The University of Queensland’s Sustainable Management Alliance in Research and Teaching, SMART, program has received an award for Outstanding Excellence in Collaboration.
The award was presented at the recent Business Higher Education Round Table Awards – one of the most prestigious honours of the tertiary sector.
The team behind the program, which sits within UQ’s School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management (GPEM), was recognised for their efforts connecting industry, government and community groups with UQ experts and students to address business sustainability issues.
The program’s approach, which focuses on a high level of collaboration with industry partners, has resulted in course content containing the latest innovations, guest lectures, student internships and ground-breaking research projects.
GPEM Senior Lecturer and Director of the SMART group Dr Paul Dargusch said the program was a great opportunity for students to engage with industry.
“SMART programs provide a win-win outcome where students benefit from real world experience and partners have access to expert advice and high quality research capability,” Dr Dargusch said.
The award was presented to the SMART group, its students and leading industry partners including Billabong International, LCR Group, Groundworks, Low Carbon Australia, carbonjobs, Virgin Australia and the Queensland Murray Darling Committee.
General Manager of Projects, Partnerships and Training Mr Adrian Ward said that since SMART’s inception, students have identified over 100 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, over 10 million tonnes of potential verifiable carbon offset emissions and over 5 million tonnes of potential Green House Gas emission reductions for SMART’s industry partners.
“We are delighted that our efforts to bring practical business sustainability experience into both the classroom and boardroom, in areas such as carbon inventory, abatement and management, have been recognised,” Mr Ward said.
“SMART is leading research into the development of new carbon offset methodologies,” he said.
“As a direct result of our projects, students have developed new carbon offset methodologies, in the areas of piggery emissions, marine environments (known as Blue Carbon) and soil carbon/reforestation.”
These methodologies have been submitted to the Domestic Offset Integrity Committee at the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency and are currently under review for use under the Australian Carbon Farming Initiative, a domestic carbon offset scheme that started in July this year.
“Our hope is that these methodologies will encourage more sustainable practices in the agricultural sector by opening up access to carbon credits that financially reward farmers and landholders for doing so,” Mr Ward said.
To register your interest in becoming a SMART partner please contact Dr Paul Dargusch on 07 3365 1594 or email@example.com, or Mr Adrian Ward on 0423 675 525 or firstname.lastname@example.org