Mongolian and Swedish Students Discuss an Inclusive Green Economy

20 December 2017, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia - Students from Lund University in Sweden and three Mongolian universities connected via video-conference on 20 December 2017 for a dialogue on how young people can contribute to an inclusive green economy. The students in Mongolia are from the National University of Mongolia, the University of Commerce and Business, the MB Park and GAIN. The Swedish students are part of the International Masters Programme in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science (LUMES).

The group discussed environmental issues Mongolia and Sweden are facing, as well as initiatives by students in both countries to advance green and sustainable development. For example, in the case of Lund, students managed to convince the university management to divest from fossil fuels and invest in renewable energies instead. In the case of Mongolia, the students are likewise actively engaged in a series of initiatives, including a project that aims at transforming a former landfill. At the end of the dialogue, the students exchanged views on professional opportunities in the area of green and sustainable development. Both sides see growing job opportunities both in the public and private sectors. For example, in the case of Mongolia, more and more companies are hiring ‘ecology managers’ to green their production chains.

Fossil Free Lund University campaign

Neha Satheesan, LUMES Student Ambassador concluded: “I am really inspired and happy I could join the exchange. Hopefully, we can have another session next year!”. The dialogue was part of a broader initiative by PAGE that promotes green development issues in higher education in Mongolia.

     

About Green and Sustainable Development at Mongolian Universities

A number of initiatives exists that aim to strengthen the capacity of higher education institutions to promote green and sustainable development. PAGE supported a feasibility study for integration of green economy concepts in university programmes under the leadership of the National University of Mongolia. Following the recommendations of the study, PAGE is supporting the development of two university courses on green economic and modelling as well as sustainable finance. The Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) project works with Mongolian universities on sustainability education. In November 2016, the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET), jointly with PAGE and other partners organized the Green Ambassadors Initiative – Network Event. Over 90 university administrators, lecturers, representatives of student organizations, alumni associations and civil society organizations participated. The initiative demonstrated keen interest of Mongolian universities to introduce sustainability into campus management, operations, teaching and learning.

   

About LUMES

The LUMES programme covers a full range of topics from the natural and social sciences, relevant to the sustainability challenges around the world. Grounded in sustainability theory, the courses delve into the environmental, economic and social aspects of sustainability challenges. The programme builds on the previous knowledge, skills, and experiences of its students to foster holistic-systems thinking and create a platform that is conducive to the teaching-learning process amongst peers as well as with teachers. The ambition is to create knowledge brokers and agents of change, who are equipped with interdisciplinary and cross-cultural competencies to create change, from local to global levels.

LUMES teaches its students to apply a multitude of methods and approaches, combining critical perspectives with problem-solving skills in collaboration with society. Throughout the programme, the courses include opportunities to inculcate critical thinking and use a transdisciplinary approach to understand the different levels of complexity, alternative forms and various levels of organization. Most importantly, the LUMES programme wants students to apply a critical and open mindset to sustainability and the various solutions that are proposed in getting there, be it at the technical, social or managerial level.