Sustainability matters to Deakin staff and students for a very simple reason – we care about our shared future. Because of this, we're committed to sustainable initiatives and practices, and focus on our environmental, social and economic sustainability performance.

Whether it’s sustaining the diversity of life on Earth, the viability of our work, or enjoyment of our environment, sustainability is central to maintaining our quality of life without compromising the needs of future generations.

Jane den Hollander

Deakin Vice-Chancellor and President

United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Deakin University is proud to be a signatory to the university commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Universities play a vital role in achieving a sustainable future by recognising:

  • the enormous social, economic and environmental challenges facing the world
  • that future development must take place in a way that is socially, economically and environmentally sustainable
  • that the SDGs establish an agenda for the achievement of sustainable development by 2030.

Amongst a variety of initiatives, Deakin supports the targets and objectives of the UNSDGs by:

  • supporting and promoting the principles of the Sustainable Development Goals
  • undertaking research that provides solutions to sustainable development challenges
  • providing educational opportunity for students to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development
  • ensuring our campuses and major programs are environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive.
  • Learn more today.

Reporting on sustainability

We’re proud of our sustainability record and the changes we’ve made across our campuses to become more sustainable.

As one of the first universities in the world to have produced a report in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Guidelines in 2013, we’ve taken the lead in the sector and are committed to improving our sustainability practices year-on-year.

Download our Award Winning (Australasian Reporting Award) 2015 Sustainability Report (PDF, 3.8MB) or take a look at our 2016 progress report (PDF, 2.4MB).

Learn more about our sustainability policy

Focus areas for sustainability at Deakin

Sustainability at Deakin

We are currently working on a mapping exercise to understand teaching and research and will include this in our framework.

Sustainability vision statement

Deakin is committed to being a sector leader in sustainability. By embedding our principles in everything we do, we will minimise our environmental impact, maintain our financial viability and promote the social aspects of sustainability whilst nurturing and enabling our future leaders.

Carbon, energy and smart sustainable buildings

We track our carbon emissions and energy use to develop sustainable practices and buildings on our campuses.

Learn more about carbon, energy and smart sustainable buildings

Water, waste and recycling

We encourage staff and students to avoid, reduce, re-use and recycle wherever we can. We also use water economically and harvest rainwater to use across our operations. 

Learn more about water, waste and recycling


We provide accessible, sustainable transport options to, from and between campuses – helping to reduce pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and traffic congestion.

Learn more about transport


We aim to minimise disruption to the natural ecosystems of each of our campuses by setting biodiversity principles across our building standards and campus experiences.

Learn more about biodiversity

Sustainable procurement

We recognise that the goods and services we purchase, as well as how we procure them, has an impact on sustainability.

That's why we: 

  • support suppliers who are socially responsible and who adopt ethical practices
  • consider the environmental impact of our suppliers and contractors, as well as the life cycle of the goods they supply  
  • use Fairtrade (or equivalent), and ethically sourced/produced goods and services
  • encourage local suppliers to bid for our business 
  • comply with all Australian sustainability-related regulations and legislation, and ensure our suppliers do the same
  • train appropriate staff on valuing sustainability within our procurement process.

Get involved

Find a sustainability course to study, register for one of our events and find out more about our life sciences and environment research. 

Get involved with sustainability at deakin

Current Videos

Deakin's #WarOnWaste

Deakin’s fighting the #WarOnWaste and working hard to improve our Sustainability. This is one of the ways to take action- use a reusable cup and get a discount on your coffee at the same time.

Closing the Loop - A solution to organic waste at Deakin

Deakin is a finalist in the Green Gown Awards Australasia in a truly great example of closing the loop.

We undertook a food waste processing trial at Waurn Ponds Estate that not only reduced the amount of food waste going to landfill but returned the goodness back to the earth by using it as fertilizer in the beautiful kitchen garden.

With 19 food venues across our four campuses, Deakin is committed to finding ways to reduce the impact of food waste on campus and has plans to roll out the Closed Loop system further.