Global Climate Change Week - An engagement initiative to support sustainable development at Universities
Beasy, K and Gale, F and Neoh, ZW, Global Climate Change Week - An engagement initiative to support sustainable development at Universities, Handbook of Best Practices in Sustainable Development at University Level, Springer, CR Portela de Vasconcelos and WL Filho (ed), Cham, Switzerland (In Press) [Research Book Chapter]
Universities have a responsibility to engage their diverse communities in meaningful conversations and actions in support of sustainable development. However, such engagement often occurs in siloed initiatives that target discrete groups: students, academics, or professional staff. Rarely do initiatives adopt a whole-of-university approach to bring the entire community together. In this chapter, we describe how one international engagement initiative, Global Climate Change Week, enabled a university community to unite in support of sustainable development. Using the methodology of collaborative autoethnography, the authors reflect from their positionalities as a senior academic, a junior academic, and a student on why and how they got involved in Global Climate Change Week and on the ways the initiative enabled them to advance sustainable development at their institution. Their reflections emphasise the impact of collective narratives to drive strategic decision-making for sustainable development, as well as the personal and institutional impact that Global Climate Change Week had for each of the authors, through the broadening of networks and creation of connections with previously unconnected people within the university. Reflections show the potential for engagement initiatives such as Global Climate Change Week to raise awareness of sustainable development among university communities. When engagement initiatives intertwine academic, professional and student communities, existing initiatives are reinvigorated and new and creative ways to advance sustainable development are realised within and beyond the academy.
Research Book Chapter
global climate change week, higher education, sustainability, collaborative autoethnography