The 2 day workshop for teaching staff (A1)

Date: 09-2021 Duration: 2 days

Session 0: The first session will bring together educators from different disciplines together with commercial representatives from the fields of artificial biology, robotics, art, design and sustainability. The focus of the workshop is to discuss and create guidelines for creating a transdisciplinary educational programme that bridges science, engineering, art, design and sustainability. All this in relation to tackling the skills gaps and mismatches in students, educators, specialists/researchers. Dealing with different terminologies embedded in specific fields and addressing ways to create a common language will be discussed. Specific case studies from industry will inform the discussion on what real-world needs are and possible solutions. This will guide the conversation of how to prepare students and teachers for our evolving job market. We will examine the affordances and challenges of putting together interdisciplinary teams. We will investigate where the fine balance is between generalists and specialists in innovation. Last but not least - what are the skills and competencies that are missing from current MA and Msc. graduates? The guidelines drafted in this first session of C1 will inform sessions 2 of C1 and C2.

Session 1 : In session 1 - theories related to (a) problem based learning, (b) design-based and art-based research, (c) the state of the art in robotics and robotic production and (d) areas of intersection between: technology and biology; genetics and computation; digital fabrication and bio-fabrication; making and bio-hacking; artificial intelligence and natural intelligence are all presented and discussed.

Session 2 : In session 2, participants will work towards the production of robots through a problem based learning approach. Using a series of design thinking methods, blueprints for soft robots with different controlled or un-controlled movement patterns are produced. A number of designs, production techniques and natural and artificial materials are introduced and applied. Through computational design and digital fabrication, we will explore different (1) exterior, but also (2) interior geometric configurations of the robots themselves in trying to control their movement and inquire what kind of interactions these different movements allow and deny/impede. The participants will work in interdisciplinary teams and exchange background knowledge and experience.

Session 3 : The third session will focus on studying and evaluating interactions between people and the outputs developed in Session 2. Discussions and reflections on challenges and opportunities related to the future of robotics, human-robot interaction and artificial life will take place.

Session 4: The fourth session will focus on discussing the first iteration of the workshop as a transdisciplinary educational initiative together with sustainable design procedures and actions within our focus fields.


The workshop participants will be representatives of the teaching staff from each of the strategic partners in the consortia, invited teachers, invited members from the Nordic Summer School, and invited members from a minimum of 2 companies working within the fields of robotics, biotechnology, design.


The activities will contribute to the Intellectual Output 1, 2 and 5:

  1. IO1 - ABRA platform
  2. IO2 - Course guide on transdisciplinary teaching and learning.
  3. IO5 - the Joint Master Degree Curriculum for Erasmus+ application.