Campus - 08.12.2022 - 13:20 

HSG students launch their own energy-saving campaign

In a course, HSG students are developing entrepreneurial solutions for the social and ecological spheres. This has resulted in an energy-saving campaign for flat-sharing communities and an energy board game for pupils.
HSG-Studierende lancieren eigene Energiespar-Kampagne
In einem Kurs entwickeln HSG-Studierende unternehmerische Lösungen für den sozialen oder ökologischen Bereich.

Will there be sufficient energy throughout the winter? Switzerland has been discussing this question for months, and the Confederation has issued posters to exhort people not to waste energy. Now five HSG students have launched their own saving campaign: in an Advent calendar, the group presents 24 energy-saving tips that are easy to implement in a flat-sharing community’s everyday life.

“Unlike the Confederation, we want to tackle the issue in a playful way,” says Lou Vogel, who is studying for a Master’s degree in General Management. She has developed the campaign together with her fellow students Chantal Fodor, Marc Bölsterli, Marie-Therese Messinger and Victoria Kindle in a course entitled “Grand Challenge: sustainable start-ups”. In this seminar, student groups devise entrepreneurial solutions, for instance in the social or ecological spheres. They aim at projects that have a primarily local impact.

“In the discussions we had in the course, the energy crisis was very much present. We then conducted a survey among 72 HSG students to find out how well-informed people were,” says Marc Bölsterli. Among other things, the results revealed that 93 per cent of the interviewees are already trying to save electricity, but only 25 per cent agree with the statement that they were sufficiently well-informed regarding the issues of power and energy-saving. “For example, the interviewees would like simple recommendations for action and easily digestible information,” says Bölsterli.

A great deal of support for the campaign at the HSG

This is the requirement that the Advent calendar is intended to satisfy: in 24 little doors it explains, for instance, that a kettle is more efficient than a pan, that the fridge should only be opened for a few seconds at a time or that washing that is dried on the line rather than in the tumble-drier saves 84 kilogrammes of CO2 a year. 

The Advent calendar is displayed on public information screens that are distributed throughout the campus – in this way, the campaign reaches a wide audience. In addition, the student group is also running an Instagram channel under @energizehsg and publishes the tips in the Student Union’s campus app, which is used by more than 3,000 people. Also, the students may possibly want to address their colleagues with a stand campaign on the campus. “To spread the campaign, we’ve contacted various people at the HSG, ranging from the Administration and sustainability-oriented student associations to the Student Union. We’ve experienced a great deal of support for the issue from all sides,” says Bölsterli.

Board game developed for Eastern Swiss schools

A second group from the “Sustainable start-ups” is also going public with its project: five students have devised and produced a board game about the energy issue. They are now presenting this game in various secondary schools and vocational colleges in the region. “The topics of energy and saving tips become much more tangible for young people in a game,” says HSG student Anja Raths, who helped to develop the game, in an article published in the Herisauer Nachrichten newspaper. One of the schools where the group, whose further members are Silyas Bieri, Viviane Gstrein, Patrick Dudli and Pia Schlichtenmaier, presented their game was the Herisau secondary school. In the board game called Schwiizblitz, young people take on the role of energy providers and have to link up cities with energy sources by supplying the correct answers to questions about energy. “At the same time, they also learn where you can find what energy sources. In addition, the questions also serve to reveal tips about saving energy.” Contacts with regional schools showed that the issue preoccupied many young people but was nevertheless not sufficiently tangible, says Raths.

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