Campus Buildings & Student Engagement in Institutional Sustainability Efforts

Mar 27, 2013

Colleges and universities are presently engaged in efforts to address the environmental impact of their operations, facilities, and activities. In an effort to provide a way for diverse institutions to compare their efforts in a consistent format, a number of publicly accessible self-reporting systems have emerged since 2006. This paper reviews self-reported sustainability data related to green building and student engagement activities submitted by a sample of 55 institutions that participate in three reporting systems: STARS, ACUPCC, and The College Sustainability Report Card. The objective is to determine the range of approaches across campuses, the usefulness of the data in revealing campus efforts, and unique approaches. Findings suggest that campuses vary widely in enrollments, size of building area, and energy usage, but employ many of the same green building standards and student engagement strategies. Nevertheless, the limitations inherent with the use of self-reported data are addressed.

Thomas Collins (University of Oregon)
Proceedings of the 2013 ARCC Spring Research Conference
Presented at: 
The Visibility of Research
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Architectural Research Centers Consortium

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