Sustainability and environment
At Swinburne, commitment to sustainability is one of our core values. It is embedded across our university and our daily operations as we seek to accelerate our efforts and goals to ensure a sustainable future.
We take a universal approach to sustainability, considering the physical environment we operate in, as well as our people, practices and research.
Advances in technology offer enormous potential to improve sustainability outcomes. Much of our research is focussed on one or more aspects of sustainability and, increasingly, this research and its real-world application has the potential to transform lives and create more sustainable outcomes, both for individuals and society.
Sustainability concepts are progressively being established within the curriculum in all disciplines, in the design and construction of our on-campus environment, and in how we manage our campuses.
Sustainability Development Goals
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are designed to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, protect the environment and address climate change. Governments, businesses and civil society together with the United Nations are mobilising efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Agenda by 2030 — a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity.
Swinburne is a signatory to the University Commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals. We are now part of Australia/Pacific Regional Network of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN). The SDSN aims to bring its members together to develop and promote solutions, policies and public education for sustainable development.
Our commitment to the SDGs focuses on recognition and commitment to the following areas:
- the enormous social, economic, and environmental challenges facing the world
- future development that is socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable
- the vital role universities can play in achieving a sustainable future through teaching, research, and operations.
Swinburne Net Zero 2025 Pathway
In line with our sustainability development goals, Swinburne has recently made a commitment to be carbon neutral by 2025. The pledge — championed by our newly appointed Vice-Chancellor Professor Pascale Quester — has already stemmed a number of initiatives to materially reduce emissions across our campuses.
To ensure we meet our target, a cross-functional team has been established to investigate, develop and prioritise further initiatives to decarbonise our operations. Opportunities to leverage sustainability-focused research, partnerships and curriculums are also being explored. Learn more about our Net Zero 2025 Pathway.
Addressing Modern Slavery
Swinburne is committed to taking the necessary steps to identify and resolve any form of modern slavery within the University’s operations, its suppliers and partner organisations. We deplore all forms of slavery and forced labour, and we understand the significant role of universities in helping to end modern slavery.
Swinburne's Modern Slavery Statement outlines our commitments and steps taken to resolve any forms of modern slavery within our operations, suppliers and partner organisations. We are participating in the university sector’s modern slavery program which aims to work collaboratively with our suppliers and peers in the sector to address modern slavery across our supply chains. Our Modern Slavery Statement is also published on the Australian Border Force’s online register.
Swinburne University of Technology Modern Slavery Statement
Responsible Investment Charter
Swinburne’s Responsible Investment Charter guides our future investment decisions.
The Charter commits us to take account of environmental and social impacts in the investment choices that we make.
We can use our influence to increase positive impacts and reduce negative ones.
Through investments in public and private companies, we have an indirect impact on the environment and communities worldwide. We have an opportunity to influence those companies to create positive change.
Our areas of focus are:
- climate change
- human rights and modern slavery
- sustainable development
We will also exclude companies that are inconsistent with a sustainable future that generates significant revenues from:
- carbon-intensive fossil fuels
- tobacco production
- controversial weapons such as landmines
Swinburne's current investment manager is Mercer who supports the university to implement its Responsible Investment Charter. Mercer also provides advice and benchmarking reporting to Swinburne on our sustainability and reponsible investment performance.
Responsible Investment at Swinburne - Annual ESG Review June 2021
Looking for our Responsible Investment Charter 2019?
The purpose of the Responsible Investment Charter is to guide us in considering how these core values are applied to investment practices.
Batteries are the environmental Achilles heel of electric vehicles – unless we repair, reuse and recycle them
Electric vehicle advocates say the cars ultimately have a smaller carbon footprint than their fossil-fuelled counterparts and could resolve our energy concerns for good. Well, fair enough, but questions arise when we dig into the inner layers of electrical vehicles and see how sustainable their components are.Read more (Batteries are the environmental Achilles heel of electric vehicles – unless we repair, reuse and recycle them)Thursday 25 May 2023
PhD student goes to the 2023 UN Water Conference
School of Engineering PhD student Vishnu Pillai recently landed the prestigious opportunity to attend the 2023 UN Water Conference in New York, thanks to his pioneering work on water sustainability solutions.Friday 05 May 2023
Australia finally has an electric vehicle strategy. How does it stack up?
Australia’s first National Electric Vehicle Strategy, released today, details the government’s long-awaited plans to accelerate the adoption of these vehicles.Wednesday 19 April 2023
Swinburne empowers first aerospace Founder in Residence to soar at Avalon International Air Show
Taking on Avalon International Air Show with innovative aerospace is Swinburne’s first Founder in Residence Rachael Barritt.Read more (Swinburne empowers first aerospace Founder in Residence to soar at Avalon International Air Show )Wednesday 01 March 2023
$5.2M green energy research hub coming to Swinburne
The Siemens Swinburne Energy Transition Hub is Australia's new research-driven hub focused on energy and sustainability.Thursday 16 February 2023
Why a shift to basing vehicle registration fees on emissions matters for Australia
The ACT is changing how it calculates car registration fees. Instead of being based on a car’s weight, the fee the owner pays will be based on the greenhouse gas emissions it produces.Friday 10 February 2023
To learn more about our strategies and initiatives, please call our general enquiries number on +61 3 9214 8000.