, Graduate Trainings (GTs) of one-week intensive course format are being organised. The combination of an intercultural lecturer team, interdisciplinary participants, the limited timeframe, pandemic-related restrictions and differing targets of the individual stakeholders compress many challenges of most other education situations. This contribution deals especially with the GT integrated in the overall project, including planning phase, implementation, result evaluation and occurring stumbling blocks of such a training format.