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Stories From the oikos Winter School 2016

20160214_164853_HDR_1456935853024““How to feed the world?” is a question that we do not give enough attention to the global issues that our generation will bear on our shoulders. After one week participated in 12th oikos Winter School I’ve learnt a lot about the problem through “eye-opening” lectures, interesting workshops, and intensive discussions. It went more exciting with all the speakers so passionate telling their works and problems they are trying to solved. The conference bring people around the world with various backgrounds make me understand the problem in different perspectives. As an Agroindustrial Technology student in University of Brawijaya, Indonesia, I always taught Agriculture plays a key role in the entire life of a given economy such as providing employment opportunities to very large percentage of population, in addition to providing food and raw material. On the other hand, agriculture is among the greatest contributors to global warming and accelerates the loss of biodiversity. I really like what I study yet somehow I feel guilty for the challenges we have to face because of my field and thanks to oikos Winter School I could see the possibilities of sustainable agroindustry practices will tackle the problem.

There is a lot of experiences I’ve got in winter school. I really like the apartment and the hosts are really nice. The participants are very critical and friendly that make the atmosphere so great for the whole week. We spent most of the time together since wake up until catching the last bus every night, from breakfast until dinner, from small talks until furious debate. Since first day we had really good times thanks to the amazing organizer team who managed this conference so perfectly that I never look times until it ended so fast. The meals we had during conference are just beyond my wildest expectation, how could be vegetarian meals are so delicious? Maybe I’ll considering myself to be a vegetarian someday.

In the end of winter school we had some workshops to get inspired and then came up with potential solution. I attended one of the workshop from essento about edible insect as solution for our food security which is coincidentally similar with project I’ve been working on. I was surprised to know in the end of the day all the team and participants dug into mealworm burger for dinner like it was normal. Now I’m optimistic that edible insect will be our future sustainable and nutritious food alternative. We also had design thinking workshop to think about problems we’ve learnt during the week and came up with a solution. I teamed up with Laura and Annina, we decided to working on food waste problem. After having some brainstorming and discussion we came up with brilliant idea to make mobile platform to optimize household left over foods. That was really a great idea after we analyzed the problem we have through our own experience with food. Hopefully this will be a great startup in the future.

After all the experiences that I had during oikos Winter School I want to say that it was the most inspiring week in my life. It helped me to understand the problem that we are not aware of and know what I can do with my field. Thank you to all the team, participants, speakers, and oikos International for make this happen.”


Mush’ab Nursantio





“I found oikos Winter School 2016 by chance. I had never even heard of oikos before and1959416_10203337621868276_1110793159_n didn’t really know what to expect from the experience. The main reason I decided to take part is because the topic of food security is something I find very interesting and what I want to focus on in my studies. I study geography in the University of Turku in Finland and I’m currently planning the topic for my master’s thesis, something to do with agriculture and food production. In the Winter School I hoped to spend a week immersing myself in this topic, learning more about it and getting new ideas.

The week was a great experience, very different and even better than I thought it would be. Not only were the lectures, discussions and workshops very interesting and informative, but also our group had a great atmosphere and lots of fun together. The days were packed with all kinds of interesting activities and the whole program was well planned and executed. It was fun to discuss and work with people from all over the world, hear new viewpoints and also to experience a way of teamworking that is quite different than what I’m used to. That was a bit challenging at times but I think that’s only a good thing, after all new experiences and challenges was exactly what I hoped for. After the Winter School I feel much better informed on the topic, and I have many more new questions about food security I’m interested to try finding answers for in my research.”


Tiia Villman