Copenhagen, Denmark

Climate Change Policy & Advocacy

Program Suspended for Summer '21
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Delve into climate policy, politics and public affairs in Denmark, one of the most environmentally progressive nations on the planet.

How is it possible to implement the world’s most ambitious climate policy while maintaining a highly competitive economy? Study the success stories driving this innovative green society in real time and see for yourself.

Denmark is globally recognized as a leader in progressive climate initiatives and sustainable energy. Ambitious new decarbonization goals set by the new prime minister in 2019 have amped things up even further. Come summer you’ll live and learn at the forefront of it all in Copenhagen, the government seat — already on the fast track to become the world’s first carbon-neutral capital by 2025.  

During this 3-week program you’ll learn public affairs tools, strategies and what it takes to plan and execute an impactful campaign. Through interactive classes, you’ll examine the different ways civil society can influence public policy. Out in the field, you’ll explore innovative technologies for renewable energy generation, waste management and more.

Ready to get in on the action? Climb a wind turbine and swim at city beaches (the water is incredibly clean!). On excursions outside of the city, you’ll hike the cliffs of Hundested and discover ancient villages with Viking roots.

You will enjoy the day trip on the ferry out to Youth Island, where youth groups share a unique outdoor space a few miles out into the strait separating Denmark and Sweden.

Home base is a residence hall called Basecamp (literally), just a 10-minute walk from the CIEE Copenhagen Global Institute where you’ll attend classes and lectures. Meals are eaten either at a local restaurant or café, the Global Institute or the Residence Hall, depending on the activities planned for the day. Along with open-faced sandwiches and traditional Danish fare, there are plenty of popular choices like pizza, falafel, wraps and vegetarian options. In your free time, you can hit the street food stalls and hipster coffee shops.

The ultimate goal? By the end of the program you’ll come away with new friends, new insight and the tools and motivation to influence the public opinion on climate change — in your home town, future college campus or on the world stage.

The Takeaways


    A new-found confidence and the ability to work across cultural lines to enact positive change

  • Understanding

    An appreciation for both Denmark’s progress in creating climate policy and the work that remains to be done

  • Field Work

    Explore innovative technologies for renewable energy, engage with carbon neutral communities, while identifying issues and creating real solutions

Location & Culture

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Imagine a future of possibilities in the clean, green haven often called the “happiest city in the world”

When you think green, think Copenhagen! This eco-friendly city is hard at work becoming a sustainable place to work and live.  It’s also rated the most bike-friendly city in the world. In fact, you can cycle from one end of the city to the other in 20 minutes and over half of the population commutes by bike along the city’s 250 miles of bike lanes. The city aims to be the world’s first carbon-neutral capital by 2025.

Copenhagen also thrives on organic produce, open spaces, green oases, and clean water. The Copenhagen Harbor is probably one of the only harbors clean enough to swim in.

Although known for its progressive policies, Copenhagen retains an old-world, small village feel – with more bicycles than cars traveling its canal-lined streets. Cosmopolitan, culturally rich, environmentally conscious, clean, safe, and filled with exceptional universities, it’s no wonder residents and visitors alike find it extremely livable.

Copenhagen is stunning. From the city’s pristine waterways, to its modernist lamps, to the many castles and bell towers, Copenhagen is a feast for the eyes. Visit Nyhavn, Copenhagen’s waterfront, canal, and entertainment district that features iconic brightly colored townhouses that line the harbor.

Then there’s Tivoli Gardens, the second-oldest amusement park in the world. Nestled right in the city, Tivoli Gardens offers rides, games, concerts, ballet, and musicals. Not only will you get to experience the park and all it offers guests, but also you will get a behind the scenes look at Tivioli’s sustainability program! Fun fact: Walt Disney visited Tivoli Gardens in 1951 and was so inspired by its lush gardens, rides, and food that – four years later – he opened California’s Disneyland.

Daily Life

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Daily Life

"After my trip with CIEE I have definitely grown in ways I never could if I had stayed in the US."

Learn more about daily life on a high school study abroad program by reading our blog posts.

  • Housing

    Dorm rooms at BaseCamp

  • Local Support

    24/7 Support from your CIEE program leader and in-country CIEE staff members


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  • Tour a royal castle in a setting straight out of a fairy tale
  • Step back in time at Tivoli Gardens, an enchanting 19th century amusement park
  • Visit a Viking ring-fortress and an ancient pre-Viking village
  • Cycle around colorful landmarks on a bike tour of Copenhagen
  • Get your fill of international eats at Reffen Street Food
  • Swim at Amager Beach, known for its manmade lagoon and fun vibe
  • Tour sustainable rooftop gardens, neighborhoods and other green initiatives
  • Visit Dyssekilde Øko, an enchanting eco-village that’s been thriving for decades
  • Hike the rugged cliffs at Hundested, a small fishing village near the Baltic Sea

Download a sample itinerary ›

Please note this list of activities is based on past programs and subject to change at CIEE's discretion to both adapt to local circumstances, covid-related measures and restrictions and participant feedback. Our goal when revising itineraries is always to enhance your experience. Every activity is designed to provide you with a deep immersion in your topic, local culture and sights. Get ready for maximum fun!

Our Staff

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Ready to change your life?