Multidisciplinary GRADUATE SCHOOL in Sustainable Development

In January 2021, Uppsala University established a new multidisciplinary graduate school in sustainable development. The main mission of the graduate school is to conduct research based on key social challenges. The research will include subjects such as changed energy systems, sustainable consumption, destinations development.

Uppsala University Campus Gotland, where the graduate school is based, is an important hub in the university’s work towards a sustainable society. Here, the graduate school will be rooted in ongoing interdisciplinary collaborations in research and education, conducted in an international environment.

Multidisciplinary and sustainable

Eight departments from the university are collaborating on five unique research projects. Twelve doctoral students are working together with their supervisors, international partners, guest researchers and local actors, with a focus on knowledge development to cope with the changes needed to live well during climate change.

The research environment is characterised by local relevance and international excellence, multidisciplinarity and cutting edge, sustainability now and in the future.

The graduate school in numbers
  • 8 departments in collaboration
  • 5 unique research projects
  • 12 doctoral studies
  • 24 supervisors

Sustainable destination development

Here we focus on the intersection between UN’s Global Goal 17 on Partnership for Sustainable Development, and the need for collaboration and cooperation in destination development. We investigate the challenges within the tourism industry and the possibilities of tackling sustainability challenges by implementing sustainability labelling and eco-tourism. We also explore how the interplay between sustainability, cultural heritage, islandness and tourism is designed, negotiated and practiced, and its implication for sustainable development and destination development.

Department of Earth Sciences • Department of Civil and Industrial Engineering • Department of Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology

Gotland’s sustainable energy system transition: resources, demand and planning

How can a 100% renewable energy system for Gotland be achieved with respect to resource availability, energy demand and social sustainability in different future scenarios? The project is divided into three separate, but closely interconnected, PhD projects that focus on resources, demand or planning issues.

Department of Earth Sciences • Department of Earth Sciences • Department of Civil and Industrial Engineering

Fisheries and coastal development in a small island context: the past, present and future

The overall purpose of this transdisciplinary project is to combine coastal and fisheries development in a small island context in the past with the present to help develop sustainable ways forward.

Department of Archaeology and Ancient History • Department of Earth Sciences

Getting the balance right? Applying legislation when seeking a balance between energy transition and conservation of cultural value

The aim of this project is to explore how existing legislation manages to balance the goals of sustainable energy consumption on the one hand and conservation of cultural heritage values on the other hand. Specifically, this concerns insulation, window replacement and isolar panels on historic buildings.

Department of Law • Department of Art History

Digital innovation for sustainable consumption

The aim of this project is to investigate the potential of digital systems to support customers to make sustainable consumption decisions. This includes, for example, deepening our understanding of how consumers consider different kinds of information, and the development of store environments, both physical and online.

Department of Business Studies • Department of Informatics and Media

The graduate school is characterised by

Local relevance and international excellence

The location will be central to the graduate school. The research projects within the graduate school are all based on local key challenges. The graduate school will, at the same time, be rooted in the existing research environment and network to secure international excellence.

Multidisciplinarity and cutting edge

The transformation needed to live in a world with sustainability challenges requires that we within academia move beyond traditional boundaries. We need to be curious, bold and work together on the most urgent issues. Through the questions we raise, the activities we perform and the research we conduct, we aim within the graduate school to work with transdisciplinary approaches.

Sustainability now and in the future

At the same time as the graduate school aims for long-term transformation, we are attentive towards’ how we act here and now. This means that we critically analyse how our academic environment contributes to sustainability. We do not take traditional ways of acting for given. Our ambition is to continuously learn how we can act more sustainably within the graduate school, right now as well as in the future.


Jenny Helin

Senior lecturer/Associate Professor at Department of Business Studies

+46-498 108398
Mobile phone:
+46 70 1914621
Last modified: 2021-06-15