Learning Innovation For Tomorrow

Learning Innovation for Tomorrow (LIFT) is our capacity building programme in Education for Sustainability (EfS) that supports the wider sustainability strategy.

LIFT is supported by our Academic Development Unit and delivers funding and support for new curriculum change initiatives led by our academic teams, sometimes collaborating with students and on learning partnership activities externally, as one of the UN Regional Centres of Expertise.

LIFT funding in action

LIFT supports course teams to create new learning and assessments for students that build change capability for sustainability – see some of these LIFT funded innovations on our course experiences.

In the 5 years from 2016-2021 LIFT has funded 26 projects and involved all our academic schools, led by 25 subject areas, with 5 cross-subject collaborations and 12 external partnership initiatives.

By 2020 35% of our academic senior leaders had delivered or supervised LIFT projects to develop changes in their course cluster areas and 33% of course leaders had EfS as part of their courses.

LIFT also funds larger collaboration activities bringing together multiple courses and working with external partners to expand the impact of this new learning. 

ChangeMakers Summit 2022

This immersive learning event with Cheltenham Education Partnership brought 120 local secondary school students and teachers into a series of applied learning workshops on change issues students most wanted to influence.

Academics from six course areas joined with industry guests to provide workshops on live workplace and community issues, inspired by university level course experiences.

  • Money and Greenwash – critiquing company sustainability reports and understanding green finance
  • Smart Carbon – analysing key business impacts and energy efficiency actions for lowering carbon emissions in schools
  • System Change – developing low carbon travel solutions across local organisations on sustainable transport
  • Communicating and Influence – improving promotion and engagement for more sustainable catering outlets
  • Biodiversity – experiencing ecological impact assessment practices and analysis methods to boost conservation
  • Redesigning the Future – learning techniques for responsible design and circular economy in fashion design

Radical Sustainability 2019

This business masterclass event partnered with Interface, corporate sustainability leaders on the global stage, delivering insights and opportunities for business leaders and students.

Learning from this inspirational headline case study and experiencing speed coaching on their current sustainability business challenges, the business leaders were joined by students who also experienced a live business sustainability challenge using cross-discipline thinking.

Student finalists from eight courses exhibited their work and projects against a competition brief for professional experience prizes, with the winner joining Interface at Clerkenwell Design Week.

  • Fashion Design – upcycling military clothing to reduce waste and synthetic fibres going to landfill
  • Geography – proposing natural flood management solutions with local agencies
  • Interior Design– re-thinking design for sustainability in the reuse of recreational vehicles
  • Landscape Architecture– using forgotten and unused urban spaces to build communities
  • Business Management – methods of reducing water consumption and costs for businesses

LIFT has kickstarted and supported initiatives for decolonising learning, recognising the shared aims of EfS with decolonial practice, to add critical global and equity perspectives into course experiences.

The LIFT LAB sessions from our public events and Festival of Learning show the range of this work.

Watch presentations: 2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019

View programmes: 2019 | 2018