5th June will see the launch of the Global Universities Partnership on Environment and Sustainability (GUPES), a platform that engages universities globally in responding to the challenges of sustainable development, by supporting innovative and relevant approaches to education.
The ceremony will be hosted by Tongji University at the UNEP – Tongji Institute for Environment and Sustainability in Shanghai, China. The launch will be hosted alongside the 2012 International Students Conference on Environment and Sustainability and the Asia-Pacific Leadership Programme on Environment for Sustainable Development
GUPES objectives include:-
- To provide a strategic platform for the mainstreaming of environment and sustainability concerns into universities;
- To build, through university education systems, leadership needed for responding to sustainable development challenges;
- To revitalize higher education system and enable it to address current sustainable development challenges with emphasis on UNEP’s six thematic priorities;
- To contribute to the knowledge generation within UNEP’s six priority thematic areas and other contemporary environmental and sustainability issues, risks and challenges;
- To optimize development opportunities provided by ecosystem services in a sustainable manner in line with the principles of “Green Economy” and in the context of sustainable development;
- To help prepare the world for the projected impacts of global climate change, disasters and conflicts, harmful substances and hazardous wastes.
GUPES is expected to provide a platform for universities around the world interested in enhancing environment and sustainability concerns through teaching, training and networking. This will enhance universities’ access to relevant sustainability support, information and educational resources while allowing them to substantively contribute in shaping the sustainability agenda for universities globally.
The two day event will be used to evaluate lessons learnt, challenges and opportunities for GUPES network, agree on a common platform and strategic partnership framework for universities globally on environment and sustainability and develop strategic frameworks for resource mobilization for GUPES programmes, projects and activities.