Our 2007-2013 Strategic Plan, Smart Green Solutions, outlined and achieved an ambitious growth agenda that included the addition of 16 new degree/diploma/collaborative programs. That same period witnessed a near doubling of undergraduate and graduate student enrolment and a substantial increase in faculty-staff complement.


Our 2013-2018 Strategic Plan, Shaping Our Sustainable Future, identified four strategic priority areas: our people, impactful research, outstanding academic programming and influential communication and outreach. Our goals and key achievements are summarized below:

Foster a collaborative community of engaged students, staff, faculty and alumni who are proud to be part of our faculty and feel empowered and supported to contribute to our collective vision.

›  There has been a renewed spirit of co-operation over the past five years, illustrated by shared planning and offering of courses, as well as increased attendance at meetings and events such as the Dean’s Lecture Series, General Assembly and student recruitment events.

›  Alumni engagement has reached new heights with regular communications through our Faculty of Environment newsletter, ENVision, and well-attended events in multiple cities and countries – including our 50th birthday reunion weekend attended by over 200 alumni and guests.

›  Entrepreneurship@Environment was launched in partnerships with Waterloo’s Velocity and St. Paul’s University College GreenHouse, and is supported by programming developed by an Associate Dean of Strategic Initiatives and an Entrepreneur in Residence. The initiative has facilitated numerous student awards.

›  Student-initiated activities, such as ENVigorate and Ecology Lab workshops, celebrate and engage our diverse community.

Conduct impactful research that transcends disciplinary boundaries in addressing complex environmental and social issues.

›  The faculty has emerged as a national hub for climate resilience and flood mitigation where media, governments and businesses come for expert input.

›  Both the Intact Centre of Climate Adaptation and the Partners for Action initiatives were launched in 2015.

›  What began as our Interdisciplinary Centre on Climate Change became a university research centre in 2018.

›  The University of Waterloo co-led a successful proposal to establish a federally funded institute, The Canadian Institute for Climate Choices in 2019.

›  The faculty increased its Canada Research Chairs from three to seven, and University Research Chairs from one to three.

›  Annual research funding increased from 7 million to 9.9 million dollars over this five-year period.

›  Members of the faculty led major research projects through NSERC, SSHRC and Global Water Futures, and several faculty members won national and international awards and recognitions.

Continue to build our reputation as a national and global leader by offering a range of unique and highly regarded educational programs related to environment and sustainability.

›  The faculty introduced two new graduate programs in 2018, a PhD in Sustainability Management and a graduate diploma in Climate Risk Management.

›  Graduate student enrolment increased by 25 per cent over the five-year period, supported in part by the Dean’s Doctoral Initiative that has at its core the principle of independent and open inquiry while providing guaranteed financial support to doctoral students.

›  While undergraduate majors increased only three per cent over this time period, international enrolment more than doubled and total undergraduate course enrolment grew 20 per cent.

›  Selected courses now integrate Indigenous expertise.

Share the story of the faculty to enhance our reputation with varied audiences, extend the impact of our research, and inspire environmental action.

›  We were selected as host of the Canadian chapter of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network with an official launch in 2018.

›  On campus, the faculty was the impetus for establishing the University’s Sustainability Office, which has since led the development and adoption of a Sustainability Policy and Strategy.

›  The faculty continues to live its sustainability values, leasing space in Evolv1, Canada’s first multi-tenant, zero-carbon, net positive building, and collaborating with other tenants there to incubate green innovations.

›  The faculty has increasingly engaged with media in order to advance knowledge mobilization, increasing its media presence substantially.

Download Key achievements under the previous plan and Key achievements under the previous plan continued  as an accessible PDF

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