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Transdisciplinary Learning Lab


Project Duration: 04/2016 - 12/2020
Project Leader: Prof. Dr. Uta Wilkens
Project Coordinator: Saskia Hohagen, Marleen Voß
Funding: Within the framework of the RUB Initiative "Forschendes Lernen" (until 09/2017) Additional Information
German Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF)
Funding Code: 01PL16072
Target: To offer a transdisciplinary teaching module for exploring and designing collaborative value-added processes using the example of Product-Service Systems (PSS).


Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung 


Background and objective:

The Ruhr-University Bochum aims to increase the attractiveness of academic studies and to promote its teaching profile nationally and internationally. In line with this purpose, the future concept “Forschung erfahren, erlernen, leben” reforms the process of studying and allows for self-dependence. In the context of this initiative, the Ruhr-University Bochum fosters the development of the “Transdisciplinary Learning-Lab”, among other initiatives.

Background on the formation of the Learning-Lab

Within the project “SFB TR 29 Engineering hybrider Leistungsbündel” the transfer project T5 devised the prototype of a business simulation, showing the collaborative value-adding process in a Product-Service Systems (PSS). The application of this prototype offers students a chance to expose themselves to the specific challenges faced by organizations in the process of becoming an integrated solutions provider (new business models, coordination efforts, coping with complexity). Simultaneous, the simulation offers a multimedia-web-based platform for teaching and research within a protected laboratory environment. This project furthers the potential of this platform for research based teaching, thus enabling students to study in a sustainable way, developing approaches based on their own initiatives. In interdisciplinary teams, these students will be led to systematically discover the dynamics PSS and Industry 4.0.


The primary target of this research project is the creation of a laboratory environment for interdisciplinary research-based learning. This laboratory environment is available for students of Management and Economics, Engineering, and Work Science as a complementary course. In addition, students of other faculties are also considered (e.g. psychology or media science).

As this learning environment is available to students of different disciplines, one of the project's basic targets is to promote interdisciplinary collaboration among students and encourage them to get involved in the process of learning through research.

Additionally, the ongoing development of the Learning-Lab aims to:

  • Use simulations to explore subjects that have been not been thoroughly research reality, and to systemize this approach for academic teaching,
  • Include students in the framework of an interdisciplinary research-teaching-approach,
  • Use the simulation-approach to exceed the mediation of competencies related to real-life through the conception of a modular Learning-Lab.



Konzept der Laborumgebung