The University has been named as one of the Top 100 educational institutions worldwide in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023, demonstrating our commitment to a sustainable future.
The ranking recognises our extensive programme of work across our educational, research, engagement and operational activities contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The SDGs were first adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a universal call to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity.
This year we have been placed joint 77th in the world, from a field of 1,591 educational institutions. This is our highest ranking to date in this league table.
The ranking reflects the work of our staff and students, across the whole University, including our academic departments, research institutes, colleges and Energy and Sustainability team.
We performed particularly well in SDG15: Life on Land, SDG11: Sustainable Cites & Communities, SDG17: Partnership for Goals and you can find out more about our submissions to these SDGs below.
We were pleased to rank 64th out of 1,625 educational institutions for SDG17: Partnership for Goals - a fantastic recognition of how we work with partners locally and globally to achieve more together. For example:
For SDG11: Sustainable Cities & Communities we ranked 34th out of 860 educational institutions. We strive to reduce our environmental impact, and to improve the local environment, both for the people who live and work in the University and for the wider community. An example of which is our Durham Centre for Cultural Heritage Protection (DCCHP).
The DCCHP builds on the expertise available in our Department of Archaeology, ranked 10th in the world in the QS World Rankings by Subject 2023, in global cultural heritage protection issues.
The Centre’s activities make full use of the range of outstanding skills and expertise available in Durham, to work with a variety of partners, in the UK and internationally. Heritage is essential to our sense of identity and place in the world, but is more than ever under threat from conflict, tourism, natural disasters, and climate change. This places archaeology at the heart of contemporary political and social debates. Inspired by Durham’s own UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a broad and deep trajectory of heritage protection and training globally, the Centre works to sustain and protect cultural heritage for future generations.
Further afield, the EAMENA Project (Endangered Archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa) was established in 2015 and is a partnership between the Universities of Durham, Leicester and Oxford. The team use satellite imagery and ground surveys to record and monitor cultural heritage sites in the MENA region in response to a growing number of threats such as agricultural expansion, urban development, conflict, and natural disasters.
This year, we performed particularly well in SDG15: Life on Land, placing 15th out of 586 educational institutions. The research, outreach and educational activities set out in our Biodiversity strategy were recognised, particularly our popular visitor attractions and the ongoing events in our Botanic Garden that continue to welcome visitors and school groups.