Stepping Up or Falling Behind? Students, Universities and Climate Crisis

Stepping Up or Falling Behind? Students, Universities and Climate Crisis


8 Feb 2023    
9:00am - 10:30am

Event Type


8 February 2023, 9:00-10:30

Chair: Amanda Lange Salvia (University of Passo Fundo)

Presenter: Caine Rolleston (University College London)

Discussant: Ailsa Holloway (Auckland University of Technology). 

In this online presentation, we discuss the findings from a large-scale survey conducted among undergraduate students in twelve universities in Brazil, Fiji, Mozambique and Kenya carried out as part of the Transforming Universities for a Changing Climate (Climate-U) project. 


The survey centres on students’ attitudes and experiences in relation to climate change and perceptions of climate action in their universities. Overall, in all countries, students reported that they were most likely to learn about climate change from internet and social media sources. There is strong consensus that students should be learning more about climate change at their universities and that they are not satisfied with current learning. 

‘Environmental concern’ was found to be higher among students studying science, agriculture, and health/welfare related subjects, by women, by more economically advantaged students, and among students in Brazil. While students in Brazil were most likely to believe human actions are the major cause of climate change and provided the most pessimistic estimations of the impact of climate change, they were also the least likely to be confident that government action could make an impact. Conversely, students in Kenya had the greatest confidence in government action, were the most willing to participate in climate-change activities and were most optimistic about the impacts of climate change.

Following the presentation and invited response, there will be an open discussion and debate with the webinar participants.