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Sustainability Policy

At the University of Suffolk, we believe that sustainability means helping to improve the quality of life for all, while minimising negative impacts, and maximising positive impacts, on society, the economy and the environment.

As a new, vibrant, forward thinking higher education institution, we support learning, research and enterprise that benefits stakeholders in our region and around the world. While the University of Suffolk enriches society and supports the growth of a sustainable economy, both as an employer and by enhancing graduate employability, such a large organisation inevitably has an impact on the environment.

We therefore set objectives and targets to ensure continuous improvement in our environmental performance. We are also committed to the prevention of pollution from all of our activities and comply with, and where possible strive to exceed, all legal and other requirements relevant to our activities.

Sustainability Strategy


Sustainability is defined as meeting our needs today without compromising the ability of others to meet their needs, now and in future. This definition applies to the three pillars of sustainability: social, economic and environmental.

The strategy has three sustainability themes: Academic, Enterprise and Operational.

Academic sustainability

This theme covers the sustainability aspects of learning, teaching, assessment, research, recruitment and employability.

The University of Suffolk will include Education for Sustainable Development in curriculum development and will bid for sustainability related research funding. Each year, we will seek to improve our position in the Green League and Green Gown Awards in order to enhance our attractiveness to potential students and improve employability for existing students.

Enterprise sustainability

This theme spans the sustainability aspects of stakeholder engagement, business development and brand enhancement.

The University of Suffolk will engage on the sustainability agenda with students, the University of Suffolk Union, staff, Higher Education institutions, Further Education institutions, schools and other relevant organisations. We will work with government, business and the New Anglia LEP to promote the growth of a sustainable economy in our region and we will support start-up businesses in the sustainability sector directly and/or via the University of Suffolk business incubator.

Operational sustainability

We will maintain an environmental management system (EMS) so that we can manage the environmental impacts of our operations. These include carbon emissions and consumption of energy, water and materials, as well as procurement, travel, transport and waste. To ensure that our EMS implements best practice and to maximise reputational benefits, we will maintain third party certification to ISO14001.

Implementation and delivery

Implementation of this strategy will be managed by the Sustainability Officer on behalf of the Sustainability Committee. The strategy will be delivered collaboratively via our Faculties and Departments, with support from the Sustainability Officer.

It is recommended that the terms of reference for each committee should state how it will support implementation and delivery of this sustainability strategy.