UniSC named top in Queensland, in global top 2% for impact | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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UniSC named top in Queensland, in global top 2% for impact

The University of the Sunshine Coast has topped Queensland, and been named among the world’s top two percent of universities, in a major global ranking.

In the 2023 Times Higher Education Impact Rankings, UniSC placed equal 29th overall out of 1,591 institutions worldwide, in an exceptionally strong result for a growing regional university.

And in the category for Clean Water and Sanitation, UniSC placed third in the world.

UniSC also topped Queensland across multiple categories, including Clean Water and Sanitation, Climate Action, Life Below Water and Life on Land, and first-equal for Zero Hunger.

UniSC Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Helen Bartlett said it was a phenomenal outcome as UniSC improved its position to gain its best result yet.

“We are going from strength to strength, and to be named among the world’s top three universities for Clean Water and Sanitation is a wonderful recognition of all the work we’ve been doing to embed sustainability across everything we do,” Professor Bartlett said.

“Our unique campus positioning across three UNESCO biosphere reserves, our connection to our community and our innovative approaches to research and teaching mean we are well-positioned to champion and deliver holistic sustainability across our teaching, research and operations.”

The Impact Rankings are the only global performance measurement that assesses university outcomes against the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“A large portion of the ranking is based on how we build and run our campuses, so we can be proud to see that we are practicing our sustainability values every day and ensuring that our campus operations are in alignment with these global sustainability goals,” Professor Bartlett said.

“For example, we received full marks for our water reuse and land-sensitive waste disposal, which includes our swimming pool that is topped up from the lakes at our main campus, as well as our award-winning onsite composting system.

“We also received top marks in ‘educating for the SDGs’, which assesses how we share our sustainability knowledge. For example our water battery – which recently won a National Energy Efficiency Award - uses solar power to save water chilling costs, and is a valuable teaching tool.

“As well as this, our Life on Land and Life Under Water courses contributed to our global top-30 positions in these categories, as did our world-class environmental research which includes coastline monitoring, forest restoration, ecology, marine and climate change research.

“It also shows that the solutions that our researchers are developing here are locally and globally-relevant and align with goals that have been set by the United Nations.”

UniSC psychology PhD student and Humanitarian Affairs Green Ambassador Carmine Buss, who is helping lead sustainability initiatives at the university, said she was thrilled to hear the news.

“I’m from Canada, so when I’m talking to friends back home, I’m usually saying how proud I am to be at a growing university that is punching above its weight, where different researchers and areas of the university are all working together towards shared sustainability goals,” Carmine said.

“I have such pride in being a student where researchers, leaders and students are being proactive about meeting what needs to be done in terms of sustainability and climate change, contributing to solutions, and being innovative in how we do it.”

UniSC highlights in Times Higher Education Impact Rankings for 2023:

  • Global top 2 percent overall
  • Top in Queensland
  • Third globally for Clean Water and Sanitation
  • Equal 11th globally for Life Below Water
  • 23rd globally for Life on Land
  • UniSC is first in Queensland across five SDGs
    • Zero Hunger
    • Clean Water and Sanitation
    • Climate Action
    • Life Below Water
    • Life on Land 
  • UniSC has five SDGs in the global top 50:
    • Good Health and Wellbeing
    • Life Below Water
    • Life on Land
    • Climate Action
    • Clean Water and Sanitation
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