UU doesn't contribute and gets mediocre score

Sustainability ranking: TU Delft and Erasmus University in top 3

Photo: Pixabay

Since 2012, the student network Studenten voor Morgen (Students for Tomorrow) has been making a sustainability ranking of higher education institutions in the Netherlands, considering education, research, operations and best practices. That's the SustainaBul prize.

This is the fourth time that Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences has topped the list. The institution, which has branches in Leeuwarden and Velp, also won in 2020, 2022 and 2023.  


Green, orange, blue and red: scores for education, research, business operations and best practices

The compilers of the rankings first search for information about sustainability, before asking the educational institutions for a reaction. With this information, they then determine the final scores.

Sustainability, as understood by the students, involves more than just action aimed at reducing CO2 emissions and preventing food waste. The topic of "social sustainability" also covers diversity and inclusion.

The students do not ask directly about ties with the fossil fuel industry. Action groups that include students and scientists are pressing higher education institutions to cut ties with companies such as Shell, with occupations taking place at various educational institutions last year.

Utrecht University comes 28th on the list. The university has been getting mediocre scores for years. That's because it doesn't agree with the methodology used by SustainaBul. According to UU, the compilers mainly base the ranking on statements made about sustainability issues on the institutions' websites, which means that communication counts more than actions. For this reason, UU refuses to comment on the researchers' findings.

Tags: sustainabul