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RCE Bulletin

Issue 138: February 2023

Dear Colleagues and Friends, 

Greetings from the Global RCE Service Centre! We hope you have all had a great start to the year so far, and are looking forward to what is already shaping up to be an exciting year ahead, with plenty of events and initiatives happening across the network.

Thank you to all who have submitted applications to host RCE events in 2023. The deadline has been extended until 28 February 2023 for the RCE Regional Meetings, therefore if your RCE is interested in applying, there is still time to send us your applications. See below for further details.

If you would like to share any news, upcoming events, open calls, or publications for an upcoming bulletin, please complete this form and email your submission to the Global RCE Service Centre at rceservicecentre@unu.edu (submissions close on the 15th of each month).


The Global RCE Service Centre

Deadline Extended: Open Call to Host RCE Regional Meetings in 2023

Applications are still being accepted to host RCE Regional Meetings in 2023 in Africa, the Americas, Asia-Pacific and Europe, which continue to be important mechanisms to create synergies within the network. These events provide a platform for discussion, networking, the sharing of knowledge, and learning.

RCEs interested in hosting either a regional meeting or the Global RCE Conference are encouraged to apply. Applications are currently being accepted to host the following events:

  • 15th Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting
  • 13th African Regional Meeting
  • 12th Americas Regional Meeting
  • Europe Regional Meeting 2023

To find out more about the process, view the open call here. The deadline for applications is Tuesday 28 February, 2023 (11:59pm JST).

Upcoming Events

6th Annual EQUINOX Symposium 2023: UN SDGs
1 March, 2023, 9:45-15:00 (EST), online

Established in 2017 as a platform to advocate the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the annual EQUINOX: UN SDGs is dedicated to socio-economic-ecological impacts of sustainability within the local-global framework. The multi-sponsored EQUINOX programs seek to catalyze and advance pathways of multidisciplinary scholarship and partnership on UN SDGs among institutions of higher education, professionals, policymakers, stakeholders, community members, and advocates. Learn more about the initiative here, and register for the event here.

Special RCE Session at 14th ICERD: Sharing RCE Experiences
4 March, 2023, 15:30 - 17:00 (JST), online

UNU-IAS will organise a special online session at the 14th International Conference on Environmental and Rural Development (ICERD), titled 'Sharing RCE Experiences'. Under the theme 'Circular Economy Education for Sustainable Development in Local Communities', this event will explore the role of education, multistakeholder partnerships, and community engagement in addressing local problems particularly in the promotion and practice of the circular economy model.

It will share experiences, and discuss lessons learnt, on how RCEs have responded and contributed to mitigating the adverse impacts of irresponsible consumption and production.

Participation is open to all and no registration is required. Read more

Open Calls

Call for Papers: Virtual International Conference on 'Environment, Climate Change and Energy for Future Challenges'

A virtual International Conference on 'Environment, Climate Change and Energy for Future Challenges: Best Practice and Innovation for Conservation and Restoration' will be held on 26 June, 2023. The call for abstracts is currently open, until 31 March, 2023. View the event poster, abstract selection criteria, and tentative programme for further details.

The event will be organised by the Sirindhorn International Environmental Park (SIEP) in collaboration with Silpakorn University (Phetchaburi IT Campus), Kasetsart University (Kamphaeng Saen Campus), Phetchaburi Rajabhat University, RCE Cha-am, Thailand Institute of Scientific and Technological Research (TISTR), Department of Environmental Quality Promotion (DEQP), Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, and Blue Renaissance Co., Ltd.

New Sustainability: Think, Care, Do Microcredential Opening Soon!

Open to any interested RCEs members and their students in March, Sustainability: Think, Care, Do is a new short microcredential. Developed by WesternX, this course aims to develop your sustainability thinking skills, values, conversations and knowledge to enable you to be the change you want to see in the world. In completing this course, you will become part of a global learning community of like-minded peers, learn more about the SDGs and receive a digital microcredential from Western Sydney University.

Sustainability: Think, Care, Do introduces learners to the building blocks for sustainability and unpacks the driving concepts of the Anthropocene, including resilience, sustainable development, and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030 agenda (SDGs). The learning also covers the critical and reflective capabilities and systems and complexity thinking, needed to understand global issues and enable us to work towards a better future.
This short course is open to any interested RCE members and colleagues across the world, as well as your affiliated university staff and students. The structure of the course provides self-paced flexibility with two live workshops planned to connect with your peers. It will be offered free of charge to RCE members in 2023, and upon completion of the course you will receive a branded microcredential from Western Sydney University (Australia). The first international cohort commences on the 20 March, 2023. Read more

Call for Abstracts: 12th World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC)

The 12th World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC) 2024 will be held in Abu Dhabi, UAE, focusing on 'Connecting People, Creating Tomorrow'. WEEC 2024 seeks to facilitate the exchange of ideas, to advance progress towards a sustainable, resilient, and adaptable future. The event will encourage exploratory dialogue on the different dimensions involved in EE (educational, ethical, economic, political, etc.) to facilitate progress in this future. Abstract submissions are now open, until 30 June, 2023. Read more

Latest News

CIES Session Presents Research on Youth Engagement in Intangible Cultural Heritage in Luang Prabang

On 16 February 2023, UNU-IAS organised an online session at the 67th Annual Meeting of the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES 2023) held in Washington, D.C. under the theme 'Improving Education for a More Equitable World'. The session presented early findings of a study involving the participants of the Youth Ambassadors' Forum - a series of workshops facilitating youth engagement in promoting, enhancing, and safeguarding intangible cultural heritage (ICH) in Luang Prabang, Lao People's Democratic Republic. Read more

(Photo credit: Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre)


2022 Transforming Education Summit Report

UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, convened the Transforming Education Summit (TES) at UN Headquarters in New York on 16-17 and 19 September 2022 as part of a broader effort under Our Common Agenda to accelerate SDG progress and ensure multilateralism is fit for the future.
The Transforming Education Summit was an important milestone for education across the world, now and into the future but its true impact will be determined by the effectiveness of the Summit follow-up at national, regional, and global levels. Download the full report here.

IAU HESD Survey Report

The International Association of Universities (IAU) is pleased to have launched the report of the third global survey on Higher Education and Research for Sustainable Development (HESD), conducted in 2022.

In total, 464 valid responses from higher education institutions in 120 countries were collected. The findings show that higher education and partnerships are essential to address the global challenges identified in the UN Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and to build a more sustainable future together. Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are in a unique position to foster the engagement with sustainable development (SD) taking a whole-institution approach to Teaching and Learning, Research and Community Engagement.

Furthermore, the survey looks closer at partnerships, leadership and strategy for SD and the relatively new concept of Climate Change Education (CCE). This report provides data and thus shows the global commitment and responsibilities of many HEIs towards the 2030 Agenda and SD more generally. The survey was conducted in collaboration with ASEF (Asia-Europe Foundation), Crue (Conferencia de Rectores de Universidades Españolas), and MECCE (The Monitoring and Evaluating Climate Communication and Education Project). Download the report here.

The virtual launch event on 31 January, 2023 presented the report and experts from different countries were invited to discuss the results and its implications for universities working with sustainable development, in particular the SDGs. A recording is available here on the IAU YouTube channel.

In-depth Analysis - Achieving the UN Agenda 2030: Overall actions for the successful implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals before and after the 2030 deadline

Dr. Kalterina Shulla, Chair of RCE Middle Albania and Prof. Walter Leal, Chair of RCE Hamburg, co-authored the 'In Depth Analyses - Achieving the UN Agenda 2030: Overall actions for the successful implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals before and after the 2030 deadline'. The study was released by the Policy Department for External Relations and requested by Members of the Development Committee, of European Parliament. The findings were presented and discussed on 6 February, 2023, during the DEVE Committee meeting in Brussels, with the presence of the Members of the European Parliament, representatives of the European Commission, and interested stakeholders.

The study gives insights into the SDGs' implementation processes and complexities by analysing current challenges and the impact of global crises, as well as potential actions needed to achieve the 2030 Agenda, and recommendations for European Institutions and multi-stakeholders. The first European Union Voluntary Review, at the 2023 UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, is an important milestone for the SDGs monitoring and reporting, and must be inclusive with the contribution of all interested stakeholders. This In-Depth Analysis aims to assist the European Parliament by contributing to policy and legislative debates ahead of the 2023 SDG Summit. Read more

Free Online Course: Learning for a Sustainable Future

The University of Edinburgh, in partnership with 'Learning for Sustainability Scotland' (RCE Scotland) and the British Council, with input from Education Scotland, will be running their free online course, 'Learning for a Sustainable Future' again, from 13 March, 2023.
This five-week course is designed for and open to anyone with an interest in, or remit for, sustainability, to learn more. Participants will explore a range of global, community and school-based contexts and develop an informed personal response to major challenges, such as climate change and gender equality. Engagement and time commitment are both flexible. Full details, including how to register, are available here.

Youth Political Participation in Thailand: A Social and Historical Overview

The current Thai youth (aged 15-24) have grown up in a time of political change and polarization. In 2020, resentment toward the junta government exploded in student-led protests not only at the university but also at the high-school and middle-school levels. This report provides historical backgrounds and investigates the political, economic, and socio-cultural factors that incited the movement. The objective is to describe the political context and explain this phenomenon based on relevant literature, news reports, and research with Thai high school students. Read more