The Green Gown Awards UK & Ireland – And the winners are…

The University of Worcester and Nottingham Trent University claimed the big prizes of the night

The University of Worcester clinched the title of most sustainable institution of the year at the Green Gowns in Glasgow.

Worcester was up against Aston and Gloucestershire universities for the big prize of the night, which recognises institutional action on environmentalism and sustainability.

The university was recognised for its democratic culture, sustainable campus and curriculum. Worcester staked its claim on the title with its collaborative approach to embedding sustainability on campus, and said of its approach, “little by way of innovation occurs in isolation”.

List of winners

Benefiting Society:

SMALL INSTITUTION: Ayrshire College – #PassingPositivity Mental Health United

LARGE INSTITUTION: Northumbria University,  Student Law Office – facilitating access to justice in the North East

Campus Health, Food and Drink:

SMALL INSTITUTION: Dundee and Angus College – Putting Planet before Profit

LARGE INSTITUTION: The University of Edinburgh – Good food: Promoting healthy, sustainable and affordable food

Campus of the Future:

Category Supporter: JISC

University of the West of Scotland – UWS Lanarkshire: A sustainable campus for sustainable minds


Category Supporter: CUBO

SMALL INSTITUTION: Wiltshire College and University Centre – Apple Project

LARGE INSTITUTION: City, University of London – The GreenSpark Award

Money for Good:

SMALL INSTITUTION: The London Institute of Banking and Finance – Reaching further in LiFE: Making personal finance accessible

LARGE INSTITUTION: The University of Edinburgh – Investing for good: Social investment at the University of Edinburgh

Next Generation Learning and Skills:

University of Bristol – Unleash your potential: Sustainable Futures Online Course

Research with Impact – Institution:

Category Supporter: Emerald Publishing

University of Gloucestershire – Stopping the poachers: Building partnerships and low-cost technological solutions for rhino conservation

Student Engagement:

University of Strathclyde – Strathclyde’s Global Student – using Vertically Integrated Projects to make a difference through useful learning

Sustainability Institution of the Year:

Category Supporter: EAUC

University of Worcester – Small but mighty – University of Worcester punches above its weight

Tomorrow’s Employees:

Manchester Metropolitan University – CL4Ss action for climate change

Total Reporting:

The University of Edinburgh


Outstanding Leadership Team of the Year:

Category Supporter: Interface UK

Live voting – Nottingham Trent University

Research with Impact – Student:

SMALL INSTITUTION: Scott Stephens – Exeter College Technology Centre

LARGE INSTITUTION: James Boyd – University of Leicester

Sustainability Champion – Student:

Category Supporter: SALIX

Tom Bedford – Keele University

Sustainability Champion – Staff:

Category Supporter: SALIX

Zulfi Ali – Canterbury Christ Church University

Recognising sustainability initiatives

The Green Gowns are annual sustainability awards which have recognised exceptional initiatives in higher and further education institutions across the UK and Ireland since 2004.

The team from Nottingham Trent University (NTU) beat off competition from Aston and Winchester to claim the Outstanding Leadership Team of the Year award. The prize is the only one of the night chosen by university peers in a round of live voting.

The university said it had diverted 99% of waste from landfill, delivered a 46% reduction in carbon emissions and planted 8,000 trees.

The University of Edinburgh – which was the most nominated institution this year – walked away with three of the seven awards it was in the running for. Edinburgh’s victory in the Total Reporting category was a big success for the institution, which was up against eight competitors for the title. The prize is awarded in recognition of an institution’s transparent and relevant sustainability reporting.

Iain Patton, chair of the Alliance for Sustainability Leadership in Education (EAUC) and host of the awards, commented: “Addressing the climate emergency has been the focus of EAUC’s work this year and will continue to be a key priority over the months ahead through our work with the newly formed Climate Commission, which will work with UK institutions to ensure they reach the UK government’s target of reducing all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 at the very latest.

“It is a privilege to collaborate with the institutions recognised tonight, supporting them on pioneering initiatives that will contribute towards these emissions targets. There are a lot of questions at the moment from the general public, concerned about the climate crisis, concerned about how we will reach net zero, and these awards identify and commend those that have some of the answers.”

This year, over 100 institutions made it to the finals, of which 84% were from the higher education sector. The EAUC administers the awards, the majority of which are judged by leading sector bodies.

To view case studies, videos or infographics for all the winners, highly commended and finalists, please visit the Sustainability Exchange at:

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