As a manager or department head

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What you can do

What's the next thing you can do to help Waterloo's sustainability efforts?

Small actions like reducing waste, recycling, turning off the lights, and driving less do add up to important changes and help shift campus culture. For resources about how to live and work sustainably in your day-to-day, check out the Sustainability Guide. But there are also many impactful ways you can use your role on campus for wider impact.

As a manager or department head, here are some important actions you can take to support campus sustainability:

Program and service management

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  • Identify connections between sustainability objectives and your department’s unique campus mandate (see Departmental Support section)

Goals and priorities

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  • Establish sustainability as a departmental priority
  • Continuously reinforce the importance of climate action and sustainability
  • Establish goals, targets, or KPIs, where appropriate


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  • Review operational practices, procedures, and decision-making to identify opportunities for integrating sustainability lenses
  • Allocate resources to support efforts, or request resources where necessary
  • Create and communicate department-specific commitments or standards


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  • Identify opportunities for measurement of departmental action and impact
  • Develop continuous improvement processes linked to sustainability

Employee engagement

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  • Create space for employees to bring forward questions, comments, concerns, and ideas related to sustainability
  • Empower leadership across your team, for example through the Green Office or Green Lab programs
  • Create opportunities for skill development and training, such as hosting the Sustainability Certificate and integrating through professional networks
  • Celebrate progress at the departmental level, and recognize contributions


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  • Identify opportunities for joint initiatives with other institutional teams/units
  • Consult with relevant stakeholders that can be impacted by changes

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