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Article
Publication date: 4 September 2017

Michael Scoullos, Vicky Malotidi, Paula Lindroos and Sinikka Suomalainen

The purpose of the paper is to present and compare collective efforts of higher education institutions working through regional networks in introducing and promoting education for…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to present and compare collective efforts of higher education institutions working through regional networks in introducing and promoting education for sustainable development (ESD) and environmental education (EE) in two most significant EU boarder regions. Efforts to support EE/ESD in higher education are usually undertaken at individual universities and, in some cases, at national level, still remaining very fragmented; therefore, the examples of University networks in the Baltic and the Mediterranean regions are of particular interest and importance. Both regions have regional conventions, protocols and strategies for the relevant seas, bringing EU and neighbouring countries of the regions together for the protection of the environment and the promotion of sustainable development (SD) within which EE and ESD are embedded.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper presents the driving forces for the establishment, evolution and design of relevant activities of these two networks, making also a few inter-comparisons and recommendations for further improvements.

Findings

Both regions, the Baltic and the Mediterranean, have multiple needs and high potential for more efficient linking of SD with higher education. Early enough it was realised that regional networking could stimulate countries and universities towards this task. Two networks were set up: the Baltic University Programme (starting already in 1991) and the Mediterranean Universities Network for SD focusing on ESD (starting in 2007). The paper reviews main activities of the networks together with lessons learned and gives directions for their future operations.

Originality/value

This paper is one of the rare case studies related to higher education networking on ESD and demonstrates how networking on ESD, apart from enhancing professional development, supports also SD and promotes cooperation and peace in regions that have a history of frequently turbulent relationships.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 18 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 January 2015

Walter Leal Filho, Evangelos Manolas and Paul Pace

This paper aims to provide a description of the achievements of the United Nations (UN) Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) with a focus on higher…

4876

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a description of the achievements of the United Nations (UN) Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) with a focus on higher education, and it describes some of the key issues which will guide sustainable development in the coming years.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper initially presents an analysis of past developments, complemented by an assessment of the emphasis on sustainable development by the International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. In particular, it makes cross-references to the deliberations held at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June 2012, with a special emphasis to the document “The Future we Want”. It concludes by listing a set of suggestions and measures that both industrialised and developing countries may consider to translate the principles of sustainable development into reality.

Findings

Sustainable development is and will continue to be a matter of substantial international interest and concern. The developments achieved over the past 20 years have been substantial, but there are still many gaps and need which need to be met, so as to improve its prospects in the next two decades.

Originality/value

The paper provides useful insights which allow a better understanding of the role of universities in fostering sustainable development, and some of the key issues need to be considered, so as to allow things to move in the right direction.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 16 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

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