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Thursday, June 02, 2022 at 14:05

The great event of university sustainability begins

On June 1, 2 and 3, the XXX edition of the Crue_Sustainability Conference will be held. This event, which takes place in the recently renovated San Carlos Hospital in Aranjuez, was inaugurated today by the rector of the URJC, Javier Ramos.

Daria Efimova

The issue of sustainability has entered the public agenda a few years ago. Since then, it has been occupying more and more space in the consciousness of the population through education, projects and research. However, until recently, the main focus of sustainable challenges was the imminent threat of climate change, leaving aside other important aspects such as decent working conditions or social justice. With the aim of drawing attention to these problems, as well as seeking solutions, the Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities has launched the Crue_Sustainability project. Over the years, different educational centers have hosted this event. The last edition was held last October at the University of Almería.

This summer it is the Rey Juan Carlos University that hosts the XXX edition of the Crue_Sustainability Conference. Throughout June 1, 2 and 3, it brings together the most important experts on the subject of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the recently rehabilitated Hospital San Carlos in Aranjuez, an emblematic building of this town. 

This morning the rector of the URJC, Javier Ramos, formally opened the event. In this act, he was accompanied by the mayor of the Aranjuez City Council, María José Martínez; rector of the University of Burgos and president of Crue_Sostenibilidad, Manuel Pérez Mateos; and Deputy Director General of Research University Activity of the Ministry of Universities, Manuel González. About 100 people have attended the opening of the event. 

The close link between education and sustainability

The central theme of this edition of the conference is the integration of the SDGs in university education. During the inauguration, Javier Ramos highlighted the importance of the university as an agent of social change: “We are guarantors of culture, knowledge and research; but all the advances we can make are only useful if we put them at the service of society”. In this aspect, the San Carlos Hospital stands out as an example, rehabilitated specifically for educational purposes, setting an important precedent not only in the conservation of historical heritage, but also in the sustainable use of existing spaces. For this reason, both Manuel Pérez and María José Martinez congratulated the URJC in their speeches for their work and commitment to the SDGs. According to Manuel Pérez: "We have the obligation to lead this transformation process because, although the word sustainability is fashionable, there is still a lot to do"

Immediately afterwards, the inaugural conference began, which had Manuel González as speaker. Understanding that society already has a certain awareness of the importance of the environment, he highlights two other axes on which future actions should focus: social responsibility and the circular economy. In these aspects, the university plays a fundamental role by being as close as possible to the generations here and now. “It is an institution that preserves and transmits knowledge; it has an essential role in the connection between formal knowledge and other more latent knowledge”, explains Manuel González. “It is an essential forum to comment and debate topics such as sustainability”.

Once the conference is over, the specific presentations, meetings and colloquiums have begun. The current state and future of the different SDGs and their relationship with the university community will also be addressed. These include the meetings of the CRUE Commission for the 2030 Agenda and the Crue Sustainability Executive Committee, as well as the different working groups. In the working groups, topics such as occupational risk prevention, gender policies and sustainable university mobility, among others, will be discussed. 

Finally, the closing ceremony, which will take place on June 3 at 14:XNUMX p.m., will be attended by the rector of the URJC, Javier Ramos, as well as the president of Crue_Sostenibilidad, Manuel Pérez Mateos.

Inauguration 13 120x90