söndag 8 mars 2015

Our planned master's level track "probably unique"

I wrote a blog post about our master's level track, "Sustainable Information Society" only a month ago when we found out that yes, we will be able to develop it and start to teach it 1.5 years from now. Those news resulted in an interview that was picked up and developed by the central KTH press function. The result is the text below - a translation from the Swedish-language original text that for a while was available on KTH's front page. The track will start in the autumn of 2016 - 18 months from now - so it feels a bit blown out of proportion at this point, but, here it is:

Environmentally friendly IT new master's level specialisation at KTH

From the autumn of 2016, students at KTH can immerse themselves in information technology and sustainability as part of their masters program. The specialisation is probably unique, it will be part of their two-year long masters program that will be called Sustainable Information Society.

- As far as we know KTH will be the only university in the world that offers this kind of specialization in IT and sustainability. It is an important specialisation: there is great potential in the use of IT to improve efficiency and decrease carbon emissions in different sectors of society, says Daniel Pargman, KTH researcher and leader of the group that developed the proposal for the new specialisation.

He says that the School of Computer Science and Communication at KTH is in the process of developing their master's level programmes. Today there are three different media technology and Human-Computer Interaction masters programmes [123] but these will be replaces by one program with six different specialisations. Information Technology and Sustainability will thus becomes one such specialisation.

- The fact that KTH now further promotes itself in sustainability education and research will allow us to deepen our competence and our skills in this field. Furthermore, it gives us additional opportunities to partner with business, industry and public administration in the form of graduate projects and master's theses, says Daniel Pargman.

During the spring, the School of Computer Science and Communication will announce a job position as Assistant Professor in Human-Computer Interaction with a focus on sustainability.

A few typical jobs that students who read the specialisation can look forward to is to work with how IT can be used in our cities and our homes to reduce resource consumption. This will be part of the so-called smart homes of the future. But also smarter transportation is needed in the future, both in terms of personal and collective services. Concretely, this may mean that the students will develop various IT services, like travel planners.

Students will, at the same time, also acquire basic knowledge of life cycle analysis and systems thinking.

- The new masters program is of course also exciting for the Centre for Sustainable Communications; a concrete example of how work undertaken within the frame of the KTH Centre will live on in the future, says Daniel Pargman.

The Master program Sustainable Information Society will be held in English to attract students from different parts of the world.

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