We are right in the middle of Bunuru season here. This is the hottest time of the year and it has been above 35degrees for several weeks now. The black cockatoos (endangered everywhere but our neighbourhood it seems) are starting to spend their days in the tree near the road and making a lot of noise. Maybe I’ll send through a recording next week since it is the soundtrack I listen to while writing this!
It definitely isn’t Bunuru season at Dublin City University Business School (DCU) in Ireland which is where we are going today with this List. This morning I was reading their annual sustainability report and want to share five initiatives that I found particularly interesting. Although they don’t provide much information about their overall approach or strategy, the report clearly presents their individual projects in an engaging way.
1. AUTISM FRIENDLY UNIVERSITY
DCU was the world's first designated autism-friendly university. They are committed to supporting and celebrating our students and staff who are on the autism spectrum. This includes adapting the environment, raising awareness and acceptance, and building initiatives to make it as easy as possible for autistic community members to participate fully in all aspects of university life. In 2021 DCU launched the first ever Autism-Friendly University Design Guidedeveloped in collaboration with global expert Prof Magda Mostafa. The publication will be used to ensure future infrastructural developments at DCU are autism-friendly and to also retrofit existing buildings, where possible and will be made eavailable to other universities.
2. UNIVERSITY OF SANCTUARY
DCU was designated a "University of Sanctuary" in December 2016, awarded by Places of Sanctuary Ireland, in recognition of their commitment to welcome asylum seekers and refugees into the university community and to foster a culture of inclusion for all. One of the key commitments is to host an annual Refugee Week where university students, staff, Asylum-Seekers and Refugees engage in a wide range of activities exploring varied aspects of refugee issues today. There are currently over 11,000 asylum seekers living in Ireland’s direct provision system. Despite some recent policy changes, many still face significant barriers to entering higher education and employment, such as the requirement to pay international fees of €15,000 per year, and practical challenges with paperwork, transport and access to technology. The school provides scholarships complemented by research, outreach and community engagement activities.
3. BUILDING GENDER SENSITIVITY
Dr Yuhui Gao (Associate Professor of Marketing) contributed a case study, Building gender sensitivity awareness and creating brave spaces, to an edited Handbook for Creating a Gender-Sensitive Curriculum: Teaching and Learning Strategies published by Oxford Brookes University which provides illustrations of successful management of the gender dimension in teaching practices. This Handbook aims to help colleagues develop their professional capabilities by building their gender sensitivity awareness, which in turn helps to create a gender-sensitive curriculum. It was developed as part of the EU Gearing Role project to challenge and transform gender roles and identities linked to professional careers.
4. EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
DCU Business School plays an active role in building future sustainable and inclusive workplaces, in equipping future responsible employees as well as having a critical role in developing the national capacity for emergency management. The MSc in Emergency Management is the first programme of its kind in Ireland. The programme, launched in 2007 , has been endorsed by the National Steering Group for Major Emergency Management, The Emergency Planning Society and Pharmachemical Ireland. It continues to enhance the national capacity for emergency management. Graduates from this programme led the response to COVID-19 across all of the emergency services. Students also have access to a course on Ethical Dilemmas in Emergency Management.
5. SUSTAINABLE PARTNERSHIPS
Dublin City University, aviation business daa International and Fingal County Council partner on sustainability in aviation. A new collaboration will see academics and researchers in DCU work together with daa and Fingal County Council to develop practical and impactful solutions aimed at making aviation more sustainable and to reduce the environmental impact of the aviation sector on the Fingal region. The partnership will explore, among others topics, public transport connectivity to the airport from the Fingal area and decarbonising energy sources. Students also have access to a number of courses on sustainable aviation.
Bonus: Rediscovery Centre
Rediscovery Centre, within the locality of DCU, is the National Centre for the Circular Economy in Ireland. In MG115 Market Intelligence class, Dr Yuhui Gao (Associate Professor of Marketing) explains that students are encouraged to design some sustainable and reusable products for the benefits of our community and society. To inspire students’ creative ideas, the class toured the Rediscovery Centre and were then challenged to come up with some new products.
I'm currently looking for a student/students to help me do research for a book I'm currently writing. No funding unfortunately, but happy to mentor interested students. Flexible and can be done remotely.
Things to Click On
Consider taking a moment to wonder aimlessly today
This website automatically extracts key concepts related to sustainable development from text documents and links them to the most relevant sustainable development ngoals, targets, indicators and series https://linkedsdg.officialstatistics.org/#/
The World Resource Institute had this interesting webinar on the State of the Transportation System in relation to Climate Change (recording available)
I don't think many groups do a good job at engaging the public in climate change. we need new stories on climate. I'm not alone at thinking this.
People in Portland planted trees. Decades later, a stunning pattern emerged...
This video has nothing to do with sustainability, but I feel that in many ways it has everything to do with sustainability (and is a bit of fun to start your week).