Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 59.36
Liaison Laura Minchella
Submission Date July 30, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Sydney
EN-14: Participation in Public Policy

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Zoe Morrison
Strategy Advisor
Strategy Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the municipal/local level?:

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the municipal/local level:

The University of Sydney has a number of relationships with the local council areas that surround our campuses. Our largest campus at Camperdown/Darlington sits within the City of Sydney Local Government Area (LGA). The University is engaged in a number of examples of policy advocacy and engagement.
For example, the University has a MoU with the City of Sydney (CoS), which was signed by the Vice Chancellor and gives remit for many areas of the University to work with the City of Sydney in partnership, policy aspects and joint ventures. This partnership filters throughout multiple areas of the University including:
- The University Infrastructure have engaged with the City of Sydney by reviewing the and contributing to their Sydney Local Environmental Plan (LEP) since 2012. the review includes a comprehensive review of LEP through proposed consolidated rezoning of certain University land use holdings (e.g. Forest Lodge properties).

The University is also a participant and contributor to the Greater Sydney Commission project to develop a Clean Tech precinct. Part of the development of this precinct involves a large Sustainability working group of local and regional agencies. This working group is tasked with developing a cohesive strategy to incorporate sustainability into the Clean Tech Precinct development including transport, construction and how the measures align with the participating agencies.

Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the state/provincial/regional level?:

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the state/provincial/regional level:

The University of Sydney has a long-standing relationship with the New South Wales transport authority TforNSW. Recently, the University made a submission regarding the TforNSW plans for expanding Redfern Station, the nearest train station to our biggest campus which most students transit through on their University commute. As a result of the submission, the University has further negotiated with TforNSW to have a new, safer pick-up location for our shuttle bus at the station and new infrastructure to boost usage. The shuttle bus and making the commute from the station to the University easier and more prominent position is key achieving the University sustainable commuting targets and an initiative under the University's next iteration of its Sustainable Transport and Mobility Plan (STAMP)

The University contributes to policy advocacy and support at a New South Wales State level through the NSW Vice Chancellor Committee (NSWVCC) which consults and participates in policy development and review in several areas of the NSW Government. This includes continuing review of policy changes and amendments to align with the University's sustainability aims. This is main conducted through the University Infrastructure area (UI):
1. UI and Office of General Council joint submission to NSW Department of Planning Industry & Environment (DPIE) to clarify and include Universities as a Public Authority under Part 6 of the Planning Act to clarify Universities as Crown applicants both for development works and for building works and certification.

2. After the Grenfell disaster, the University reviewed all of its building for cladding defeats. The University of Sydney has assisted in establishing a NSWVCC working committee to review Building Cladding requirements from State/Local Governments in seeking a consistency of legislative and procedural consistency across jurisdictions. At the University of Sydney, the cladding removed from our buildings is recycled and prevented from going to landfill.
This provides a best practice benchmark on proven solutions and professionals in dealing with State/Local government requirement for necessary building façade upgrades.

Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the national level?:

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the national level:

The University regularly contributes to national policy advocacy through submissions to federal-level government discussion papers, feedback on draft policy and to changes/projects that affect the University community. The University also contributed to national dialogues such as Royal Commissions and future ways of work, advising the government on policy direction. Advocacy includes:

1. The University submitted a response to the Commonwealth Dept. of Agriculture in contribution to consultation regarding the Drought Resilience Fund Plan (https://www.agriculture.gov.au/ag-farm-food/drought/future-drought-fund). The University outlined the strength contributions it could make through education and research to support the main stakeholders and benefactors of the $5bn fund - Australian farms and communities. This included our Plant Breeding Institute, Agriculture product and insurance information from Prof. Eddie Anderson and social resilience resources - https://www.sydney.edu.au/content/dam/corporate/documents/about-us/governance-and-structure/university-policies/2019/december-submissions/20191212-usyd-submission-no-sig.pdf

2. A response on options for the Commonwealth government in regard to rural health quality and distribution. The University has a large rural health program in partnership with the NSW state and local health districts in Broken Hill, Lismore, Dubbo and Orange as well as specialised Poche Centre of Indigenous Health which aim to improve the health and employment outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in rural communities through extensive educational, research and community outreach programs. The submission advises on governance, priorities, establishing a Rural Allied Health College, which the University has extensive experience in, opportunities for rural and indigenous students, work and labour opportunities and the provisions of health and telehealth services.

3. Disability Royal Commission Employment - In May 2020, the Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability released an issues paper focusing on the experiences of people with disability in employment. The University made a submission, highlighting the findings of a research project on Disability Disadvantage and Vocational Education and Training.

4. The Australian Government (through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade) invited submissions from the public to help inform the development of the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent for the Pacific Islands Forum. The public submission process consisted of seeking views on four key questions. The University made a submission, partnering with academic experts identifying biosecurity, food security, climate change, disease control, marine health, animal welfare, disaster response, economic development, good governance and management as the key challenges facing the Pacific region. The University’s submission also stressed the value of systematic and strategic investment in education as vital for realising long-term benefits for Pacific countries.

Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the international level?:

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the international level:

Outside of its research activities and its contribution to policy advisory and advocacy, examples of the University's policy advocacy include:

The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women and the Assistant Defence Minister and Minister for International Development and the Pacific announced a consultation process to guide a new Australian development policy to drive the Government’s international development efforts in support of security, stability, prosperity and resilience in the Indo-Pacific. The University made a submission which addressed the challenges ahead for biosecurity and population health, disaster management, animal health and food security in the Indo-Pacific. We also encouraged the Government to increase its support for Australia Awards scholarships in health and education for emerging leaders from Indo-Pacific countries, and highlighted some of the extensive relevant research being led by academics in Infectious Diseases, Public Health, Paediatrics and Veterinary Science.

A brief description of other political positions the institution has taken during the previous three years (if applicable):

A brief description of political donations the institution made during the previous three years (if applicable):

Website URL where information about the institution’s sustainability advocacy efforts is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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