Major international events in 2015 (on sustainable development (SD), on financing of SD and on climate change) have led to a new SD agenda for the next 15 years. At all levels, from global to local, and in all sectors, from business to government, from NGOs to education, thousands of initiatives have been launched to support the different SD goals defined by basic UN documents, e.g. the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Agenda defined 17 goals of SD to achieve by 2030. The United Nations Global Compact transformed general objectives described by other UN documents into 10 principles, which is a United Nations initiative to encourage businesses worldwide to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies. Higher educational institutions realised that they have the specific role to empower faculty, administrators, staff and students to be effective change agents and drivers of a more sustainable global society.
The main objective of ISSUE (Innovative Solutions for Sustainability in Education) project is to develop education tools based on principles and goals of sustainable development and adapted them for higher educational institutions. To reach the objective, partners will work on reviewing existing literature, research on best practices, mapping stakeholder expectations, developing new solutions and piloting them.
Sustainability, in any organisation, should be embedded through knowledge, engagement, collaboration and innovation. HE institutions should take care to integrate this strategy into their institutional development plans.
HE institutions should take great care to integrate sustainability strategies into their institutional development plans. The ISSUE partnership will adjust the Integrated Reporting (IR) tool often used by companies, giving HE institutions a method and framework for the redaction SD plans overarching the activities.
On the other hand, leading HEIs should ensure that their governance, faculty, staff and students not only understand sustainability, but also have the capacity to act sustainably and promote sustainable practices. To expose students as well as faculty to principles of sustainability, project partners will develop content and education tools with modern pedagogical approaches, such as gamification, adapted to the different target groups of a university in as many SD issues as possible.
The main, long-term goal of the partners is not to consider sustainability as a standalone subject, or as added class hours at different individual classes, but rather a wholesale development of SD tools intertwined with education at its core.
To disseminate the project results between various stakeholders, several regional conferences will be organised in the next years.
- Budapest Business School – University of Applied Sciences, Hungary
- Leeds Beckett University, UK
- IEDC-Bled School of Management, Postgraduate Studies, Slovenia
- Cologne Business School, Germany
- Lappeenranta University of Technology, Finland
- INFODEF – Institute for the promotion of Development and Training, Spain
- Business Council for Sustainable Development in Hungary, Hungary
- CEEMAN – The International Association for Management Development in Dynamic Societies, Slovenia