The University is committed to extending our work in sustainability to the wider community.
A Communications and Community Engagement strategy which helps us to raise awareness on current and planned sustainability initiatives and encourage behavioural change among staff, students and all University stakeholders. Students are actively encouraged to support this work including part-time digital creative students. The University has an Annual Community Engagement and Communications Plan for 2020-21 – for further details please see our current plan.
Community involvement targets
SMART targets for 2020/21
- Increase student participation in Student Switch Off by 2% on 2019/20 levels
- Increase number of Green Impact teams to 17 in 2020-21 across all sites
- Increase the student awareness of the University’s sustainability activities from (baseline year 2016-17 47%) to 65% by 2020
Some examples of how are we going to achieve this target?
- Work closely with and support student societies such to raise awareness on sustainability and social justice issues
- Recruit 4 student Digital Creative part-time posts to help publish and promote www.susthingsout.com and increase readership by 5% by July 2021
- Promote collaborative working within UW and with Worcestershire and Worcester City Council and other 3rd sector organisations. Coordinate regular meetings and actively seek out initiatives where resources can be shared
- Implement in January 2021 a 12 months pilot EcoCampus Housing with 2 national Housing Associations and Loreus to assist them to embed ISO 14001:2015 in their organisations
Download our full current qualitative and quantitative targets and progress against targets from our Carbon Management & Targets page.
Community involvement projects
A website www.susthingsout.com, whose strapline is "change today protect tomorrow", provides a magazine format and commentary space for all University stakeholders. It links curriculum, campus and community, and students help co-create content as part of their studies. It is used in teaching sustainability and has a virtual learning environment for sustainability students and for teaching the Emerging Leaders programme, and is promoted to all new employees.
Some examples of a whole institution (university and students' union) and the community projects are Recycle League and Sustainable young minds.
Energize Worcester a collaboration between Worcester Bosch Group, Worcester City Council and the University of Worcester and Students’ Union involves working with landlords and students with the combined aims of; improving energy efficiency in student homes, increasing understanding of student attitude and behaviour with regards to energy management. Bosch installed free Smart Boilers and data loggers into student houses, these are being monitored and the data combined with the findings of survey research.
Students have been instrumental in the data collection and processing aspects of this project, using their computing skills to write bespoke software code to analyse boiler data (over 3 million data points). UK and Worcester Polytechnic Institute USA students completed and analysed 180 in-depth interviews with students and landlords. These have aided; a better understanding of conflicts between students’ real and perceived behaviour, which can be used to focus more effective information campaigns and new insights for global manufacturer Bosch. This has led them to rethink some aspects of design relating to boiler controls and testing.
Go Green Week
Another collaborative project is Go Green Week in Worcester city. Students led a week of awareness-raising activities linking local sustainable businesses. Due to Covid this didn’t take place in 2020 These projects won Silver Green Apple Awards in November 2018
University Community Forum
The University takes its role within the wider community seriously and is committed to establishing and strengthening partnerships with local business, charities and other organisations.
The University Community Forum tackles issues of mutual concern to local residents, students and the University. The Forum meets three times annually. Its membership includes the Deputy Pro Vice Chancellor and Head of School and other senior members of University staff, together with representation from the Students’ Union, Worcestershire County Council and Worcester City Council Councillors, local head teacher and residents. The West Mercia Police are also regularly represented at meetings. Regular reports on sustainability are made to the committee, including a review of community issues raised and dealt with throughout the year.