Skip to main content
About us

Sustainability Week 2021 Highlights

Sustainability Week 2021 took place 18-21 October in the run up to the COP26 Climate Negotiations in Glasgow


Sustainability Week 2021, took place from 18-22 October. The schedule include a broad range events run by teams across the University an beyond. Activities included:

All Week:

Art Installation: OCA RED: Living Beyond the End of the World  

  • Art installation and video projection by Takumã Kuikuro, Gringo Cardia, and Paul Heritage which will become part of the official “green zone” at COP26 

Art Installation: Natural Future Museums 

  • What would it mean to confer museum status on existing Indigenous lands that play a key role in climate action?  Art installation and video projection exploring the indigenous, communal world of the Brazilian Amazon by Takumã Kuikuro and Thiago Jesus from the team at People's Palace Projects which will become part of the official “green zone” at COP26 

One Planet Plate- How Green is Your Meal? 

  • At The Curve restaurant, customers were able to sample the sustainable ‘One Planet Plate’ options available each week to lower your carbon footprint and learn about eating sustainably. This event formed part of Queen Mary's participation in the SU-EATABLE LIFE project.  

International Business and Sustainability Essay Contest 

  • Open to students from all courses within the School of Business and Management, this contest was designed to channel the initiative and creativity of the University’s students in exploring the relationship between international business and the promotion of a sustainable planet. The essay theme was: 'What is the relationship between business operations and environmental sustainability?'. Prizes available to the best entries included a £100 book voucher and certificates.  

Monday 18 October: 

Sustainability Week 2021 Opening Ceremony (4pm-4.45pm) 

  • To launch Sustainability Week, Dr Philip Tamuno, Head of Sustainability and esteemed guests talked through our events for the week and how we can all make a difference in combatting climate change.  
  • Speakers included; 
    • Dr Philippa Lloyd- Vice Principal Policy and Strategic Partnerships 
    • Climate Crime and Justice- Dr Thomas MacManus, Acting Director of the International State Crime Initiative 
    • Climate Change and Water Resources- Professor Kate Heppell, Professor of Physical Geography 
    • People's Palace Projects Events- Professor Paul Heritage 

Marking the Impact of the Pandemic: Tree Planting 

  • As part of a series of activities across Tower Hamlets to mark the local impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, we planted fruit trees at the Charterhouse Square, Whitechapel and Mile End campuses alongside a time for reflection, remembering and thanking all those affected during the past 18 months. 

Tuesday 19 October:

Research Showcase: Sustainable Materials for Energy Storage Devices  

  • Dr Ana Sobrido, Reader in Sustainable Energy Materials organised tours of research labs to learn how Queen Mary research is turning paper waste into batteries. Attendees were able to witness the steps involved in turning lignin, a form of biomass waste into electrodes for edox flow batteries, used in renwable energy storage 
  • Lab 143, First Floor, School of Engineering and Materials Science 
  • Tours last 30 minutes, booking slots available 10am-12pm & 2pm-4pm 

Physics and Astronomy Society: Climate change, International development, and Renewable Energy Talk 

  • Students from the PsiStar Society and Professor Alan Drew from the School of Physical and Chemical Sciences held a talk on Indonesia's approach to a 'green energy revolution' and related social, political and financial considerations. Y

Wednesday 20 October:

Campus Biodiversity Volunteering 

  • Staff and students joined the grounds team to plamt winter salad vegetables into raised beds around Mile End campus. 

Industry Spotlight Series: Sustainability  

  • The School of Business and Management welcomed students from the school to a virtual careers session with professionals in the sustainability sector. The speakers provided an insight into their roles, how they got there and answer any questions that you may have.

Equity and Sustainable Healthcare: A Panel Discussion 

  • The Community Based Medical Education (CBME) team from Barts NHS Trust hosted a virtual panel discussion on 'Equity and Sustainable Healthcare', discussing a collaborative vision for the sustainable provision of fairer environments, community initiatives and supportive endeavours to deliver sustainable healthcare. 

Film screening of Yamiyhex: As Mulheres Espírito + Q&A  

  • Preview screening of Yãmiyhex (women-spirit) plus a Q&A session with Paul Heritage (Queen Mary University of London); Lucia Sá (University of Manchester) and Sueli Maxakali (Yãmiyhex Indigenous film-maker) ahead of the 1st Brazil Indigenous Film Festival UK 
  • 6-8pm at the Hitchcock Cinema, Arts One, Mile End Campus  

Thursday 21 October 

Campus Foraging Walk 

  • Our campuses are home to a range of edible plants, berries and herbs. Staff and students joined Queen Mary's Grounds and Gardens Supervisor Dimi to for a foraging tour of campus.  

Embedding Sustainability in the Curriculum Workshop 

  • This workshop offered an introduction to ways in which sustainability can be integrated into the curriculum. Students and staff had the opportunity to explore examples of ways of including sustainability within curricula and to generate, share and discuss ideas for integrating sustainability within their own courses.   

Canal Clean-Up 

  • Students and stuff took part in a clean-up of the Regent's Canal alongside campus with support from PADi.  

The Role of Women in Managing Climate Change 

  • The Energy & Climate Change Institute, Queen Mary, University of London and Clifford Chance hosted their Annual Lecture on Climate Change. The keynote speaker was, Emma Howard Boyd, Chair, Environment Agency, with a follow-up discussion with Claire Perry O’Neill, Managing Director for Climate and Energy at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. Dicussion included the key themes and developments shaping the area, with a special focus on the role of women as instigators of change, and the disproportionate impact of climate change on women. The session was introduced by Clare Burgess, Partner and ESG Board Member at Clifford Chance, and finished with the opportunity to pose questions to the panel. 
  • 5:30–7:30pm – Clifford Chance, Canary Wharf and streaming online 

Friday 22 October 

Sustainability Week 2021 Closing Ceremony (3pm-3.45pm) 

  • To close Sustainability Week this event, held at the Octagon, included; 
    • Opening Comments- Dr Philippa Lloyd 
    • Highlights of Sustainability Week & Pledges from the Queen Mary Community- Dr Philip Tamuno 
    • International Business and Sustainabiliy Essay Content Winners Announcement- Dr Fernando Barrio, Adi Sawalha, Radhika Thiagarajan and Saynab Sharif 
    • Closing Remarks- Dr Philip Tamuno 

1st Brazil Indigenous Film Festival UK  

  • In the lead-up to the UN Climate Summit, COP26, People’s Palace Projects, Queen Mary University of London and The University of Manchester, in partnership with the ICA and APIB, presented 12 productions by Indigenous filmmakers from Brazil, home to the world’s largest remaining rainforest. The three-day festival featured shorts films, documentaries and animations that raise Indigenous voices. The programme celebrated their rituals and heritage and asserts their rights to their lands and to cultural expression, which have been brazenly dismantled and vilified under Brazil’s current government. Held at Institute of Contemporary Arts & trailer.

If you'd like to get involved with planning Sustainability Week 2022, please contact the sustainability team on




Back to top