Responsible Futures is a programme run by Students Organising for Sustainability (formerly NUS), which aims to put sustainability at the heart of every curriculum.
It aligns with Goal 4.7 of the Sustainable Development Goals:
"By 2030 ensure all learners acquire knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including among others through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship, and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture's contribution to sustainable development."
The programme consists of students conducting audits of their own institution and Students' Union which are then bench-marked against a set of sustainability criteria compiled by Students Organising for Sustainability (SOS).
ARU has twice been successfully audited by its own students. In addition to this, we are now one of three UK Host Partnerships, meaning that we will be using our expertise in sustainability to guide other institutions through an in-person support day. The event will be hosted on campus on Thursday 2 April 2020.
Details about our Responsible Futures work can be found below, and you can also find out more by visiting the SOS website.
2018 Responsible Futures accreditation
As part of the 2018 accreditation, the Education for Sustainability team analysed the progress made in the last two years, and compared this with some of the action points raised as part of the 2016 accreditation.
- Student survey - we compared and contrasted findings from the annual 2017 NUS skills survey with results from a survey that was conducted in April 2016. Read the findings.
- Curriculum audit - we compared and contrasted results from a baseline curriculum audit in 2016, with evidence of the work we have been doing over the last two years to support individual staff members and faculties. The study is reflective of our work within the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, and highlights the substantial impact that we have had through taking more of a targeted approach. Download the study.
- Monitoring sustainability - we actively monitor the progress being made to embed sustainability into the curriculum through the Quality Assurance course approval and re-approval process. The findings from this data have been written up into a report which can be accessed Download the report.
2016 Responsible Futures accreditation
- Student survey – in April 2016, we conducted a survey of ARU students on their attitudes, expectations and experiences of Education for Sustainability. The findings have been released in a GSI Briefing Note.
- Baseline audit – to identify where sustainability and social responsibility sits within the curriculum, the EfS team conducted a baseline audit of all courses in the Faculty of Science and Engineering; the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; and the Faculty of Business and Law. If you're interested, this can be found in our Annual Report 2015, along with case studies. We've also done a similar study on Anglia Ruskin's nursing and midwifery courses.