24th November 2020
Carbon neutrality by 2030, sustainable development at the heart of strategies, and strong support for the Finnish Government’s climate and biodiversity goals.
All of the above is included in the plans of Finnish universities through 12 mutual principles on sustainable development and responsibility, which have been published today.
The principles contain extensive recommendations for measures to be taken in teaching, research, administration, societal impact and funding model of universities. Developed by the Council of Rectors of Finnish Universities, (UNIFI), all 13 of Finland's universities have committed to them.
The 12 principles are:
Sustainable and responsible research
1. Research activities are aimed at solving great sustainability challenges.
2. Attention is paid to sustainability and responsiblity in the assessment and funding of research projects.
3. Universities support an interdisciplinary approach, the principles of open science and a multifaceted global perspective in finding solutions to sustainability challenges.
Teaching promoting sustainable development
4. Studies in sustainable development are part of all degrees and the continuous learning offered.
5. Universities promote the accessibility of higher education and a safe research and teaching environment.
Universities’ own functions and administration create a responsible and sustainable world
6. Universities’ management, administration and campus activities are in line with the sustainable development goals.
7. Universities follow the principles of a carbon neutral circular economy in their activities and take concrete measures to foster biodiversity.
8. Universities work actively to promote equality, equity and well-being.
Societal impact and cooperation as drivers of change
9. Universities are bold, committed and responsible partners that act and exert influence at both national and international levels.
10. Universities share sustainable and responsible practices openly and actively and develop them together.
The preconditions for responsibility and sustainable development are created in cooperation
11. Universities integrate sustainability and responsibility work in their strategy and allocate more resources and monitoring tools to it.
12. Sustainable development and responsiblity are strongly visible in the national funding model, evaluation and auditing of universities.