The goal is that students and staff of Goethe University use more environmentally friendly means of transportation during their time abroad, as well as become more critical consumers and thinkers - in their private lives as well as in their academic work.You can read more on the Green Erasmus portal. Moreover, you find the petition for increasing the Green Exchange top-up there
Objectives of the Green Erasmus project:
With these tips and recommendations for action, you can make a small individual contribution to the EU's climate goals and sustainable European cooperation during your Erasmus+ experience.
Before your Erasmus+
Already in the application stage, you can start thinking about: Where do I want to do my Erasmus+? Can I combine my semester abroad with other academic or personal destinations?
Most students travel abroad by plane, even if the destination is accessible by more sustainable modes of transportation. Physical mobility is not sustainable per se, but the CO2 emissions of trips could be reduced by two-thirds if you travel by train.
Thus, we encourage you to avoid flying by airplane, use more sustainable transportation instead and apply for the €50 top-up.
Maybe you have heard of the concept of "slow travel" before. It also offers another perspective on travelling and asks: How fast am I travelling? What might I gain by travelling slower?
Slow Travel is the attitude that the quality of the experience is more important than the quantity of experiences. This type of travelling offers a more authentic experience where you feel like you have really gotten to know the places, people and cultures you encounter on your trip.
Example of Frankfurt Lyon (Calculated with the CO2 calculator of Quarks)
During your Erasmus+
You can also get involved on an individual and/or institutional level in your semester abroad. Below you find a few examples, ideas, and suggestions:
If you can, use public transportation during your Erasmus+. Often, special student tickets are available which can also save you money, such as the Klimaticket in Vienna or the student discounts in Vilnius, Lithuania.
Alternatively, you could look for a bicycle during your Erasmus+. Whether it is buying a used bike cheaply on online platforms or local flea markets, or looking for rental opportunities, a bike is a great way to explore your host city in a different way.
Consumption is one of the individually implementable parameters for more sustainability. The concept of circular economy is central to the idea of sustainable consumption. It is the opposite of the "throwaway economy." The aim of a circular economy is to produce and consume in the most resource-conserving and long-lasting way possible. In the best case, it creates a cycle of products and materials. Most countries in Europe offer (some of the following) opportunities for a more sustainable lifestyle and consumption in everyday life:
While the culture of communal living (“WG") is comparably big in Germany, similar living concepts are increasingly available in other countries as well. From student dorms, rooms with a local family or privately organized living with other students: communal living is easy on the wallet and the environment. Moreover, you get to know other people right away. The testimonials of previous Erasmus+ students contain valuable tips which websites you can use for searching shared housing in the exchange country
If you want, you can also use your Erasmus+ semester to network, exchange, and support sustainable initiatives and participate in events. This way you automatically get to meet people with similar interests. Whether at beach clean-ups or participation in university groups, committed locals are certainly happy about support and your interest. Additionally, it gives you the opportunity to learn the language, learn new perspectives and contribute with your own ideas.
If there is a thematic offer at the partner university, you can take courses related to sustainability or climate change to further educate yourself and/or learn about new perspectives.
After your Erasmus+
We encourage you to include your personal experiences and learnings in the area of sustainability in your final report. This is helpful for the next generation of Erasmus+ students to find their way around local sustainable options, for example having a tip for second hand stores. In our FAQs you find some more inspiration what you could include. Moreover, it helps us in pursuing the topic, as it shows your interest in sustainability and supports our work to integrate sustainability more strongly into European universities.
After your Erasmus+, you can continue to get involved at Goethe University to further promote sustainability at our institution. Sustainability is already a core topic of some activities of student organizations.
Moreover, you can contact the newly found Goethe’s Green Office at Goethe University with your ideas to make the university a greener and more sustainable place.
In the QIS/LSF system, you are also able find a list of all courses and seminars offered with a reference to topics of sustainability under "Sustainability Studies".
International Relations Management and Erasmus+-Coordination
Dr. Anke Reinhold
Tel.: +49 (0)69 798-36571
PEG Room 2G. 134
Open consultation hours: Tuesdays and Thursdays 11 am – 1 pm and online by appointment via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
During the semester break, office hours are held on Tuesdays from 11 am – 1 pm.
Faculty of Social Sciences
Campus Westend, PEG building
60323 Frankfurt am Main