2019 BANKSIA RESEARCH/ ACADEMIA AWARD

OUR WINNERS

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BANKSIA FOUNDATION

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HONOUR
ROLL


2019 BANKSIA RESEARCH/ ACADEMIA AWARD

 

 

Finalists:
. Monash University Buildings and Property Division, VIC
. University of Melbourne in partnership with Climate Reality – Australia and the Pacific, VIC

Winners:
Monash University, Faculty of Science, Faculty of Arts, Monash Sustainable Development Institute, Monash Business School, VIC
Global challenges like climate change and widening inequality demand solutions that are collaborative and innovative. They demand passionate leaders who can inspire change and work across disciplines, cultures and industries.

Monash University’s Master of Environment and Sustainability (MES) transcends the traditional ‘blinkered’ approach and provides the blueprint to meet these contemporary environment, social and economic needs. The X-Factor is our unique focus on all 17 Sustainable Development Goals, taught in ways that are experiential, transformative, and grounded in real-world experience.

Created in 2017, MES is the university’s first truly cross-faculty course and was co-developed by Science and Arts, Monash Business School and Monash Sustainable Development Institute in collaboration with corporate, government and NGOs. The principle of creating partnerships – in business, within society and with nature – is at the heart of everything we do. By integrating it into a carefully designed curriculum, including Australia’s first Leadership for Sustainable Development specialisation, we ensure our students graduate with the curiosity, ambition and critical inquiry required to provide the bold, sophisticated leadership that the 2030 Agenda demands. By embracing perspectives and expertise from across the university and external partners in a way that sets Monash University apart, we can uniquely: – Integrate knowledge from various disciplines and industry experts into our curriculum design and delivery structure. – Ensure learning is relevant, giving students the opportunities to develop competencies for addressing the SDGs e.g. systems thinking, problem solving, social responsibility, partnerships and innovation.

Through this approach, we integrate diverse disciplinary and industry perspectives into the curriculum, teach collaboratively, promote innovation through exchange and, by doing these, forge a new model for teaching and learning focused on creating real-world impact. Our curriculum is ‘transformative’ – Student experience a combination of hands-on application, peer-to-peer learning, collaborative problem-solving and real-world projects. Fundamental changes in students’ core competencies, perspectives, and career aspirations are evident. Students rank the course as ‘outstanding’. “(This result) is a clear demonstration of the effort, creativity and skills applied to ensure our students are immersed in a transformative learning experience.” – Deputy Vice Chancellor (Education), Professor Sue Elliott AM. Our graduates are bold, proactive change agents. With 50+ graduates working at local, national and international scales to implement the SDGs in 22 countries, our graduates impact business, government agencies, intergovernmental panels, NGOs, research, consulting, B-Corps and start-ups. Applied learning linked to real-world industry problems – The course is grounded in authentic, professional practice which engages our students in real-world problems, and equips them with the skills to address these.

All 17 SDGs are carefully embedded throughout the degree in recognition that universities play an important role in connecting students to the 2030 Agenda. MES pedagogy promotes transformative learning for sustainable development (SDG 4) to help us deliver a high-quality, industry-aligned course (SDG 17). As an early innovator for cross-faculty and interdisciplinary learning, our curriculum is now used as the blueprint for courses throughout Monash. It will continue to be a model for the sector as higher education moves to embed sustainability principles in all courses.