The entire world is facing massive challenges. These include climate change, the depletion of natural resources, and increasing inequality and polarisation. The scope of these challenges is reflected in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations.
As a university, we have a unique role in addressing sustainability. We educate the leaders of tomorrow, generate the knowledge that drives humanity forward, and transfer this knowledge to society. We take our responsibility seriously. By contributing to the SDGs, our students and academics not only play a role in science but also in society.
Sustainable in the broadest sense
VU Amsterdam works on developing sustainable solutions to these wide-ranging issues. For us, ‘sustainable’ has a broad meaning. In addition to the environment, it also includes economic, human, cultural and social aspects. The VU community contributes to the transition to a more sustainable university and society. We do this by integrating sustainability into our operational management, education, research and knowledge transfer. This creates an ecosystem in which knowledge about sustainability flourishes and circulates, within VU Amsterdam and beyond. This makes our campus an accelerator for positive impact.
Science for Sustainability is one of our profile themes. With this theme, we aim to create the conditions in which people, the environment and the economy can achieve balance without depleting the earth. One of the ways we do this is by combining fundamental scientific knowledge with practical knowledge about how to implement sustainable changes in society. Virtually all of VU Amsterdam’s faculties and departments are involved in this profile theme. We focus on the entire chain of fundamental and applied research to applications in practice. With the expertise that results from this, we enable our students to work toward a better world and prepare them for sustainable careers.