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REPORT ABOUT PARTICIPATION at the «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities» (WSSD-U-2014)
Monday, 15 September 2014 00:00



of Professor Dr. Michael SHILIN from Russian State Hydrometeorological university

(St. Petersburg, Russia)

at the «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities» (WSSD-U-2014)

with presentation «Achieving Sustainability in Applied Marine Science Education: Using European Experience», devoted to the results of eMaris TEMPUS project (authors: M.B. Shilin, T.R. Eremina)


Over 200 sustainable development researchers from 32 countries – also from Baltic countries such as Belarus, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Lithuania, Poland and Russia – met in Manchester (United Kingdom) at the Metropolitan University, attending the «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities» (WSSD-U-2014, September 3 - 5) (Fig. 1). Their aim was to present and to discuss the latest trends on sustainability in higher education, worldwide.

The event was organized by Manchester Metropolitan University and the Research and Transfer Centre «Applications of Life Sciences» of the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences (Germany), in co-operation with United Nations University initiative «Regional Centres of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development» (RCE). The Symposium was one of the last events of the UN Decade on Education for Sustainable Development (UNDESD), which concludes in 2014. The chairpersons of the Scientific Committee were Prof. Walter Leal (Manchester Metropolitan University, UK, and HAW Hamburg and RCE Hamburg and Region, Germany); Prof. Lynn Martin (Manchester Metropolitan University, Centre for Enterprise, UK); Prof. Callum Thomas (Centre for Aviation, Transport and the Environment, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK).


Fig. 1. The central point of Symposium delegates’ meeting at Manchester Metropolitran university: how far different universities are distanced from Manchester City?

The «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities» was focused on «transformative approaches to sustainable development across disciplines» and contributed to the further development of this fast-growing field. The aims of the «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities» were as follows:

- to provide universities all around the world with an opportunity to display and present their works (i.e. curriculum innovation, research, activities, practical projects) as they relate to education for sustainable development at university level;

- to foster the exchange of information, ideas and experiences acquired in the execution of projects, from successful initiatives and good practice;

- to discuss methodological approaches and projects which aim to integrate the topic of sustainable development in the curriculum of universities;

- to network the participants and provide a platform so they can explore possibilities for cooperation.

The Symposium was opened by Mayor of Manchester City, and Prof. Walter Leal (Fig. 2).


Fig. 2. Official opening of the «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities»

Delegates attended the «2nd World Symposium on Sustainable Development at Universities» were: members of university administrations; teaching staff; research staff; student groups; campus facilities and operations staff; project officers and consultants.

As part of the event, 3 ground-breaking books were launched, along with the brand new book series «World Sustainability Series»:


The Symposium was a truly sustainable event. To this purpose, the food was local or fair trade. Organizers and participants of Symposium exercised great care in energy consumption. Finally, the WSSD-U-2014-team avoided printing anything. Every kind of information was available digitally at the Symposium web site. During the guided tours of Manchester Metropolitan university campus, the delegates of Symposium observed wonderful landscapes and views (Fig. 3).


                     Fig. 3. New bridge in Metropolitan university campus

During the open discussion on the final day of Symposium (Fig. 4), it was decided to start with the preparation of the 3rd World Sustainable Development Teach-In-Day, to be held in 2015 under the theme: “Breaking the Barriers Across Disciplines”.


Fig. 4. Walter Leal and Michael Shilin: making plans for the future.

Michael Shilin was invited to be a member of the Presidium of the Teach-In-Day-2015.

The presentation «Achieving Sustainability in Applied Marine Science Education: Using European Experience» should be published in the new book series «World Sustainability Series».



Main Partners

University of Bremen

St. Petersburg State Marine Technical University
P.P. Shirshov Institute of Oceanology

Klaipeda University
University of Cádiz
Academic Association of RF Universities in Hydrometeorology