AASHE’s publications library is the leading repository of reports, journal articles, books, and student research on sustainability in higher education. Certain publication types are entered in the annual AASHE Awards Program.

At a Glance

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Bars in graphs can be clicked to view resources that align with a particular category. Because a resource may be listed under multiple topics and disciplines, graph data may include higher total counts than what is indicated in total resources above.

3621 resources

The Sustainable University: Progress and prospects

  • University of Plymouth (Devon)

The direction of higher education is at a crossroads against a background of mounting sustainability-related issues and uncertainties. This book seeks to inspire positive change in higher education by exploring ...

Turnaround Leadership for Sustainability in Higher Education

  • University of Western Sydney (NSW)
  • Australian National University
  • University of Gloucestershire (Gloucestershire)

Universities play a central role in addressing key challenges of social, economic and environmental sustainability. For this role to be delivered effectively it is critical to identify not only what ...

The Essex Report: Workshop on the Principles of Sustainability in Higher Education

  • Second Nature (MA)
  • Association of University Leaders for a Sustainable Future (DC)

In February of 1995, a workshop at the Essex Conference Center of Essex, Massachusetts brought together thirty-two educators and other professionals with environmental expertise to discuss the principles of sustainability ...

A mathematical decision-making procedure to assist in the development of sustainability plans based on the STARS framework

  • Dominican University of California (CA)


The purpose of this study was to establish an objective mathematical decision-making procedure to help universities prioritize credits, while using the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System (STARS) framework ...

Sustainability assessment in higher education institutions: The STARS system

Sustainable development is a concern for countries, businesses and organizations sensitive to excess in terms of utilized resources. This is evident in international initiatives which aim to establish guiding principles ...

Benchmarking tools for assessing and tracking sustainability in higher educational institutions: Identifying an effective tool for the University of Saskatchewan

  • University of Saskatchewan (SK)


The University of Saskatchewan (UofS) has indentified five areas of campus life critical to improving the university's sustainability performance: education, research, operations, governance, and community engagement. In recognition ...

The state of sustainability reporting at Canadian universities

  • University of Waterloo (ON)


The purpose of this paper is to describe the state of sustainability reporting in Canada's higher education sector, while understanding who is reporting on sustainability performance, how is ...

Examining the Literature: A Bibliometric Study of ESD Journal Articles in the Education Resources Information Center Database

  • Dalhousie University (NS)

Using the tool of bibliometry, this study examines journal articles related to Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in academic journals from 1990 to 2005. It offers a statistical description of ...

Higher education for today and tomorrow: university appraisal for diversity, innovation and change towards sustainable development

  • United Nations University

This article serves as a position paper of a consortium of universities in the Asia–Pacific region working to address challenges of sustainable development and rapidly changing social, economic and ...

Developing key competencies for sustainable development in higher education

  • Leuphana University of Lüneburg


To date, little attention has been given to the circumstances in which the process of developing key competencies for sustainable development may take place. The purpose of this paper ...

Advancing Civic Learning and Engagement in Democracy: A Road Map and Call to Action

Education in America must prepare all students for informed participation in civic and democratic life—so that all Americans are ready to tackle the challenges confronting communities and the nation ...

Democracy Matters: A Guide to Non-Statutory Barriers to College Student Voting

  • Tufts University (MA)

Campus climates for political engagement matter, but if students face technical barriers to voting, they may get frustrated and not bother. This guide describes the sometimes-hidden barriers students face and ...

The Unintended Consequences of Changes in Beverage Options and the Removal of Bottled Water on a University Campus

  • University of Vermont (VT)

Objectives. We investigated how the removal of bottled water along with a minimum healthy beverage requirement affected the purchasing behavior, healthiness of beverage choices, and consumption of calories and added ...

Greening the Ivory Tower: A Review of Educational Research on Sustainability in Post-Secondary Education

  • University of Saskatchewan (SK)
  • Dalhousie University (NS)

There is a deficit of multi-site studies examining the integration of sustainability in the policies and practices of post-secondary institutions. This paper reviews what comparative empirical research has been undertaken ...

Greenhouse Gas Emissions from U.S. Institutions of Higher Education

Greenhouse gas (GHG) emission estimates from signatories of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) were compared across Carnegie institutional classifications. Average annual emissions from all institutional classifications ...

College students are flocking to sustainability degrees, careers


With an increased interest in the environment and growth in the "green collar" job sector, colleges and universities are beginning to incorporate sustainability into their programs. From MBAs in sustainable-business ...

Green, Greener, Greenest

Green is good for the planet, but also for a college’s public image. In a Princeton Review survey this year of 10,300 college applicants, 63 percent said that ...

College campuses are working to lessen parking pains

  • California State University, Long Beach (CA)
  • Loyola Marymount University (CA)
  • Santa Monica College (CA)
  • University of California, Los Angeles (CA)

Campuses are building new lots, but also promoting bike-sharing, subsidizing bus passes, joining forces with Uber to create car pools and looking at other alternatives to reduce pressure on campus ...

Sustainability is everyone's job, but some get paid for it

  • Macalester College (MN)
  • University of Minnesota, Morris (MN)

Employees whose sole job is to improve "ecofriendliness" are popping up at colleges and businesses in Minnesota and elsewhere.

Sustainable development, higher education and pedagogy: a study of lecturers' beliefs and attitudes

  • University of Plymouth (Devon)

Education for sustainable development (ESD) is playing an increasing role in the higher education curriculum. However, little previous research exists on lecturers' understanding of and attitudes towards sustainable development. This ...

Meeting the growing demand for sustainability-focused management education: a case study of a PRME academic institution

  • La Trobe University (Victoria)

The current business landscape has created the impetus to develop management graduates with capabilities that foster responsible leadership and sustainability. Through the lens of Gitsham's 3C Model (Complexity, Context ...

The Essential and Growing Role of Legal Education in Achieving Sustainability

  • Widener University (PA)

This article suggests that law schools need to play a leading role in the national and global effort to achieve sustainability, including the effort to address climate change. The article ...

Sustainability in the Real Property Law Curriculum: Why and How

  • James Cook University (Queensland)

Traditionally considered the preserve of environmental law, for the lawyer and the legal academic, sustainability does not immediately come to mind in considering the subjects of the core curriculum. Yet ...

Legal Education for Sustainability: A Report on US Progress

  • Widener University (PA)

This article is an overview of sustainability efforts in US law schools. It describes two sets of drivers for these efforts—inside and outside the legal profession. Drivers from within ...

At students' behest, colleges add efforts to address climate change


More and more, prospective students want to know what universities are doing about climate change - from reducing their own carbon footprint to preparing students for the environmental challenges ahead.

A bibliometric study on “Education for sustainability”

  • University of São Paulo

The scientific production on “education for sustainability” has been growing in recent years what demonstrates the attention this subject has gathered. To better understand and characterize this trend, a bibliometric ...

Green revolving funds: A sustainable investment

  • College of Saint Benedict (MN)
  • University of Dayton (OH)
  • Sustainable Endowments Institute (MA)
  • Blessed Earth (KY)
  • Saint John's University (MN)

There has recently been a groundswell of interest in sustainability in all its forms, and two organizations — Green Seminary Initiative and Seminary Stewardship Alliance — have emerged to provide resources and ...

Higher Education: Features, Trends and Needs in Relation to Sustainability

  • Technische Universiteit Delft

The progress of sustainability within higher education has steadily increased in focus over the last decade and has increasingly become a topic of academic research. With various scholars, journals and ...

Where in the World of Sustainability Education is US Geography?

  • University of Central Missouri (MO)

This paper investigates latest developments in sustainability studies, sustainability education and geography's place in sustainability education, with a focus on the USA. The investigation draws on latest information on ...

Geography and the Emergence of Sustainability Science: Missed Opportunities and Enduring Possibilities

  • Oregon State University (OR)

The dawn of the 21st century saw the emergence of the newly declared field of “sustainability science.” The new field’s research agenda focuses on meeting human needs while simultaneously ...

Applying AASHE STARS to Examine Geography’s “Sense of Place” in Sustainability Education

  • Indiana University Bloomington (IN)
  • Southern Illinois University Carbondale (IL)

Geography supports place-based inquiry for the learner, applying the old environmental adage of “think globally, act locally” to environmental problem solving. Many within and outside of the discipline of geography ...

Campus Environment 2008: A National Report Card on Sustainability in Higher Education

  • National Wildlife Federation (VA)

This comprehensive study by National Wildlife Federation and Princeton Survey Research Associates International reviews trends and new developments in environmental performance and sustainability at 1,068 institutions. It recognizes colleges ...

Above the din but in the fray: environmental scientists as effective advocates

  • University of Georgia (GA)
  • Environmental Defense Fund (DC)

Environmental policies and actions can be improved when environmental scientists engage in science-based advocacy, by calling attention to relevant scientific information and ensuring that policies and their implementation are consistent ...

Sustainability Science

  • Harvard University (MA)
  • American Meteorological Society (DC)
  • Stanford University (CA)
  • Stockholm University
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (SC)
  • University of Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines
  • Griffith University (Queensland)
  • University of New Hampshire (NH)

Meeting fundamental human needs while preserving Earth's life support systems will require an accelerated transition toward sustainability. A new field of sustainability science is emerging that seeks to understand ...

The engaged university: providing a platform for research that transforms society

  • National Science Foundation
  • USDA (IL)
  • Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick Campus (NJ)
  • Georgetown University (DC)
  • Stanford University (CA)
  • Boston University (MA)
  • University of California, Santa Barbara (CA)
  • University of Maine (ME)
  • Florida International University (FL)
  • New York University (NY)

Despite a growing recognition that the solutions to current environmental problems will be developed through collaborations between scientists and stakeholders, substantial challenges stifle such cooperation and slow the transfer of ...

Linking classroom learning and research to advance ideas about social-ecological resilience

  • Arizona State University (AZ)
  • Dartmouth College (NH)
  • University of Alaska Fairbanks (AK)
  • University of Victoria (BC)
  • Stockholm University

There is an increasing demand in higher education institutions for training in complex environmental problems. Such training requires a careful mix of conventional methods and innovative solutions, a task not ...

Strengthening the role of universities in addressing sustainability challenges: the Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions as an institutional experiment

  • University of Maine (ME)

As the magnitude, complexity, and urgency of many sustainability problems increase, there is a growing need for universities to contribute more effectively to problem solving. Drawing upon prior research on ...

The Use of Criminal History Records in College Admissions Reconsidered

This report reviews findings from a first-of-its-kind survey conducted by the Center for Community Alternatives in collaboration with the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO) that explores ...

Boxed Out: Criminal History Screening and College Application Attrition

This report builds upon CCA's 2010 study, "The Use of Criminal History Records in College Admissions Reconsidered." It makes clear how the criminal history box on college applications and ...

Education for apparel sustainability from perspectives of design students from differing cultural contexts

  • University of North Carolina, Greensboro (NC)
  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (MN)
  • University of Nebraska - Lincoln (NE)

The focus of this paper is how design students think about sustainable practices and design solutions. A survey distributed to American and Korean design students asked how important sustainability was ...

Evolution and structure of sustainability science

  • Indiana University Bloomington (IN)

The concepts of sustainable development have experienced extraordinary success since their advent in the 1980s. They are now an integral part of the agenda of governments and corporations, and their ...

Reviewing the incidence and status of sustainability in degree programmes at Plymouth University

  • University of Plymouth (Devon)


This paper aims to present an overview of the design and implementation of a curriculum review undertaken at Plymouth University, UK, to gauge the incidence and status of sustainability ...

Framework for Introducing Education for Sustainable Development into University Curriculum

  • RMIT University

Inclusion of education for sustainable development (ESD) in the curricula of universities, and in many forums, has been promoted for over a decade. Despite this apparent enthusiasm, there is little ...

You say you want a revolution? Transforming education and capacity building in response to global change

  • Stellenbosch University (Western Cape)
  • Arizona State University (AZ)
  • University of Dundee
  • University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (CO)
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Oslo
  • Norwegian University of Science and Technology

This paper considers the changes in education and capacity building that are needed in response to environmental and social challenges of the 21st Century. We argue that such changes will ...

Routledge Handbook of Higher Education for Sustainable Development

  • University of Vechta
  • Leuphana University of Lüneburg
  • RMIT University

The Routledge International Handbook of Higher Education for Sustainable Development gives a systematic and comprehensive overview of existing and upcoming research approaches for higher education for sustainable development. It provides ...

Starting the pluralistic tradition of teaching? Effects of education for sustainable development (ESD) on pre-service teachers’ views on teaching about sustainable development

There is currently a well-established belief among politicians, scholars and university representatives that educational systems can produce positive attitudes towards sustainable development (SD) among citizens. This article investigates whether Education ...

Academic Engagement in Public and Political Discourse

  • University of Michigan (MI)

The May 2015 Michigan Meeting, hosted by the University of Michigan, explored the changing role of the university and what it means to be an academic in a society facing ...

Mobilizing the power of higher education to tackle the grand challenge of sustainability: Lessons from novel initiatives

  • University of Arizona (AZ)
  • University of Maryland, College Park (MD)
  • University of Washington, Seattle (WA)
  • Dartmouth College (NH)
  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (MN)
  • University of Maine (ME)

Leaders from a half-dozen U.S. academic institutions with dedicated sustainability programs share five recommendations, distilled from their own experiences, for universities seeking to improve their ability to both create ...

Introducing sustainability into the architecture curriculum in the United States

  • Southern Illinois University Carbondale (IL)

A brief review of the five collateral organizations that influence architectural education in the USA and their priorities indicate they may have reached the point of recognizing that sustainability is ...

  • Posted April 29, 2016
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Measuring the educational impacts of a graduate course on sustainable development

  • Texas A&M University (TX)

While university‐level education is increasingly recognized as an important component of sustainable approaches to development, little empirical research has been done on the impact of sustainability education on student ...

  • Posted April 29, 2016
  • Publications
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