University College Cork has placed 9th in the UI GreenMetric World University Rankings 2017. The rankings showcase the most sustainable universities across the globe. The achievement is an increase on the university’s previous position of 12th in 2016. Established in 2010 by the Universitas Indonesia (UI), 619 universities across 76 countries were assessed for the 2017 rankings. Third level institutions were judged according to the findings of numerous independent bodies including Webometric, QS, the Higher Education Evaluation and Accreditation Council of Taiwan (HEEACT), and the College Sustainability Report Card. Sustainability is described by UI Green Metric as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” The aim of the rankings, according to UI, is to highlight that “[u]niversities have the potential to demonstrate sustainable principles in their campus operations and can be a role model for the society. Their examples can provide a road map for others to follow.”
UCC’s total score of 6873 placed the university firmly as first out of the Irish universities. Dublin City University was ranked 15th in the world, with University of Limerick placing 24th. Dublin Institute of Technology was the highest ranked Irish Institute of Technology at 59th place. UCC received 7th place when ranked out of the European universities.
Universities received marks for 6 indicators: Setting and Infrastructure, Energy and Climate Change, Waste, Water, Transportation, and Education. According to the UI, these criteria were selected because they are “generally considered to be of importance by universities concerned with sustainability.” Each criterion received different weighting. Third level institutions that wished to be considered for the rankings had to provide numerical information on their progress concerning each indicator during the year in question between July and October, and submit this data via questionnaire.
The University of Wageningen of the Netherlands was named the world’s most green campus in 2017, followed by the University of Nottingham and the University of California, Davis, at second and third place respectively.