The UvA Green Office is a student-run platform striving to make the University of Amsterdam a greener place. Established in 2016, the Green Office has continuously increased its output of policy recommendations and projects to accelerate the sustainable transition at the UvA. We follow an intersectional approach to sustainability that aims to respect the boundaries of our planet without compromising social needs.
Our overall mission is to guide the University of Amsterdam towards social and environmental sustainability.
The Green Office is a student-run platform, so we foster our community of motivated students from all disciplines with an interest in sustainability to help us achieve our goals. We use our core team and dedicated members to channel the efforts of students, staff, and partner organisations to influence policy at the university and wider Amsterdam community.
We support an intersectional approach to sustainability that calls for radical system change in favour of the people and the planet. Because "sustainability" is now a broad idea that encompasses multiple approaches to the betterment of our planet, we have included below the specific documents, organisations and theories that guide our efforts.
As the largest and only student-run body focussed on sustainability at the University of Amsterdam, we align ourselves with two key documents: The UvA Diversity Commission Report and the latest policy White Paper. Firstly, the Diversity Report addresses our responsibility to the staff and students of our university with regards to equality and social justice. Our minimum mandate to work towards sustainability is addressed in the White Paper, but as an organisation we strive for a more ambitious goal in which we meet these minimum requirements while also taking it upon ourselves to further the goals of the White Paper by pursuing our own innovative projects for sustainability at the university.
We support the efforts of Circular Amsterdam, the municipality’s mission to make Amsterdam a circular city. We recognise their 3 value chains of: Built Environment, Food and Organic Waste, and Consumer Goods. As part of Amsterdam’s largest university, we recognise the importance of our commitment to these city goals. However, our action is not limited to these three value chains.
The UvA Green Office consists of four different teams. Each team, which consists of one team leader and 5-10 voluntary members, has its own focus and addresses a different aspect of sustainability within the University of Amsterdam. One general manager oversees the four teams and constitutes the link to the central UvA staff and partners. Click on a team to learn more about what they do and what their responsibilities are as part of our office!
The R&E team works on interdisciplinary collaboration, educational material, and sustainability-related research projects. They are currently working on building a sustainable research community to connect both UvA and non-UvA staff and students.
Our Communications team loves to connect. We focus on internal (within teams) and external (to the public) communication to pass on the good word of the Green Office! This year we have expanded our platform reach to Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, and Spotify.
Establishing a supporting community is crucial for our Green Office. To build bridges and foster a culture of shared problem-solving is the aim of our Events & Community team. This can be in the form of team-building, community outreach, educational material and more.
Decisions have to be made from the soap we use to the waste separation system that is implemented. The Campus & Operations team makes sure that we choose sustainability. Current projects include the waste disposal systems, the cafeteria food and drink, and e-waste management.
Policy change, green lectures or plastic-fishing events: With numerous projects, the UvA Green Office works hard to engage students and make long-lasting change. Read our semi-annual reports to find out more about what we do, or get an overview of our projects and platforms here. Do you want to become actively involved yourself? Have a look at our join us page.