You’re working for a Green Office (GO) or as a sustainability-minded staff or academic at a university. You recognise that engaging staff in sustainability is important. Only by engaging a critical mass of change makers can you truly embed sustainability into your university. But engaging staff is challenging: Staff are busy. Often they don’t know how to implement sustainability into their everyday jobs.
Existing approaches are limited
Setting up a sustainability champions network, organising events or running campaigns are staff engagement efforts we see GOs take. However, many networks remain informal and provide too little guidance for staff to implement sustainability as part of their job. One-off events are great, but often clear follow-ups are missing.
Our approach: Green Impact
Green Impact is a behaviour change and engagement programme to encourage people to take simple actions on socio-economic and environmental issues in their offices.
Green Impact was developed by the National Union of Students (NUS) in the United Kingdom in 2006. Since then, the programme has been a massive success in the UK and was recognised the UNESCO-Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development in 2016.
NUS and rootAbility have teamed up to widen the programme’s impact across Europe. rootAbility now supports organisations across the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, who want to implement Green Impact at their organisation.
Your benefits of Green Impact
- Staff have an easy and clear way to engage in sustainability, and become part of a wider university network
- Students gain employability skills and learn how to implement sustainability within an organisation.
- Sustainability teams and Green Offices save time, energy and money.
- Universities implement their sustainability strategy accross the organisation, save carbon and cut costs.
Staff in all departments are encouraged to form Green Impact teams. Students can join as project assistants. These teams then realise practical actions in their offices and departments. You support the teams through workshops, materials and advice.
You design a toolkit with simple and positive actions teams can realise. The actions are based on the priorities of your organisation. The toolkit is online, allowing each team to track its actions. No messy excel sheets!
Teams get instant feedback through achievement reports that show their progress. They can also track their own performance against that of other teams at your organisation and internationally.
Once teams completed their actions, we train student auditors. These auditors meet with the teams to verify the teams’ results, identify examples where teams made a difference and support teams with feedback.
Teams collect points for the actions they implement. The can win a bronze, silver or gold award, depending on how many points they collect. At the end of the year, you celebrate the programme’s success and teams’ efforts at a big awards ceremony.
What participants say
Sustainability Manager, Kingston University
Howard Collier, Researcher at University of Leeds
Student auditor, University of East London
Get in touch with Anne for a tour of the programme
You’re curious to learn more about how Green Impact could work at your university? Just get in touch with Anne, who’s coordinating Green Impact at rootAbility. Anne can answer your questions via email or give you a short tour of the programme via Skype.