Plenary panel session

How should IT education address sustainability and climate change?

It is now beyond discussion that issues of sustainability and climate change will be a great challenge globally and on every level of society in the decades to come. Computers have an environmental impact, directly (e.g. through the energy consumption of the infrastructure) and indirectly (e.g. by affecting the behavior of users of information systems). This environmental impact is increasingly being acknowledged by academia and industry, and there is related research and development activity within the different branches of IT, for instance in artificial intelligence, human-computer interaction and software engineering. As society needs IT professionals who are trained to recognize, understand and act upon the challenges of sustainability and climate change, these challenges need to be addressed in higher IT education.

There is an increasing interest in academia in how this should be achieved. This plenary session is a contribution towards this agenda, to help push the community of Norwegian IT educators to engage in the conversation and find good ways to address sustainability and climate change in their courses and study programs. Key questions include:

  • What is needed from future candidates in IT to address the challenges of climate change?
  • How should we address these challenges in higher IT education?·      
  • What enables us to do so, and what are hindrances?

The session will start with short introductory speeches by the invited panelists, followed by a panel discussion in which the audience is invited to participate.

Invited panel:
Dr. Anne-Kathrin Peters, University of Uppsala
Simen Sommerfeldt, CTO Bouvet ASA
Leif Skiftenes Flak, Universitetet i Agder

Moderator: Birgit R. Krogstie, NTNU