Architecture & Arts
Germany Sustainable Communities

Us Partner Institution Texas A & M University
Faculty US Faculty
On-Site Coordinator Ture Petersenn 
Level Undergraduates
Sequence Summer Term


The Texas A&M summer program “Germany Sustainable Communities” is a five-week international experience for all Texas A&M majors (priority given to University Studies students in the College of Architecture and students enrolled in CARC 481. The program is based in Bonn, Germany and is offered in collaboration with the Academy for International Education (AIB). The Academy for International Education is a private, non-profit organization for higher education. Founded in 1993, AIB has welcomed thousands of study abroad students in a wide variety of academic disciplines.

The Program “German Sustainable Communities” explores exciting and innovative approaches to sustainability-related concepts and practices on different levels, such as urban design, energy production & consumption, waste management, traffic planning, architecture and land uses in Germany, one of the nations spearheading sustainable initiatives in those fields. Many study tours, exchanges with experts from the field and first-hand experiences allow students to discover a multitude of challenges, strategies and success stories, revealing to them commonalities and differences between German and US practices in this field.

In this program, students will experience both personal and intercultural growth, as well as prepare for their future academic career goals. For those interested in international perspectives on essential and imminent challenges the world is facing in the future, this study program may serve as a catalyst for a career in related professions.


This summer program is designed for all majors. Priority is given to University Studies students in the College of Architecture and students enrolled in CARC 481.

Participants are required to take a total of six (6) credits.

URPN 460: Sustainable Communities (3 credits)

CARC 311: Field Studies in Design Communication (3 credits)

LAND 485: Directed Studies (3 credits)

LAND 685: Directed Studies (3 credits)

Two courses for a total of six credits are built into the program (URPN 460; CARC 311; LAND 485; LAND 685).

Special emphasis in the program is given to reflecting on commonalities and differences between the approaches to sustainability in the German and US context. The program is designed to link classroom instruction with experiences, field studies and meetings with expert practitioners and academics in the field. To that extend, a multitude of study tours are built into the program.


The program takes students on a multitude of day-long and overnight field trips to sites displaying sustainable initiatives, to research institutions, to NGO’s from the field, as well as to museums and historical/cultural sites of significance in Germany.

Some examples include visits to:

  • six day study tour to Berlin
  • a renewable energy park
  • innovative waste management projects
  • creative urban agriculture projects
  • to world-famous industrial brown eld redevelopments
  • the United Nations in Bonn
  • multiple bike-rides and hikes through nature preserves and along the Rhine in/around Bonn
  • a cruise on the Rhine river through the UNESCO Upper Middle Rhine Valley
  • etc., illustrating design practices and cultural/historic aspects of Germany & Europe


Gastfamilien & Housing


Ture Petersenn