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CAUS: Sustainable Policy Making and Planning in Europe
Budapest, Hungary; Freiburg, Germany; Ostrava, Czech Republic; Riva San Vitale, Switzerland; Strasbourg, France; Venice, Italy (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Summer Session 1
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Homepage: Click to visit
Budget Sheets Summer Session 1
Fact Sheet:
Language(s) in which classes are available:
English Max credits offered: 6
Minimum VT Class Status required for admission:
2 Sophomore
Language Experience required for admission:
0 none
Program Type: VT faculty-led
Minimum Cumulative GPA:
Areas of Study: Architecture, Sustainability, Urban Planning College Sponsor: CAUS
Min credits offered: 03
Virginia Tech Steger Center:
Program Description:


College of Architecture and Urban Studies


Multi-modal transport; Water resource management; Environmental policy in the EU; Urban form and city design; Non-governmental organizations; and European solutions to wicked problems

Program Flyer
Sustainable Europe 2017 Flyer 

Additional Information

Virginia Tech course, VT faculty led, VT credit (3-6 cr.)

Study public transport and sustainability practices/policies, develop key communication skills, and gain career experience while immersing yourself in countries across Europe!

Cities visited:
Freiburg, Germany
Riva San Vitale, Switzerland
Venice, Italy
Budapest, Hungary
Ostrava, Czech Republic
Strasbourg, France

Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, Hungary and the Czech Republic 
Summer I, 2017 (June 3rd - 24th)

Sustainable Policy Making and Planning in Europe

Join us for a once-in-a-lifetime journey to explore planning and policy-making in contemporary Europe. We will meet policy-makers and other stakeholders, examine some of Europe’s most pressing challenges and innovative solutions, and see a variety of cities through the eyes of locals. This three or six credit study abroad program has four components:

1. Fundamentals of sustainability and environmental policy-making in modern Europe (online prior to trip and France);
2.Addressing Europe’s wicked sustainability challenges (Italy, Hungary and the Czech Republic);
3. Water resource management (Switzerland);
4. Making urban transport sustainable: How European cities promote walking, cycling, and public transport (Germany and Switzerland).

The trip will afford multiple opportunities to explore how the unique histories, urban forms, and contemporary nature of European cities shape human behavior, and advance and challenge long-term sustainability. After meeting in Prague, the group will travel to the city of Ostrava, Czech Republic to examine a challenging case study that involves environmental, economic and cultural dimensions. The group will then head to Budapest, Hungary and visit a couple of organizations to get a sense of how environmental policy is shaping an expanding Europe, the roles of civil society, and learn about Europe’s ‘refugee crisis’. The next stop will be Venice, Italy, with a focus on the multi-billion dollar MOSE project constructed to tackle acute flooding. Virginia Tech’s Steger Center in Riva San Vitale (Ticcino), Switzerland will be the next stop, serving as a base for exploring sustainability in that region. Lectures and discussions will focus on water resource management. Water will remain the topic as the group moves to Zurich, Switzerland. In Strasbourg, France the group will visit the European Parliament and meet with local policy makers to discuss sustainable transport. The last stop will be Freiburg, Germany to examine its state-of-the-art cycling, walking, and public transport infrastructure.


Sophomores and up are eligible to apply; open to all majors. Students must have a minimum GPA of 2.5. This program is coordinated with the University of Virginia. Students from other universities must apply under the Commonwealth Student Program. Please contact us for further information. 


Participants have the choice of earning 3 or 6 semester hours of Virginia Tech academic credit. Details on the course names will be released soon.



Dr. Ralph Buehler (
Dr. Todd Schenk (
Dr. Suzanne Moomaw, University of Virginia


Program Fee

The program fee, which we estimate will be $4,300, covers accommodations; most meals; transportation costs within Europe; tours and site visits that are officially part of the program; CISI travel insurance; and administrative costs.
In addition, students will be charged summer tuition, and are expected to cover their travel to and from Europe and other (individual) expenses. A very rough estimate is:

·    Tuition fees ~ $1,099.25 to $5,649.50*
·    Round trip airline ticket ~ $1,200 to $1,600
·    Passport and visa fees ~ $0 to $110**
·    Books and supplies ~ $50
·    Personal expenses ~ $400***
*  Depending on registration for 3 or 6 credits, and whether or not a VA resident.
** Depending on citizenship and whether or not you already have a valid passport.
*** Depending on individual travel (outside course), souvenirs, and other items.

University Tuition & Fees

Tuition and university fees are billed separately from the program fee according to University Bursar policy. See here for credit hour rates for the appropriate term:


Students will be based at VT’s Steger Center in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland, and in hostels and hotels (shared accommodations) in other locations.


Contact Information

For more information, please visit, or contact us at (Todd Schenk) and (Ralph Buehler).

Dates / Deadlines:
There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
This program is currently not accepting applications.

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Travel alert for Europe
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US Department of Homeland Security Announces Aviation Security Enhancements
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Global Travel Policy 1070
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Greetings From Abroad