York Task Force on Sustainability Research releases draft report

trees near the lake

The York University 2014-2015 Task Force on Sustainability Research is seeking feedback from the University community on a draft report released today. The draft report highlights the task force’s suggestions and recommendations for the continued development of structures to support, integrate, cultivate and publicize York University’s sustainability research.

Jennifer Foster
Jennifer Foster

“The task force looks forward to receiving feedback from the York community on the draft report.  Over the past months the task force has been impressed with the richness and depth of sustainability research across the University,” said Faculty of Environmental Studies Professor Jennifer Foster, chair of the task force. “York researchers are exploring sustainability in a distinctly interdisciplinary and collaborative manner.  The University is certainly positioned to become a leader in this area, and feedback on the draft report is essential to advancing York’s sustainability research strategy.”

The task force has made several recommendations, organized into themes that reflect connections, communication strategies and funding, the implementation of which ranges from over 12 months to more than three years.

Recommendations from the report include:  The development of a comprehensive inventory of sustainability research at York that is updated regularly and available to York members; the establishment of a York-wide (institutional) Organized Research Unit focusing on environment and sustainability; the dedication of physical space to the Sustainability Institute for collaborative research purposes and social interaction, including student space; hosting an annual international interdisciplinary sustainability research conference that stimulates debates and discussions related to York’s vision of sustainability research and connects scholars at York; and prioritizing central funding support for sustainability research at York through the creation of a sustainability fund that provides seed funding or matching funds for both exploratory and applied sustainability research at York.

For a complete list of the report’s recommendations, view the full report online.

The task force met seven times between September 2014 and February 2015. The first phase of the consultative process consisted of meeting with members of York’s research community to solicit early input to the task force’s work and engage with York members on their sustainability research perspectives.

The current phase involves further group consultation to obtain further feedback on the draft report.  It will also include meetings with student groups, external partners and hosting an open forum where York members can contribute their input.

To provide feedback on the draft report, please visit the Feedback Tab on the Task Force on Sustainability website or contact Barbara Edwards, senior policy adviser, at ext. 55296.  The deadline to provide written feedback on the draft report is May 15.