Lancaster University: Lancaster University is a Green Gown Award finalist

Research developing green innovations to drive forward economies around the world has seen Lancaster University shortlisted for a Green Gown Award this week.

Representing over 862,219 students and 156,000 staff, this year’s UK and Ireland Green Gown Awards’ Finalists are leading the way with their commitment to the global sustainability agenda and proving the value that universities and colleges bring to the economy and society even in the most challenging times.

Lancaster is one of seven UK universities shortlisted for this year’s ‘Research with Impact’ award.

The entry, led by the University’s Centre for Global Eco Innovation, was titled ‘Thinking globally, working locally: Co-developing net zero solutions at scale’.

Professor Jess Davies, Director of the Centre for Global Eco-Innovation said: “The Centre for Global Eco-Innovation is focused on bringing people together across disciplines and sectors to create the products, services and practices needed to help both people and our environment prosper. From its beginning in 2012, the Centre has had a strong focus on low carbon innovation. The urgency and scale of the net zero challenge means that this focus is more important than ever.”

“With big complex challenges like global climate change, a major issue can be knowing where to start. In the Centre, we’ve taken an approach of thinking global and acting local – keeping the big picture and global science-based targets firmly in mind, but seeking to collaboratively develop solutions that work in the local context with the local businesses and communities, building on local strengths and knowledge”

“We’ve worked with more than 700 SMEs across the North West, helping to deliver more than 100 PhD research projects focused on sustainable innovation.”

Professor Kirk Semple, Centre for Global Eco-innovation, added: “We have also expanded our ‘thinking globally and acting locally’ approach beyond the region, successfully co-delivering the place-based eco-innovation model through the pan-African Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) supported RECIRCULATE project.”

“The Centre has learnt a lot about eco-innovation and creating sustainable collaborations by working with our RECIRCULATE partners, networks and communities in Nigeria, Ghana, Malawi, Botswana, Zambia and Kenya.”

Professor Ruth Alcock Head of Enterprise & Business Partnerships Lancaster Environment Centre said: “We’re very excited to be shortlisted for this award and to have the opportunity to champion this approach. We strongly believe that working together, building on the strength of local communities, networks and places and two-way sharing of learnings across boundaries is a really important part of the road to net zero.”

Reflecting on this year’s submission, Iain Patton, CEO, EAUC (the alliance for sustainability leadership in education) said: “It is clear from the number and quality of applications, that sustainability and the now irreversible sustainability movement is not only resilient but profoundly energised, opportunistic and dynamic!

“UK and Irish universities and colleges have turned Covid 19 challenges into opportunities and ensured that every change is a change for sustainability. A reset of our economic and social foundations is happening and the Green Gown Awards are all the more important to inspire and scale change for sustainability. Congratulations to all our Finalists.”

Winners will be announced late October/November at the ceremony.

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