TESS is the study of the entanglement of Technology, Environment, Science and Society. It explores the potential of possibilities to engage critically and responsibly with the fabrication and use of technical and scientific objects, processes, and systems. It offers students a unique toolkit and a practical framework for addressing urgent challenges in a changing Europe. This programme is developed around questions concerning technology-society relations and how they shape (and are shaped by) ongoing changes in the broader natural and physical surroundings. In doing so, it addresses central questions and problems of the present. These include the Anthropocene debate, irreversible plastic pollution, biodiversity loss, socioenvironmental conflicts, and the design potential of ecotechnological artifacts. The programme encourages a closer look at the many sociotechnological lifestyles in societies that strive for sustainable ways of conviviality, and to examine their symbolic and material conditions. Main axes of theoretical engagement are the close interaction between representing and intervening in the technosciences (nano-, eco-, bio-, converging technologies), the conceptual move and its consequences from matter of fact to matter of concern to matter of care, and the probing of decentering approaches such as postcolonial and multispecies studies or gender/queer studies. Students learn about different knowledge forms (scientific, non-scientific, indigenous, etc.), and how to identify and use speculative, practical, and analytic methods. The practical engagement of the study programme includes co-creative methods, the use of concepts as tools, the application of principles of experimental design and art-based research.
- Science and Technology Studies
- Philosophy and History of Technology
- Environmental Anthropology
- Gender Studies
The standard period of study is four semesters (two years), including the completion of a Master's thesis.
Field of Expertise (knowledge acquisition and conceptual analysis)
- competencies in Science and Technology Studies (STS), canopy of theories and range of methods.
- moving confidently in interdisciplinary contexts; coordinate collaboration across different knowledge cultures.
- learning in a diverse community of practice; creating and sustaining international and interdisciplinary networks.
- applying problem-based learning and conceptual analysis.
- probing creative methods and perspectives, practice-based processes by experimenting with design, art, video, sound.
- writing scientifically, designing of exhibitions (analog and digital), outdoor methodologies.
- cultivating ethical and socio-political awareness, responsible professional conduct, transcultural sensibility.
- understanding global perspectives and situated knowledge implications with the subject areas.
- designing learning and communication processes to prevent or mitigate conflict.
Graduates of a master's program in TESS can work as policy analysts, assessing the impact of technology on society, the environment, and the world. They can contribute to the development and implementation of science and technology policies and regulations.
Environmental Humanities practitioner:
With a focus on the intersection of environment, culture, and society, individuals with a master's degree in this field can work as environmental humanities practitioners. They can research and write about the cultural and social dimensions of environmental issues, such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and environmental justice.
Science and Technology Scholar:
Graduates of a master's program in this field can work as humanity or social science scholars, exploring the epistemological, historical, ethical, and metaphysical dimensions of science and technology. They contribute to the development of ethical frameworks, and in general to critical perspectives of science and technology.
Science and Technology Mediator:
With a focus on the intersection of science, technology, and society, individuals with a master's degree in TESS can work as science and technology communicators at non/governmental institutions, museums, and education. They evaluate and report on scientific outcomes, technological innovations, and their social and environmental implications for various media outlets.
Teaching Stuff Science and Technology:
Graduates of TESS can be employed as teachers in the field of humanities and social sciences (academic and non-academic). They design and deliver courses, workshops, and training programs that integrate ethical, social, and environmental considerations into scientific and technological knowledge.