UWE wins Green Gown Award

Issue date: 17 June 2010

green image The University of the West of England has won a prestigious Green Gown Award. The prize for 'Continuous Improvement – institutional Change' was presented to UWE's Environment Manager, Mark Webster, at a special ceremony at the Swan at Shakepeare's Globe Theatre last night.

The prize for Continuous Improvement – Institutional Change recognises sustained and successful activities to improve the performance of whole further and higher education institutions, campuses, faculties and buildings over a number of years. Projects are only likely to be successful if they provide considerable quantitative evidence on the nature of the improvements made, and also demonstrate a causal relationship between activities undertaken and improvements achieved. Initiatives must have been running for at least five years. This prize is sponsored by The Higher Education Funding Council for England and The Scottish Funding Council.

Mark Webster said, “This is brilliant news for the University. Being acknowledged by our peers for making a real, long term and sustained contribution to sustainability is a highly valued and honourable reward for our efforts. UWE students, staff, the senior management team and the governing body deserve recognition for their commitment to helping UWE achieve its vision of being recognised as one of the most sustainable universities.

“We have put in an enormous effort to embed the management of sustainability across the the whole of the University. Together we have reduced carbon emissions by 26% since 2001/2002, we achieved carbon trust standard recently and the recycling rate now stands at 37% of all waste. UWE is now recognised as one of the top five institutions for delivering education for sustainable development and we have maintained a first class performance in the University Green League.

“Last year UWE was shortlisted for Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Development in the Times Higher Awards.

“The Continuous Improvement – Institutional Change category is arguably the most hard fought for award to win because institutions need to demonstrate longevity of commitment to sustainability.”

Steve West, UWE Vice Chancellor, said, “We're absolutely delighted to win a Green Gown. Sustainability permeates all that we do from research to waste management and energy management to purchasing. We continually strive to get better and the Green Gown recognition for all the efforts put in by the staff and students right across the university is second to none. I am particularly pleased the judges recognised our work with our partners.”

Judges comments include:

“UWE has demonstrated the embedding of sustainability into the institutional strategy with an integrated management approach to continuous improvement.”

“The judges particularly highlighted the strong collaboration with other institutions and the engagement from all staff and felt that the initiative showed a significant breadth and depth of sustainable activity.”

The Green Gown Awards are now in their sixth year and recognise exceptional initiatives being undertaken by Universities across the UK to become more sustainable. The awards have become the most prestigious in the recognition of sustainability excellence in further and higher education.

For more information about the categories see


Editor's notes:

The Green Gown Awards – additional information
The Green Gown Awards 2010 are sponsored by: - The Carbon Trust, The Association of College and University Business Officers (CUBO), The Higher Education Academy (HEA), The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), The Scottish Funding Council (SFC), The Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), The Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association (UCISA), The Learning Skills Council (LSC), Sodexo Ltd and Salix Finance.
The Green Gown Awards are administered by the Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges (EAUC) and are governed by a cross agency steering group made up of:
Association of Colleges (AoC)
Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE)
British Universities Finance Directors Group (BUFDG)
Guild HE
Higher Education Environmental Performance Improvement (HEEPI)
Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE)
Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW)
Learning and Skills Council (LSC)
NUS Services Limited (NUS)
Scottish Funding Council (SFC)
The Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges (EAUC)
The Higher Education Academy (HEA)
Universities UK (UUK)
About the EAUC:
With a membership of over 290 universities and colleges, the EAUC is the environmental and sustainability champion within Further and Higher Education in the UK. For more information www.eauc.org.uk

Back to top