FUTE project: GINTL network expanded to develop sustainability in teacher education


Author Sari Havu-Nuutinen, Ella Suortti (University of Eastern Finland)

TopicsBlog posts & articles, GINTL-funded projects

The University of Eastern Finland, University of Turku, University of Namibia and University of Dar es Salaam have started a new Higher Education Partnership (HEP) project. Originally, the project is rooted in a GINTL collaboration. The newly funded project aims to develop collaborative activities to promote education for sustainable development in teacher education by focusing on sustainability competences, pedagogical solutions and implementing the sustainability activities in regards of the local needs. Following the goals of GINTL, the project aims to support lifelong learning and inclusive education in teacher education.

Educational experts, teacher educators and student teachers to develop and promote sustainable education in teacher education

In March, educational experts from four higher universities from Finland, Namibia, and Tanzania started the “Future teacher education for sustainable development” (FUTE) project through their first face to face meeting in Dar es Salaam. The intensive meeting week included building closer relationships and bonding, finishing the project’s inception phase as well as planning the three cycles of the project.

As part of the visit, Professor Sari Havu-Nuutinen (University of Eastern Finland and leader of the FUTE project) held a lecture about the importance of sustainability in teacher education and role of the current research about sustainability education and 21st century competencies.

During the meeting in Tanzania, the project members drafted four workshops for the teacher educators participating from the involved universities. In Fall 2024 and Spring 2025, a group of teacher educators will join the workshops to learn more about the sustainable development goals and the role of sustainable development in teacher education and different pedagogical approaches to support sustainability.

In addition, teacher educators will come together to reflect the local needs and learn from each other’s experiences and best practices in the workshops. Eventually the format will guide the teacher educators to revise current curricula to meet the needs of sustainability in their courses.

Image: FUTE experts actively participating in one of the learning cafes to plan the foundation for the workshops

Aims of the FUTE project

This collaborative initiative intends to advance and strengthen teacher educators’ conceptual, methodological, and pedagogical competence to promote education for sustainable development in teacher education in Finland, Namibia, and Tanzania.

Some of the FUTE project members after successful first face to face meeting
Some of the FUTE project members after successful first face to face meeting

Project cycles

The project has planned to progress through three cycles:

  • The first cycle aims to foster teacher educators’ capacity building through professional development training.
  • The second cycle will encourage teacher educators to continue their work in small teams on each campus to update and re-design their courses to student teachers to fulfill necessary targets of sustainable development and link them to local needs.
  • The third cycle will facilitate student teachers to apply their learning outcomes from the courses in their teaching practice as well as plan, implement, and assess mini projects of sustainability education in their local community.

With these activities the FUTE project aims to increase teacher educators networking and possibilities to share and develop their courses in teacher education. Meanwhile, the inclusive education as well as sustainability competencies in teacher education are increased.

More information

Cover image: Professor Sari presenting for DUCE’s education department staff members

Members of our network

We are a network of dedicated scholars and practitioners, who work jointly with our partners to co-create research-based solutions for local needs.

Together, we can spark cycles of learning for better education. 

Project coordinators

GINTL Finnish higher education institutions