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University of Gävle Environmental Performance After ISO 14001 CertificationReflected by Students’ Environmental Awareness
University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development. (Sustainable Development)
University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development. (Sustainable Development)
2010 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 15 credits / 22,5 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Environmental problems are seen as the first priority that all countries try to find as a solution to be more sustainable. These issues arise due to the lack of our responsibility to the world. Researchers agree on that the starting point in changing our society to be green is to increase environmental awareness (Jiang et al., 1999). Several sectors accept this idea like UNESCO which focuses on education as a tool to promote sustainable development (UNESCO, 2002).

 

Following UNESCO, our study investigates university students’ environmental awareness. The Authors hope that the outcome not only reflects university performance, but also helps to develop the environment in the future.  Hence, the authors selected the University of Gävle or HiG, as a case study because it is a best practice in Environmental Management System (EMS). Moreover, HiG received the ISO 14001 certificate and it has a continuous improvement program (Sammalisto, 2007, p.69). 

 

The study was started by reviewing research literatures concerning Environmental Management System (EMS), Sustainable Development (SD), Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and Environmental Awareness. The authors found that there are few studies talking about students’ awareness in universities after being awarded ISO 14001. Notice that the research was seen only from environmental perspective (Flint, 2004).

 

To answer research questions, two surveys were adopted. The first part focused on teachers and officers (or staffs) who work on environmental issues. While, the second part focused on the students which were divided into Swedish and international.

 

The research outcomes indicate that HiG has a good EMS performance supported by annual environmental audits, regular policy revision and the attempts to minimize non-conformities. Conversely, when the authors pointed at student awareness, it shows that students have insufficient environmental knowledge. Moreover, some students have lower environmental awareness and act in a less ecological friendly way. Nevertheless, a knowledge problem was also found among several university staffs. This is because of the lack of communication about environmental issues inside the staffs community and lack of environmental education for students.

 

Whatever the university situation is, there are some groups of staff and students eager to develop themselves and their university. This point of strength could be the best driving force. It can push the university forward until the university reaches sustainable development and it brings the aware graduates into society.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , p. 92
Keyword [en]
Environmental Management System (EMS); ISO 14001; Sustainable Development (SD); Education for Sustainable Development (ESD); Environmental Awareness; Consumption, Recycling; Communication
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-7259Archive number: TEX100615OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-7259DiVA, id: diva2:331141
Presentation
2010-06-18, 11:519, HIG, 10:00 (English)
Uppsok
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
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Examiners
Available from: 2010-08-13 Created: 2010-07-21 Last updated: 2010-08-13Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
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Output format
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