Sustainable Intelligence – Intelligent Sustainability

Funding:      ZEVEDI, Hessisches Ministerium für Digitale Strategie und Entwicklung, TU Darmstadt

Duration:   2021- 2022

Supervision:   Prof. Dr. Birgit Blättel-Mink (FB Gesellschaftswissenschaften) und Prof. Dr. Indra Spiecker (FB Rechtswissenschaften)

Researchers: Franziska Ohde and Bianka Zurek

To ensure sustainable development worldwide on an economic, social and ecological level, the United Nations has defined 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Digitisation poses new challenges to the achievement of these goals, but due to its transformational character it can also open up new opportunities. However, conflicts and synergies arising between SDGs have hardly been explored – neither in general nor in relation to digitisation in particular. This is the background for the project group’s research. Using innovative approaches such as collaboration engineering and citizen science, the project group aims to identify digitisation-related conflicts of goals and synergies between SDGs, discussing them in a transdisciplinary manner and developing solutions. The focus is on SDGs 4 (quality education), 10 (reduced inequalities) and 12 (responsible consumption and production).

Speaker: Prof. Dr. iur. Gerrit Hornung, LL.M., Universität Kassel
Deputy: Prof. Dr. phil. Gerd Doeben-Henisch, University of Applied Sciences Frankfurt

The project group of Professor Birgit Blättel-Mink explores the relationship between SDGs and (digital forms of) Citizen Science.


Effects of Climate Change on Aquatic Ecosystems and Water Supply in the Rhön Biosphere Reserve: Participatory Risk Assessment and Development of Adaptation Measures

Funding:      Hessian Agency for Nature Conservation, Environment and Geology

Duration:   2019 - 2022

Supervision:   Prof. Dr. Birgit Blättel-Mink, Prof. Dr. Petra Döll (Faculty of Geosciences/ Geography)

Researchers: Max Czymai
Facing difficulties in quantifying climate change and an increasing pressure in using water resources, how can these resources be managed sustainably for society and the ecosystem by different actors?

The aim of the project is (1) to develop suitable management strategies in a participatory manner in order to be able to use the water resources in the Rhön Biosphere Reserve, especially its Hessian part, in a sustainable way for society and the ecosystem in view of climate change. To this end, (2) methods for interdisciplinary (social and natural sciences) and transdisciplinary (with scientists and practice partners) knowledge integration must be developed. Practice partners (i.e. institutional stakeholders) are selected, relevant Hessian actors in the problem area, such as the administrative office of the Hessian Biosphere Reserve Rhön, (water) authorities, civil society organisations, companies and other stakeholders.

The perception of the problem and the willingness of citizens to adapt is empirically surveyed by the project partners and brought into the participatory process in a way that not directly involves citizens in the process. The exact focus within the problem area (e.g. drinking water supply, preservation of the raised bog, water transfer to Fulda) will be developed by the project partners in a participatory manner with the stakeholders during the participatory process. This exact focus will depend, for example, on the composition of the stakeholders, their problem perspectives, and their specific areas of interest.

​Working Group (AK) Critical Sociology - intensification of cooperation with Institute for social research (IfS) and Faculty 03, Department of Social Sciences, Goethe University

The working group, jointly supported by the Institute for Social Research (IfS) Frankfurt and the Institute for Sociology of the Department of Social Sciences at the Goethe University Frankfurt, sees itself as a forum for critical social research. The working group organises the lecture series "Critical Sociology", which, following the Frankfurt tradition of Critical Theory, explores concepts, subjects and effects of sociological criticism. A diversity of societal phenomena are under exploration. Overarching questions that also critically (self)reflect the practice of sociological critique itself are: which phenomena can be subjected to critique, why and from which perspective? What are the conceptual and methodological challenges of critical social research? Which concepts of critique can be distinguished and how? Doing so, the working group wants to contribute to a (self-)understanding of the tasks, requirements and goals of a critical sociology of the present communicating with the tradition of Critical Theory and critical concepts of other provenance. In addition, it promotes cooperation between the IfS and the Goethe University's Department of Social Sciences by fostering networking and exchange of all interested parties who are dedicated to the questions and problems of a critical sociology in their research.


Birgit Blättel-Mink, Laura Hanemann, Stephan Lessenich, Susanne Martin


Birgit Blättel-Mink,




Prof. Dr. Birgit Blättel-Mink

Faculty of Social Sciences
Institute of Sociology

Visiting address
Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 6
Campus-Westend – PEG-Building
Room 3.G 029
60323 Frankfurt am Main

Mail address
Campus Westend
PEG - internal post 31
60629 Frankfurt am Main

Tel. +49 69 798 36660


Team Assistant

Mrs. Uhrig
Room 3.G 030
Tel.: +49 69 798 36660