Step 1:

Download the application form: PDF/Word-file

Step 2:

Fill out the application

Step 3:

Collate the required *documents in one single pdf-file. (*filled out application form, CV, letter of motivation)

Step 4:

Name and save the file in the following order: surname_first name_year of birth(YYYY) For example: borowski_angela_1900

Step 5:

Don´t forget to complete the Upload Master Sheet

Step 6:

Attach your single pdf-file with all the required documents (limit: 8 MB)

Step 7:

Push the SEND button

Note: Deadline for submitting your application is Thursday 18th May 2017 at 23:59 UTC

Online Application


Modern pluralistic societies face many challenges. In 2017 we will explore the relevance of an approach to inclusive governance for sustainable futures.

The fourth Potsdam Summer School from 04th – 13th September 2017 will address the central question: „How can transdisciplinary knowledge production be integrated in inclusive governance processes towards the achievement of sustainable development as in the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?“

With its overarching theme – “Human Environments in a Changing World“ – this Summer School will continue the transdisciplinary and interactive event series that has been held annually in Potsdam, Germany since 2014. The aim is to bring together talented early-career scientists and young professionals from the private sector, governmental agencies and non-governmental organisations in many different parts of the world to discuss frontier research questions on future sustainable development. In this context, the Potsdam Summer School provides a unique opportunity for all participants to foster international cooperation and an exchange of ideas.

The following topics will structure the discussions:

  • The role the SDGs play in measurement, management and monitoring of progress towards sustainable economic, social and environmental development of sustainable cities and communities
  • The challenges of sustainable urban planning, pollution and resilience to climate change
  • The way in which major risk factors such as population growth, climate change, pollution, energy security, water supply, etc. can be governed in cities and communities

Since the sharing of interdisciplinary knowledge and expertise is highly relevant, the following questions will also guide the ten-day programme:

  • What are the challenges of interdisciplinary knowledge exchange between science, policy makers and society?
  • How can we provide knowledge for action and thus contribute to transdisciplinary inclusive governance?

The issues span a multitude of disciplines and invite stakeholders from the public and private sector to get involved. The programme will comprise lectures, various discussion formats, and interactive project activities, including hands-on demonstrations, workshops, and group projects.

In partnership with the City of Potsdam, the 2017 Potsdam Summer School will be jointly organised by the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), the Helmholtz-Centre Potsdam – GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS), the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), and the University of Potsdam. Experts, stakeholders, and guest lecturers from high level national and international institutes and organisations will contribute knowledge and insights to the Summer School programme.

The entire Summer School will be conducted in English. 

Participants of the Potsdam Summer School can earn a maximum of 6 ECTS-credits within the framework of this programme. They will be comprised as follows:

2 ECTS-credits for participation in the ten-day programme
2 ECTS-credits for follow-up research
2 ECTS-credits for preparation and presentation within a webinar

The organisers are looking forward to receiving applications from young professionals from various backgrounds to explore with us the relevance and challenges of an evidence-based approach to inclusive governance and geo-governance for sustainable futures.

The call for applications will start on 15th February 2017. The deadline for submitting completed applications will be Thursday 18th May 2017 at 23:59 UTC.

For further information, please contact angela.borowski(at)


Please note:

Photographs and film footage may be taken during this event, which may or may not include your recognisable image or a video. By submitting your application you consent to being photographed or filmed and authorise the organisers to use the photographs or film in print, digital, video or web-based format for its promotional and archival purposes.



Applicants, aged 25 to 45 from all countries are welcome. Applications are sought not only from advanced graduated students, postdoctoral fellows, junior and senior faculty members in relevant disciplines but also from representatives of governmental and non-governmental agencies as well as from the private sector. Women, minorities and young professionals or students from developing countries are especially encouraged to apply. The enrollment is limited to 36 participants.


A tuition fee of € 280 will be charged from each participant. To enforce the participation from developing countries, this fee will be waived for participants who are residents of developing countries. You can check here, if this is applicable to you. The cost of accommodation, lunch and most dinners will be covered with exception of the weekend and the evenings of Sep 06, 08 and 12 where evenings will be at own leisure. Participants are expected to arrange and pay for their own travel to and from the Summer School event in Potsdam.

If you want to check funding opportunities and/or suitable scholarships please try the following databases:

German Academic Exchange Service


Application Requirements

A full application consists of the following documents:

Your resumé or curriculum vitae should include a clear description of your current educational or professional status, your photo and a list of publications, if any.

Your letter of motivation should explain why you want to attend the Potsdam Summer School. The statement can be 1 – 2 pages in length.

We also require two references. When you complete the application form, please also provide the e-mail address of the two persons, you would like to give as references.

It is very important that you name your file according to the following order:

last name_first name_year of birth(YYYY)

For example: borowski_angela_1900

Full applications submitted by May 18, 2017 23:59 UTC will be given due consideration.

Any application received after this date can only be entertained on a space-available basis. For further information, please email angela.borowski(at)

Upload Master Sheet / Apply online

All the above mentioned documents should be transmitted at the same time and uploaded as a single pdf-file using this Upload Master Sheet. The file size has to be limited to max. 8 MB.
If you don’t already have a software programme generating pdf-files, a large number of free software can be found easily on the internet. Just search for „pdf generator“ or „pdf creator“.

Organising Partners: