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Assessment of sustainability processes on the example of the University of Graz(Resource ID: 15)

The sustainability process of the University of Graz is analyzed by using the Graz Model for Integrative Development (Mader, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012). The Graz Model describes development processes on the basis of five principles: Leadership & Vision, Social Network, Participation, Education and Learning, and Research Integration. The model aims to scientifically reflect and evaluate sustainability processes as well as to provide support in the planning and further development of these processes. Based on the Graz Model, development processes can be monitored from the vision to the implementation. The activities of the University of Graz of the last 20 years and their effects are analyzed according to the Graz Model. Based on the results, it can be determined in which areas the University shows potentials and opportunities for further development of its vision.

This building block shows how sustainability processes can be analyzed. A case study has been conducted on the sustainability process of the University of Graz. The Graz Model for Integrative Development is used as a teaching method. The Graz Model describes development processes on the basis of five principles: Leadership & Vision, Social Network, Participation, Education and Learning, and Research Integration. For detailed information on the Graz Model and its application, have a look at the Graz Model for Integrative Development section under Teaching Methods on the Sustainicum Website.

The aim of a 'sustainable University of Graz' has been incorporated in the mission statement of the University of Graz. The rectorate, the management of the university and the students are actively involved in this process, a sustainability task force and a sustainability library have been established and the first sustainability report of an Austrian university has been published. This building block gives the students an overview of the development process of the University of Graz to become a sustainable university. The students also get a deeper understanding of the larger context of this process and they learn to apply the Graz Model for Integrative Development.

The sustainability process of the University of Graz illustrates how such a process can be described and reflected. Lecturers of the University of Graz can integrate the results of the project directly in their courses. For lecturers of other universities, the process can also be taken as an example on how to evaluate their own university. It is also possible to use the Graz Model to analyze other development processes and discuss them in class.

Learning Outcomes
- Understanding of the larger context of the sustainability process of the University of Graz
- Understanding the Graz Model for Integrative Development, its principles and applicability
- Analysis of the integrative connections of the sustainability process at the University of Graz by application of the Graz Model
- Independent application of the Graz Model in unknown development processes
- Reflection on development processes and the role of integrative thinking
Relevance for Sustainability
As education and research institutions, universities play an important role in society. The University of Graz gives an example on how sustainability can be integrated at universities.
Related Teaching Resources
Preparation Efforts
Medium
Access
Free
Sources and Links

Mader, Clemens (2012) Sustainability process assessment on transformative potentials: the Graz Model for Integrative Development, Journal of Cleaner Production, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2012.08.028

Mader, Clemens, Mader, Marlene, Diethart, Mario (2011) Der Nachhaltigkeitsprozess der Universität Graz – analysiert durch das Grazer Modell für Integrative Entwicklung, S. 63-69; in: Zimmermann, Friedrich M. (Hrsg.), (2011) Nachhaltigkeit, Regionalentwicklung, Tourismus – Festschrift zum 60. Geburtstag von Friedrich M. Zimmermann, Grazer Schriften der Geographie und Raumforschung, Band 46, Universität Graz, 380 S.

Zimmermann, Friedrich M., Risopoulos, Filippina (Hrsg.), (2009) Nachhaltigkeitsbericht Universität Graz 2008. Grazer Universitätsverlag, Leykam, Graz, 86 S.

Zimmermann, Friedrich M. (Hrsg.), (2006) Nachhaltigkeitsbericht Universität Graz 2005. Universität Graz, 64 S.

Funded by
Funded by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Science and Research within the framework of the call "Projekt MINT-Massenf├Ącher" (2011/12)

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Author

Prof. Dr. Clemens Mader

Contact

Clemens Mader
mader(at)sustainability.uzh.ch
This teaching resource is allocated to following University:
UZH - University of Zurich
Institution:
Sustainability Team
Date:

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