I have joined Hefce’s London consultation on line, and was impressed by the ease of the technology. Just a click. If it runs out of tax-payer cash, HEFCE could sell this expertise.
I joined just in time to see the NUS’s two recent films (again) – the Welsh one, and the one about the Green Fund projects, wittily introduced by Dom Anderson. Then there was the Panel discussion where Dom was joined by Steve Egan (Hefce), David Pencheon (NHS), and Nigel Carrington (VC; U of the Arts). All men, Dom and I noted.
Questions to the speaker panel included …
- What can we do to provide stronger and more authentic Leadership
- What enthuses VCs?
- The Student Green Fund is excellent – what are prospects for more funding?
- Should we be educating students about sustainability?
- How (and what) can academics learn from the NHS?
- What about the 2/5 of students who don’t seem to want sustainability in the curriculum? How can we engage them?
… and their comments included
Engage the VC on their own terms, on what interests them; make them offers they cannot refuse.
Make the Green Fund a partnership between students and the university
Empower leadership at every level in the organization
Make universities visible institutions of the future in terms of implementing (and then doing) solutions. Universities know too much and do too little, unlike the NHS which apparently knows too little and does too much.
These are not all original ideas, of course – except to those large numbers of people who’ve never thought about them before.
After lunch, it was mostly small group work (around 90 minutes), which is pretty useless for those of us on line, as we cannot even listen in. I did ask an on-line question:
In 2009, Hefce said this: “It remains our view that the greatest contribution that universities and colleges can make to sustainable development is through the values, skills and knowledge that students learn and put into practice.” Why has this sentiment been omitted from the current draft document?
But will I get an answer?