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Autumn Challenge Programme 2021

Smart, happy and resilient communities
Sustainable Cities and Communities


This year will be the second edition of the Autumn Challenge Programme! After the success of last year’s programme, this year a new group of students will get the chance to partake in this online experience and work on real-life challenges that seek solutions. The Autumn Challenge consists of educational sessions (lectures), skills workshops and a virtual team collaboration to solve a challenge, centred around the SDG-11 on creating sustainable cities and communities.


The challenges we offer

Challenged-Based Learning (CBL) forms the heart of the Autumn Challenge Programme. During the programme, students work in groups (also known as Virtual Teams) on one of the following challenges:

●      Challenge 1: A future-proof community fund in Twente: securing financial resources to support local communities.

●      Challenge 2: From the ivory tower to the layman valley: communicating science to citizens.

●      Challenge 3: First language first: fighting illiteracy.

●      Challenge 4: Empowering young voices in local government.

●      Challenge 5: Recycling behaviour in university communities.

●      Challenge 6: Future energy system to support green energy and electric aviation.

●      Challenge 7: Young talents in the regional labour market.


All challenges are offered by various stakeholders, such as NGOs and local organisations from the city of Enschede and/or the Netherlands.


Expected impact and target groups

Learners in this programme are given all the tools they need to make a significant contribution to their challenge and the SDG-11 as a whole. With the support from educational sessions and relevant skills workshops, learners use a structured approach within the CBL framework. The Autumn Challenge Programme offers an all-inclusive structure, whereby learners can work on their selected challenge by means of their Virtual Teams (group work), follow a selection of thematic lectures related to the challenge topics (thematic lectures), as well as skills labs (skills workshops) based on the needs they have and the skills they want to develop. Moreover, learners have the chance to customise their learning experience by selecting an individual learning goal they want to achieve aside from the general learning outcomes of the programme. 


More information about the specific activities and schedule of the programme can be found in the Autumn Challenge Programme website:


The Autumn Challenge Programme is targeted at students of the ECIU universities within their 2nd or 3rdBachelor year or who are starting a Master programme.


Expectations from students

The programme will take place in a fully online format between the 12th of October 2021 and the 13th of January 2022. On the 25th and 27th of January 2022, the final pitching moments will be held. Students can choose their own educational curriculum and schedule in the programme, which amasses to a total of 4 ECTS (with a possibility to expand to 5 ECTS upon request). 


Deadline for application

Students should apply by the 19th of September 2021, 23:59 (CEST) via this registration form

Registrations via the ECIU platform are also possible, however in this case, please ensure to mention the top 3 challenges of your choice in your motivation letter. 



Programme information

Admission process: An admission process will take place following the application submission. The selection process will be completed in the week 20-24 September 2021. When applying, please make sure to state the preference for the top 3 challenges you would like to follow as well as the individual learning outcome (if this is desired). 

ECTS or certification information: 4 ECTS (possibility to expand to 5 ECTS). This is an extracurricular programme, therefore recognition of the ECTS needs to be coordinated at the home institution. A certificate will be provided upon successful completion of the programme, which includes presence and active participation to the final pitching sessions on the 25th and 27th of January 2022. 



Information session: All interested learners are welcome to join the information and consultation sessions organised on the 31st of August, 18:00 CEST onwards. You can make an appointment for consultation via this link: