International Student Success

Ufuoma Egbegbedia

Ufuoma Egbegbedia -
PhD Student and Research Associate

I am currently pursuing a PhD in Sustainability with the Suffolk Sustainability Institute at the University of Suffolk. I hold a master's degree in environmental management from Coventry University and a bachelor's degree in development studies from the University of the Gambia. I have worked as a research assistant in the Leadership and Management Academy, the Institute of Crime and Social Justice, and as a research administrator in the Institute of Health and Wellbeing, and currently hold the role of research associate in the Suffolk Sustainability Institute.

I was recently selected as a member of Catalyst 2030. Catalyst 2030 is a social entrepreneur and innovator-led movement responding to this global call to action for people and the planet, which was launched at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2020. I would be serving in both the United Kingdom and Africa geographies, addressing issues on SDGs 4, 5 and 11, within the Academic stakeholder type.

What does this role involve? I would be sitting within the working groups and collaborating with other change-makers in the academic and stakeholder categories to advocate change and co-create working models for the achievement of the UN SDGs.

Why is this important for society, what is the impact you will have as a member? As a Catalyst 2030 member, I will be able to engage with both public and private sectors to implement approved working models that propel achieving the UN SDGs in Africa and United Kingdom in the most sustainable ways. The importance of the Catalyst 2030 rests on its potential to unleash global systems change through a collaborative effort of the UN General Assembly, academics, entrepreneurs, and those in the grassroots.

Could you describe what this means to you to have been selected? I feel ecstatic to have been recognized, let alone selected. I am currently pursuing a PhD in Sustainability with the University of Suffolk, and I am focusing on Theory of Change as a conceptual framework which is the same framework used within the Catalyst 2030. This means I will have first-hand knowledge and experience of implementing and working with ToC.

What was the selection process, what did you have to do to be selected and stand out from the others? The application/selection process was nerve racking as there were applicants from all over the world vying for the same position. I would like to believe what made me/my application stand out was my experience in working within the sustainability field back home in Nigeria and here in the United Kingdom, my ongoing PhD programme and the diverse range of research I have been privileged to participant in as research assistant and research administrator within the University of Suffolk

What are your future plans for the next 5-10 years? In the next 5-10 years, I would love to still be pushing the banner of sustainability across the globe regardless of the sector I find myself.

What are you researching for your PhD? I am researching on the environmental policies and laws in Nigeria, identifying the loopholes, and finding ways to bridge the sustainability gap within Nigeria. The title of my research is Learn, Unlearn and Relearn into a Sustainable Future: Sustainability Consciousness in Nigeria.

Outside of work, Ufuoma is a member of the Anti-Racism Collective Group, an executive member of the Global Majority (Black and Asian Minority) Group, and the Society of Nigerian Students’.

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