Acting Sustainable
Sustainable HU

Sustainable HU

Sustainability is not a choice, but a necessity! We look at sustainable development as a social obligation towards future generations. That is why sustainability is central to our education, research and business operations. We are inspired by the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Educating young people to become professionals in a world that is changing rapidly and drastically cannot be done without looking at our responsibility and wider role in society. The professionals we educate will have to build a future based on sustainable development. HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht wants to contribute to the quality of living together in the urban environment because sustainability is in the genes of the HU community.
The regional ambition ‘Utrecht climate neutral in 2030’ has become one of our own spearheads. These HU spearheads are in line with the focus of the region, the city of Utrecht and the regional business community. In the Utrecht Science Park Ambition Document, we have identified energy transition as a top priority.

In the HU 2026 ambition plan, sustainability is one of the focal points of our mission-driven tasks. This is how we will be developing from being a sustainable HU into an HU that sees sustainability in education, research and professional practice as an important task for the coming years, generating value for the region.

For further development and profiling of each of the four focal points, sustainability included, a steering committee has been appointed consisting of a member of the Board and directors (education, research and services). With the profile we are developing, we want to become the leading partner in the region for sustainability issues, such as smart mobility, healthy living environment and a circular built environment. We want our knowledge and the knowledge we develop and teach to be applied, so that we will actually contribute to that sustainable society. We are inspired by the Sustainable Development Goals (17 SDGs) of the United Nations. With a special focus on ‘The Donut Economy’ by Kate Raworth. It is our goal to work on sustainability in an integrated way and, in this way, to further contribute to solutions for sustainability issues that are prevalent in our region.

To celebrate our sustainability efforts in recent years and the new phase we have entered, the sustainable HU was put in the spotlight on 8 October 2020 as part of the 25th anniversary of the HU with the theme ‘Think Local, Act Global’. To look back at this day, click here.

Also this year you are welcome at the online Sustainability Day 2021 (part of the Utrecht Science Week), on Thursday 14 October 2021, from 9AM to 12PM and from 1PM to 2:45PM. Please visit for the full programme.

How can we use the insights brought by the COVID crisis to create a more sustainable world? By focusing on a more circular, green, regenerative, low-carbon and locally anchored economy, in which finances, environment and social return are more in balance. But also with attention to social sustainability. In order to anchor sustainability within the HU, the HU Sustainable Ambassadors work, the SDG community, was launched. The SDG community is an online (and offline) community for HU staff and students who want to make an impact on the SDGs and who want to play a pioneering role in this. The ambassadors stimulate sustainable thinking and acting among students and HU staff. Read the story of Eelco Koot, minor ‘Leefbare Stad’ (Liveable City).

HU’s annual report succinctly states the results in the area of sustainability and future-proofing. To do justice to the many efforts, from 2020 onwards we have been reporting more extensively to show what has been achieved with sustainability in relation to our ambitions. Without being exhaustive, the annual review draws a picture of how we as HU have been working towards a sustainable world in 2019. Please visit our Annual Review Sustainability 2019 to read how HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht makes an important contribution to the quality of (communal) life in an urban environment. A handy infographic gives you an overview of the highlights.