Learning inside the classroom isn’t enough to ensure graduates can make a real influence in the world. If universities want to stay at the top of their game, being an inclusive, active contributor to this global cause is essential. As such, the environment plays a central role in the definition of ESD, while still placing great importance on the education of young people which is participative, inclusive and facilitates their own decision-making. What is the relationship between ESD, EE and DE? Education, essential to achieve all of these goals, has its own dedicated Goal 4, which aims to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.” The Education 2030 Framework for Action provides guidance for the implementation of this ambitious goal and commitments. The goal of the decade, as outlined by UNESCO, is to integrate the principles, values and practices of sustainable development into all aspects of education and learning. In Ireland however, there is a strong tradition of development education as reflected in the new Irish Aid strategy on development education which also provides useful opportunities for exploring ESD (http://www.irishaid.gov.ie). Examples of the programmes delivered by ECO-UNESCO include the Young Environmentalist Awards which encourage groups to undertake a local environmental action project to encourage citizenship as well as the development of skills and awareness raising in environmental protection. Later this week, on September 25-26th, world leaders will meet at the UN Summit in NYC to commit to the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) also known as the Global Goals - … However, this assertion cannot be fully verified as the low response could also be attributed to other factors such as heavy workloads. The aim of ESD is to enable people to make decisions and carry out actions to improve our quality of life without compromising the planet. Global fashion supply chains, how they work and how they can have a more positive impact on people and planet Students need to take an active role in co-creating their own learning environment and recognizing opportunities to help attain the SDGs. During her Masters program she participated in a study abroad programme at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland. A significant development since the compilation of the research project has been the certification of a Regional Centre for Expertise at the University of Limerick following an application led by the Ubuntu Network in conjunction with DICE on behalf of a network of groups (http://www.ubuntu.ie/). This is an example of a collaborative working model between departments and provides an excellent opportunity for the growth of education for sustainable development in Ireland. The relationship between environmental education, education for sustainable development and development education is complex, and the three often display more similarities than differences. Measuring learning achievement, starting in the early grades, will help to identify where schools are failing to meet their commitments to children and to formulate appropriate remedial action. They address the needs of the target group and provide them with an opportunity to feed into the programme development. The underlying concepts of sustainable development are defined by Agenda 21, which is the Action Programme for the 21st century adopted by governments at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (also known as the Earth Summit) in 1992. http://www.unece.org/env/documents/2005/cep/ac.13/cep.ac.13.2005.3.rev.1... http://portal.unesco.org/education/en/ev.php-URL_ID=23280&URL_DO=DO_TOPI... http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/documents/agenda21/index.htm, http://daccessdds.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N02/636/93/PDF/N0263693.pdf?OpenElement, A perspective on the relationship between development education and education for sustainable development, Education for sustainable development: Using the UNESCO framework to embed ESD in a student learning and living experience, Education for sustainability: Challenges and opportunities, Sustainable education - towards a deep learning response to unsustainability, The whole-school approach to eduation for sustainable development: From pilot projects to systemic change, The Learning and Telling for Transformation initiative: Helping Higher Learning Institutes participate, Link Community Development: Linking development education and educational development, Education for sustainable development - feeling our way, ‘Its life Jim – but not as we know it’: The unique contribution of development education to ‘Big Picture’ sustainability education with a focus on climate change. The research project also identified potential new opportunities for the delivery of ESD within the education system. A student organization is a powerful environment to create sustainable projects in order to contribute to the broader community outside of campus walls, even internationally (Jablonski & Reisel, 2013), so that the students become potential stakeholder in the achievements of … There was a low response rate from some of the sectors approached including the business, media, community and voluntary sectors, most likely due to the perception of ESD as a primarily environmentally-oriented concept. After being increasingly faced with criticism for elitist practices, institutions have turned their attention to serving the public good. One of the most recent ECO-UNESCO programmes is the Youth for Sustainable Development programme. Here’s why: Building impactful and inclusive networks: Global collaborations between various external stakeholders such as governments, NGOs, leaders, local communities and youth groups have illustrated the sheer importance of providing a platform to converse, and more importantly act together, to positively impact the local and global wellbeing. Among other countries which have completed implementation plans for the Decade of ESD are Finland and the Netherlands (Finnish National Commission on Sustainable Development, 2006; Ministerie van LNV, 2004). This uses a variety of methods to inspire, empower and engage young people in sustainable development. ESD’s traditional associations with environmental education (EE) have allowed it to consolidate existing links in countries where EE strategies are in place. It has much in common with other forms of social and political education (DCI, 2003). to enhance the understanding of sustainability and sustainable development amongst academic staff and students alike. This ‘bigger picture’ is translated into local and personal action by enabling young people, their leaders and their teachers to explore the links between their lives, the environment and the global context. The underlying principles of ESD as outlined by UNESCO highlight the importance of respect and care for life in all its diverse forms: this involves the protection and restoration of the earth’s ecosystems, respect for the dignity and human rights of people, respect for the rights of future generations and respect for cultural diversity. As we get closer to the 2030 SDG agenda, it has become clear that achieving the UN SDGs is far from possible without the education sector’s significant involvement in the cause. This will include a sustainability audit whereby organisations will be encouraged to review their practices and develop policies and programmes that promote sustainable development. The methods used in the programmes are transferable to any ESD programme including schools’ initiatives and community development work. This was emphasised at the UN World Summit in Johannesburg in 2002 where the reorientation of current education systems was outlined as key to sustainable development. civil society, non-governmental organisations and the general public. The ECO-Choices programme uses action projects, outdoor education and personal development work to encourage young people to take an active role in their environment. The result we seek is that graduates leave their courses inspired by, and with understanding of, both the concept of sustainable development and the place of their The relationship between ESD and other educational sectors is the subject of ongoing debate with the latter often regarding ESD as being ‘part of’ their education. Department of Education and Science (DES) (2004) A Brief Description of the Irish Education System, Government of Ireland. She holds a Bachelors’ in Geography and Political Science, a Masters’ in Women’s Studies and a Higher Diploma in Education. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are 17 goals defined by the United Nations to tackle the world's biggest problems by 2030. The secondary school system offers some opportunities for the integration of ESD, however, second level timetabling and structure do not easily allow for links to be made between subject areas, which is an integral element of ESD. Substantial advances in human capacity are needed through improvements of education and healthcare – resulting, among others, in higher income and better environmental decisions. External leadership: Universities are responsible for raising awareness about the SDGs, whether through public lectures, community events or forums. This is unusual compared to the rest of Europe and countries such as Australia and Canada where ESD has built on environmental education. Brundtland, G (ed.) UNESCO (2006) International Implementation Scheme for the Decade in Brief, available: http://portal.unesco.org/education/en/ev.php-URL_ID=23280&URL_DO=DO_TOPI.... United Nations (1992) Agenda 21, Rio de Janeiro, available: http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/documents/agenda21/index.htm. It is generally accepted that certain characteristics are important for the successful implementation of ESD, reflecting the equal importance of both the learning process and the outcomes of the education process (adapted from ‘UN Decade of Sustainable Development’ UNESCO Nairobi Cluster, 2006). , by phoning: +353 1 6625491 or by emailing: http://www.ecounesco.ie/youth_sustainable.aspx, http://www.unece.org/env/esd/inf.meeting.docs/Bureau/Good%20practices.templ.pdf. The Development and InterCultural Education (DICE) project also works in ITE at primary level. She holds a Bachelors’ in Geography and Political Science, a Masters’ in Women’s Studies and a Higher Diploma in Education. All three are essentially concerned with behavioural change through education and the promotion of values, attitudes and understanding. Ministerie van LNV (2004) Learning for Sustainable Development: From the Margins to the Mainstream, The Netherlands. 6, Spring, pp. The programme covers many of the elements of ESD where global and local dimensions are addressed. Along with a sense of justice, responsibility, exploration and dialogue, ESD aims to move us toward adopting behaviours and practices which will enable us all to live a full life without being deprived of basic human needs. How can students contribute to sustainable development? They are means to deliver quality goods and services in the areas of health care, education, finance, commerce, governance and agriculture, among others. Find out more about the UN Sustainable Development Goals. It is also important to note that some education initiatives are leading to action on ESD issues. These courses and programmes are often oversubscribed and interest is growing all the time. The research also explored existing frameworks in Irish and EU contexts and explored areas where ESD could build on existing work and be incorporated therein. … This final goal is focused on the revitalizing the global partnership for sustainable development, and bringing the entire world together in a collective effort to accomplish the other 16 Sustainable Development Goals. Education for sustainable development in ECO-UNESCO. Education for sustainable development expands upon the social and human rights dimension in DE and other educational sectors to include a strong environmental focus. However, there are some business leaders who are as yet unconvinced of their utility, who perhaps think they're yet another public relations exercise or corporate responsibilitychecklist. This definition acknowledges that while development may be necessary to meet human needs and improve the quality of life, it must happen without depleting the capacity of the natural environment to meet present and future needs. Agriculture uses a lot of environmental resources, from farming to food processing and preparation, and cities use more resources per capita than rural communities. Comhar, SDC (2007) Recommendations on the Review of the National Sustainable Development Strategy, Dublin. Education for sustainable development’s primary concern is the improvement of the quality of life for people without damaging the environment. Similarly, universities that refrain from participating in issues that relate to growth in human and social capital will undoubtably be left behind. A third element of this programme is exchange. The ultimate function of an academic institution is to provide youth with quality education. Sara is the QS Stars Project Manager with several years of work experience in the higher education sector – working specifically at academic institutions. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. United Kingdom. This has been particularly evident in the fourth SDG, which advocates for: “inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong opportunities for all.”. The other shows the economy embedded in society, which in turn is embedded in the environment (fig 1.b). The process of developing a National Strategy of Education for Sustainable Development is underway in Ireland which will provide a framework for ESD implementation in tandem with a review of the National Strategy of Sustainable Development. In initial teacher training the work of the Ubuntu Network, based in the University of Limerick, was highlighted based on its support of the integration of development education (DE) and ESD into post-primary Initial Teacher Education (ITE) in Ireland. However, a closer examination of each sector suggests that each has a primary aim or focus that sets it apart from the others. There are a growing number of organisations becoming involved in various cross-cutting themes, such as climate change. ESD and DE also employ similar methodologies including: critical thinking and problem solving, experiential learning, role play, guided interpretation, debate, futures thinking and participatory decision making. United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (also known as the Earth Summit) in 1992. local as well as global issues, and avoid jargon-ridden language and terms. Development education’s primary concern is the reduction of poverty, the promotion of social justice and the improvement of quality of life for people. Check out our lessons. In February 2007, ECO-UNESCO undertook a research project on behalf of Comhar SDC (Sustainable Development Council) on education for sustainable development in Ireland (ECO-UNESCO, 2007). Educators can use the World's Largest Lesson to teach students about the SDGs and identify actions children and young people can take to make the goals a reality in their communities. The Sustainable Development Education Panel (2003) Learning to Last: The Government’s Sustainable Development Education Draft Strategy for England, London. They must have some of the following outcomes and characteristics: Although the questionnaire response rate was relatively low (out of approximately 1,200 questionnaires circulated by email, 45 completed surveys were received) it did reflect a higher level and greater diversity of initiatives and providers in the area of ESD than had been anticipated. Competitive academic institutions produce graduates that can translate what they’ve learnt in books to real-world applications. Comics Uniting Nations works with world-renowned comic book artists and storytellers to bring the … In 2005, UNECE member states adopted the UNECE Strategy for ESD (UNECE, 2005) as an operational tool to implement ESD which committed governments to incorporate sustainable development themes into their formal, non-formal and informal educational systems. Human rights education, peace education, multicultural education, education on race and race issues, environmental education and ultimately citizenship education all have overlapping features and concerns with development education, although each has its own distinct character and focus. Many believe that ESD should embrace all these educational sectors to a certain level and, with sustainable development assuming increasing importance in policy and educational contexts, there will be a need for each of these sectors and their practitioners to explore more closely the commonalities between them. Each sector may be concerned with an ultimately different goal but working together in the achievement of areas of common good is likely to result in a more strategic approach and more beneficial outcomes. Implement the World's Largest Lesson. Investments in environmental protection, rural infrastructure and in rural health and education are critical to sustainable rural development and can enhance national well-being. Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC). Looking back, the world has come a long way in reducing poverty. She speaks English, Arabic and French. This is a good example of inter-sectoral co-operation on an issue of common concern where the groups involved have agreed on strategies to achieve the network’s primary aim of introducing a climate change law to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, limit global temperature increases to two degrees or less, and support developing countries to adapt to climate change. Curriculum areas such as civic social and political education (CSPE), geography, science, social, personal and health education and some areas of business studies provide the best opportunities for ESD integration. is the National Director of ECO-UNESCO, Ireland’s environmental education and youth organisation. Universities need to collaborate with other institutions and work with policymakers and leaders to identify problems and potential solutions to create a more sustainable, inclusive and innovative world. In 2015, the United Nations Member States defined 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Beyond Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Canada have a strong tradition of environmental protection and conservation, with Australia having just published a new strategy for the Decade (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006). Therefore although all three ‘educations’ have much in common they differ in their primary goal. To achieve sustainable development, three sectors need to come together. (1987) Our Common Future: The World Commission on Environment and Development, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Consultation with young people prior to delivery enables us to feed their views into the programme content. The ongoing debate around how universities can benefit from engaging in the SDGs, and actively contribute to this mandate, has occupied academics and researchers for the past few years. Achieving a food-secure future for all people means helping to achieve the related goals of sustainable agriculture and sustainable cities. ICTs can achieve results at a scale, speed, quality, accuracy and cost not imaginable just a decade ago. The concept of ESD developed largely from environmental education, which has sought to develop the knowledge, skills, values, attitudes and behaviours in people to care for their environment. The 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals aim to eradicate poverty and encourage peace and prosperity around the world. Elaine has been involved in the conceptualising and development of various programmes and initiatives including the Youth for Sustainable Development Programme, the research project on ESD in Ireland, on behalf of Comhar, and the National Strategy on ESD in Ireland. Therefore although all three ‘educations’ have much in common they differ in their primary goal. With less than 10 years to go to meet those goals, the challenges we face in realizing them will need to be overcome through a global effort. Since their introduction in 2015, the 2030 United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been readily discussed across a range of professional fields, including the tertiary education sector. In the youth sector, the National Youth Development Education Programme and the ECO-UNESCO ‘Youth for Sustainable Development’ programme were acknowledged as good practice initiatives in youth work. Our full Sustainable Development Goals report outlines the results of a year-long mapping exercise, identifying our current contribution to the SDGs. A sustainable development portal, 2015 Time for Global Action for People and Planet, was launched by the United Nations in 2015. For the Office of Institutional Planning, Strategy and Research, For the Office of the Vice-Chancellor/President. There are a number of key themes in ESD and while the dominant focus is on environmental concerns, it also addresses themes such as poverty alleviation, citizenship, peace, ethics, responsibility in local and global contexts, democracy and governance, justice, human rights, gender equality, corporate responsibility, natural resource management and biological diversity. The United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development requires a global, collaborative effort and the higher education sector has an important part to play. There are new developments in the Senior Cycle with a review underway highlighting available opportunities for the delivery of ESD. Being an internationally recognized organization in the higher education sector, QS has been mindful of establishing products that measure academic institutions’ efforts towards SDGs. Sustainable development is the organizing principle for economic development while simultaneously sustaining the ability of natural systems to provide the natural resources and ecosystem services on which the economy and society depend. Another element of the programme is the development of an ESD newsletter and webpage (http://www.ecounesco.ie/youth_sustainable.aspx). The article examines how these three ‘educations’ can develop and grow, and considers examples of ‘good practice’ in ESD in the context of Irish national policy frameworks, particularly focusing on how ESD can fit into these frameworks. The research methodology included a questionnaire based survey, adapted from the UNECE guidelines on good practice initiatives, and desktop research to identify examples of good practice projects and programmes in the area of ESD in Ireland. As an affiliate of the World Federation of UNESCO Clubs, Centres and Associations (WFUCA), we place great emphasis on the global perspective of ESD where our actions are connected to the world at a local, national and international level. Help make learning safe. In essence ECO-UNESCO examines the ‘bigger picture’ in respect to issues such as environment, development and global justice. As universities tend to receive private and public research funds to directly and/or indirectly solve world issues, universities are responsible for providing the in-depth academic and vocational training needed to achieve the SDGs. According to UNECE, projects and initiatives are considered good practice if they are closely related to ESD, generate ideas and contribute to policy development. Education for sustainable development (ESD) promotes the development of the knowledge, skills, understanding, values and actions required to create a sustainable world, which ensures environmental protection and conservation, promotes social equity and encourages economic sustainability. She has worked as the National Director of ECO-UNESCO since 2001 where she has overseen the growth and development of the organisation and the expansion of its programmes. Access and sustainable development ... More specifically, it involves educating students on the necessity of sustainable development by integrating sustainable development issues into all aspects of teaching, research and service. Ireland does not have a strong tradition of environmental education in terms of government policy. As a result, there are now many countries in the EU where national action plans and strategies in ESD have been developed and are being implemented. Responsibility lies with Member States and citizens but also companies. ECO-UNESCO is an environmental education and youth organisation. Moreover, the diversity of programmes offered at present provides a good basis for any action plan on education for sustainable development and useful opportunities for inter-sectoral collaboration on common issues and areas. Central to all of the work of the organisation is the empowerment of young people and the protection and conservation of our environment from a local and global perspective. The decade pursues a global vision ‘of a world where everyone has the opportunity to benefit from quality education and learn the values, behaviour and lifestyles required for a sustainable future and for positive societal transformation’ (www.unesco.org/education/desd). The Summit confirmed its resolve to promote the three pillars of sustainable development as interdependent and mutually reinforcing concepts. As no one country can achieve sustainable development alone, international scientific cooperation contributes, not only to scientific knowledge but also to building peace. Give Your Time and Skills. ESD shares many similarities with DE and addresses issues such as climate change, oil shortages, water pollution, the need to maintain biodiversity as well as poverty alleviation and human rights. The ethos of the ECO-UNESCO club is to encourage groups of interested young people to participate in local environmental protection with the opportunity to link with the international network of UNESCO clubs and centres. There are two commonly used visualisations of how the various aspects of sustainable development interact: one is of three overlapping circles representing the three pillars of sustainable development - economy, society and environment (fig 1.a). How would your university benefit from actively engaging in the Sustainable Development Goals? Development education focuses on interdependence and interconnectedness between people on both a global and local perspective but does not traditionally extend this to ecosystem interdependence or specific environmental concerns. It also aims to integrate the values inherent in sustainable development into all aspects and levels of learning. Before moving to the UK, Sara was working as an Educational Enrichment Manager and Academic Research Fellow. This will provide young people with the opportunity to create links with young people in a developing country through the UNESCO club network. It is evident that the UN’s SDGs are ambitious and difficult to attain without an education sector that empowers future leaders to make responsible decisions that positively contribute to economic viability, environmental integrity and societal growth. These associations are based on ESD ’ s world, Development Cooperation Ireland abroad at... Basic human needs and links local and global justice also be attributed to other such. S environmental education reshaping incentives: more and more factors such as heavy workloads of! Reinforcing concepts youth organisation of social and human rights dimension in DE and other Educational sectors to include a environmental! 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