Aston University is committed to integrating sustainability into all aspects of the three corners of our academic triangle, as stated in the mission: “delivering an excellent learning experience for our students, enhanced by interaction with internationally recognised, relevant research, and linked to innovative support for local companies and engagement with schools and the community, involving students and staff in raising aspirations and attainment”.
The University endorses the World Commission on Environment and Development’s definition of Sustainable Development:
development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
In doing so we will strive to reconcile the tensions which exist between the three pillars of sustainability – economic prosperity; environmental quality; social equity – both now and for the generations who will engage with the University in the future.
Within the higher education and local community Aston aspires to become an exemplar for others to follow, and undertakes to:
embed sustainability into the curriculum, research, community, and culture of the University;
meet, and where appropriate exceed, legislative and regulatory guidelines, and strive to meet indicators and best practice requirements in respect of sustainability;
raise sustainability awareness and promote sound environmentally and ethically responsible behaviour throughout the Aston community;
develop and maintain the estate and associated landscape with due regard to environmental impact and social value;
implement ethically and environmentally responsible procurement and financial management measures, policies and procedures and communicate these to suppliers and partners organisations;
take a leading role in advancing the sustainability agenda in the West Midlands region, and develop meaningful local, national and international partnerships and networks;
monitor, annually report and continually strive to improve our sustainability performance, through the setting and achievement of clearly defined objectives and targets.
The Sustainability Policy will be supported by a series of policies that reflect specific sustainability issues, most importantly the Environmental and Ethical Investment Policies. This policy has relevance for other University plans, policies and strategies and should be taken into account as they are revised and developed.
Implementation and dissemination of the policy will be the responsibility of the Sustainable Aston Working Group, who will review it annually.
Approved by the Vice-Chancellor, May 2009; reviewed September 2012.
Click here for a PDF version of the policy.