Higher Education Sustainability Initiative
Description/achievement of initiative

Education for sustainable development aims at enabling everyone to acquire the values, competencies, skills and knowledge necessary to contribute to building a more sustainable society.

Implementation methodologies

The commitments made by the university presidents, chancellors and deans, who are signatories to this initiative, will be achieved through the implementation of the sustainability strategies and implementation plans at their respective institutions of higher education. Implementation will be monitored through reporting to the various higher education networks of UN Academic Impact, UNEP, UNESCO, UN Global Compact, UN-PRME and UNU.


Institutions of higher education around the world, with support from UN Academic Impact, UNEP, UNESCO, UN Global Compact, UN-PRME and UNU.
Deliverable Date
Teach sustainable development concepts, ensuring that they form a part of the core curriculum across all disciplines so that future higher education graduates develop skills necessary to enter sustainable development workforces and have an explicit understanding of how to achieve a society that values people, the planet and profits in a manner that respects the finite resource boundaries of the earth. Higher Education Institutions are also encouraged to provide sustainability training to professionals and practitioners. 2015
Encourage research on sustainable development issues, to improve scientific understanding through exchanges of scientific and technological knowledge, enhancing the development, adaptation, diffusion and transfer of knowledge, including new and innovative technologies. 2015
Green our campuses by: i) reducing the environmental footprint through energy, water and material resource efficiencies in our buildings and facilities; ii) adopting sustainable procurement practices in our supply chains and catering services; iii) providing sustainable mobility options for students and faculty; iv) adopting effective programmes for waste minimization, recycling and reuse, and v) encouraging more sustainable lifestyles. 2015
Support sustainability efforts in the communities in which we reside, working with local authorities and civil society to foster more liveable, resource-efficient communities that are socially inclusive and have small environmental footprints. 2015
Engage with and share results through international frameworks, such as the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, led by UNESCO, the UN University system, the Global Compact, the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Management Education initiative and the UN Environment Programme's Environmental Education and Training initiatives, in order to exchange knowledge and experiences and to report regularly on progress and challenges. 2015

Action Network
  • Global Compact
, Head of PRME , haertle@unglobalcompact.org

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