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Sustainability and Research

Applying the principles of both interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research is crucial in achieving sustainable development. University Research Priority Programs, cross-faculty Centers of Competence, associated institutes and researchers at numerous departments contribute to sustainability research at UZH.

The objective of the University Research Priority Programs (URPPs) is to support and unite selected areas of scholarship. The URPPs build on the University’s research competencies and are instrumental in the advancement of young academics.

Evolution in Action

Global Change and Biodiversity

Solar Light to Chemical Energy Conversion

Equality of Opportunity

UZH Centers of Competence are academic networks in which researchers from different departments coordinate their activities to pursue common strategic goals.

Center of Competence for Sustainable Finance 

Center for Ethics

Center for Human Rights Studies

Citizen Science Center Zurich

Jacobs Center for Productive Youth Development

Zurich-Basel Plant Science Center

The sustainability team analysed in 2019 which UZH professors contribute to one of the SDGs with their research. Using ZORA, the Zurich Open Repository and Archive, publications with a publication year of 2014 to 2019 with content related to at least one SDG were identified. The result shows that more than 160 UZH professors are conducting research on SDG-relevant topics. A maximum of 5 publications per author were counted, resulting in a total of 742 publications. The highest numbers of contributors were identified for SDGs 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions), 10 (reduce inequalities), and 3 (health and well-being).

Contribution to the SDGs

Number of professors contributing to SDGs by faculty, 2019

Note: Publications from the Faculty of Medicine could not be not included for methodological reasons.


More information is provided in the Sustainability Report (German):
Sustainability Report 21/22 (German)

UZH makes itself available to its researchers, staff and students as a real-world laboratory to enable the exploration and implementation of innovative measures for sustainable operation. More information about the real-world laboratories at UZH is provided on the linked page:
UZH as a real-world laboratory

Weiterführende Informationen

Present Your Network

If you think your research network should be mentionied here, please send us an e-mail. We regularly update lists.

In this dossier you will find articles about research and teaching related to sustainability, and what UZH is doing for a sustainable campus.