HERE “Institutional Approaches and Strategies for Greening” virtual study visit took place

On March 25 and 27, representatives of National Erasmus+ Office in Armenia and Higher Education Reform Expert Garegin Hambardzumyan participated in “Institutional Approaches and Strategies for Greening” virtual study visit hosted by University College Cork, Ireland and SPHERE (Centralized Support to the Network of Higher Education Reform Experts).

The study visit was welcomed by Michael Gaebel (SPHERE Team Leader), Prof. Ursula Kilkelly (Vice President Global Engagement, UCC), Cliona Maher (International Officer, UCC) and Adrian Veale (Policy Officer, European Commission, DG EAC).

The goal of the visit was to highlight University College Cork’s comprehensive approach to sustainability and greening, particularly how it is integrated into its institutional mission and practices, such as Green Campus strategy.

On the first day of the visit, participants got informed about “Sustainability and Climate Action Plan 2023 – 2028”, the Greenshoots Green Campus Programme, Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and trends in greening strategies.

During the second day of the visit, participants were engaged in breakout group discussions on the topics of “Greening and Teaching and Learning”, “Third Mission and University Engagement” and “Research Collaboration”. Arpine Hunanyan, Program Manager at the National Erasmus+ Office in Armenia took part in the “Breakout group 3: Research Collaboration” as a rapporteur. The session was facilitated by Howard Davies, Academic Expert at SPHERE. During the session, participants shared sustainability and greening practices within university research initiatives, support mechanisms implemented by respective institution, examples of interdisciplinary research collaborations focused on sustainability, national priorities, etc. Afterwards, participants learnt about the “Irish Tree Explorers Network Project”, “UCC International Office Swap Shop” and “UCC Environmental Society”. The two-day visit was concluded with a Q&A session.

As a result of the visit, participants

  • gained insights into UCC’s institutional approaches and strategies for integrating sustainability and greening into its policies and practices,
  • understood how UCC’s green strategy engages with diverse stakeholders within and outside the institution, including civil society, the private sector, the public sector, youth.
  • discussed how national strategies can address the role of higher education in contributing to environmental sustainability and also enable this.
  • understood, at both institutional and national levels, how these initiatives align with broader frameworks such as the SDGs and the European Green Deal, and also how Erasmus is used in this regard.

The photos from the visit are available below.

Posted in: News & Events 2024