A few weeks ago Michael Wilhenda invited me to visit to the coworking space of the Student HUB of the Weltethos-Institut (Global Ethic Institute), at the University of Tübingen. I wanted to learn a bit about the German outlook on social entrepreneurship.
The Global Ethic Institute of Tübingen is framed in the Global Ethic Project, a project based on Professor Hans Küng’s book “Global Responsibility” (1990). The book develops the idea that “the religions of the world can make a contribution to the peace of humankind only if they reflect on those elements of an ethic which they already have in common: on a fundamental consensus on binding values, irrevocable standards and personal attitudes.”*
In 2012, the Global Ethic Institute was founded at the University of Tübingen to “promote moral behavior in the global economy and the dialogue of cultures.”
The Institute conducts activities which include seminars, events, research, and the student HUB, created as a place for students to network and share information about sustainability, business ethics and interculturality.
Michael’s idea of bringing students together came up when he noticed that there were many student social projects and initiatives but they didn’t know about each other. So he created this collaborative space, both virtual and physical, for them to meet, share information and discuss ideas and projects.
Students now have a coworking space where they have resources (projectors, boards, and even a library), learn about social entrepreneurship, and network. I’ve always thought words have power and talking about the right thing to the right people can drive change within ourselves and thus, what we do. I believe all the ingredients of this coworking space make it easier for students to enroll in the conversations the world needs young people to have. The type of conversations that lead to new, awesome, change making, world changing, ideas and projects.
I personally love this initiative. It’s a safe environment for students to carry out projects that are beneficial for society and the environment. It empowers them to produce a positive impact though their work, by giving them support and access to resources, both physical and intellectual. And to me, this is the most valuable service a university can provide to a student and to the world.
Special thanks to Michael for taking the time to share his work, ideas and show me around 🙂