Creating a Sustainable Global Society

As a matter of urgency, humanity must learn to live sustainably without degrading its shared planet. Food must be produced sustainably to feed a stable human population.

Energy must be provided from renewable sources, and the processes of generating and storing that energy must not impact negatively on the environment. Material goods of all types must be made from recycled and/or renewable materials. There must be reduced levels of inequality within and between communities. These goals require significant development of technologies and infrastructure, and changes in human behaviours and institutions. 

UCD has a long-standing commitment to sustainability. Members of the UCD community have been to the fore in shaping the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We have led in research areas such as the bioeconomy, agri-food and renewable energy and have developed education programmes in sustainable development and humanitarian assistance.  We will now build on this expertise to deliver a holistic response to the challenges of sustainability that spans and unifies our activities in this area.

We will embed the principles of a sustainable society in our University community. Undertaking research which advances the 17 UN Sustainable Developments Goals through generating, sharing and applying knowledge for maximum impact, we will deliver interdisciplinary educational programmes which support our students and graduates to contribute most effectively to the development of a sustainable society. 

New governance arrangements for sustainability will enable the university to develop, communicate, implement and adapt its ambitions to the challenges faced by the world.  This will ensure that our campus demonstrates the principles of sustainability across policies and operations in respect of estates, energy, technology, procurement, HR, governance and partnership with our neighbours and wider community. The University will set ambitious targets and will report annually against these targets, becoming a ‘living lab’ for a sustainable community.