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School of Chemical and Environmental Engineering

Now offering two distinct diplomas: Chemical Engineering and Environmental Engineering

Ecological Engineering and Circular Economy


School Chemical and Environmental Engineering
Course Level Undergraduate
Direction Environmental Engineering
Course ID ENVE 512 Semester 9th
Course Category Required
Course Modules Instruction Hours per Week ECTS

Lectures, Tutorials and Laboratory assignments

T=2, E=1, L=0

Course Type Scientific Area
Instruction/Exam Language Greek
The course is offered to Erasmus students Yes
Course URL  



Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, the student will have the ability to:

  • Recall the basic concepts of Ecological Engineering and Green Infrastructure.
  • Understand the approach of nature-based solutions and green infrastructure to deal with the most important global and regional environmental problems, the hydraulic characteristics, processes and mechanisms for the removal / transformation of pollutants and the role of the various components in natural treatment systems such as constructed wetlands.
  • Develop effective systems and sound solutions to address the human impact on natural environment.
  • Design and dimension nature-based solutions for water, municipal wastewater and urban runoff management.
  • Perceive, design and implement integrated green infrastructure solutions in the urban environment.
General Competencies/Skills
  • Ability to design and dimension nature-based solutions for water pollution control
  • Ability to capture and design alternative green infrastructure
  • Ability to develop sustainable strategies in the urban environment
  • Ability to tackle modern environmental problems with an ecological or ecosystem services approach
  • Ability to identify sustainable solutions for the mutual benefit of both ecosystems and systems that are significantly affected by human activities 


Ecological Engineering is the translation of ecological principles into social and technical action, which means the adaptation of construction techniques, material flow cycles, material flow management, spatial coexistences of materials and energy users, so that they are compatible with nature with the least possible footprint and impact

  1. Main environmental and social challenges for Europe by 2050. Introduction and definition of Ecological Engineering and Technology (EET). Basic concepts. Nature-based Solutions. Green infrastructure. The role of the Environmental Engineer.
  2. Ecosystem services. Classification, Value and Origin. Land use and biodiversity. Ecosystem services design.
  3. Sustainable Development Principles. Linear problem-solving process. Transition to a circular problem-solving process - circular economy - systems thinking. Closing the loop of materials.
  4. Decentralized water management. Categories and types of Nature-Based Solutions. Introduction to the natural systems of Constructed Wetlands for wastewater and sewage sludge management. Types of constructed wetlands and description. Main physical, chemical, biological processes.
  5. Components of Constructed Wetlands, construction and operational parameters. Use of plants and substrate media.
  6. Design equations of Constructed Wetlands. Design examples. Modern design models for different applications. Integrated design of Constructed Wetlands facilities.
  7. Case studies, examples of Nature-Based Solutions facilities for different applications and climatic conditions.
  8. Design of waste stabilization ponds. Phytoremediation.
  9. Remediation of contaminated soils and ecological rehabilitation. Wetlands and watershed ecology, ecological and hydrological functions, ecosystem and hydrological cycle links. Ecosystem health, wildlife functions, ecohydrology and ecosystem restoration, conservation and optimization of natural resources management
  10. Green infrastructure in the urban environment. Eco-cities. Green roofs. Green water management surfaces. Green buildings, landscape architecture and regenerative design. Urban agriculture and aquaculture.
  11. Circular economy and waste management. Recovery, reuse and recycling of treated effluents, irrigation of commercial crops, composting of by-products, biogas production. The contribution of nature-based solutions to the circular economy.
  12. Green infrastructure – nature-based solutions and human well-being and prosperity in the urban environment, urban air quality. Involvement of stakeholders, citizens, social groups in decision making process.
  13. Green infrastructure and sustainable solutions in industry. Industrial sustainability.


Lecture Method Direct (face to face)

Use of Information and Communication Technology

E-class support (All teaching notes are on-line; assignments are delivered on-line)
Instruction Organisation Activity Workload per Semester
- Lectures 26
- Tutorials 13
- Project 38
- Autonomous study 48
Course Total 125

Assessment Method

Ι. Written final examination (70%)

ΙΙ. Project (30%)


  • Kadlec, R.H., Wallace, S.D., 2009. Treatment wetlands, 2nd Edition, CRC Press, USA ISBN 978-1-56670-526-4.
  • Stefanakis, A.I., Akratos, C.S., Tsihrintzis, V.A., 2014. Vertical Flow Constructed Wetlands. Elsevier Science, ISBN 978-0-12-404612-2.
  • UN World Water Development Report, 2018. Nature-based Solutions for Water. Available online.
  • Ballard, BW, Wilson, S., Udale-Clarke, H., Illman, S., Scott, T., Ashley, R., Kellagher, R., 2015. The SuDS Manual. CIRIA, UK, ISBN 978-0-86017-760-9
  • Dumitru, A., Wndling, L., 2021. Evaluating the impact of Nature-Based Solutions. A Handbook for Practitioners. European Commission, Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, Directorate C - Healthy Planet, Unit C3 - Climate and Planetary Boundaries, Brussels, ISBN 978-92-76-22961-2.


Course Instructor: Assistant Professor A. Stefanakis (Faculty - ChEnvEng)
Lectures: Assistant Professor A. Stefanakis (Faculty - ChEnvEng)
Tutorial exercises: Assistant Professor A. Stefanakis (Faculty - ChEnvEng)
Laboratory Exercises: