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The University of Luxembourg is willing to take a predominant role in the ecological and social transition that is shaking the world at the beginning of the 21st century.

As the only public university in the Grand Duchy, it is at the crossroads of the country's major trends and issues, and it aims to make a decisive contribution to the resolution of major national, European and global challenges.

Internationally oriented, the University of Luxembourg brings together a large community of students, professors, researchers and staff ready to engage individually and collectively in the reinvention of our society on our planet with well-defined limits.

Sustainability, a priority for the University

In 2021, the University completed its reflections which led to the adoption of the Strategy Framework 2020-2039. The Strategy Framework sets out the University's Vision, Values ​​and main Goals up to 2039, in alignment with its core Mission of striving for excellence in research and education, and in driving innovation for society.

The University's Four-Year Plan 2022-2025 proposes a number of initiatives to address the major challenges identified in its strategic framework. Sustainable and societal development is strongly emphasised, through the implementation of four major achievements:

  • The preparation of an institution-wide action plan to integrate the principles of sustainable development into research, education, dialogue with society, and campus development and management;
  • The creation of a new interdisciplinary centre focusing on environmental systems;
  • The launch of an institutional sustainability initiative focusing on the functioning and operations of the University;
  • The strengthening of quality education as a pillar of a sustainable society.

These axes are materialised in the Multiannual Convention 2022-2025 signed between the State and the University.


Education, research and outreach, and operations

At the University of Luxembourg, salient disciplinary research and teaching to describe specific sustainability challenges that are set in specific systems is established, and the development of key interdisciplinary research areas including on transport/mobility, health economics, ecological economics, economic geography, socio-economics and demography studies, and Green ICT is well underway.

All three faculties offer  learning opportunities and research programmes across a wide range of disciplines that equip students in different ways to address diverse sustainability challenges.

Departments and research units across all three faculties and the three interdisciplinary centres have developed projects and conduct research that address selected sustainability challenges.

Combining natural science and engineering with critical perspectives from social sciences and humanities on the functioning of our society is required in order to better understand and act upon complex social-ecological systems. A new field of transformative sustainability science is emerging, in which researchers, civil society, private enterprise, and governments collaborate with the goal of transforming how society and environment interact.

Finally, in order to achieve the ambition of being a sustainable university in all its aspects and to introduce more coherence in its actions among its missions, the University is also focusing on the operational sustainability of its functioning and its campuses. This implies analysing the impact of its activities but also involving the operational structures in order to integrate the elements of sustainability into the University's operating processes.

A brief history of sustainability at the University of Luxembourg

  • 2006: Foundation of an informal bottom-up University Sustainable Development Group (SD)
  • 2008: A formal Working Group (WG) on SD was created. It expanded with student participation and the first position statement on energy and water-use in Belval was adopted by the rectorate and the Fonds de Belval.
  • 2009: The University Cell for Sustainable Development with a dedicated Head of SD, who reported to the President, was approved by the governing board. The University Strategic Action Plan on SD (2010-2013) was approved and implemented.
  • 2010: The University signs the ISCN-GULF “International Sustainable Campus Network Charter”. The idea was to reconnect campus and teaching as a test-bed for SD and to “walk the talk”. The University still is signatory today.
  • Until 2015: The following University SD Reports were published and can be downloaded here: 2009/2010; 2011/2012; 2013/2015.
  • 2021: Creation of the position of Sustainability Officer to launch reflections and actions for more sustainability integration in the operations and functioning of the University.
  • 2022: Analysis of greenhouse gas emissions from the University activities, awareness and communication actions, responsible event organization, process for equipment donation.