Hanzehogeschool Groningen
Description/achievement of initiative

Het nieuwe strategische plan Koers op Kwaliteit. Wij willen dat in iedere opleiding aspecten van duurzaamheid en/of maatschappelijke verantwoordelijkheid tot uiting komen. Studenten wordt een ondernemende geest bijgebracht maar wel vanuit verantwoordelijkheid voor de samenleving. Een kernbegrip in die verantwoordelijkheid is duurzaamheid; je verantwoordelijkheid ook willen nemen voor de toekomstige generaties.

Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility policy statement
Sustainability has been one of Hanze’s core values for years. In 1999, for example, an agreement was concluded with the universities of applied sciences; the Netherlands Association of Universities of Applied Sciences; the Ministries of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment, Education, Culture and Science, Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality and Economic Affairs; and the Dutch national network for sustainable development in higher education curricula for the integration of sustainable development in education, research and business operations in higher education. We pass on these core values to our students, who will promote them in their future profession. The competence of future generations to solve issues related to scarcity, environmental conservation and justice is taught and stimulated to a high degree during the years in higher education. Therefore, Hanze (UAS) not only wants to express sustainability in its business operations, but we also want it to be a part of our social responsibility and Corporate Social Responsibility.

This is also pointed out in the new strategic plan « Road to Excellence ». We want each degree programme to express aspects of sustainability and/or social responsibility. Students are taught to have an entrepreneurial spirit that is based on social responsibility. One core value related to this social responsibility is sustainability, which means daring to take that responsibility for the benefit of future generations.

Implementation methodologies

Wij leiden studenten op die de competentie bezitten om, ongeacht hun discipline of werkterrein, vraagstukken op het gebied van duurzame ontwikkeling weten te hanteren en daarvoor oplossingen kunnen aandragen. Dat gaat verder dan de opleidingen die traditioneel al verbonden zijn met duurzaamheid, zoals bijvoorbeeld milieukundige opleidingen. De verankering dient juist ook vanuit sociale, technologische en economische thema's vorm te krijgen. Studenten worden op gestructureerde wijze in aanraking gebracht met aspecten van duurzame ontwikkeling die relevant zijn voor hen als beroepsbeoefenaar, burger en consument. Duurzaamheid is daarmee een hogeschool breed thema. Wij streven er naar dat er in 2014 tenminste vijf schools 1 of meer AISHE duurzaamheids sterren heeft verworven.

Wij blijven maatregelen treffen die er toe leiden dat de milieubelasting van de eigen bedrijfsvoering wordt beheerst en gestadig wordt verminderd. In het kader van de meerjarenafspraken (MJA3) tussen het ministerie van VROM en de HBO-Raad, hebben wij een convenant ondertekend met de HBO-Raad om het energie gebruik jaarlijks met drie procent terug te dringen. Dit wordt jaarlijks gemonitored door Senter Novem. Ook bij aanbestedingen worden de Senter Novem-criteria voor duurzaamheid standaard opgenomen naar aanleiding van het afgesloten Convenant Duurzaamheid tussen VROM en de HBO-Raad.

Our educational system, and with it professionally oriented higher education, is taking a step towards innovative learning, which centres on concepts such as flexibility, creativity, innovative power and co-creation, and in which talent development is the most natural thing in the world. Our students learn what sustainability concretely means to their field of study and how they may develop opportunities for social added value. It is our duty to introduce students to social responsibility, which they will have in and in addition to their future profession of members of society.

We train students who know how to handle issues in the field of sustainable development, regardless of their discipline or field of activity, and who are able to come up with solutions. This entails more than just offering degree programmes that are traditionally linked to sustainability, such as environmental degree programmes. The basis should take shape in social, technological and economic themes. Students are structurally introduced to aspects of sustainable development that are relevant to them as professionals, citizens and consumers. This makes sustainability a university-wide theme. Our aim is that at least five Schools will have been awarded one or more AISHE sustainability certificate by 2014.

Sustainability is also expressed in our vision on business relations. Integrity and care are the central issues. Sustainable development and social responsibility are at the forefront in our contacts with the professional field and other sectors in society.

We serve as an example to our employees and students in terms of sustainable business operations. We apply those principles to our own business operations, which are passed on to our students and which are the results of research. Increasing efficiency and effectiveness are drivers of sustainability and make a considerable contribution to this concept. We aim for the reduction of our energy consumption by establishing a behavioural change in our employees and students (awareness) and by applying new and proven techniques for heating, cooling and ventilation. Accommodation issues are solved with respect and responsibility for the environment.

We continue to take measures that lead to a steady reduction and management of environmental burden of our own business operations. Within the framework of the multi-year agreement (MJA3) between the Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment and the HBO-Raad (Netherlands Association of Universities of Applied Sciences), we have signed an agreement with the HBO-raad to reduce our energy consumption by three per cent every year. This is annually monitored by Senter Novem. The Senter Novem criteria for sustainability are also included in a standard way in tenders, as a result of the agreement concluded by the Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment and the HBO-raad.
Finally, Fairtrade is an important aspect of Corporate Social Responsibility. Fairtrade means: honest trading. This means that a fair price is paid for products, which is in relation to the production costs. It is not a price that is determined by relationships on the international market. It also means that manufacturers in developing countries receive a fair salary, that there are good working conditions for employees, that products are manufactured with respect for the environment and that there is a better trade position for developing countries on the global market. We are proud to be the first Fairtrade university of applied sciences in the Netherlands and we will ensure that we continue to meet the right criteria, which will allow us to keep this title.

Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility policy statement (Executive Board/11-156)
The Executive Board lays down the policy statement. The Staff Office of Marketing & Communication is asked to publish it on the intranet and the internet.


Hanzehogeschool Groningen
Deliverable Date
Strategische plan Koers op Kwaliteit 2015
Resources devoted to implementation
Type Details
Staff / Technical expertise Expertise of students and staff concerning sustainable development

Action Network
  • Higher Education Sustainability Initiative
Henk Pijlman, Drs. H.J. PijlmanPresident and Chairman of the Executive Board, info@org.hanze.nl

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Henk Pijlman – President and Chairman of the Exec
Copyright United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs

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