Much still needs to be done to preserve the Earth’s precious resources and higher education Institutions are at the forefront of this work. From encouraging staff and students to recycle to providing cleaner forms of transport, action is being taken to reduce their impact on the environment. Their next challenge is encouraging others to follow the same steps. Be one of them!
Sustainability challenges are being tackled in higher education to reduce environmental impact. For example, higher education institutions are now adopting sustainable practices for supply chains and catering services. They are providing sustainable mobility options for students, such as public transport or cycle paths. To reduce their impact on the Earth’s resources, they are also adopting effective programmes to minimise waste, or encourage recycling and reuse. On top of that, academics are advancing sustainability research, in this way contributing to the public and the scientific community’s efforts to ensure a more responsible lifestyle and support for sustainability efforts.
These actions are being achieved by:
- Teaming up with multiple stakeholders through cross-sectorial strategic alliances (education institutions; local authorities; enterprises; environmental agencies; research centres; NGOs, etc.).
Thankfully, Erasmus+ provides a very good structure for those alliances to find support to make these alliances.
- Strategic Partnerships: Erasmus+ provides support for strategic collaboration between education institutions, enterprises, local/regional authorities and other relevant players.
Among the higher education Strategic Partnerships that have been selected so far, 55 projects deal with issues related to sustainability, focussing on themes like green energy; sustainability skills; climate change; sustainable agriculture; sustainable cities and regions; interdisciplinary teaching methods; and university social and environmental responsibility. To get a glimpse of the work underway, you can check out the URBAN GREEN TRAIN project, coordinated by the University of Bologna, or the ESSENCE project, coordinated by the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht.
- Bringing a wide range of stakeholders together for a thematic seminar in October 2017 on the subject of the role of higher education for social and environmental sustainability.
The objective of the seminar is to make sure that the results of EU transnational projects can be transferred to other projects and that their outcomes reach as wide an audience as possible. Highlighting their work and results has the potential to influence policy makers and encourage others to follow the same path as higher education Institutions and make a more sustainable future a reality.