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Department of Geography

#26: The GIUZ Sustainability Task Force

To strengthen our role in fostering sustainable practices and collaborating with the public, the GIUZ decided to officially implement a Sustainability Task Force.

Picture: / Rawpixel

It began with an informal meeting of a group of mid-level academic staff in spring 2019, and soon the ideas became more concrete: We reached out to fellow employees and founded a sustainability group with the goal to transfer sustainability research into practice. 

Three working groups

We started to develop and implement projects in three working groups.

  1. The Sustainable Department Life group identified and implemented practical measures to address issues such as energy consumption and resource use (e.g. paper) at GIUZ.
  2. The Air Miles Monitoring group collected - with the extensive and dedicated support of the administrative assistants - data on the number of travelled air miles by the GIUZ research groups in 2018. Together with ongoing data collection on the years of 2017 and 2019, this series will serve as a baseline reference for further actions.
  3. The Outreach group established ties with the climate movement and started to collaborate with other sustainability working groups across the UZH.

Official committee of the Department of Geography

In November 2019, the department assembly (Institutsversammlung) recognized the group as an official committee of the Department of Geography, the Sustainability Task Force. The official mandate entails following points: 

  • The Sustainability Task Force develops and implements measures to improve sustainability at GIUZ and advises the Executive Board on sustainability issues.
  • It reports to the Head of Infrastructure and regularly informs GIUZ employees about its activities.
  • It cooperates with other sustainability bodies at MNF and UZH level.
  • It promotes the dissemination of sustainability-related scientific findings to the public and fosters cooperation with civil society groups.

The Sustainability Task Force keeps the three working groups after its official implementation and is currently working on the continuation and expansion of projects while establishing important contacts and a network to other relevant bodies. 
If you'd like to receive information about ongoing projects and upcoming meetings, please contact

Annina Michel, Manuel Wirth

Weiterführende Informationen

GIUZ Sustainability Task Force

air miles

Air miles monitoring & reduction @ GIUZ

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More about Sustainable Living for the New Decade

UZH has been stepping up its efforts to develop sustainably since 2014.