University Educators For Sustainable Development

ESD Professional Development Resources

ESD Educator Competences

The UE4SD project focuses on competences for ESD professional development, to address the pedagogical orientation of ESD, as well as the need to be an effective agent of change in the education system.

UE4SD aims not just to establish the principles of ESD, based on the scholarly literature and pedagogical theories, but to locate, share, test and develop insights from experience. In this way it seeks to help educators to put ESD into practice, engaging in useful professional development to increase their ESD capabilities.

Shape of the Project

UNECE ESD Competence Framework

UE4SD is guided by the UNECE Education for Sustainable Development Competence Framework (2011), developed over 3 years by a pan-European expert group across the UNECE region.

The competence framework has 3 key ESD principles:

A holistic approach - seeking integrative thinking and practice;

Envisioning change - to explore alternative futures, learn from the past and inspire engagement in the present;

Achieving transformation - to change the way people learn and the systems that support learning.

Workshop Tools were also developed to help teams and organisations to apply the framework to their own settings and purposes.

The UE4SD project uses these tools and approaches for the development of ‘competences’ or ‘capabilities’ in ESD, so that future professional development activities will not just improve the ability of educators to deliver ESD, but will also help them to bring wider changes into education thinking and practices. This aim is guided by the findings of global research and development work related to educator competences in ESD:

Research on ESD Competences for Educators

Several research projects have called for this focus on the development of professional capabilities or competences for educators, in order to advance ESD.