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Danube:Future - A sustainable future for the Danube River Basin as a challenge for the interdisciplinary humanities

Danube:Future is a project endorsed by the Alps Adriatic Rectors’ Conference (AARC), and the Danube Rector’s Conference (DRC). It aims at developing interdisciplinary research and education in the DRB simultaneously as a basis for the solution of pressing environmental issues and a sustainable future of the region. Danube:Future is a Flagship project of EUSDR-PA7

  • Posted on: 04.06.2014
  • Project date: January 2013 - December 2020
  • Acronym: Danube:Future
  • Coordinating institute: University of Klagenfurt, University of Trieste, BOKU Vienna, University of Novi Sad

Website: Link

Contact: Management Committee, management@danubefuture.eu

Danube:Future in EUSDR:

The Action Plan of EUSDR identifies in PA no. 7 the Action “To strengthen cooperation among universities and research facilities and to upgrade research and education outcomes by focusing on unique selling points” where Universities and Research Centers should engage in stronger cooperation in various fields. The cooperation between DRC and AARC Universities is appreciated, so Danube:Future is a good example of how to reach this goal.

Furthermore, Danube:Future is connected with all the EUSDR Priority Areas because it potentially contributes to all 4 pillars:

  • Pillar 1, Connecting the region: transportation network evolution (PA 1), transition pre- to post-fossil society (PA 2) and nationalism, war, tourism (PA 3);
  • Pillar 2, Protecting the environment: results of the research module will be useful for the restoration and maintenance of the quality of waters by the hydromorphological change (PA 4), for the management of environmental risks as toxic sediments (PA 5) and for the preservation of biodiversity, landscapes and the quality of air and soils (PA 6);
  • Pillar 3, Building prosperity: results of the capacity building module enhance the development of green/blue economy (PA 8) and strengthen the education for people (PA 9);
  • Pillar 4, Strengthening the Region: through contributing to the political and institutional structures (PA 10) and to social prosperity (PA 11).

Danube:Future goals:

The project will achieve several goals:

  • It will have a lasting effect on research and teaching in the humanities in the region, bringing young scholars to the forefront of international research and hence developing the strengths of higher education in the region in internationally competitive contexts.
  • EUSDR encompasses and builds on the concept of smart specialization strategies for regions. Danube:Future will be of particular importance for regions who build their strategy in the core of the sustainability economy (“green jobs”) as their specialization. But, in fact, all strategies need to take a long-term perspective into view in order to be smart, and therefore, projects of smart specialization, whatever their thematic focus, will all at least have some benefit from engaging with the sustainability questions in the DRB. Comparisons with other river basins also developed in the core project will allow researchers to identify specific and global challenges for a sustainability transition and apply them to the regional context.
  • Danube:Future will create living heritage by making the environmental and cultural heritage of the DRB visible and bringing it into the context of sustainable development.
  • It will lead to a series of in-depth analyses of the long-term evolution of the DRB and its implications for sustainable development.

Danube:Future structure:

Danube:Future is a multi-year program (2013-2020). It consists of three modules: (a) core, (b) capacity building and (c) sustainability related research with a long-term socio-ecological component. Danube:Future is a unique combination of regional, national and supra-national initiatives in interdisciplinary sustainability research with training and capacity building. It contributes to the sustainable development of the Danube River Basin (DRB) with a particular focus on the contribution of humanities.

Core Module

The integrated networked program is aimed to establish a knowledge base to which the capacity building and research projects will contribute. An integrated, networked program will build the core of supporting existing and future bi-, tri- and multilateral capacity building and research projects. The knowledge base will be available open access (Danube:Future WIKI), ensuring that the output of the Danube:Future program can be utilized by all interested organizations, institutions and initiatives.

Capacity Building Module

The thematic focus of capacity building projects takes into account existing initiatives and frameworks dealing with sustainable development research. 
Danube:Future is aimed at developing trainings in cultural and natural heritage, institutional capacity building for green jobs, and strengthening regional networks. The DIAnet international Schools offer a unique learning environment. Young researchers from all DRC and AARC universities interested in the sustainable development of the Danube River Basin with particular emphasis on the roles of natural and cultural heritage are trained to apply for funding in competitive programs in the wide field of inter- and transdisciplinary sustainability studies.

Research Module

The DRB has a troubled political and environmental history. Environmental problems abound and impede economic growth and sustainable development. 
Danube:Future takes into account the long-term legacies of this troubled history with a strong focus on humanities and social sciences through new interdisciplinary approaches



Danube Slide

Program: Danube Region Programme | S&T field/scope: Natural Sciences, Humanities | Geographical focus: Danube Region

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  • Posted on: 02.06.2015
  • Created by: Desiree Pecarz

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