A11TZ Transition Engineering - Achieving Net Zero Carbon InTIME

12 Weeks + Exam

Course Overview:

Transition Engineering is the work of turning down the unsustainable aspects of the incumbent industrial technical enterprise to achieve international agreements and science requirements. Turning down unsustainable, yet profitable and desirable engineered systems is challenging work. This course will help you use counterfactuals and alternative perspectives, and teaches the approaches, tools and methods for the work of engineering these transitions.

Course Objectives:

The main objective of the course is to learn how to proactively and productively work through the wicked problems of transition. The course will use reading, lectures, short example problems and case studies. Problem Based Learning will be used to apply Transition Engineering in a real-world situation. Students will: explore a wicked problem, use the 7-step InTIME methodology to develop a project brief for presentation.

  • Understand and appreciate fully the sustainability implications of the issues of climate change, fossil energy use, economic growth, biocapacity, social capacity, equity, autonomy and sustainable resource limits. Be familiar with current sustainability approaches, policies and international agreements.
  • Using appropriate project and business management principles and tools to solve complex engineering problems.
  • Understand approaches and methods for exploring future scenarios.
  • Prepare for communication and consultation with a range of stakeholders.
  • Use the InTIME methodology to innovate engineering projects that deal with wicked problems.
  • Carry out transitional economics analysis and contrast with conventional economic prescriptions.
  • Understand energy return on energy investment (EROI), carrying capacity and depletion risks, and be able to provide sound engineering advice based on rigorous analysis to a range of stakeholders, e.g. politicians, business people, financiers and the public.


A11ET Energy Transition Lab

12 Weeks + Final Report

Course Overview:

Transition Engineering is the work of downshifting the unsustainable aspects of the incumbent industrial technical enterprise to achieve the emissions targets set by international agreements and to restore environmental biocapacity. Downshifting the unsustainable aspects of profitable and desirable engineered systems is challenging work. This work will be done one shift project at a time from the ground up and from within the incumbent organisations.

This course is lab-based, applying the Transition Engineering approach to a real-world wicked problem and developing a shift project to the proposal stage. A Transition Lab at the Islands Centre for Net Zero (ICNZ) will be ongoing during the course and students can follow that lab and participate.

Assessment:  The assessment for this course is 100%  Final Report  Due final day of Exam Diet

The deliverable for the course will be a fully developed Shift Project Proposal for an organization, council or business. The Final Report includes the description of the wicked problem, the data and analysis in each of the InTIME steps, and the proposal for the shift project. The assessment will include learning developed through the project, the historical research (Step 1), data observatory (Step 2) modelling of scenarios and crash testing (Step 3), application of transition tools and methods (Step 4), insight and perspective (Step 5), the resulting shift project proposal (Step 6) and the forward analysis (Step 7). The project milestones, analysis and final report are individual work, but can be done in groups working in similar energy transition sectors and can involve group feedback. Individual students will turn in their own final reports on the final day of the exam period. Thus, a superior grade for the course will be related to active learning and participation throughout the course.

Course Objectives:

Carry out an Energy Transition Lab with a viable shift project proposal. Gain motivation for energy transition leadership. Gain competency in real-world complex energy systems data and analysis. Explore a wicked problem in a given context. Gain proficiency in the 7-step Interdisciplinary Transition, Innovation, Management and Engineering (InTIME) Methodology. Develop a shift project proposal brief for presentation to a stakeholder cohort. Practice project planning and management, team working, and stakeholder relations in the context of a real-life project. Prepare to practice as an energy transition leader in community, business, finance or industry sectors.