View Thread

Call for Chapters: Higher Education for Sustainable Development Goals: Bridging the Global North and South

  • 1.  Call for Chapters: Higher Education for Sustainable Development Goals: Bridging the Global North and South

    Posted 16 days ago

    Call for Chapters: Higher Education for Sustainable Development Goals: Bridging the Global North and South


    Publisher: Emerald Publishers Limited, UK


    Editors: Leonardo Caporarello, Payal Kumar and Anirudh Agrawal


    *Deadlines at the end*


    The global north is having conversations on "de-growth" when they have significantly improved their standard of living. While the global south is struggling to move out of poverty through growth strategies. The narratives structuring this intersectionality is poised to turn this global north and global south division into a major international issue with major social, economic, and even military ramifications.  One of the ways to address this division is through education addressing the division and providing possible solutions. HEIs should take leadership in shaping young minds through education and research that leads to better understanding of differences in sustainability approaches of global north and global south. As societal and economic systems undergo a sustainable transformation worldwide, we see major changes taking place in global markets, Global South and Global North. We also believe that education will play an increasingly pivotal role in shaping sustainability narratives, human resources, and policies. Therefore, the educators, learners and higher education management teams need to be prepared to face and contribute to the development human capital, knowledge bases, critical narratives on intersectional divisions related to sustainability and climate change.


    The importance of higher education institutions (HEIs) in achieving sustainable development targets can be traced back to the 1972 Stockholm Declaration on the Human Environment (United Nations, 1972). Today, HEIs are acknowledged as a key driver for the development of sustainable societies (Stephens, Hernandez, Román, Graham, & Scholz, 2008), so much so that some scholars say that education for sustainable development is the most fundamental of the United Nation's 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (Hallinger & Chatpinyakoop, 2019). Until now, the relevant literature has largely focused on the internal policies and activities of HEIs, e.g., university projects related to energy efficiency and sustainability literacy of students (Fischer, Jenssen, & Tappeser, 2015; Yarime & Tanaka, 2021). This edited volume aims to explore how HEIs can address the issues around SDGs not only in reference to curriculum, appropriate pedagogical tools and aspirational student competencies (Findler, Schönherr, Lozano, Reider, & Martinuzzi, 2019; Vaughter, Wright, McKenzie, & Lidstone, 2013), but also in the context of global leadership and global partnerships.


    In this edited volume, we aim to look at the role of HEIs in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals, with a view to addressing Global North and Global South narratives. Global warming, climate change and sustainability narratives seem to differ around the world. While the Global North is focused on "de-growth" in the context of a significantly improved standard of living, much of the Global South is struggling to develop through economic growth strategies. HEIs need to draw on education and research so as to ensure a better understanding of the phenomenon for both students and faculty. We invite conceptual and empirical chapters from scholars around the world that address multiple issues related to HEIs and Sustainable Development Goals, as per the following three themes:-


    1. Curriculum Development for Student Competencies

    According to the OECD (2018), there are three categories of key competencies related to sustainable development: interaction (e.g. ability to use language, symbols, and texts interactively; ability to use technology interactively), social context (ability to cooperate and resolve conflicts), and structure (e.g. ability to act according to the big picture; ability to define projects' plan). How can HEIs develop such competencies? It would be prudent to consider Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) as a holistic and transformational educational paradigm that creates an interactive and learning-centered educational environment, driven by a transformative pedagogy which supports participation, collaboration, problem-solving orientation, interdisciplinarity, and the combination of formal and informal learning to contribute to the development of key sustainability competencies (Watson, Lozano, Noyes, & Rodgers, 2013; Tilbury, 2011; Sipos, Battisti, & Grimm, 2008; Annan-Diab & Molinari, 2017; Nolet, 2015; Gadotti, 2016; Storey, Killian, & O'Regan, 2017).


    Here are some important (indicative) questions to be explored:

    • What are the student competencies that are being developed in this context, for example cognitive skills, practical abilities, and ethical values related to sustainability (Cebrián & Junyent, 2015; Backman, Pitt, Marsden, Mehmood, & Mathijs, 2019)?
    • How should HEIs create relevant educational experiences for sustainable development for both students and faculty?
    • How can HEIs design and deliver a high-impact educational programme for sustainable development? Is this best taught within certain tracks, or across a broad range of disciplines?


    1. Pedagogy and Sustainability

    In order to enable students to gain competencies in sustainability, some scholars highlight the importance of the teaching and learning methodologies. The most relevant characteristics of these methodologies are said to be interdisciplinarity, problem-based approach, value-based learning, experiential learning, social learning, peer involvement, open debates, role-playing, simulations, and games (Wals, 2014; Shephard, 2008).

    Here are some important (indicative) questions to be explored:


    • Is there a combination of formal and informal learning that can contribute to the development of key sustainability competencies (Tilbury, 2011; Sipos et al., 2008; Storey et al., 2017).
    • What is the role of technology in developing competencies for sustainable development?
    • Do different generations of learners require diverse educational methodologies in order to build these competencies (Manzoni, Caporarello, Cirulli & Magni, 2020)?
    • What is the role of experiential learning in contributing to valuable learner experiences (Caporarello et al., 2020; Morris, T. H., 2019; Kolb & Kolb, 2017; Wurdinger and Allison, 2017)?


    1. Macro-level societal contributions: Global North and Global South

    We invite chapters that look at HEIs and large-scale societal contributions across the globe.

    Here are some important (indicative) questions to be explored:

    • How are HEIs in different countries assessing the progress on their sustainable development commitments?
    • What intra-country and inter-country examples are there of collaborative work between HEIs or between HEIs and public policy groups?
    • Is there any institutional commitment, policies, and organizational mechanisms and practices so to support ESD experiences?
    • What leadership interventions are there at the institutional level, including strategic plans?


    Agrawal, A. (2018). Effectiveness of Impact-Investing at the Base of the Pyramid: An Empirical Study from India. In A. Agrawal & P. Kumar (Eds.), Social Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Business Models (pp. 207–246). Palgrave Macmillan.


    Agrawal, A., & Kumar, P. (2018). Social Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Business Models : The Case of India (A. Agrawal & P. Kumar (eds.); 1st ed.). Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.


    Annan-Diab, F., & Molinari, C. (2017). Interdisciplinarity: Practical approach to advancing education for sustainability and for the Sustainable Development Goals. The International Journal of Management Education, 15(2), 73-83.


    Backman, M., Pitt, H., Marsden, T., Mehmood, A. & Mathijs, E. (2019), Experiential approaches to sustainability education: towards learning landscapes, International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 20 No. 1, pp. 139-156.


    Cebrián, G., & Junyent, M. (2015). Competencies in education for sustainable development: Exploring the student teachers' views. Sustainability, 7, 2768–2786.


    Fischer, D., Jenssen, S., & Tappeser, V. (2015). Getting an empirical hold of the sustainable university: a comparative analysis of evaluation frameworks across 12 contemporary sustainability assessment tools. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 40(6), 785–800.


    Findler, F., Schönherr, N., Lozano, R., Reider, D., & Martinuzzi, A. (2019), The impacts of higher education institutions on sustainable development: A review and conceptualization, International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 20 No. 1, pp. 23-38.


    Gadotti, M. (2016). Education for sustainability - A critical contribution to the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. New York: Routledge.


    Hallinger, P., & Chatpinyakoop, C. (2019). A Bibliometric Review of Research on Higher Education for Sustainable Development, 1998–2018. Sustainability, 11(8), 2401.


    Kolb, A., & Kolb, D. A. (2017). The Experiential Educator: Principles and Practices of Experiential Learning, EBLS Press


    Manzoni, B., Caporarello, L., Cirulli, F. & Magni, F. (2020). The preferred learning styles of Generation Z: do they differ from the ones of previous generations? In Metallo, C. et al. (eds) "Digital Transformation and Human Behavior. Innovation for People and Organisations", Springer.


    Morris, T. H. (2019) Experiential learning – a systematic review and revision of Kolb's model, Interactive Learning Environments.


    Nolet, V. (2015) Educating for sustainability: Principles and practices for teachers. Routledge.

    OECD. (2018). The future of education and skills: education 2030: the future we want, (accessed on January 6, 2021).


    Shephard, K. (2008), Higher education for sustainability: seeking affective learning outcomes, International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 87-98.


    Sipos, Y., Battisti, B., & Grimm, K. (2008). Achieving transformative sustainability learning: engaging head, hands and heart, International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 68-86.


    Stephens, J.C., Hernandez, M.E., Román, M., Graham, A.C., & Scholz, R.W. (2008), "Higher education as a change agent for sustainability in different cultures and contexts", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 9 No. 3, pp. 317-338.


    Storey, M., Killian, S., & O'Regan, P. (2017) Responsible management education: Mapping the field in the context of the SDGs. The International Journal of Management Education, 15(2), 93-103.


    Tilbury, D. (2011). Education for Sustainable Development: An Expert Review of Processes and Learning; UNESCO: Paris, France; Available online: (accessed on January 6, 2021).


    United Nations, (1972). Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment. Available online: (accessed on January 6, 2021).


    Vaughter, P., Wright, T., McKenzie, M., & Lidstone, L. (2013). Greening the Ivory Tower: A Review of Educational Research on Sustainability in Post-Secondary Education. Sustainability, 5(5), 2252–2271.


    Wals, A. E. J. (2014). Sustainability in higher education in the context of the UN DESD: a review of learning and institutionalization processes. Journal of Cleaner Production, 62, 8–15.


    Watson, M. K., Lozano, R., Noyes, C., & Rodgers, M. (2013). Assessing curricula contribution to sustainability more holistically: Experiences from the integration of curricula assessment and students' perceptions at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Journal of Cleaner Production, 61, 106–116.


    Wurdinger, Scott & Allison, Pete. (2017). Faculty Perceptions and Use of Experiential Learning In Higher Education. Journal of E-Learning and Knowledge Society. 13. 27-38. 10.20368/1971-8829/1309.


    Yarime, M., & Tanaka, Y. (2012). The Issues and Methodologies in Sustainability Assessment Tools for Higher Education Institutions: A Review of Recent Trends and Future Challenges. Journal of Education for Sustainable Development, 6(1), 63–77.


    Timeline for authors

    Long Abstract: 10th December 2021 to:

    Feedback to authors: Continuous basis (within 7 days of abstract Submission)

    Full Chapter Submission of 6000 Words by 15th June 2022, APA Style to:

    Edited Book Publication: March 2023 (tentative)


    *According to Publisher the book chapter will be SCOPUS Indexed, but it takes two years before edited volumes are indexed by SCOPUS*

    Anirudh Agrawal
    Copenhagen Business School
    Frankfurt Am Main
    0045 3815 3401