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Applying SDGs as a systematic approach for incorporating sustainability in higher education

Applying SDGs as a systematic approach for incorporating sustainability in higher education The achievement of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) for all communities and jurisdictions require a comprehensive roadmap that encompasses all dimensions of data infrastructure, social, economic, environmental and governance ecosystems. With this in mind, this paper aims to establish the link between the curriculum and intended learning outcomes of undergraduate and postgraduate subjects offered by the University and sustainability. This study is a part of a wider university strategy to embed sustainability knowledge and values in the university curricula. The 17 SDGs developed as a part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainability Development was used as tool to measure and map how the subjects are linked with sustainability.Design/methodology/approachTo incorporate sustainability into the curriculum, this paper developed an interdisciplinary approach for analysing the interconnection between the SDGs, the expected subject learning points and the relevant aspects of sustainability (geospatial information, the legal, policies and institutional components). As part of the approach, in the first phase of the study, qualitative data were collected through a review of published information on the SDGs and the content of the subjects available in the subject handbook. Subject codes were assigned to the keywords and key phrases extracted from the SDGs and the subject content, and then compared and matched to establish the link between the subjects and the SDGs. Six university schools offering over 2,157 subjects were investigated. In the second phase, a survey was conducted involving subject coordinators with the purpose of validating the findings of the first phase and determining the strength of the linkages between the subjects and the SDGs. In the third phase, a plugin was designed to be used in the digital twin platform developed in the UoM, allowing visualisation of the research outcomes.FindingsBased on the interim findings, it was found that some subjects within the schools are linked to more than one SDG. However, not all of the subjects within the schools can be linked to the SDGs. There is a scope of improvement for embedding sustainability in more subjects within the schools. Some of the schools were also found to have weak linkages with sustainability, which demonstrate the challenge in technical subjects in linking their subject contents with sustainability.Originality/valueThis study provides a methodology which enables the integration of sustainability into current state of the curricula at the university to be established. Further, with the advancement of geospatial technology and new visualisation opportunities through the use of the digital twin platform provides capabilities to communicate the outcomes of sustainability and involvement of each faculties and departments more effectively to the university community and wider stakeholders. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education Emerald Publishing

Applying SDGs as a systematic approach for incorporating sustainability in higher education

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
1467-6370
DOI
10.1108/ijshe-10-2020-0418
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The achievement of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) for all communities and jurisdictions require a comprehensive roadmap that encompasses all dimensions of data infrastructure, social, economic, environmental and governance ecosystems. With this in mind, this paper aims to establish the link between the curriculum and intended learning outcomes of undergraduate and postgraduate subjects offered by the University and sustainability. This study is a part of a wider university strategy to embed sustainability knowledge and values in the university curricula. The 17 SDGs developed as a part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainability Development was used as tool to measure and map how the subjects are linked with sustainability.Design/methodology/approachTo incorporate sustainability into the curriculum, this paper developed an interdisciplinary approach for analysing the interconnection between the SDGs, the expected subject learning points and the relevant aspects of sustainability (geospatial information, the legal, policies and institutional components). As part of the approach, in the first phase of the study, qualitative data were collected through a review of published information on the SDGs and the content of the subjects available in the subject handbook. Subject codes were assigned to the keywords and key phrases extracted from the SDGs and the subject content, and then compared and matched to establish the link between the subjects and the SDGs. Six university schools offering over 2,157 subjects were investigated. In the second phase, a survey was conducted involving subject coordinators with the purpose of validating the findings of the first phase and determining the strength of the linkages between the subjects and the SDGs. In the third phase, a plugin was designed to be used in the digital twin platform developed in the UoM, allowing visualisation of the research outcomes.FindingsBased on the interim findings, it was found that some subjects within the schools are linked to more than one SDG. However, not all of the subjects within the schools can be linked to the SDGs. There is a scope of improvement for embedding sustainability in more subjects within the schools. Some of the schools were also found to have weak linkages with sustainability, which demonstrate the challenge in technical subjects in linking their subject contents with sustainability.Originality/valueThis study provides a methodology which enables the integration of sustainability into current state of the curricula at the university to be established. Further, with the advancement of geospatial technology and new visualisation opportunities through the use of the digital twin platform provides capabilities to communicate the outcomes of sustainability and involvement of each faculties and departments more effectively to the university community and wider stakeholders.

Journal

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher EducationEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 30, 2021

Keywords: Education; Sustainability; Sustainable development goals; SDGs; Digital twin

References