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The Role of University Campuses in Reconnecting Humans to the Biosphere
The Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, Sweden; Stockholm Resilience Center, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden.
University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental engineering. Stockholm Resilience Center, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2637-2024
2017 (English)In: Sustainability, ISSN 2071-1050, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 9, no 12, article id 2349Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper, we explore the potential for integrating university campuses in a global sustainability agenda for a closer reconnection of urban residents to the biosphere. This calls for a socio-cultural transition that allows universities and colleges to reconnect to the biosphere and become active stewards of the Earth System. Recognizing their pivotal role of fostering coming generations of humans, university campuses represent a unique socio-cultural setting to promote sustainable development in practice. Among others, this involves the nurturing of biodiversity and ecosystem services in the Antropocene era, which is characterized by ongoing climate change and massive loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services. We explore the traditional campus setting, its role as a community for rejuvenating town planning and its role as a governance authority that may promote or retard sustainable development with an ecological focus. We explore the “sustainable” university and describe the campus as an ecosystem and how a resilient campus can be designed to meet the novel and critical challenges of the Anthropocene. We conclude by providing some policy recommendations for higher educational institutes to speed up their ambitions in the area of sustainable biosphere management.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 9, no 12, article id 2349
Keywords [en]
sustainability; transition; universities; colleges; biosphere; urban; biodiversity; ecosystem services; management
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-25834DOI: 10.3390/su9122349ISI: 000419231500195Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85038431617OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-25834DiVA, id: diva2:1167857
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research
Note

Funding Agency: Interreg. Central Baltic Project called: LIVE BALTIC CAMPUS 

Grant Number: CB155 

Funding Agecy: Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics  

Fuding Agecy: University of Gavle 

Available from: 2017-12-19 Created: 2017-12-19 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved

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Barthel, Stephan

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