The 1st Regional Workshop for African Universities hosted by University of Sousse
On 11-12 October 2019, the UI GreenMetric team represented by Prof. Riri Fitri Sari and Mr. Junaidi, M.A. became the resource person at the Regional Workshop on UI GreenMetric for African Universities. The event was hosted by the University of Sousse, Tunisia.
In the first day of the event, the UI GreenMetric team met the Vice-chancellor of the University of Sousse, Prof. Lotfi Belkacem, the Ambassador of Indonesia for Tunisia, Prof. Ikrar Nusa Bhakti and the speakers from Thailand, Nigeria and South Africa. The meeting was also attended by Asst. Prof. Sanor Klinngam (President of Phetchaburi Rajabhat University), Prof. A. Idowu Olayinka, (Vice Chancellor University of Ibadan, Nigeria), and Mr. Jason Huang (University of Witwaterstrand, South Africa). In this meeting we discussed the framework of cooperation between universities in Africa, by using UI GreenMetric thematic priority activities.
The regional workshop on UI GreenMetric opened by Prof. Lotfi Belkacem. In his remarks he delivered various achievements of the University of Sousse in the field of internationalization and their efforts to improve themselves as a more environmentally friendly campus. Prof. Riri Fitri Sari expressed her appreciation to the University of Sousse and participants who attended this event. She emphasized the importance of collaboration in GreenMetric network to make each campus more environmentally friendly. Dr. Abdelmajid BenAmara (General Director of Scientific Research at Tunisian Ministry of Higher Education) and Prof. Ikrar Nusa Bhakti were also expressed their appreciation and emphasized the importance of sustainability by universities.
In the first session, Mr. Junaidi explained the background of UI GreenMetric, the principles and activities in the UI GreenMetric Network, as well as the results of UI GreenMetric ranking for Tunisian universities. Meanwhile Prof. Riri also described some steps to complete the UI GreenMetric questionnaire, detailed explanation of the criteria and indicators in the GreenMetric questionnaire and answered various questions on the questionnaire. Some participants gave input on the GreenMetric questionnaire. One of them was on giving bigger points for student activities and fairness of giving values to developed countries and developing countries.
The second session, the speakers delivered their experiences in managing infrastructure, energy and climate change, and waste. Through this presentation, it is known that the university’s obstacles in the process of becoming a sustainable campus such as limited resources (funding, capacity, expertise), geography, operations, old buildings, infrastructure programs, cultural-social barriers, and lack of institutional data. According to Mr. Jason Huang we cannot underestimate human barriers, data, synergy of academic and research interests as well as benchmarks with international standards and practices.
The next session is about water management, transportation and education. Dr. Bilal Said (American University of Beirut, Lebanon) presented the participation American University of Beirut in UI GreenMetric as well as conservation efforts at the university. Prof. Ghada Khayat (University of Alexandria, Egypt) delivered various initiatives to become a green campus. Asst. Prof. Ahlem Haifa ben Thabet delivered a master’s program in sustainability at the University of Sousse. The interesting thing from these presentations were we got to know the effort to answer challenges in sustainability issues.
At the end of the event Prof. Riri invited the workshop participants to join the 2019 UI GreenMetric ranking and participate in the UI GreenMetric network. Prof. Lotfi Belkacem also thanked the participants who attended the workshop. The next event was a campus tour by visiting several educational facilities at the University of Sousse, such as the Technical Center of Organic Agriculture, the National Engineering School of Sousse and the Faculty of Medicine, University of Sousse.