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Regional Centres of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development (RCEs): an overview

Yoko Mochizuki (Education for Sustainable Development Programme, United Nations University‐Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU‐IAS), Yokohama, Japan)
Zinaida Fadeeva (Education for Sustainable Development Programme, United Nations University‐Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU‐IAS), Yokohama, Japan)

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education

ISSN: 1467-6370

Article publication date: 19 September 2008

1596

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to offer an overview of the United Nations University's Regional Centres of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development (RCE) initiative–the global process created to support the implementation of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD, 2005‐2014)–and discuss the roles of institutions of higher education (IHEs) in RCE efforts.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper provides a historical overview of the RCE initiative, clarifies the philosophy behind it, and describes the guiding principles for RCE establishment and operations.

Findings

The paper reveals the UNU's views about effective strategies to promote Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and discusses the roles of IHEs as partners within and among RCEs. Highlights the potential roles of IHEs in overcoming the compartmentalization of knowledge and linking policy and practice.

Research limitations/implications

The paper recognises that RCE is an evolving concept and calls attention to the RCE process as a promising example of “social learning” and “communities of practice”, and at the same time, of “knowledge management system”.

Practical implications

The paper clarifies the expected functions of RCEs as multi‐sectoral and interdisciplinary partnerships and “local‐regional knowledge base” and exhorts local ESD stakeholders, including higher education institutions to use RCEs as value‐adding learning networks at the local and global levels.

Originality/value

The paper refines the RCE concept and offers practical advice to RCEs and RCE candidates. Opportunities are indicated for higher education institutions in contributing towards ESD and sustainable development through RCEs.

Keywords

Citation

Mochizuki, Y. and Fadeeva, Z. (2008), "Regional Centres of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development (RCEs): an overview", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 9 No. 4, pp. 369-381. https://doi.org/10.1108/14676370810905490

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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