From CDIO to challenge-based learning experiences – expanding student learning as well as societal impact?
Journal article, 2020

Challenge-based learning (CBL) is a multidisciplinary approach that encourages students to work actively with peers, teachers and stakeholders in society to identify complex challenges, formulate relevant questions and take action for sustainable development. In this paper, it is argued that CBL can be viewed as an evolution of the Conceive, Design, Implement, Operate concept, expanding as well as deepening the learning experience. The study reported on investigates the multiple aims of a particular CBL environment (the Challenge Lab at Chalmers University of Technology), which are to combine significant student learning and societal transformation. The results show that the students perceive that they have developed deep skills in problem formulation and sustainable development, as well as working across disciplines and with different stakeholders. Moreover, the study shows that although few student projects reach implementation stage, there is a potential for societal impact both during and after the Challenge Lab learning experience.


stakeholder involvement

multidisciplinary learning


Challenge-based learning


Kamilla Kohn Rådberg

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Entrepreneurship and Strategy

Ulrika Lundqvist

Chalmers, Space, Earth and Environment, Physical Resource Theory

Johan Malmqvist

Chalmers, Industrial and Materials Science, Product Development

Oskar Hagvall Svensson

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Entrepreneurship and Strategy

European Journal of Engineering Education

0304-3797 (ISSN) 1469-5898 (eISSN)

Vol. 45 1 22-37

Subject Categories


Energy Systems

Areas of Advance



Learning and teaching

Pedagogical work



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2/8/2021 7