Student Sustainability Conference 2020

More than 200 staff, students and visitors flocked to the fourth Annual Student Sustainability Research Conference.

Panel members (from left): Chair Dr David Mihell, James Dixon-Gough, Anna Gugan, Negar Nagshinehpour and Dr Alice Owen

The panel on stage at the 2020 Student Sustainability Conference.  March 2020

Held on Wednesday 26 February 2020, the event was rooted in the University's Seven Principles for action on the climate crisis, in which we have committed to providing opportunities to students to take part in activities to promote sustainability.

The conference highlighted and celebrated the crucial role student research plays in finding innovative interdisciplinary solutions to such issues. 

Beginning with a welcome address from Professor Lisa Roberts, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation, and Dr Louise Ellis, Director of Sustainability, the conference consisted of student presentations, an exhibition, networking sessions and a keynote panel.

Students attended from a number of Leeds institutions. March 2020Students attended from a number of Leeds institutions

Students from the University of Leeds, Leeds Beckett University and Leeds Arts University showcased research ranging from turning brewery waste into energy and using oranges to solve dental caries, to making freshers’ fairs more sustainable and creating a ‘Green Guide’ for the city. 

Students also linked their research back to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The keynote panel, chaired by Dr David Mihell (Student Sustainability Architect), comprised of Sustainability Manager, James Dixon-Gough; Sustainability Research Institute (SRI) Associate Professor, Dr Alice Owen; Natural Capital Valuation and Woodland Creation Officer at the United Bank of Carbon, Anna Gugan; and Student Sustainability Architect, Negar Nagshinehpour.

The group discussed questions about the climate crisis submitted by the audience and wider University community, and emphasised local opportunities for action.

Presentations covered a wide range of areas and issues. March 2020Presentations covered a wide range of areas and issues 

This was followed by an awards ceremony, which celebrated the excellent poster entries for the conference exhibition, and a closing address delivered by Dr Ellis.

She said: “We were delighted with the strong turnout and a show of great enthusiasm from delegates, and would like to thank everyone involved with making the event a success, including MeetinLeeds, Great Food at Leeds and the FD Marketing and Communications team.” 

There were plenty of opportunities to network with fellow delegates. March 2020There were plenty of opportunities to network with fellow delegates

For anyone who was unable to attend the conference, recordings and student research posters will soon be available to view on the Student Sustainability Research Conference 2020 website

The Sustainability team is also asking colleagues to send them their insights and feedback about the event via email.

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