VU Amsterdam is the most sustainable university in the Netherlands

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is the most sustainable university in the Netherlands according to SustainaBul 2020 of ‘Studenten voor Morgen’ (SvM), a student network for a sustainable future. Every year they assess 30 Dutch higher education institutions on the themes of sustainability in research, education, business operations, and the integrated approach. In the SustainaBul 2020, VU Amsterdam jumps eight places and ends up in second place with Hogeschool (University of Applied Sciences) Van Hall Larenstein topping the list.

06/05/2020 | 11:44 AM

Green Office
Higher education institutions were assessed based on a questionnaire prepared by SvM. After the students of SvM first answered the questions themselves, guided by public information, the participants were allowed to respond. The institutions had to provide supporting documents to substantiate their responses. VU Amsterdam’s Green Office was closely involved in this process. Green Office manager, Rodrigo Zapata, is delighted with the result: “This year, VU Amsterdam’s Green Office played a special role in the process. We organized the Ranking Night where we, under strict supervision of SvM, sought documents and evidence to support our response. Throughout this process, we received fantastic assistance from the Faculty Campus Organization.”

Sustainable university
The top ranking in the SustainaBul 2020 is the second time this year that VU Amsterdam’s commitment to sustainability has been in the spotlight. In the international Times Higher Education Impact Ranking 2020, which was published in April, VU Amsterdam ranked second among nearly 500 universities that take action against climate change. The high rankings show that it is possible to create the conditions under which people, the environment, and the economy can coexist without exhausting the earth. VU Amsterdam does this by linking fundamental scientific knowledge with knowledge about implementing sustainable changes in society and on its campus. Additionally, sustainability is woven into VU Amsterdam’s Strategic Plan.

Science for Sustainability
Sustainability is an important part of VU Amsterdam’s education and research. The theme Science for Sustainability inspires lecturers, researchers, and students to look for solutions to sustainability issues. In addition, the university’s goal is to have a completely natural gas-free campus by 2035, in combination with 100% sustainably generated energy.

The SustainaBul was presented online this year on the National Day for Sustainability in Higher Education.