University of Toronto

Whole-institute governance for interdisciplinarity, divestment and sustainability skill development


University of Toronto


North America



founding year


student body



Institutional Approach

The University of Toronto (UofT) has several embedded governance and educational approaches to sustainability. Four flagship sustainability programs exist at the university: divestment from fossil fuel investments, generation of a climate positive plan, sustainability pathways, and campus as a living lab and community-engaged learning projects. Their Committee on the Environment, Climate Change and Sustainability (CECCS) functions as the main logistical and governance structure for facilitating interdisciplinary teaching, research and operational initiatives, prioritizing funding of interdisciplinary sustainability projects and campus initiatives. In 2019, the CECCS spearheaded a large-scale inventory of sustainability course content, community-engaged learning, and sustainability co-curricular and extra-curricular activities. This resulted in the implementation of the ‘Sustainability Pathways Program’, where students can be recognized as a sustainability “citizen” (recognition of co-curricular involvement in sustainability activities), a sustainability “scholar” (recognition on transcript) or a sustainability “leader” (both recognitions). The embedded governance structure is such that CECCS is co-chaired by a leading sustainability academic as well as the university’s chief operating officer, and the committee reports directly to the university’s President and Governing Council.


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