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Responsibility & Sustainability

at the University of St.Gallen

We envision a University of St. Gallen where sustainability is deeply embedded in all aspects of university life.

In doing so, we aim to contribute to solving grand sustainability challenges of our time, such as climate change, biodiversity loss and social inequality. This mission guides our actions in transforming HSG towards sustainability.

Happening now

Creating Positive Impact by Jointly Transforming HSG

Are you attending the HSG Alumni Community Festival on September 30? Join our workshop ‘Creating Positive Impact by Jointly Transforming HSG’!

Our world is facing several grand challenges, and HSG is committed to preparing its students to become future leaders in a world that must solve these serious ecological and social crises. In this bilingual workshop (DE/EN), you can explore what HSG is currently doing to educate change agents for a safe and just future, bring in your perspective as a key stakeholder on what skills are needed, and let’s discover how we can collaborate to transform HSG and create a positive impact together!

When? September 30, 13:10 – 14:30

Where? SQUARE, 1st floor, room 11-1091

This event is co-organized by the HSG Delegate’s Team for Responsibility & Sustainability and the HSG Alumni Sustainability Club. We are looking forward to meeting you there!

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 21. September 2023

HSG Faculty Peer Exchange on Sustainability

Sustainability Teaching exchange is back on September 26th!

Are you teaching at HSG and seek inspiration how to embed sustainability into your courses? Then join the upcoming Faculty Peer Exchange on Sustainability in Teaching on September 26!

Once a semester HDZ, CAT and R&S join forces to provide a space to enable a teaching exchange on sustainability as part of the HDZ Teaching Exchange Series. We will focus on faculty exchanging concrete teaching best practices at HSG to further inspire and support each other. We hope to foster an impactful peer learning experience for all!

When? September 26, 12:00 – 14:00

Where? MeetingPoint

Please register here

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 19. September 2023

The HSG Impact Scholar Community – Dialogue and collaboration among scholars

The “HSG Impact Scholar Community” – a community of purpose-driven early-career researchers –  is looking for support to further develop the dialogue and collaboration among scholars.

The community was launched two years ago in a team of 2 PhD students and 2 Post docs with institutional & moral support from various people. The purpose is to connect scholars aiming to conduct research that positively contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Over the course of the last two years, we have (co-)created around 15 events with about 250 people attending in total and sent out around 20 newsletters to a list of about 80 community members.

We want to make sure that the community flourishes in the future. We are, therefore, launching a call for collaboration: if you are excited about what the community stands and aims for and could imagine supporting and shaping the further development of the community, please reach out to ! You can also find some additional information in the call below.

HSG Impact Scholar Community Call For Collaboration

Author: Tabea Bereuther

Date: 19. September 2023

HDZ course on responsibility and sustainability in teaching

The HSG Center of Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (HDZ-HSG) is organizing an upcoming seminar on the topic “From insight to impact: Tackling the sustainability challenge in teaching”.

Led by Prof. Dr. Judith Walls and Prof. Dr. Bernadette Dilger, this introductory course explores basic concepts of responsibility and sustainability (R&S) and discusses pedagogical considerations for incorporating these topics into any university course. By presenting concrete examples, this course wants to encourage faculty to rethink their own teaching. Discuss with peers and experts how to integrate R&S in teaching in their own discipline/field and be part of the change.

This seminar takes place on October 3rd and is open to everyone teaching at a higher education institution and interested in learning more about how to foster sustainability and responsibility in their course.

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 7. September 2023

HSG publishes 2023 report on its water-related activities

Since 2016, HSG has been a member of the Blue Community initiative. As part of this commitment, we produce an annual report on our water-related activities. In the latest edition, published today, you can read more about:

  • HSG’s latest water consumption figures
  • the course ‘Global Water Governance’
  • last year’s achievements of SIMagination’s PureDrops initiative
  • UN Special Rapporteur Pedro Arrojo-Agudo’s visit to HSG in January
  • and our involvement in the Blue Community network

The report is only available in German. Please find it here: Blue Community Annual Report 2023

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 30. August 2023

Sustainability in Higher Education Conference

Join the “Teaching and Learning for change: Sustainability in Higher Education” Conference!

Sustainable development is rightly becoming a hot topic in higher education, especially in teaching. The Focus of this Conference lays on the integration of topics, perspectives, mindsets and learning methods of sustainable development into Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs – in the sense of “Education for Sustainable Development in Higher Education (ESD)”.

Since teaching/learning approaches of ESD  are virtually all interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary, they involve transfer, i.e. cooperation with practice partners, learning together and learning from each other. In addition to the promotion of knowledge and competencies for sustainable development, ESD also focuses on “transformative learning theory”, which aims to encourage reflection of values, attitudes, thought patterns and emotions.

The conference aims to:

  • Provide a platform for, and promote connections between initiatives and projects at Swiss Higher Education Institutions,
  • Learn from other perspectives and gather feedbacks from peers which can spark new and scale up existing projects,
  • Promote exchange between lecturers, heads of study programs, sustainability units, Higher Education didactics and representatives of university faculties and departments, university management, students and university administrations of different Higher Education Institutions,
  • Encourage inter- and transdisciplinary learning among stakeholders to foster a culture of collaboration and innovation in possible transfer projects.

Come and get inspired to integrate sustainability into your own courses by listening to your peers and experimenting with the methods they use in other Swiss higher education institutions.

Come and have the opportunity to connect with fellow professionals, exchange knowledge, and gain new insights. The program is filled with a diverse range of interesting workshops, keynotes, and a marketplace.

Who? Program directors, faculty/lecturers, members of university management, students and other stakeholders

When? September 1st, 2023 9:00 – 17:00

Where? Eventfabrik, Bern


Seven Swiss universities (including the University of St Gallen) are jointly organizing the Swiss conference “Teaching and Learning for change: Sustainability in Higher Education” in cooperation with the National Student Union. The conference is further supported by various stakeholders (FOEN, WWF, SDSN). More about it here: About Us | HE – Sustainability

For any questions, your contact at HSG:

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 17. July 2023

New Solar Project on Campus

A solar installation with around 500 panels will be built on the roof of the HSG sports hall this year. HSG students, researchers and administrative staff of the HSG have been heavily involved in the project.

The panels are scheduled to be installed in the second half of this year and will have an annual electricity production of around 200,000 kilowatt hours – enough to cover the annual consumption of 40-50 average Swiss households. HSG will use them to cover part of its own energy needs and feed any surplus into the power grid.

Behind this next solar installation on the HSG campus – others already exist on the library and on temporary building 23 – is the tireless work of various student cohorts of the Master’s Certificate in Managing Climate Solutions (MaCS-HSG). They were supported by various administrative units of HSG and the MaCS programme management.

The Swiss solar start-up Solarify is now taking the lead in developing and financing the project and is offering interested small investors the opportunity to participate directly in the planned 500 panels on the roof of the HSG sports hall. For the planning and construction of the installation, Solarify is working with Helion, a subsidiary of the AMAG Group.

The panels of the solar installation on the HSG sports hall can be purchased here. Until the end of July 2023, persons and companies with a direct connection to the HSG, as well as from the St. Gallen region in general, have a right of first purchase.

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 23. June 2023

Climate Action in Switzerland

The Ukraine conflict and the threat of an electricity shortage last winter have set things in motion in Switzerland at the political level in terms of renewable energies. But there has also been a jolt among the private sector in the direction of climate-neutral supply. This is shown on the one hand by the sharp rise in demand from homeowners for photovoltaic systems and heat pumps. On the other hand, Switzerland is now one of the leading countries in Europe in terms of new registrations of electric cars. In the video, Prof. Dr. Rolf Wüstenhagen from the Institute for Economy and the Environement (IWOE) at the HSG assesses the progress Switzerland has made with regard to climate protection, where the hurdles still lie, and whether we are on track with regard to the 1.5 degree target.

Author: Julian Boemelburg

Date: 12. June 2023

Key facts

Our engagement and activites

Our contribution to the SDGs

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed upon in 2015 by the United Nations provide an overarching framework for addressing the world’s sustainability challenges. Find out more about the University of St. Gallen contribution to achieving the SGDs goals through our activities.

How students are shaping sustainability at HSG

Student engagement has always been a central part to campus life at the University of St.Gallen. There are several student associations that focus on sustainability and help shape the university’s sustainability activities.

Student Initiatives