“The basic idea of transdisciplinarity is a co-generation of knowledge between researchers and stakeholders together, making use of the knowledge that’s outside of a traditional academic field and bringing that together in the entire research process, from defining the problem through bringing knowledge into society for change and to bringing the change back into knowledge.”

Mark Lawrence, atmospheric scientist

Over the course of 2013–14, Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW) in cooperation with the Max Planck Society, Deutsches Museum, the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society, and the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies facilitated The Anthropocene Project, producing situations for engagement and supporting new forms of research and practice. Several exhibitions, public events, and workshops, as well as an ambitious publication, all contributed to unraveling the Anthropocene across disciplines and within public awareness. The Anthropocene Campus was part of that two year project, focusing on knowledge production and dissemination in a “geological age of mankind”.

The following two texts address key questions that that have been the point of departure in the development of the Anthropocene Campus. Jan Zalasiewicz in his text discusses the difficulty of defining the moment in time, when the Holocene was replaced by the Anthropocene. Jürgen Renn and Manfred D. Laubichler address the need of restructuring not only research but also education systems to meet the demands of the Anthropocene.

Teaching the Anthropocene from a Global Perspective

In memory of Yehuda Elkana. By Manfred D. Laubichler and Jürgen Renn.

The Anthropocene is a geological epoch defined by the consequences of human activity. As such, its reach is global, even planetary. Yet, despite the dramatic impact of human activities, which themselves are a consequence of human knowledge, but also a lack thereof, most educational practices remain fragmented and discipline-bound. more...

A Beginning to the Anthropocene?

By Jan Zalasiewicz

Geologists, did not, though, discard their elaborately compiled dynastic framework to simply use numerical time (although suggestions to that end were made). Those stratal dynasties proved too useful—and their reflection of real genuine changes in Earth state made them into a kind of convenient aide memoire of the major phases of Earth history. more...