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On the road to a local 'skills ecosystem'? Green skills in Cologne

At a time when climate change is posing major challenges to our cities and communities, Prof. Dr. Martina Fuchs and Prof. Dr. Matthias Pilz from the Faculty of Management, Economics and Social Sciences at the University of Cologne, together with Prof. Dr. Claudia Ziller from Cologne University of Applied Sciences, have launched the innovative “SkillsEco” project. The project is funded by the RheinEnergieStiftung Jugend/Beruf, Wissenschaft. The aim of the project is to analyse, to develop and promote sustainability skills in order to make Cologne a "greener" and more sustainable city. Businesses in urban areas have a crucial role to play in achieving climate targets and conversing resources and need employees with the appropriate “green skills” to achieve the sustainability goals. These skills include technical, social and personal aspects in the field of environmental sustainability.

The project focuses on three main areas:

Micro level: Prof. Dr. Matthias Pilz is leading the research into the teaching of “green skills” at learning locations in companies and educational institutions.

Meso-level: Under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Martina Fuchs, regional stakeholder networks and the local "green skills ecosystem" are being studied.

Technical specification level: Prof. Dr. Claudia Ziller is focusing on the implementation of sustainability concepts in the field of building technology and use in order to develop Cologne into a "Green City".

The research project includes a variety of measures, including interviews with local stakeholders, workshops and scientific publications. The results will not only contribute to Cologne's transformation into a sustainable city but will also serve as a model for other regions.