The Higher Education Sustainability Initiative (HESI) for Rio+20 was initiated in 2012. It aims to get institutions of higher education to commit to teach sustainable development concepts, encourage research on sustainable development issues, green their campuses, and support sustainability efforts in their communities. It is an unprompted initiative for Higher Education Institutions (HEI) in the run-up to the Rio+20 Conference.
Promote development through both research and teaching, disseminating new knowledge and insight to their students and building their capabilities. Given the objectives of Rio+20, HESI has a special responsibility to provide leadership on education for sustainable development.
Play a key role in building more sustainable societies and creating new paradigms through:
Teaching sustainable development concepts
Encouraging research on sustainable development issues
Supporting sustainability efforts in the communities
Engaging with and sharing results through international frameworks
A total of 272 organizations in 47 countries have made commitments to the HESI as of June 2013. These commitments represent organizations from a diverse range of countries including both public and private HEIs from all six UN regions.
Link with other initiatives
Many of these organizations are also affiliated to other UN initiatives, such as the Global Universities Partnership on Environment and Sustainability (GUPES) and around two-thirds of the organizations are signatories to the UN Global Compact or PRME.
Commitments by the HEIs generally include a commitment to reporting in order to provide transparency to the implementation of the particular sustainable development commitment.
HESI partner organizations
UN Global Compact
UN Global Compact's Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME)
Kedge Business School (former Euromed Marseille School of Management)