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Implementation of sustainability in universities as perceived by faculty and staff: a model from a Swedish university
University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Industrial Development, IT and Land Management. University of Gävle, Center for Logistics and Innovative Production.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5661-2917
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3258-0671
Novia University of Applied Sciences, Vaasa, Finland.
2015 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, Vol. 106, 45-54 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Education for sustainable development creates new challenges for universities where faculty and staff are expected to prepare students to meet complexities in society and take responsibility for sustainability, which scientists are urgently calling for today. Few studies exist on how faculty and staff perceive sustainability in their functions at the university based on long-term sustainability implementation and training within a 14001 certified environmental management system. This university case study with data collected by open-ended survey questions explores how faculty and staff express their role in sustainability work within a Swedish university.The authors developed a model to illustrate development of sustainability competence and its institutionalization. Results show a large variation in perceptions of sustainability from waste separation to a complex understanding and integration of issues into education. Integration of sustainable development as a university core competence is difficult for a whole university to reach. Interpretational flexibility provides opportunities for discussing the sustainability concept in diverse academic traditions in different disciplines. Top management inspiration on different university levels is essential for integration. Continuous training and routines contribute to movement towards institutionalization of sustainability activities and to following up the process in universities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 106, 45-54 p.
Keyword [en]
Competence, Education for sustainable development (ESD), Higher education, Institutionalization, Management engagement, Sustainable development, Education for sustainable development, Swedish
National Category
Other Social Sciences Educational Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-18316DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2014.10.015ISI: 000359955900006Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84938197430OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-18316DiVA: diva2:769888
Conference
Bridges for a more sustainable future: Joining Environmental Management for Sustainable Universities (EMSU) and the European Roundtable for Sustainable Consumption and Production (ERSCP) conferences
Available from: 2014-12-09 Created: 2014-12-09 Last updated: 2017-01-10Bibliographically approved

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Sammalisto, KaisuSundström, Agneta
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CiteExportLink to record
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  • apa
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  • sv-SE
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  • Other locale
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