York UNESCO Chair Newsletter September 2022 🌎 Greening education to transform the world 🌱

Dear Colleagues, Network Partners, and Friends,

Greetings from Toronto! For many, September marks the end of a break and the beginning of a new academic year. If this is so for you, we hope you had enough time to relax, rejuvenate, and were able to cope with the weather in your local region.
It has certainly been another challenging time with unprecedented fires, floods, heat, and drought, while the unprovoked, raging war in the Ukraine is causing food and energy crises in many parts of the world. Lastly, rising prices and an ongoing pandemic are still overshadowing our lives.
On the positive side, there is so much more awareness and understanding for the need for change – for individuals and for humans as a collective to allow a future worth living on this planet. There is lots of discourse and activity in education settings to move towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and more to come. How can we incorporate the ongoing challenges and still create a positive future outlook with well-being for all? How can we start reimagining and transforming education?
Education is seen as a priority by most stakeholders to make real change towards sustainability possible. Nine out of ten countries have national benchmarks to track their progress towards SDG 4 and there is lots of opportunity for educators to increase their impact to contribute to the SDGs.
So, let’s get back to school or work in our community with the awareness that we are all members of a fast growing global group of educators and change makers that carry quality education with Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in their heart. Together, we can #TransformEducation, be #SustainableontheGo, and achieve the #GlobalGoals.
Would you like to know what we are up to? Please check the upcoming events in September 2022 and feel free to share this newsletter widely with your networks. We look forward to seeing many of you virtually and in-person again in the next weeks!

Be well, and please keep in touch.

Best wishes from Toronto,
Charles Hopkins and Katrin Kohl
UNESCO Chair in Reorienting Education towards Sustainability
York University

P.S. Be sure to receive our updates and save unescochair@edu.yorku.ca in your contact list.

In case you missed it: UNESCO Chair Charles Hopkins received the Lithuanian Statehood Award

For the safeguarding of 32 Lithuanian State treaties since the 1980s and for securing their rightful return to their home country Lithuania in 2021, UNESCO Chair Charles Hopkins received the Lithuanian Statehood Award by the country´s President in Vilnius on 6 July 2022. Among the documents, signed by Japanese Emperor Hirohito, Russian leader Vladimir Lenin, Pope Pius XI, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, King George V and many more, was also a large, detailed map outlining the exact border with Russia and other neighbouring countries. Congratulations, Charles! 👏👏👏
Following the ceremony, Hopkins spent several days in Vilnius, engaging with education leaders from Lithuania´s UNESCO networks and discussing joint activities in Lithuania, Canada, and beyond.

Embedding the SDGs in higher education practice: register for the heinnovate webinar on 8 September 2022

Heinnovate is back with a new webinar on exploring the ways in which higher education institutions are working towards achieving the SDGs. Practitioners will discuss what steps they are taking to embed the SDGs in their teaching, research and community service, locally and globally, and how sustainability links with higher education innovation.
Together with Isabel Toman from the International Association of Universities (IAU)
 and the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN)´s Vice President Paul Walsh, York International´s Deputy Director Helen Balderama and UNESCO Chair Charles Hopkins will share their expertise and present York University´s whole-institution efforts in accepting the grand challenge. Register for the webinar on 8 September at 11 am EST/5 pm CEST and join the conversation!

Sustainable on the Go on 17 November 2022: registration is now open!

York University is hosting the 2nd edition of the Sustainable on the Go (SOTG 2022), co-organized by York International, the UNESCO Chair in Reorienting Education towards Sustainability, and their international partners during the International Education Week 2022 on 17 November 2022. The SOTG 2022 will feature inclusive, innovative, and interactive formats following the joint commitment to the Toronto Declaration in 2021. Registration is now open and free for all to join the dialogue!

Save the date: launch of the UNESCO ESD-Net 2030

Following the success and lessons learned from the previous Global Action Programme (GAP), UNESCO developed the ESD for 2030 framework and Roadmap, a global framework for the implementation of Education for Sustainable Development for the period 2020-2030. To accelerate this global framework, UNESCO, with the generous support of the Government of Japan through its Japanese Funds-in-Trust (JFIT), is launching a new global network of education stakeholders – the ESD for 2030 Global Network (ESD-Net 2030). The ESD-Net 2030 aims to become a platform for knowledge sharing, collaboration, mutual learning, advocacy and monitoring and evaluation among a wide range of stakeholders, including governmental agencies, civil society organizations, educators, youth, research institutions, UN partners, international development communities, among others. UNESCO is organizing an online webinar and workshop to launch the ESD-Net 2030 on 4 October 2022Register and join the discussion!

Join the new Greening Education Partnership

Building off of the knowledge and practice accumulated in Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), a new Greening Education Partnership aims to deliver strong, coordinated and comprehensive action that will prepare every learner to acquire the knowledge, skills, values, and attitudes to tackle climate change and to promote sustainable development. The Greening Education Partnership will be officially launched at the Transforming Education Summit in New York in the following session: 

Greening Education Partnership: Getting Every Learner Climate-Ready, which will take place on 17 September 2022 from 10:00 – 11:30 EST. 

If you are working on climate education towards greening schools, learning, teacher training, and lifelong learning, express your organization’s support and commitment and join the partnership.

The United Nations Transforming Education to take place in New York City on 16-19 September 2022

The United Nations Transforming Education Summit will take place in September in response to a global crisis in education – one of equity and inclusion, quality and relevance. Often slow and unseen, this crisis is having a devastating impact on the futures of children and youth worldwide. This summit provides a unique opportunity to elevate education to the top of the global political agenda and to mobilize action, ambition, solidarity and solutions to recover pandemic-related learning losses and sow the seeds to transform education in a rapidly changing world. York University´s UNESCO Chair has contributed to publications, consultations and participated in the preparatory UNESCO Summit in Paris in June 2022. Learn more about the heads-of-state level event!

Rethinking higher education: perspectives from key stakeholders

The UNESCO Chair at Leuphana University , International Association of Universities, and the Alliance of Iberoamerican University Network for Sustainability and the Environment (ARIUSA) Network present a video on conversations with key stakeholders of higher education on challenges, opportunities and scope for higher education to make stronger impacts towards sustainability. From February to May 2022, as part of the Rethinking Higher Education Dialogue series, ISDL team member Edali Cardenas Beltran interviewed diverse stakeholders to understand their perspectives on the role of higher education amidst ever-increasing complexities. This video is a compilation of key messages from these diverse stakeholders across the globe to unlearn and learn towards sustainability pathways.

Higher education conversation series: learn more about micro-credentials in higher education

UNESCO is holding a higher education conversation series. This second round will be held on 8 September 2022, now in the lead-up to the entry into force of the Global Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education. This webinar will bring together policy makers and higher education stakeholders to advance the understanding and quality of micro-credentials in higher education in order to boost their impact and efficiency for all learners. Register and stay tuned for future conversations.

Putting planetary well-being at the core: a call to turn our conscience into action on 1-2 December 2022: registration is now open!

The next Earth Charter Conference is taking place at the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development at University for Peace (Costa Rica) on 1-2 December 2022. This dynamic event will bring together Earth Charter supporters from all over the world with the purpose of stimulating discussion and collaboration. We will open ourselves up to two full days of learning, making new connections, and sharing and building new perspectives for turning conscience into action for a thriving Earth. The Earth Charter Center for Education, located on the University for Peace campus, is a magical setting for our gathering amid a tropical forest near San Jose, Costa Rica. Your presence will contribute to this process and elevate the depth of our conversations. Register now!

11th International Conference on Biodiversity Research (ICBR) at Daugavpils University on 20 - 22 October 2022

The UNESCO Chair on the Interplay of Tradition and Innovation in Education for Sustainable Development at Daugavpils University in Latvia is inviting the members of the DU UNESCO Chair Network of the Journal of Teacher Education for Sustainability (JTES) to participate in the 11th International Conference on Biodiversity Research by Daugavpils University on 20-22 October 2022.
The UNESCO Chair with its network will hold a session on Educational Research: Biodiversity and Diversity Research for ESD. For network members, there will also be additional opportunities to present their work in the framework of the conference. Find out more about the conference!

Report of the 2022 SDGs Learning, Training and Practice
Teacher education for sustainable development: a review of an emerging research field

During the United Nations High-Level Political Forum (UN HLPF) in July 2022, the New York Office of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) offered a 2022 SDG Learning, Training and Practice Special Event. The report and recordings are now available. Find out more about insights from York University on balancing inclusive global engagement and the pursuit of sustainability in higher education to make universities and colleges lighthouses of a better future.

Our world´s teachers are key players in facilitating our collective unlearning of unsustainability. We invite you to read this recent publication of our colleagues Daniel Fischer, Jordan King, Marco Rieckmann, Matthias Barth, Alexander Büssing, Ingrid Hemmer, and Detlev Lindau-Bank. They offer a systematic literature review based on a qualitative analysis of 158 peer-reviewed publications on research into teacher education for sustainable development. the article is available for open access download.

16th IAU General Conference to be held in Dublin on 25-28 October 2022

The 16th IAU General Conference 2022 hosted by University College Dublin (Ireland) will take place soon on 25-28 October 2022. Under the theme ‘Relevance and value of universities to future society’, the conference will provide an opportunity to discuss the lessons learned with higher education stakeholders from around the world. Together we aim to advance the role of higher education in achieving a sustainable, fair, healthy, and inclusive society, and imagining the future. Registration for the conference is still open!

UNESCO-UNFCCC webinar series: only three opportunities left to learn about climate change and social transformation

We are in ‘a battle for our lives’, as we struggle to transform our societies to reach the 1.5-degree path recommended by the Paris Agreement. The time to learn and act for our planet is now!
Have you missed the UNESCO-UNFCCC’s joint webinar series On the Road to COP27, dedicated to the goal of greening every education policy, curriculum to be climate ready, or education for post-carbon green economies? No problem, you can join now for three more sessions in preparing for COP27! The next webinar ‘Un-learning and re-learning our way towards a post-carbon future‘ will take place on 
27 September 2022Register here to participate in the last three editions of the UNESCO-led webinar series.

Register for the 10th Annual International Conference on Sustainable Development (ICSD) on 19-20 September 2022

Hosted by SDSN on 19-20 September 2022, this year’s theme will celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the annual International Conference on Sustainable Development: A Decade of ICSD. The 10th ICSD will provide a forum for academia, government, civil society, UN agencies, and the private sector to come together to share practical solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). York University’s Project Lead Sandra Skerratt Peniston is invited to present the ‘SDGs-in-the-Classroom’ toolkit and innovation hubRegistration is officially open and free for all!

The role of higher education in the transformation of future-fit education on 22 September 2022

Join United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) and the Center for Global Affairs of New York University, a UNAI member institution in the United States, for a hybrid conference on 22 September 2022 where we discuss the education needed to face the many complexities, crises and emergencies around us. The conference is held within the context of the Transforming Education Summit convened by the UN. Register now!

Last but not least an exclusive offer for our Canadian community: apply for the national online course for student teachers in ESE

The Environmental & Sustainability Education in Teacher Education (ESE-TE) just launched the second edition of the national online course in Environmental & Sustainability Education (ESE) for preservice teachers for the second time. It responds to the call for urgent action about the climate crisis from the Association for Canadian Deans of Education, who recently issued an Accord on Education for a Sustainable Future. This online course brings those studying to be K-12 educators together to learn collaboratively, ensuring that they have access to ESE at the start of their careers. It is open to students registered in Faculties of Education and Early Childhood Programs in Canadian post-secondary institutions. If you are interested to apply, please check the ESE-TE website and FAQ.