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Building Belonging in a Globalised and Mobile World

Learn how the innovative New European Bauhaus incorporates belonging for sustainable, inclusive and beautiful urban design.

Young and elderly people enjoying gardening together
  • Duration

    3 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours

Discover how to reconnect citizens with their living environment

On this three-week course, you will further develop your skills and knowledge of urban planning and development. You will take the approaches, theories, and case studies of belonging to develop strategies for belonging, and discuss how belonging can be practiced and facilitated.

Explore the social feeling of ‘belonging’

Through case studies, you will look into what belonging means as a result of social locations, political and religious identifications, emotional attatchments, and ethical values.

You’ll also gain a better understanding of how belonging emerges through differing attachments, attunements, politics, and places.

Learn from the experts at RMIT University

As the largest urban research hub in the southern hemisphere, RMIT University provides an intellectual home for multidisciplinary urban researchers to successfully execute global and local initiatives with universities, industry, not-for-profits, media and government. This course has been co-designed together with the European Institute of Innovation and Technology and has aligned itself to the New European Bauhaus Principles.

Skip to 0 minutes and 5 seconds Belonging is one of the most pressing issues in the contemporary world because climate change is threatening our environment. And if we feel that we belong in our environment, it means that we will care for the places we live really carefully, in ways that slow down climate change.

Skip to 0 minutes and 25 seconds Europe is also seeing an unprecedented amount of migration and so belonging and cultivating belonging is really important for new arrivals and also for people whose environments and neighborhoods have changed. We’re going to do this through thinking about urban sustainability practices and drawing on some examples from the New European Bauhaus. And you can bring an intersectional and inclusive approach to creating belonging into your professional practice.


  • Week 1

    Approaches to belonging

    • Why belonging matters

      Meet the teaching team and fellow students as we start exploring the New European Bauhaus approach to creating belonging.

    • Understanding belonging

      Explore some of the different ways the concept of belonging is understood, enacted and experienced.

    • Supporting diversity

      Examine online ways to protect environments and enable belonging.

    • Weekly wrap

      Reflect on the key ideas covered in Week 1 and find out what's on for next week.

  • Week 2

    Case studies of belonging

    • Beautiful - aesthetics and belonging

      Explore the ways in which belonging is facilitated through attention to aesthetics in urban design.

    • Together - community, inclusion and belonging

      Explore the ways belonging and inclusion can be built through community initiatives and collective action.

    • Sustainable - environment and belonging

      Examine the ways belonging is facilitated through environment and sustainability in urban design.

    • Weekly wrap

      Reflect on the key ideas covered in Week 2 and find out what's on for next week.

  • Week 3

    Practicing belonging

    • Different lenses for belonging

      Investigate different lenses in planning for belonging to assist with the practice of implementing belonging in design and planning projects.

    • Applying a new lens to belonging

      Here we will look at how to view projects through a semiotic lens and come to new understandings of how belonging might be enabled.

    • Intersectional approaches to belonging

      Explore examples of intersectional approaches to building belonging

    • Weekly wrap

      Reflect on what you've learned in this course and test your knowledge.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Apply some of the key theories of belonging
  • Describe the NEB approach to belonging
  • Explore and analyse case studies where belonging is designed in digital and non-digital environments
  • Develop inclusive strategies to bring people together
  • Improve social distances through embracing and sharing difference

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for Professionals in Europe working in (or interested in) sustainable urban development and planning. It will also be of interest to city decision-makers and city officials.

Who will you learn with?

Anna Hickey-Moody is Professor of Media & Communication at RMIT. Her books include "Faith Stories" (MUP), "Childhood, Citizenship & the Anthropocene" (R&L), "Deleuze & Masculinity" (Palgrave).

Marissa is a Lecturer and Research Assistant who recently finished her PhD at RMIT University in Gender and Media Studies. She researches how young people create belonging through social media.

Who developed the course?

RMIT University

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) is a global university, with over 80,000 students, specialising in technology, design and enterprise.

  • Established

  • Location

    Melbourne, Australia
  • World ranking

    Top 210Source: QS World University Rankings 2022

EIT Community

The EIT Community New European Bauhaus is an alliance of 5 EIT KICs: EIT Food, EIT Digital, EIT-Climate KIC, EIT Manufacturing and EIT Urban Mobility. A joint EIT Community NEB initiative was deployed to combine aesthetics, sustainability, and inclusion to increase citizen engagement and involve communities in the co-design of sustainable public spaces while delivering on the goals of the European Green Deal.

New European Bauhaus

The New European Bauhaus initiative connects the European Green Deal to our daily lives and living spaces. It calls on all Europeans to imagine and build together a sustainable and inclusive future that is beautiful for our eyes, minds, and souls.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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