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Transdisciplinary Master-Insert

Shaping Responsible Futures

Are you a curious and engaged student? Do you want to go beyond your comfort zone and create societal impact? Are you interested in working with students, teachers, and stakeholders from different disciplinary backgrounds? Then the 'Shaping Responsible Futures' programme is the right choice for you!

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The team of the Transdisciplinary Master-Insert ‚ÄėShaping Responsible Futures‚Äô is extremely proud to have received this prestigious award for educational innovation. It is an enormous recognition for the programme and proves that we have established a highly innovative educational concept that leads the way in the Netherlands in terms of combining the personal and professional development of students with societal impact.¬†

'Shaping Responsible Futures' is an award-winning programme that offers you the opportunity to pursue your own interests and become a multi-skilled and open-minded professional, able to constantly adapt to new challenges. Connecting science to society, you collaborate with a variety of real-world stakeholders on addressing complex societal challenges. Using tools and techniques from across disciplines, you learn to work in transdisciplinary ways (bridging disciplinary and field-specific knowledge from stakeholders together). As you participate in this extracurricular programme, you become part of a unique community of transdisciplinary professionals, develop yourself personally and professionally, and earn a unique Certificate on Shaping Responsible Futures that is complementary to your masters programme.


Overview of the Curriculum

The Transdisciplinary Master-Insert Programme

The curriculum of the Master-Insert is designed for master students from all academic disciplines and is based on four pillars: real-world challenges, transdisciplinarity, personal and professional development, and self-directed learning. It consists of three challenge packages (10 EC each) each consisting of two courses (5 EC each), taking place in Quartiles 2 and 3. The Master-Insert is a full-time programme, but for students who cannot participate full-time, we also offer a part-time option consisting of one or two challenge packages. Below you can find more information on the challenge packages and courses.

  • Transdisciplinary and Creative Ways of Working (10 EC)EC
    • Transdisciplinary Working5

      You take multiple world perspectives into account, bridge disciplines, and create value by synergising expertise.

      You learn about key concepts and principles of working with people from various disciplinary backgrounds, as well as theories and experiences that shape worldviews. Through reflective practices, you gain an in-depth understanding of that goals and values that shape disciplines, and with that, of the contribution of these disciplines to transdisciplinary work.

    • Creative Intelligence5

      You develop high-level conceptual thinking and problem-solving skills, learn how to deal with complexity, and explore frameworks for criticising and judging propositions.

      You create and apply tangible tools, design concrete activities and select the appropriate environment to facilitate 'creative intelligence' (i.e.: the creation of shared understanding and innovative ideas) within complex, transdisciplinary collaboration processes. 

  • Shaping Society and Responsible Futures (10 EC)EC
    • Societal Leadership5

      You learn about responsible innovation, servant leadership, creating societal impact, and stakeholder engagement.

      In the central project you define local or regional transdisciplinary innovation projects that contribute to reaching the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). You will develop insights in stakeholder constellations, technological options, and societal dynamics, as well as develop the ability to take the lead in implementing these projects. 

    • Futurism5

      You explore and envision future scenarios, review technology trends, and learn to articulate original, well-informed future visions.

      You 'solve' a societal challenge on the basis of building a future vision through narratives, (re-)framing, speculative design, scenario building, and design fiction. You learn how to think beyond the constraints of current technology, society, culture, politics, and policies to design/create new emerging realities.

  • Leading Systemic Change (10 EC)EC
    • Change Making5

      You create societal impact by evoking bottom-up change and communicating concepts and ideas effectively.

      You gain knowledge of, and skills in the change-making process' on many different layers and learn about important factors to consider for the persuasion and mobilisation of others. In reflection meetings, you gain insights into your unique talents and skills as a change maker.

    • Systems Thinking5

      You learn to deal with open, complex, dynamic and networked problems.

      You develop system thinking habits and learn about tools and techniques for exploring and visualising systems. You apply your skills and knowledge to a case study executed in a multi-stakeholder context and learn to uncover (sometimes hidden) relations between elements in a system.

How to Apply?

Application Deadline

1st of November 2022

Start date

November (Quartile 2)

End date

April (Quartile 3)

The 'Shaping Responsible Futures' programme starts in November and all educational activities will take place in the DesignLab. The programme can accommodate max. 30 students every year and the admission is based on intrinsic motivation and time commitment. To apply, submit a well written 'personal motivation letter' (max. 1000 words, 2 A4 pages) elaborating your interest and the relevance of this programme for your endeavours. Following your application, you are invited for an interview with the academic staff.

Ready to Apply?
Click Here!


Master-Insert Coordinators
dr.ir. K. Visscher (Klaasjan)
Associate Professor

Interested to get to know everyone on our team of enthusiastic academics from all over the university, and beyond? Take a look at the Our Team page.

Do you have a question? Check out our Contact & FAQ page.
Interested in students' experience? Take a look at our Student Experiences page.

About DesignLab

The Master-Insert is hosted by DesignLab: a collaborative ecosystem for innovative change makers that connects science and society. Students and researchers from all across the University of Twente, other educational institutions, and governments and companies, work together in a transdisciplinary way on (educational) projects and research that are focussed on responsible design and citizen Science.

Programme overview

Transdisciplinary Master-Insert: Shaping Responsible Futures
Certification: certificate
CROHO code
6 months
Numerus fixus
There is a maximum of 30 study places

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