Auburn University tackles United Nations Sustainable Development Goals


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A new report from Auburn University illustrates how it is tackling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The document, completed this summer, highlights how committed Auburn is to each of the 17 sustainable development goals, or ODD. The United Nations adopted the goals in 2015 as a way to address global challenges and achieve a better and more sustainable future for all by 2030.

Auburn has demonstrated moderate to high commitment to the goals of: Zero Hunger; Good health and well-being; Clean water and sanitation; Decent work and economic growth; Industry, Innovation and Infrastructures; Reduced inequalities; Sustainable cities and communities; Responsible consumption and production; life under water; Life on Earth; and Peace, justice and strong institutions.

Mike Kensler, director of the Office of Sustainability, said it is imperative to know where Auburn stands in its engagement with the various SDGs, as it allows the university to identify opportunities for continued and future engagement. .

“We are delighted to document all the ways Auburn University engages with the rest of the world to address these challenges and transform them for a better world,” he said. “We are not surprised by this level of contribution, but we are satisfied. There is still work to be done. “

Auburn Academic sustainability program, Hunger Solutions Institute in the College of Humanities and Sustainability Office collaborated to measure the university’s commitment to the goals. They collected and analyzed data related to the teaching, research and outreach goals of each college, school and department, including courses, majors, minors, graduate programs, faculty research , centers and institutes and student organizations of the university from 2016 to 2018.

The group is currently collecting data for the 2019-21 engagement report, which could be completed by fall 2022.

The Office of Sustainability will continue to work to move the campus forward on all goals, with the Hunger Solutions Institute, or HSI, taking the lead in SGD 2, Zero Hunger.

“SDG 2 is at the heart of HSI’s mission, which is to leverage the collective efforts of post-secondary institutions to promote the adoption and advancement of best practices to ensure food and nutrition security,” said said Alicia Powers, Managing Director of HSI. “We are poised to continue expanding our work towards Zero Hunger on the Auburn campus, in our surrounding community, and across Alabama, the country and around the world.”

Auburn took an important step in her commitment to achieving the Goals in 2019, when she joined the U.S. Chapter of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network, or SDSN. Auburn’s involvement enables faculty to collaborate with academics and network organizations around the world to achieve the SDGs locally, nationally and globally.

The Sustainability Office created a new landing page to illustrate Auburn’s work in each of the 17 goals. The office plans to mark Campus Sustainability Month with a social media campaign, focusing on Auburn’s activities in the SDGs, throughout October.

Additionally, the Be Well Hut will present the SDGs in the Haley Hall on Wednesday, September 29.


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