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Network of the Mediterranean Universities for Sustainable Development (SD) focusing on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

The Network of the Mediterranean Universities for Sustainable Development (SD) focusing on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) was established as an urgent demand in order to revitalize the Higher Educational system towards sustainable development aiming to establish a Mediterranean Master Course on ESD. The Network was launched following a series of initiatives in Athens, on 18-19 November 2008 under the auspices of the Vice Rector of the University of Athens. 

Main objectives of the Network are:

•To develop the competences of university staff regarding ESD.

•To promote a Whole of Institute Approach in the Higher Education Institutes of the region.

•To provide a forum for consultation on ESD among universities and key-stakeholders (society, NGOs, decision makers, media, etc.)

•To synergise the individual activities for the benefit of ESD in the region.


In order to meet the aforementioned objectives the Network is active in the following areas:

I. The establishment of a Mediterranean Master Course on ESD.

II. The capacity building/training of university staff on ESD & the whole-institute-approach.

III. Educational activities for post-graduate students.

IV. Advancing and integration of policy regarding ESD .

V.  Provision of a communication platform for academia, schools, CSOs, media, society, etc.


. The establishment of a Mediterranean Master Course on ESD.
II. The professional development/capacity building on ESD & the WIA.
III. Educational activities for post-graduates.
IV. Advancing and integration of policy regarding ESD .
V.  Provision of a communication platform for academia, schools, CSOs, media, society, etc.

Photo from the Launching Event of the MedUnNET, Athens, 18-19 November 2008


The Network was launched following a series of initiatives in Athens, on 18-19 November 2008 under the auspices of the Vice Rector of the University of Athens .Following the Launching Meeting hosted by the University of Athens on 18-19 November 2008 and organised by  the UNESCO Office in Venice and MEdIES Secretariat (find here the Report), the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was developed and signed by the Members. The Technical Secretariat is facilitated by MEdIES Secretariat and the Scientific Secretariat is provided by the University of Athens.

Working Session following the Launching of the MedUnNET, Athens, 18-19 November 2008

The following Universities have signed the Network's Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and are the official members (while several other HEIs have participated in the Network activities):

Agricultural University of Athens (Greece); La Sagesse University (Lebanon); National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (Greece); Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences (Greece); Technical University of Catalonia (Spain); University of Agriculture of Tirana (Albania); University of Bordeaux (France); University of Cairo (Egypt); University of Crete; University of Cyprus (Cyprus); University of Mohamed V Souissi (Morocco); University of Padova (Italy); University of Peloponnesus (Greece); University of Primorska (Slovenia); University of Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina); University of Tunis (Tunisia); University of Zagreb (Croatia).

Find here the Brochure of the Network.

The 2nd Working Meeting of MedUnNET took place in Athens, on 21 and 22 October 2009 organised by MEdIES and the University of Athens under the auspices of the Vice Rector of UoA and was attended by 25 participants representing the Universities Members of the Network. During the meeting topics relevant to the network function were discussed particularly regarding fund raising; while a special session was dedicated to the sharing of experiences and know-how on the links and the role of the universities in promoting ESD in their countries, particularly at tertiary level. The participants worked on the Background Document providing an outline for a Master Course on ESD Curriculum (prepared by Prof M.Ricard and Prof M. Scoullos). The meeting closed with the distribution of tasks and responsibilities among Members, in order to prepare the full Syllabus of all Master’s Subjects by the end of 2010.

Snapshot from the second Working Meeting of MedUnNET


In 2010 MedUnNET together with the University of Athens, MIO-ECSDE/MEdIES Secretariat, the Baltic University Programme (BUP) and the Centre of Environmental Education (CEE) of Amfissa organised the Residential Training Workshop on “Universities & ESD” on 23 to 28 May, in Amfissa, Greece. In total, 48 experts -lecturers, researchers and university staff- all involved in ESD, participated in the training, coming from nineteen countries. The workshop aimed: (a) To develop knowledge and competences on integrating ESD in University processes, curricula and activities within the framework of the UN Decade on ESD (2005-2014) and the UNECE Strategy on ESD (b) To explore the concepts of the “whole institute approach” and “sustainable university” (c) To share experiences on ESD, educational practices, policies, research, etc. working on particular case studies. More information about the workshop is available here articles.asp?cID=8&aID=2&ereg=


In December 2011 the UNESCO Chair for Sustainable Development, Management and Education in the Mediterranean was estamblished at the University of Athens as an official UNESCO Chair and Network, the second was actually the MedUnNET; in this way the MedUnNET was internationally acknowledged.

Ceremony Event for the UNESCO Chair and Network, Athens, 12-13/12/2011

The 3rd meeting was held back-to-back with the event for the UNESCO Chair and Network, in Athens, on December 11, 2011, under the auspices of the Vice Rector of the University of Athens, Prof. Thomas Sfikopoulos who opened the meeting. During the meeting membership and structure issues were discussed. Find here the detailed Report.


The 4th Working Meeting of MedUnNET took place in Athens on 3-4 December 2012. During the meeting the 15 participants reviewed the Network’s past activities and they discussed all major international ESD developments including the UN Rio+20 and the Tbilissi+35 Conferences. Additionally, participants discussed the network's future activities. The report of the meeting is available here:staticpages.asp?aID=728&overRideCategory=1


An ERASMUS Intensive Program (IP) on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in Protected Areas and MAB Biosphere Reserves was successfully organised by the University of Athens and MedUnNET n Amfissa, Greece in July 2014 with the participation of 8 Universities and 39 post-graduate students. The full report and other information related to this ERASMUS intensive training is available at this link: http://mio-ecsde.org/erasmus-IP-2014/index.html

 

On 18-19 January, 2016 the training “The role of Universities as Drivers for Sustainable Development at Local and Regional Levels” took place in Athens during which members of the Network were give the opportunity to interact and share ideas and experiences with other related stakeholders (managers, public officers, etc.) More information about the training that was organised by UNESCO Regional Office in Venice, MIO-ECSDE/MEdIES, Greek MAB Committee and the UNESCO Chair of the University of Athens are available here:

articles.asp?cID=8&aID=1040


In July 2016 the network was involved in the organisation of the Samothraki Summer University: "Integrated Management Approaches for Biosphere Reserves and other Designated Areas" that lasted from 9 to 22 July, and supported by the GWP and the UNESCO Regional Office in Venice.
In the summer university more that 70 students participated from 18 different countries. The summer university offered 2 different courses:
(A) Αquatic & Social Ecology: Theory and Practice and
(B) Integrated Water and Coastal Management - Educational and Participatory Approaches.
MedUnNET has been co-organiser of the Course B.
Read more about the Summer University:
For 2017 the MedUnNET and the UNESCO Chair on ESD in the Mediterranean is involved in the organisation of two Summer Schools:

(1)  On 9 - 16 July 2017 the  Summer School on "Water in the sustainable development – current challenges and opportunities" at the Warsaw University of Life Sciences in Warsaw, Poland. (http://www.gwp.org/en/GWP-CEE/WE-ACT/news/2017/gwp-cee-summer-school)
(2) On 13-20 July 2017  the Summer School on  "Integrated Management Approaches and Sustainable Tourism Strategies for Biosphere Reserves" in Sant’Anna di Lodè (NU) – Tepilora Regional Parck, Sardinia, Italy (http://medies.net/articles.asp?cID=27&aID=1123)


MedUnNET is systematically working in the area of advancing and integration of policy regarding ESD. In this perspective the Network has :
  • Provided scientific support in the drafting process of the Mediterranean Strategy for ESD (endorsed by the UfM Ministers of the Environment in May 2014).
  • Supported scientifically the development of the related MSESD Action Plan for the implementation of the Strategy that was adopted in the Ministerial Conference in Cyprus (8-9 December 2016) (read more here).
  • Facilitated the development of the Charter of Greek Universities for Sustainable Development (Green University Network )


International acknowledgment: MedUnNET is:

- A registered member of the Euro-Mediterranean University (EMUNI).
- Listed in the GUPES /UNEP European Directory
- Included in the Final report of the UN Decade on ESD (UNESCO, 2014) as:  “Network of higher education institutions that build capacity and expand influence on ESD worldwide”... “it has now become identifiable force of influence in its respective region.”
- Accepted among the UNESCO GAP Initiatives
- Selected as a Leading Practice Example from the ERASMUS Programme: University Educators for Sustainable Development and is presented in its respective publication available here: http://www.ue4sd.eu/outcomes/111-leading-practice-publication-launched-at-the-ue4sd-annual-conference-in-madrid

 

 

For more information on MedUnNET contact MEdIES Secretariat: info@medies.net or the chair at the University of Athens: scoullos@chem.uoa.gr


 
     
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