What is this “Sustainability Week”?

In the third week of the spring semester, there is a lot to learn about sustainability: The five Zurich universities ETH, UZH, ZHdK, ZHAW and PHZH, together with over 100 students, present the Sustainability Week Zurich. Containing about 40-50 events, the week aims to bring sustainability to the students and let them interact with the various aspects of it. Whether it is to inform, amuse, convince or activate, all events try to add something to the multidimensionality that is sustainability. In order to make everything as accessible as possible, all events are open to the public and completely free of charge!

What do we want to achieve by organizing it?

Anyone who wants to do justice to the concept of “sustainability” must be prepared to recognise its consequences in countless areas of daily life and action. This is not only difficult for us as individuals, but also for institutions, companies and our universities. These last ones also have an outstanding responsibility as educational institutions. We are pleased that on the one hand the topic of sustainability can be approached in a more interdisciplinary way and on the other hand we hope to show the participating universities that our demands for cross-university sustainability efforts can be implemented. Sustainability does not only happen top down, but simultaneously on all three levels: Politics and society, but also on the personal level something has to happen. We want to encourage reflection, debate and concrete action. Those who go to university should critically question the system, think about our society and be open to broadening their horizons.

We hope to inspire you with our events and hope that you will use the distance between the locations for a decelerating and environmentally friendly bicycle ride – so that sustainability becomes more than an empty concept.

How do we organize it?

Organizing a week filled with over 50 activities takes a lot of work. Already in September our core team starts to make the first preparations to make everything happen. In October they organize the first meetings where they invite everyone that wants to join and help (the so-called “kick-off”). This is 5 months before the start of the week! Around the end of October we organize a weekend (the NHWeekend) where more plans are made and everybody gets to know each other. During the next months, event ideas are written down and send to the core team that takes a look at them and gives some feedback. Around the middle of December the program for the week is fixed (still 3 months before the week!) and the marketing team can begin with the creation of posters, social-media posts and other crazy ideas while the infrastructure team starts to book the venues for the various events. In the meantime, the organizers of the individual events work on their idea. Right before the start of the week, one more meeting takes place to inform everybody about what is going to happen and only then the week can finally start! Events are organized and people can finally enjoy what five months of preparation can give them. After the week there is another meeting to get as much feedback as possible and during the summer we organize our “Chill \& Grill” to thank everyone that participated in the week.

Want to help making the sustainability week the most unforgettable week of all time?

Go to our “join us page” and let us know you want to help! It is never to late to sign up as we can always use all the help we can get 🙂