Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship

Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship

Swansea University is home to the Secretariat of RCE Wales, a Regional Centre of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship (ESDGC).  Further information is available at

Supported by the Welsh Assembly Government, RCE Wales helps organisations and individuals across Wales to:

  • Research, develop and promote high-quality ESDGC activities
  • To mainstream its uptake and impact.  
  • To ensure a more sustainable future for the people and environment of Wales and beyond.
  • To ensure a legacy that will help to achieve a vibrant and secure Wales that lives within its means using only its share of the earth's resources.

Working in partnership with the Higher Education Future Generations Group and the Sustainability Lab at Bangor University, we now support working groups across Welsh HEs and the Wales-wide community sector. Our working groups include:

  • Learning and Teaching for ESDGC led by University of Wales Trinity St David
  • Healthy Universities, led by Cardiff Metropolitan University
  • Collaborating with Public Services Boards, led by Wrexham Glyndwr University
  • RCE Wales Scrutiny Group, led by University of Wales
  • Effective communication, led by Bangor University Sustainability Lab
  • Circular Economy, led by Swansea University School of Management
  • Food Values working group , led by Jane Powell 

The University was an early developer and adopter of approaches to baselining and assessing ESDGC in Higher Education, and other ESDGC activities at Swansea University include:

  • Dedicated Staff: ESDGC Project Officer responsible for reviewing the progress of ESDGC at the University.
  • Member and signatory of the Principles of Responsible Management Education (PRME) with work to integrate aspects of ESDGC and CSR across curricula.
  • A range of ESDGC workshops held for all University staff and students to encourage participation, dialogue and upskilling. 

Sustainable Leadership - Being the Change Workshop

The University supports a wide range of research relating to the pedagogy and practice of ESDGC. Recent outputs are diverse and include:

The University also supports a large number of practical projects that use the operations of the University as a learning tool for students on different courses whether in group or individual projects.  In 2016/17 these included:

  • Psychology B.Sc & MSc. students studied behaviour change in University staff towards the sustainability and environmental initiatives through the staff engagement project SWell.
  • College of Engineering B.Sc. students surveyed selected buildings on Singleton Campus conducted a lighting survey to record type of lights and light fittings. They presented the calculation of existing energy consumption, cost and carbon emissions from buildings lighting. They also presented options for lighting system upgrades with energy consumption cost and carbon savings.
  • Geography & Biology B.Sc.  students used QGIS to build a geographic information system for the biodiversity aspects of the University, sourcing relevant data and map layers and ensuring that they work together as a single GIS.
  • Geography B.Sc. students planned & implemented a disposal coffee cup campaign to promote use of crockery and re-useable coffee cups
  • Geography B.Sc. student produced phase 1 habitat maps of the Bay and Singleton campuses, identifying areas and species of conservation priority and invasive / problem species using a dedicated software package.
  • Geography B.Sc. students reviewed the environmental aspects/risks of 7 colleges and PSUs by conducting an environmental walk around and filling in questionnaires.  They also liaised with the Colleges’ Environmental Coordinators to collect data and information to consolidate the environmental reviews of the colleges into one University wide environmental aspect register.

View our  Sustainability Communication and Engagement Plan for further details on our KPIs around undergraduate and postgraduate research projects and how these link to our reporting outputs.