The EUSTEPs project aims to introduce a broader and holistic approach to teaching and practicing sustainability within universities, allowing Institutions to acknowledge the environmental dimension of sustainability and connect it to their everyday functioning. As such, all actors within HEIs (students, academic staff, administrative staff and management bodies) are called to embrace a more sustainable campus, developing a set of multidisciplinary skills and a necessary shift in attitudes.

Complementing the already developed module for students and the associated educators’ manual, the module available at this page is intended for the Administrative Staff of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and embraces a hands-on, experiential approach to sustainability understanding and Ecological Footprint concept. By presenting sustainability within the context of everyday life rather than through mere abstract theories and concepts around sustainability and, bridging with the 2030 UN Agenda Sustainable Development Goals, the administrative staff will be able to grasp how sustainability relates to not only the whole spectrum of daily life but also with their workplace and the administration of HEIs.

The core aspect of the EUSTEPs Module to HEIs Administrative Staff is:

  1. To make administrative staff aware of sustainability and Ecological Footprint concepts;
  2. To empower them to affect the sustainability of their workspace, as well as their community, bringing sustainability knowledge and its associated skills (usually limited to academics, researchers, and students).

Throughout this module, the administrative staff will not only be able to learn about sustainability and the human-environment relationship but also track their own individual Footprints and learn about the tools existing to assess the Footprint and sustainability of their Institution.

The EUSTEPs module is intended for administrative staff with different degrees of expertise: 1) Beginners with low knowledge of sustainability issues and working in key operational areas (e.g., procurement), 2) Innovators with knowledge of sustainability issues and responsibilities in key operational areas, and 3) Experts with high knowledge of sustainability issues and involvement in sustainability groups, commissions, and boards at their Institution.

Register to access and download EUSTEPs free teaching material for administrative staff

    This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google

    Unit Name

    Unit Length

    Expected Learning Outcomes (ELO)


    Class exercises and activities

    Introducing Sustainability, Ecological Overshoot, and SDGs
    2 hours
    • Show their current (entry) level of understanding of the sustainability concept
      and related issues
    • Define sustainability and identify the main aspects, especially regarding the
      institutional dimension
    • Realize the concept of ecosystem boundaries/limits
    • Learn the importance of knowledge and cooperation towards sustainability
    • Understand the Sustainable Development Goals and how they apply to Universities
    • Personal involvement
    • Empathy and change of perspective
    • “Fisher for an hour” game
    • SDGs and your Institution
    Ecological Footprint within everyday life
    2 hours
    •  Understand Ecological Footprint: definition, unit of measurement, factors affecting it, and utility
    • Realize EF as a tool for environmental accountability
    • Understand the usefulness of EF as a sustainability indicator
    • Realize the relationship between SDGs and EF
    • Know some previous attempt to calculate the EF in HEIs
    • Personal involvement
    • Empathy and change of perspective
    • Systems-thinking and handling of complexity
    • Normative competences
    • Assessment and Evaluation
    •  Daily activities impacts in the EF of HEIs
    Your personal Ecological Footprint
    2 hours
    • Realize personal EF
    • Realize the gap between personal EF and resources availability
    • Identify possible solutions for reducing personal EF
    • Understand how to implement these solutions and alternative choices
    • Assess their impact on the planet
    • Personal involvement
    • Empathy and change of perspective
    • Systems-thinking and handling of complexity
    • Normative competences
    • Critical thinking and analysis
    • Assessment and evaluation
    • Personal Ecological Footprint Calculator
    Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and Sustainability
    2 hours
    • Be aware of the various tools assessing Universities’ Sustainability
    • Understand the different aspects of HEIs’ sustainability
    • Assess sustainability dimensions in one’s institution
    • Understand main sustainability features inside a HEIs Footprint Calculator
    • Realize the many ways in which HEIs can and are dealing with sustainability issues
    • The relationship of SDGs with EF
    • Personal involvement
    • Systems-thinking and handling of complexity
    • Normative competences
    • Critical thinking and analysis
    • Assessment and evaluation
    • Anticipatory thinking or future thinking
    • Debate

    Individuals interested in implementing this module at their universities are encouraged to contact us for more information, including how to track learning outcomes.