8. Staff and Student Engagement

Whilst universities are directly responsible for many environmental impacts through their operations, the university community also contributes significantly to its overall environmental impact through its behaviour - for example, consumption of electricity or travel habits.

Universities that play an active role in encouraging and engaging students and staff in sustainable behaviour change will be able to make continual improvements in holistic sustainable development more smoothly, cheaply and quickly.

Engagement can have a wider and more significant impact when behaviour and values experienced by staff, students and visitors to the university begin or embed long-lasting change throughout a persons life.

Engagement Strategy

1. Is the university committed to student and staff engagement for sustainability through the development of a strategy or several strategies that include SMART targets and commit resources to continual improvement in this area?

Yes - Please complete Stream A

No - Please complete Stream B

Stream A

Score 65%

The university has a strategy for progress in student and staff engagement for sustainability, which includes;

  • a scope of related impact areas mapping of associated baselines a framework identifying actions and committing resource to continual improvement

  • e.g. communications plan with university communications team support identified success indicators with mechanisms to track progress

  • e.g. tracking changes in staff responses to specific sustainability related questions administered through the staff survey or changes in recycling rates or uptake of greener travel habits

Approaches

Universities will approach student and staff engagement for sustainability in a variety of ways:

  • Some institutions will incorporate student and staff engagement as a component of strategies focussing on specific areas of environmental sustainability, e.g. waste management , or travel and transport management.
  • Other institutions may work on student and staff engagement for sustainability as an aspect in its own right, covering all impact areas of sustainability within the scope.
  • Some institutions will work towards student and staff engagement as a core component of their learning for sustainability commitments and strategy.
  • Some institutions may use an existing tool or framework – such as the EAUC Learning in Future Environments tool (LiFE) or an enhanced Environmental Management System.

The strategy or strategies should include the following aspects:

  • Oversight and involvement of students and staff in the development and ongoing monitoring of the university Carbon Management Plan.
  • Oversight and involvement of students and staff in the development and ongoing monitoring of the university environment or sustainability policy / plan / strategy.
  • The university sustainability policy / plan, issues and student engagement opportunities for sustainability are a component of student induction processes.
  • University actively supports an annual Go Green Week or environment / sustainability week.
  • The university runs environmental sustainability campaigns that reach all students and staff.
  • Availability of university funds and / or resources /support for student or staff-led practical sustainability projects (eg. campus allotments, recycling schemes etc).

Clarifications

  • It is expected that strategy(ies) will include communications plans.

  • No score for strategy which only relates to one aspect, campus, or part of the university (e.g. the academic community); the scope must include the university community in its entirety.

  • No score if the evidence does not clearly identify a schedule for regular review.

  • No score if the evidence does not demonstrate that actions a to e are included as part of overall student and staff engagement – please see clarifications for key engagement activities below.

Evidence required

Document(s) and / or web-links demonstrating the following:

  • Reports and/or minutes of any meeting in which student and staff engagement was reported on as a whole aspect, clearly highlighting the baselines established by the university for each aspect of the scope and how progress for each area is being tracked.

and

  • Publicly available student and staff engagement strategy for sustainability or similar.

OR

  • if an institution has identified student and staff engagement as a component of several strategies these should be listed and associated documents uploaded with student and staff engagement sections highlighted e.g. Waste Management Plan containing SMART targets for student and staff engagement in waste and recycling behaviour.

  • Zero score if you do not specify the relevant section, page or tab of any document linked to or uploaded.

Signposts

EAUC LiFE

Staff Inductions

2. All staff inductions cover university sustainability policy, issues and areas for staff engagement.

Score 15%

Clarifications:

  • No points if sustainability is simply mentioned briefly in a presentation or induction document, we required evidence of a comprehensive induction for all staff.
  • No points for simply holding a stall at an induction fair, we require evidence of an induction process which would reach and engage all staff in the sustainability agenda.
  • Staff induction might be conducted at a central, local or line management level. Local induction processes may vary within 1 institution – evidence should demonstrate how autonomous inductions incorporate sustainability.
  • Staff induction / orientation might include a staff sustainability event, a staff development process that includes sustainability as a core aspect or a line management conversation containing sustainability specific aspects.

Evidence required

  • Brief description of the staff sustainability induction process currently in place and how it engages with all new staff.

  • Relevant parts of staff training handbook, induction course outline, local induction templates, new managers framework, line management conversation outlines or similar.

  • List of new staff attendees on induction programmes from the last academic year (i.e. Aug 2013-Jul 2014).

  • If evidence for this question is contained within the evidence supplied for question 1, please indicate where; i.e. the name of the document, section/tab and page number(s) and no further evidence shall be required.

Trade Union

3. Invitations extended to recognised trade union environment reps (eg. GreenReps) or engagement with trade unions on sustainability issues

Score 10%

Trades union participation in university sustainability strategy offers a mechanism for both trades union input for sustainability issues and decision-making and the platform for further sustainability achievements.

Clarification

  • HR must show that they have attempted to engage with the recognised trades unions on participation in decision making bodies related to university sustainability.

  • Universities must contact all recognised trades unions, i.e. If there are 3 recognised trades unions for one institution then all 3 should be invited to participate.

  • If the university has developed an alternative mechanism for staff representative engagement due to the lack of a recognised trades union, this should be identified and described under extenuating circumstances.

Evidence Required

  • A letter / memo to the branch officers inviting trades union participation in those committees that have been established to develop and monitor sustainability policies.

  • If the union(s) do not respond in good time to this request then a copy of the request for participation will be sufficient to show that engagement was attempted.

Student representation

4. Student representation on all university committees concerned with estates, planning, finance and resource allocation.

Score 5%

Clarifications

  • No points unless evidence from student representative confirms this is the case.

  • Points only awarded if evidence from student representatives confirms participation in ALL relevant committees.

  • Student representation need not be limited to student union sabbatical officers.

Evidence required

  • Statement from a responsible party in the students union executive or recognised representative from the student body confirming that students have representation on all university committees concerned with estates, planning, finance and resource allocation, including contact details of relevant party.

Students’ Union

5a. Is the Students’ Union or Students’ Association associated to the institution working toward continual improvement for environmental sustainability by mapping, auditing and tracking annual progress of its impact areas?

5b. The Students’ Union or Students’ Association associated to the institution has achieved a Bronze, Silver, Gold or Green Impact Excellence Award in this year’s Green Impact Union Awards or similar scheme.

Score 5%

As the majority of students’ union or students’ associations operate from university managed estate and facilities as part of a formal agreement, the university can support the student organisation to further sustainability improvements by providing expertise on environmental management and the analysis necessary to measure and reduce a set of impacts, e.g. energy consumption baselines and statistics, as well as resources (such as space, time or grants) for sustainability initiatives to be undertaken by or in collaboration with the university.

Clarifications

  • If Students’ Union or Students’ Association is part of the Green Impact scheme then no further evidence is required - evidence of Green Impact Student’s Unions will be provided directly by NUS who coordinate scheme.

  • Points not awarded if the institution has not yet achieved an award or is still classed by NUS Services Ltd as “working towards” the award on 1 September 2014.

Evidence required

  • If not affiliated to NUS or if students’ organisation is taking an alternative approach, please ask students’ union/association to provide evidence of comparable level of activity to the Green Impact Unions Bronze Award or higher.

  • This could take the form of an environmental audit report and/or annual report covering progress in all relevant environmental management areas including transport, energy, waste, biodiversity, food, procurement and student engagement.

  • If evidence is contained within the evidence supplied for question 1, please indicate where; i.e. the name of the document, section/tab and page number(s) and no further evidence shall be required.

Signpost

Green Impact Students’ Union

Students Green Fund

Students for Co-operation

Student Switch Off

Stream B

Student and Staff Engagement Actions

1. The university undertakes student and staff engagement in the following areas:

Score: maximim 30%

Of the 6 actions below (a- f)

0-2 actions: No scores

2 or 3 actions: 10%

4 or 5 actions: 20%

6 actions: 30%

1a. Oversight and involvement opportunities of students and staff in the development and ongoing monitoring of Carbon Management Plan.

Clarifications

  • The involvement must be in developing and monitoring of the Carbon Management Plan and not simply a smaller part of the plan (e.g. monitoring energy use in a department)
  • Zero score for involving staff/students in development phase of CMP but not in the ongoing oversight and monitoring of its implementation.
  • Scores can be awarded where the carbon management plan clearly states a process or structure for ongoing engagement of staff and students in the implementation and oversight of the plan.

Evidence required

  • Please provide evidence in the form of minutes from meetings or terms of reference for a carbon management committee, or steering group clearly highlighting student and staff representatives.

1b. Oversight and involvement opportunities of students and staff in the development and ongoing monitoring of the university environmental sustainability policy and strategy.

Clarifications

  • The involvement must be in developing and monitoring of the sustainability strategy (or similar) and not simply a smaller part of the plan (e.g. monitoring energy use in a department).
  • Zero score for involving staff/students in development phase of the sustainability strategy (or similar) but not in the ongoing oversight and monitoring of its implementation.
  • Zero score can be awarded where the sustainability strategy clearly states a process or structure for ongoing engagement of staff and students in the implementation and oversight of the plan.

Evidence required:

  • Please provide evidence in the form of minutes from meetings or terms of reference for a sustainability or environment committees, or steering group clearly highlighting student and staff representatives.

1c. The university sustainability policy/plan, sustainability issues and student engagement opportunities for sustainability are a component of student induction processes.

Clarifications

  • No scores for simply holding a stall at Freshers Fair, we require evidence of an induction process which would reach and engage all new students in the university sustainability agenda.
  • Student induction / orientation might include a student sustainability event.
  • If universities undertake student sustainability induction through residential accommodation services, they should also demonstrate how students living in private accommodation are reached.

Evidence required

  • Brief description of the student sustainability induction process currently in place and how it engages with new starters.
  • Web-link to publicly available information demonstrating the requirements above
  • If evidence for this question is contained within the evidence supplied for question 1, please indicate where; i.e. the name of the document, section/tab and page number(s) and no further evidence shall be required.

1d. University actively supports an annual Go Green Week or Environment Week.

Clarifications:

  • University need not lead on, however must provide resources and/or help organise the week.
  • The environment week must have taken place since 1 April 2013.
  • The initiatives must go beyond awareness raising (eg. Poster campaigns).
  • No points awarded for one-off or one-day events.
  • No points awarded for a week which only covers one environmental area e.g cycling week unless several events are held throughout the year on a range of topics
  • No points awarded for Health/Wellbeing/Fairtrade weeks unless there was a significant environmental element included.

Evidence required

  • Description of the Go Green Week activities.
  • Evidence of these activities is needed in the form of minutes from meetings where projects are formally agreed to or programme of activities or weblink to relevant media coverage.

1e. The university runs environmental and ethical/sustainability campaigns that reach all students and staff

Clarifications:

  • No points unless the campaigns cover all campuses or departments.

or

  • The university is running several autonomous campaigns with specific relevance to each campus / department and can demonstrate that campaign scopes covers the university in its entirety when addressing key impacts for student and staff engagement.

Evidence required

  • Minutes from meetings where projects are formally agreed to and/or signed off.
  • Communications plans clearly highlighting environmental campaign initiatives.
  • Provide a brief statement from a responsible party confirming how the campaign was designed and resourced to reach all staff and students (eg. photos, university newsletter, screenshots of intranet pages etc)

Or

  • Provide a brief statement from a responsible party confirming how key impact areas are addressed through student and staff engagement campaigns that are most effectively delivered in autonomy (i.e. campus or department specific)

1f. Availability of university funds for student or staff-led practical sustainability projects (eg. campus allotments, recycling schemes etc)

Clarifications

  • This criteria refers to grassroots, practical projects developed and implemented by staff and students.
  • The funds must be from the university directly and not from student union funds or external grant-making bodies.
  • This criteria does not refer to funding for sustainability projects that are planned or carried out by university staff as part of ongoing environmental management plans.

Evidence required

  • Description of scale and scope of Sustainability Fund / donated resources or similar.
  • Evidence of the above in the form of minutes from meetings where projects or funding are formally agreed to.
  • Upload evidence or a weblink showing details of the projects started with funding and or university resources.

Staff induction

2. All staff inductions cover university sustainability policy, issues and areas for staff engagement.

score 15%

Clarifications:

  • No points if sustainability is simply mentioned briefly in a presentation or induction document, we required evidence of a comprehensive induction for all staff.
  • No points for simply holding a stall at an induction fair, we require evidence of an induction process which would reach and engage all staff in the sustainability agenda.
  • Staff induction might be conducted at a central, local or line management level. Local induction processes may vary within 1 institution – evidence should demonstrate how autonomous inductions incorporate sustainability.
  • Staff induction / orientation might include a staff sustainability event, a staff development process that includes sustainability as a core aspect or a line management conversation containing sustainability specific aspects.

Evidence required

  • Brief description of the staff sustainability induction process currently in place and how it engages with all new staff.

  • Relevant parts of staff training handbook, induction course outline, local induction templates, new managers framework, line management conversation outlines or similar.

  • List of new staff attendees on induction programmes from the last academic year (i.e. Aug 2013-Jul 2014).

  • If evidence for this question is contained within the evidence supplied for question 1, please indicate where; i.e. the name of the document, section/tab and page number(s) and no further evidence shall be required.

Trade Union

3. Invitations extended to recognised trade union environment reps (eg. GreenReps) or engagement with trade unions on sustainability issues

Score 10%

Trades union participation in university sustainability strategy offers a mechanism for both trades union input for sustainability issues and decision-making and the platform for further sustainability achievements.

Clarification

  • HR must show that they have attempted to engage with the recognised trades unions on participation in decision making bodies related to university sustainability.

  • Universities must contact all recognised trades unions, i.e. If there are 3 recognised trades unions for one institution then all 3 should be invited to participate.

  • If the university has developed an alternative mechanism for staff representative engagement due to the lack of a recognised trades union, this should be identified and described under extenuating circumstances.

Evidence Required

  • A letter / memo to the branch officers inviting trades union participation in those committees that have been established to develop and monitor sustainability policies.

  • If the union(s) do not respond in good time to this request then a copy of the request for participation will be sufficient to show that engagement was attempted.

Student representation

4. Student representation on all university committees concerned with estates, planning, finance and resource allocation.

score 5%

Clarifications

  • No points unless evidence from student representative confirms this is the case.

  • Points only awarded if evidence from student representatives confirms participation in ALL relevant committees.

  • Student representation need not be limited to student union sabbatical officers.

Evidence required

Statement from a responsible party in the students union executive or recognised representative from the student body confirming that students have representation on all university committees concerned with estates, planning, finance and resource allocation, including contact details of relevant party.

Students’ Union

5a. Is the Students’ Union or Students’ Association associated to the institution working toward continual improvement for environmental sustainability by mapping, auditing and tracking annual progress of its impact areas?

5b.The Students’ Union or Students’ Association associated to the institution has achieved a Bronze, Silver, Gold or Green Impact Excellence Award in this year’s Green Impact Union Awards or similar scheme.

Score 5%

As the majority of students’ union or students’ associations operate from university managed estate and facilities as part of a formal agreement, the university can support the student organisation to further sustainability improvements by providing expertise on environmental management and the analysis necessary to measure and reduce a set of impacts, e.g. energy consumption baselines and statistics, as well as resources (such as space, time or grants) for sustainability initiatives to be undertaken by or in collaboration with the university.

Clarifications:

  • If Students’ Union or Students’ Association is part of the Green Impact scheme then no further evidence is required - evidence of Green Impact Student’s Unions will be provided directly by NUS who coordinate scheme.
  • Scores not awarded if the institution has not yet achieved an award or is still classed by NUS Services Ltd as “working towards” the award on 1 September 2014.

Evidence required:

  • If not affiliated to NUS or if students’ organisation is taking an alternative approach, please ask students’ union/association to provide evidence of comparable level of activity to the Green Impact Unions Bronze Award or higher.
  • This could take the form of an environmental audit report and/or annual report covering progress in all relevant environmental management areas including transport, energy, waste, biodiversity, food, procurement and student engagement.
  • If evidence is contained within the evidence supplied for question 1, please indicate where; i.e. the name of the document, section/tab and page number(s) and no further evidence shall be required.

Signposts:

Green Impact Students’ Union

Students Green Fund

Students for Co-operation

Student Switch Off

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