Integral Global Futures – Socio-Cultural Systems

Course Description:

This is the second of three courses introducing you to global futures. It will show that socio-cultural futures are complex and systemically interconnected. The purpose of the ‘Integral Global Futures: Socio-Cultural Course’ is also twofold: 1. To demonstrate that the socio-cultural challenges we face at present are causing a lot of human suffering, which is being exacerbated by their interconnectedness; and 2. To explore alternatives to these unconscious, legacy, socio-cultural patterns, and systems.

This course focuses on our society and culture and will teach you about emerging global challenges such as rapid urbanization; entrenched socio-cultural prejudices such as racism, gender inequality, and ageism; and why the factory model of schooling is obsolete and needs to be replaced. Secondly, the course will empower you to search for, imagine and invent social and cultural innovations such as ecological and smart cites; social and cultural practices that are empowering, equitable, inclusive, and meaningful; and a range of educational theories and practices that are creative, evolutionary, integral, and transformative. The course will also indicate the alignment of alternatives to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this course you should be able to:

  • Identify three major socio-cultural systems domains and give examples of at least two specific challenges that impact each domain.
  • Reflect on how at least one of these socio-cultural challenges is having a direct impact on their personal life or that of their community.
  • Research or invent two alternative socio-cultural scenarios, and demonstrate how each alternative aligns to at least one of the UN SDGs.
  • Design a plan of action to implement some tangible change in their life or community in relation to one of the socio-cultural challenges.




Jennifer M. Gidley, PhD – Jennifer is an author, educator, psychologist and futures researcher. She has held academic posts at four Australian universities, is currently an Adjunct Professor at two Australian universities, and holds academic affiliations in France, Germany and Spain. She is Co-founder and Director of Research at the Oceanic Research Institute, Australia: the world’s first fully sustainable Ocean research organisation, and a partner in the UN Decade of Ocean Science.

Jennifer works globally with speaking and research collaborations across Australia, Europe, UK, USA, Middle East and South East Asia. As the longest-serving elected President (2009-2017) of the World Futures Studies Federation, a UNESCO and UN-ECOSOC partner founded in Paris in 1973, she led the global peak body for futures scholars from 60 countries. As WFSF President she presided over UNESCO Participation Project funding in six developing countries.

Jennifer has published 50 academic papers, edited scholarly books and special journal issues, and serves on editorial boards of seven international academic journals. Her recent books are: Postformal Education: A Philosophy for Complex Futures (Springer, 2016) and The Future: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2017), and The Secret to Growing Brilliant Children: Vol 1: Steiner Education for the 21st Century (Bear Books, 2020). She has five more books in process.

Websites: www.jennifergidley.com & www.bearbooks.info

Course Modalities:

Non-Credit Options

Audit-No Credit – If you would like to participate when this course is offered in our Live Virtual Classroom mode, you may attend the live faculty webinars but will not be required to submit assignments for credit.

If you take a few courses and decide you want to officially enroll in a degree program, you can gain academic credit for Lite versions or Audit-No Credit versions by paying the difference between these course fees and a normal academic fee, successfully completing quizzes, submitting your reflection journals and delivering a Final Creative Assignment that will be graded.

For-Credit Options

Live Virtual Classroom: Study that takes place within Ubiquity University, in which Ubiquity academic coursework is accomplished through attendance in Live Webinars, with faculty and student interaction being a part of the Live Webinar content. To receive academic credit, you must not miss more than 3 live sessions, you must complete the quizzes and submit any other required assignments (if any), and a final creative assignment for grading at the degree level you are enrolled in.

Internal Online Independent Study: Study that takes place within Ubiquity University, in which Ubiquity academic online coursework is engaged in independently on one’s own and does not include faculty interaction. To receive academic credit, you must complete the quizzes and submit your reflection journals and final creative assignment for grading at the degree level you are enrolled in.

The rules guiding our assignment collection and grading process can be found here: Ubiquity University Grading Policy


  • BA Level: $300
  • MA Level: $600
  • PhD Level: $900
  • Audit-No Credit: $240 (only if offered in Live Virtual Classroom Mode)
  • Lite: $50 (no credit, access to course materials only)

Our shopping cart is simple and easy to understand. If you do not have a user account, you will be able to create one upon purchase. Save your username and password as you will need it to login to access course materials later. For more detailed, step-by-step instructions you can review our tutorial How to Purchase a Course. Again, if you experience any issues, please email Veronica Saldias at registrar@ubiquityuniversity.org.

Information about how we process refund or cancellation requests can be found here: Refund and Cancellation Policy

We allow students at all academic levels to participate in our online courses. However, those students who are enrolled in MA or PhD programs are expected to offer a more sophisticated analysis on reflection tasks, writing assignments, and in the final creative assignment. You will be graded commensurate with your degree level. Except for the Final Creative Assignment, word counts are offered as guidelines. If you need to exceed the word counts to submit an MA or PhD level response, you may feel free to do so as long as the word count expansion is reasonable and necessary.

Course Contact Information:

Live Virtual Classroom macrocourses are delivered by faculty in live Zoom sessions. You will have a course facilitator who is available to answer questions and offer additional assistance and that information will be provided to you upon registration. Please do not email faculty directly with any technology or registration issues.

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