In a total of 12 units of the award-winning course, topics such as decision-making processes, crisis communication and entrepreneurship as well as state bureaucracy, questions of leadership in organizations up to Open Science and Open Data in the context of the corona crisis are covered. Prof. Leonhard Dobusch from the Department of Organization and Learning at the University of Innsbruck and Prof. Elke Schüßler from the Department of Organization at the University of Linz created the course "Organizing in the Times of Crisis: The Case of Covid-19" within a few weeks in April 2020, based on classical and new organizational theories and current research. These topics are covered by researchers from the Universities of Innsbruck and Linz in Austria, the University of Hamburg, Leuphana University Lüneburg, Freie University Berlin, European University Viadriana Frankfurt/Oder and the Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society in Berlin. All course materials are available on the website timesofcrisis.org under an open license: lecture videos, slides, assignments and a standard syllabus are available to all interested users at any time. The course does not only focus on central social areas in the Corona crisis but has also adapted the learning environment to the changed circumstances by means of an asynchronous design. The course, which is unique in terms of design and content, has now received the "Ideas Worth Teaching Award 2020" by the US think tank "Aspen Institute".
Future-oriented education standards
This year, the Aspen Institute Business and Society Program of the non-profit organization Aspen Institute awards nine outstanding courses worldwide. The "Ideas Worth Teaching Award" honors lecturers who set new standards in the field of business education and respond to an increasingly complex environment. It is a rarity in the history of the prize, which has been awarded since 1999, that educational offerings from a European university are also to be found in the pool of awards. With regard to the online course "Organizing in Times of Crisis: The Case of Covid-19" by Leonhard Dobusch, the virtual award ceremony highlighted both the innovative implementation and the explosive nature of the topics addressed. "With this course, we would like to make a small contribution to providing an overview of research on crisis management strategies and have already bundled our respective expertise on this extraordinary crisis situation across universities relatively quickly after the outbreak of the pandemic," explained Leonhard Dobusch. "The fact that this commitment and rapid reaction is now being honored with this prestigious award is of course a great honor for me and my colleagues".
As recepients of the 2020 "Ideas Worth Teaching Award" by the Aspen Institute, Leonhard Dobusch and Elke Schüßler were invited to introduce the course "Organizing in Times of Crisis" in not more than 45 seconds: