To create a sustainable future we need to make sure there is enough for everyone – enough food, water and energy. And we need to do this within planetary boundaries. To create a sustainable future we need to work together towards global goals, and we need to do it with some urgency. For this reason we are committed to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals – because the Goals provide a blueprint and a set of targets which can create a sustainable future.
To create a sustainable future we need to know how. Sustainability problems are multifaceted, they are local and global, material and social, political and industrial. One type of academic discipline alone will not solve them. Neither will policy without evidence. Neither will business without guidance. So here at the Grantham Centre, all our projects are multidisciplinary ones. Further, the perspectives of policy-makers and business informs our research. For example, all Grantham Scholars receive specialised training in working with policy-makers and businesses.
Our plan is to create usable knowledge that addresses the complexity of environmental crisis.
Grantham Centre experts represent every Faculty within the University of Sheffield. So we can create cross-cutting research projects. For instance, Grantham Scholar Jenny Veenstra‘s first supervisor is soil scientist Dr Manoj Menon from Geography. But Jenny’s second supervisor is from Civil and Structural Engineering. Or Rohit Chakraborty, who is supervised by experts in chemistry, engineering, and science communication. Because Rohit studies air pollution, this range of expertise allows him to examine this problem from the social, chemical and civil perspectives.
Grantham Centre experts are used to working across disciplines – so come together easily on other research projects. We have used this multidisciplinary thinking to win funding on collaborative research projects. For example, our £1 million UKRI funded project Plastics: Redefining Single-Use. Another example of this mixed team approach is our project at the Za’atari refugee camp. Here our experts – a team of scientists, engineering, social scientists, Grantham Scholars and policy experts – have co-created some solutions to life at the camp.
Sustainable Development Goals are blueprints for a sustainable future. So UN member states are expected to use these Goals to frame agendas and policies. Find out here how Grantham Centre research connects to each Goal.
The food and agriculture sector offers key solutions for development, and is central for hunger and poverty eradication.
Clean, accessible water for all is an essential part of the world we want to live in.
Energy is central to nearly every major challenge and opportunity.
There needs to be a future in which cities provide opportunities for all, with access to basic services, energy, housing, transportation and more.
Promoting resource and energy efficiency, sustainable infrastructure, and providing access to basic services, green and decent jobs and a better quality of life for all
Climate change is a global challenge that affects everyone, everywhere.
Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss.
Scientists from The Institute of Sustainable Food and the Grantham Centre are helping Syrian refugees to grow fresh food from old mattresses. The Grantham Centre has been working in the Za’atari refugee camp for years. At the camp they co-create sustainable solutions to the refugee crisis. Working alongside refugees, they […]
New types of bioplastic – for example, materials claiming to be compostable or made from bio materials – keep appearing. In order to make sure they’re as good as they seem, we need new standards for bio-based, biodegradable and compostable plastics. Because while claims made for these new materials are […]
Something amazing is happening at Hunters Bar Infant School in Sheffield. A living wall of plants is appearing in the playground. Incredibly, this green barrier can help reduce air pollution for the children at the school. It sounds like something out of science fiction. But it’s actually the work of […]
We work closely with our partner sustainability teams at TUoS. Many of the researchers behind these groups are mentors to Grantham Scholars.