Green Gown Awards 2020 - STAFF - Maggy Fostier & Ruth Grady, University of Manchester - Finalist

Tags: Green Gown Awards 2020 | Sustainability Champion Staff | The University of Manchester | Dr Maggy Fostier and Dr Ruth Grady

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Sustainabiity Chamption - STAFF - Dr Maggy Fostier and Dr Ruth Grady, The University of Manchester

Leading a team of 30 technicians and students, we have developed: The 6R approach (Refine, Reduce, Reuse, Refill, Replace, Recycle); a ‘savings’ quantification template; logos and a communication strategy for staff and students and a Standard Operating Procedure (6R SOP) for practicals.  

Impact: The 6R SOP has been applied to 10 practical classes so far, saving >37,000 plastic items/YEAR and 97% of the students who experienced the reviewed practicals support the initiative.  

Next: We have gained support from staff to review the rest of our practical classes; we are working with technical staff to adapt the 6R SOP to our research laboratories, also starting a long-term initiative to improve procurement and optimise waste management and we are working with students to develop posters showing how the 6R approach can practically be applied at home, on campus/at school and possibly in their workplace. 

Top 3 learnings:

  1. Get technical staff input: plastic can be saved in the preparation and layout of the classes. 
  2. Testing ideas in the lab with students helps discarding, refining, or uncovering new ideas. 
  3. Collaborate with students to shape the communication strategy: it will foster engagement and is rewarding.  

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