Sustainability Report published: BFH strengthens commitment

17.06.2024 New study programmes, research projects and optimisations in operations are contributing to the sustainability objectives.

Over the past two years, BFH has further broadened its commitment to sustainable development, turning its attention to economic, ecological and social issues. “For us, the priority is on resource-conserving, resilient and health-promoting food systems, the expansion of a circular economy and the development of sustainable settlements,” says BFH President Prof. Dr Sebastian Wörwag.

New study programmes

In teaching, BFH has successfully launched several new study programmes. This autumn, the interdisciplinary master’s programme in Circular Innovation and Sustainability will be entering its third year. The autumn will likewise see the addition of two new degree programmes: the Bachelor in Environment and Resource Management and the interdisciplinary MAS in Sustainable Transformation – with a focus on the current big challenges.

Research for sustainability

In research, BFH supported a total of 17 interdisciplinary initiatives on sustainable development, one of which was the Umami project in collaboration with the Valais University of Teacher Education and the Senso5 Foundation. Its mission is to teach children about healthy and sustainable nutrition. The aim is to find out what skills and knowledge children need to acquire in order to become responsible eaters, who consider both their own health and the health of the planet.

Networks and social engagement

By successfully establishing networks with partner institutions from science, business, society and politics, BFH is able to pursue the exchange of knowledge, experience and technologies, with the aim of achieving an even greater impact for the canton of Bern and beyond. An event in collaboration with the Swiss Academy of Sciences and the Wyss Academy, for example, examined sustainable spatial development in the canton of Bern.

Leading by example

BFH not only wants to find and teach about sustainable solutions, but also to apply them. The BFH canteens are placing an increased emphasis on organically grown food while working to reduce food waste. New printers and optimisations in heating and hot water have helped cut carbon emissions. A project shows the path BFH needs to take to become a climate-neutral university by 2030.

Expanding our pioneering role

According to WWF Switzerland’s 2021 rating study of sustainability at Swiss higher education institutions, BFH is already one of the most ambitious universities in Switzerland when it comes to sustainability. Despite this positive testimonial, BFH continues to strengthen its commitment and is keen to expand its pioneering role. “The Sustainability Report 2022/2023 gives an account of what we are already doing. But our ambition goes far beyond that. We will continue to go all out to achieve the global sustainability goals in teaching, research and in cooperation with the public,” says BFH President Prof. Dr Sebastian Wörwag.

Recognised methodology

The Sustainability Report 2022/2023 shows how BFH has achieved its sustainability goals in eleven so-called ‘material topics’, as well as the goals it has set itself for the coming two-year period. The report was prepared in accordance with the GRI Standards, which serve as a framework for sustainability reports worldwide. It also outlines the contribution BFH is making to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).