Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 76.32
Liaison Karen Oberer
Submission Date Dec. 11, 2020

STARS v2.2

McGill University
EN-6: Assessing Sustainability Culture

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Karen Oberer
Sustainability Officer
McGill Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of sustainability culture?:

Which of the following best describes the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered to::
The entire campus community (students and employees) directly or by representative sample

Which of the following best describes the structure of the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered::
Longitudinally to measure change over time

A brief description of how and when the cultural assessment(s) were developed and/or adopted:

The McGill Office of Sustainability (MOOS) developed the sustainability cultural assessment in 2019 for the following reasons:
1. to assess the knowledge and perception of MOOS's sustainability efforts
2. to assess community interest and engagement in on-campus sustainability initiatives
3. to solicit feedback for the development of the next Climate and Sustainability Strategy (2020-2025).

The survey developed for Fall 2020 combines some of the same questions from the 2019 survey, in order to measure progress, but also includes a sustainability literacy section.

A copy or sample of the questions related to sustainability culture:
A sample of the questions related to sustainability culture or the website URL where the assessment tool is available:

McGill Office of Sustainability Survey – Fall 2019

Q1. Please rate your level of agreement with the following statements:
a) I am concerned about environmental issues.
b) I factor sustainability into my daily decisions.
c) I consider my personal carbon footprint to be relatively low.
d) I would like to lower my personal carbon footprint.
e) I consider myself well informed on current environmental issues.
f) I consider myself well informed on current social issues.
g) I am confident about our collective capability to build a sustainable future.

Q2. What importance do you think sustainability will have in your area of work/study in five years, compared to today?

Q3. Please rate your level of agreement with the following statements about how McGill has influenced your view on sustainability:
a) Being on a McGill campus has had an impact on my understanding of sustainability
b) McGill offers courses/learning opportunities on topics related to sustainability.
c) I take pride in studying/working at McGill in part because of its sustainability efforts
d) McGill is an institution that values sustainability.
e) I would like to be more involved with sustainability efforts/initiatives on campus.
f) I can make a meaningful contribution to McGill's sustainability efforts.

Q4. How important is it for you that McGill has a strong commitment to sustainability?

Q5. How do you feel McGill’s sustainability efforts compare to other universities in Canada?

Q6. Is there a sustainability committee/club in your area of work/study?

Q7. To what extent are you aware of the following McGill sustainability initiatives?
a) Vision 2020: McGill’s Climate and Sustainability Action Plan
b) Sustainability Projects Fund (SPF)
c) Carbon Neutrality by 2040
d) McGill Sustainability Systems Initiative
e) Efforts to improve waste and recycling (Rethink React campaign, signage standardization, new bins, etc.)
f) The New Vic: Sustainability aspects of the Royal Victoria Project
g) Refill McGill: Phasing out the sale of single-use plastic water bottles
h) Sustainable Events Certification program
i) Sustainable Workplace Certification program
j) McGill Farmers’ Market
k) Fairtrade Campus designation
l) Indigenous Awareness Weeks
m) Safer Spaces workshops
n) McGill Feeding McGill
o) Urban agriculture activities on the downtown campus
Q8. In your opinion, what sustainability areas should be prioritized in McGill’s Climate and Sustainability Strategy over the next five years?
Buildings / Energy systems
Waste management
Mental and physical well-being
Climate adaptation
Equity, diversity, and inclusion
Community engagement
Food systems
Water conservation

Q9. Please select the five SDGs that you feel should be addressed by McGill over the next five years (whether in knowledge production, knowledge sharing, or internal operations).
Climate action
Quality education
Affordable and clean energy
Clean water and sanitation
Zero hunger
Responsible consumption and production
Good health and well-being
Life on land
No poverty
Gender equality
Sustainable cities and communities
Peace, justice, and strong institutions
Industry, innovation, and infrastructure
Life below water
Reduced inequalities
Decent work and economic growth
Partnerships for the goals

A brief description of how representative samples were reached (if applicable) and how the cultural assessment is administered:

The Analysis, Planning, and Budget office sent the sustainability survey to a sample group of McGill staff, faculty members and students between Nov. 13 and Dec. 3, 2019.
Invited participants: 4,190
Total respondents: 1,196
Count of valid respondents: 1,060
Response rate: 25.3%

A brief summary of results from the cultural assessment:

The results from the 2019 survey produced important key takeaways that helped to inform the next Climate and Sustainability Strategy:

Personal attitudes towards sustainability:
- McGill’s community is highly concerned about environmental issues and factor sustainability in their daily decisions
- A vast majority (83%) would like to lower their personal carbon footprint
- More students do not think that their personal carbon footprint is relatively low, compared to faculty and staff

Knowledge of McGill’s sustainability initiatives/programs:
- The McGill Farmers’ Market and Refill McGill (phasing out of bottled water) are the two initiatives of which our community is the most aware
- More than half of the community are aware of McGill’s commitment to reach carbon neutrality by 2040

Future importance of sustainability in area of work/study:
- 61% of all respondents think that sustainability will be more important to their area of work/study in the next 5 years
- 73% of students think that sustainability will be more important to their area of work/study in the next 5 years

McGill’s influence on sustainability views:
- More than half of our community would like to be more involved in sustainability efforts, and think that they can contribute in a meaningful way

Importance of McGill’s sustainability commitment
- The vast majority of staff, faculty and students consider that it is "important" or "very important" that McGill has a strong commitment to sustainability
- 0% consider that it’s “not at all” important that McGill has a strong commitment to sustainability

McGill’s next Climate and Sustainability Strategy Sustainability areas that should be prioritized
- According to McGill’s community, “Buildings / Energy systems” and “Waste management” should be prioritized in McGill’s next Climate and Sustainability Strategy.
- “Travel” is the third area of importance, especially for faculty members.
- “Biodiversity” is the less popular area

UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) that should be addressed by McGill
- SDG 13 Climate action is seen as a priority
- Several SDGs are deemed of almost equal importance by our community

Website URL where information about the assessment of sustainability culture is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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