Are you interested in the disruptive technologies and ideas shaping our future? This course will update you on the latest technological developments offering interesting future opportunities. You will be equipped with tools to deal with the dramatic changes ahead to position you, your company or institution for the future.

 10 ECTS


Disrupting new ideas often precedes disruptive new-engineered technologies or the two interact. This course covers such ideas and technologies and the many relationships between them, assuming that they will have a great impact on cities in the near and more distant future.

Some of the topics

  • What is a zero emission and energy autonoumous building and a zero emission mobility system and how do we design these?
  • What does new legal frameworks mean? Like the new EU Directive demanding all new buildings from end of 2020 must be Nearly Zero Energy buildings
  • Are there similar laws for transportation?
  • What is BREEAM?
  • What is a self-driving shared vehicle and what are the chances of it ever becoming a reality in a big scale – and if so - when?
  • Can a city or the world be run on renewable energy only? How do we get there and by when?

Participants will develop their skills to understand and forecast these and many more challenges.

Potential candidates

  • Architects
  • City planners
  • Anyone working with design or construction of buildings and infrastructure
  • Professionals who wants to build a career within sustainable city development
  • Transport planners
  • Concerned citizens 

Teaching methods

Lectures, reading, writing, discussion and project tasks.

Six full day workshops (three session meetings of two days each) containing lectures, discussions and project work. One semester. English. Written assignment 1/1.


Long term planning requires a deep understanding of how cities develop. Forecasting is complicated and increasingly important. Is it possible to forecast more precisely the changes ahead? If so, is forecasting the only tool available?

Workshop 2 ETHICS

In order to develop truly sustainable cities we need to look at more than just technological improvements and greenery. How people meet in cities, how safe a city is also defines the quality of living. So does the level of corruption and other ethical challenges. Can a philosophical approach help clarify our thoughts?


In spite of many doomsday forecasts – the world of today is a better place for the majority of people than 100 years ago. But what are the consequences of climate change? Are we forced to focus on adaptation or can we still fight climate change? (Mid-term review and discussion of student assignment.)


We study the latest projects of energy autonomous, zero carbon communities; both planned and built ones and their dependence on renewable energy. The immense possibilities offered by the price fall and technology improvements of renewable energy in combination with the battery revolution has led to a range of projects worth looking at; solar villages, solar planes, boats and buildings combining solar with other renewable technologies like wind power and heat pumps. But we also look at poor examples. We ask: Can the world be run entirely by renewable energy - and when?

Workshop 5 NOTOPIA

The world has over time been blessed or cursed with visionary ideas normally referred to as Utopias.They offer hope and engagement that make us stretch our ability to see new possibilities. But sometimes they end up as extreme cases of centralised dictatorial straight jackets and not as well functioning solutions. We look at examples and focus on particularly huge global challenges by asking: Are homelessnes and poverty problems solvable?


Students present and deliver their work.

Lecture dates

Workshop 1 og 2:  19 and 20 September
Workshop 3 og 4:  24 and 25 October
Workshop 5 og 6:  21 and 22 November


Those who fulfill following qualifications are eligible to apply for this course (10 ECTS) at master level: 3 years Bachelor degree (180 ECTS)

It is possible to follow this course without fulfilling the qualifications (180 ECTS) and get a transcript with 0 ECTS.


NOK 20 000,- + semester fee
50 % discount for partners in the Future Energy Hub.


Hear Professor Harald Nils Røstvik talk about these important topics in the podcast Trenger du litt miljøoptimisme?
(Podcast in Norwegian)

About the lecturer, Professor Harald Nils Røstvik

Professor Harald N. Røstvik is educated as Architect MNAL at the School of Architecture, University of Manchester, UK. He has worked for The Greater London Council, Department of Architecture and Planning, London, The Building Design Partnership, Manchester and Architect Bryne, Stavanger, after which he set up his own practice SunLab (

Hear a podcast (in Norwegian) with Røstvik: Trenger du litt miljøoptimisme? 
Read Røstviks article in the newspaper Stavanger Aftenblad: Når nullenergibygg blir europeisk standard i 2020 – som demonstrert på Forus allerede i 1988.

Røstvik is a pioneer and a visionary of sustainable design. Since 1977 he has designed sustainable buildings, communities and transportation systems in a range of European countries as well as in Africa and Asia. In practice he has collaborated on projects and competitions with a number of other internationally orientated architects and planners.

He pioneered the legendary approach of the International Solar Energy Society (ISES) when Chairman of the Norwegian section, in alliance with Eurosolar to get Energy up as a separate theme at the 1992 UN Rio Conference.

Together with A-ha and Belliona he initiated the import of the first electric vehicle to Norway and the ideas that led to the world's best electric vehicle incentives. He designed Europe's first modern energy autonomous renewable energy based house the same year, 1988. It resulted in the legendary best-selling book and video "The Sunshine Revolution" in 1991.

Harald  N.  Røstvik  has  been  nominated  for  the  Aga  Khan  Award  for  architecture  and  received  a  range  of  prizes  including  the  Gro  Harlem  Brundtland  Award.  With  Swedish  colleagues  he  was  responsible  for  the  solar  part  of  the Gårdsten housing project in Gothenburg, SE that won the UN World Habitat Award 2005.

Publisert 14.06.2018