National Monitoring: Structural Implementation of ESD in Germany

Implementing Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) more profoundly and within the structures of the German educational system is the central aim of Germany’s national strategy for the UNESCO Global Action Programme (GAP ESD). But how well has ESD been integrated so far and how can the progress made be checked? Dr. Gerhard de Haan and the Global Action Programme project team working at Institut Futur at Freie Universität Berlin aim to answer these questions.

As part of Phase 3 of Germany’s national ESD monitoring programme, a survey with more than 2,500 young people (aged 14 to 24) and over 500 teachers has been conducted in spring 2018. Participants were questioned regarding their sustainability-related attitudes, emotions, knowledge and behaviour. In addition, the quantitative survey should further determine the status of ESD implementation as well as associated obstacles.

Antje Brock and Julius Grund, members of the Global Action Programme project team working at Institut Futur, have summarised the study’s results in two documents (in German):

The evaluation of responses made clear that in the educational sectors covered by the study – school, higher education and technical and vocational education and training – there is much room for improvement when it comes to implementing ESD. This highlights not only a discrepancy between educational reality and policy goals concerning ESD, but that both teachers and young people would like to see their educational institutions incorporate considerably more ESD.