The Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) is a public institution founded in 1968. Today it is at the head of Europe’s Higher Education system committed to the construction of the Europe of knowledge. Known both for its excellence in research as for its quality in teaching, the university is already a reference within the European community and Mediterranean area and has the recognition as Campus of International Excellence (CEI) with a plan based on alliances with surrounding R&D&I centres. The over 40,000 undergraduate and post-graduate students enrolled in the university are backed up by a team of 5,000 lecturers, researchers and administration and services staff.
The UAB has made a strong commitment towards sustainability implementing strategic lines on: Environmental awareness, Greening University, Territory and Biodiversity, Energy, Water and Waste (UAB Sustainability Action Plan)
The Faculty of Education, at the UAB, is strongly committed with processes of curriculum greening. It is situated in Bellaterra Campus which is the main UAB campus for teaching and research. The Faculty is structured in five departments, although the studies taught involve 14 departments of the other faculties. It has approximately 2,900 students and 470 staff and offers four Bachelor's Degrees (240 ECTS) in Early Childhood Education, Primary Education, Social Education and Pedagogy and postgraduate courses and Research Master courses (PhD).
Partnership and networking on ESD: The Faculty of Education recognizes the role of the partnership and networking in order to achieve the principles of ESD and progress towards sustainability innovation, so it has been making efforts for being involved in collaborative projects on ESD at national and international levels, mainly through researchers of the Complex Research Group (CRG). Some of these collaborations are:
UNESCO/UNITWIN Reorienting Teacher Education to Address Sustainability (Coord. Dr C. Hopkins, York University, Canada), The International Network is comprised of teacher education institutions from about 60 nations around the world. The member institutions work to incorporate sustainability into their programmes, practices and policies.
CSCT Network: 13 European institutions involved (coord. KHLeuven, Belgium). The main product of the project was: “Competencies for ESD teachers A framework to integrate ESD in the curriculum of teacher training institute. (Comenius 2.1 project 118277-CP-1-2004-BE-Comenius-C2.1) (2004 -2007)
ENSI (Environment and School Initiatives): international network that brings together school initiatives, educators and other stakeholders in countries worldwide to promote and understand activities promoting sustainable development in schools and their communities.
ACES Network (European and Latin-American universities). It carried out the project “Orienting Curriculum of Higher Education Studies towards Sustainability: Designing interventions and analysing the process” (ALFA Programme, European Union, 2001-03),
At national level we can highlight collaboration in:
Research Network in Education for Sustainability in Catalonia, that groups 14 university research teams, public administration services, civic entities and enterprises.
XESC: Schools for Sustainability Network formed by green schools and local agencies that promote education programs aimed to address sustainability in schools in Catalonia. (Ministry of Environment, Government of Catalonia)
The UAB, and its Faculty of Education, has the administrative structure to carry out a proper economic and operational management of the project. They will give professional and research support to the project and contribute with their knowledge and expertise in the field of ESD and professional competences in ESD and for the reliable and rigorous of the key staff involved in it.
Currently, the CRG is the coordinator of the competitive projects that can give inputs to the EU4SD project:
· The development of professionals and professional competencies in education for sustainability: conceptualization, implementation and evaluation, funded by the Ministry of Science and Innovation, Spanish Government
- A training model to develop professional competences in education for sustainability and science education: characterization, implementation and evaluation,funded by the Ministry of Economy andCompetitiveness, Spanish Government
· “Towards a sustainable schools: reflection, communication and action” (2010-2014) funded by the Ministry of Environment, of the Government of Catalonia.
Role of UAB in the project:
- Contribute to the mapping exercise in Spain.
- Assist in the development of an online platform of resources as well as get familiarised and review the online tool.
- Translate project materials into national language.
- Contribute to the bi-annual newsletters.
- Provide feedback to the Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) framework.
- Contribute to the dissemination and exploitation of the project outputs, outcomes and future network activities.
- Participate and actively contribute to the discussions generated in regional and annual meetings, seminars and conference.
Operational and financial management:
- The project team will coordinate the above administrative and academic project activities.
- Financial administration will be handled by project team who will liaise internally with the institution’s finance department.