News Archive

Main content

Sustainability Report

New ETH Zurich Sustainability Report 2015/2016 published

27 April 2017 - ETH Zurich publishes its new Sustainability Report, which outlines how the university integrates the principle of sustainability into its core activities. It is structured into four chapters: Research, Education, Campus, and Dialog with society. The report is in accordance with the international reporting frameworks of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the ISCN/GULF Sustainable Campus Charter. For the first time, the Sustainability Report is jointly published with the Annual Report of ETH Zurich. More information

Logo Bike Repair Shop

Bike repair shop now open at ETH Zurich

The DYI bike repair shop at ETH Zurich’s main building offers ETH-affiliates opportunities to get a grip on their own bikes. All necessary tools to do so can be found at Töffligarage (Töga) at the main building, entrance via Tannenstrasse at the tramstation ETH/Universitäts-spital. Aside from the access to tools, the repair shop is intended to foster exchange and learning all around bikes.

More information about the bike repair shop

More information about bike parking, e-bikelink and air pumps

Summer School Erlenbach Catchment 2017

ETH-EPFL Summer School 2017 «Catchment Transport Processes»

From July 2-7 2017, ETH Zurich and EPFL will jointly hold a summer school on transport processes in hydrology. Participants will learn about physical and chemical processes occurring in the generation and transport of nutrients, data analysis, and modeling techniques. The summer school includes a workshop with case studies and a one day field trip to an experimental catchment in Switzerland. Application deadline is April 30.

More information

Mensaexkursion NN

Guideline Sustainable Catering

ETH Zurich has developed a planning tool (in German) for sustainable catering events in collaboration with University of Zurich (UZH). This guideline aims to support planners at ETH and UZH in organizing receptions and similar events in a sustainable fashion. It is based on criteria for sustainable catering and suggestions on how to avoid food waste.

Flyer MAS Mobilität der Zukunft

The study program MAS ETH in «Future Transport Systems»

The new study program MAS ETH in «Future Transport Systems» started successfully in January 2017. The program is designed specifically for professionals in the transportation sector and related fields. It focuses on developing and implementing strategies and solutions for sustainable mobility systems. Starting with the Module Basics in January, the class explored case studies related to autonomous driving, a prevalent and central topic for future transport questions. Moreover, participants got first-hand insights from Prof. Emilio Frazzoli, an ETH expert in this field. The next «CAS Technology Potential» will begin on September 4. Registration is now open until April 30.

For more information, contact or visit the program website.


Critical Thinking Seminar (in German)

Ist Forschung eine nationale Aufgabe? Dieser übergeordneten Frage geht das von der ETH Critical Thinking Initiative organisierte Seminar zum „Forschungsstandort Schweiz“ nach. Verschiedene Experten aus der Forschungsförderung, -strategie, Wirtschaftspolitik und Realwirtschaft diskutieren drängende Fragen, unter anderem zur Notwendigkeit staatlicher Forschungsförderung, der Lenkung von Forschung über thematische Schwerpunkte sowie der Arbeitsteilung zwischen privatwirtschaftlicher und staatlich finanzierter Forschung. Eine Anmeldung zur Veranstaltung ist erwünscht bis 21. April 2017.

More information (PDF, 478 KB)

SUD 2017 flyer

Sustainable University Day 2017

The Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences organize the fourth Sustainable University Day 2017. This year’s topic is “Agenda 2030: Duty of the universities?!”. For students this event offers opportunities to exchange project ideas and to prepare grant applications for the new support program “U Change”. Deadline for registration is March 30 2017.

More information

logo sustainability week

Student-organized Sustainability Week 2017

Already in its fifth year, the Sustainability Week took place from March 6 until March 11, 2017. This event series is organized by students of the five Zurich higher education institutions ETHZ, UZH, ZHdK, ZHAW und PHZH. In workshops, excursions, and exhibitions, different facets of sustainability were presented at the five institutional venues. All events are free of charge and public.

More information

R4D colloquium

Colloquium "Research for Development (R4D)”

ETH Global and NADEL - Center for Development and Cooperation hold the annual colloquium «Research for Development (R4D) - Theoretical Approaches and Field Studies» for doctoral students as part of the lectures at the Department of Humanities, Social and Political Sciences (D-GESS). Prof. Isabel Günther, Nadel (D-GESS) and Dr. Barbara Becker (ETH Global) form the teaching team, doctoral students across several departments participate.

Registration now open

E4D Call 2017

E4D Call 2017 now open

The Engineering for Development (E4D) doctoral scholarship programme promotes development-relevant products or methods. It awards two doctoral fellowships per year and promotes projects which are directly relevant for improving the livelihoods of poor people in developing countries. The grant sum is 175'000 CHF to cover the salary costs of the doctoral student for three years.

More information

No plans for next summer yet?

Then pack your laptop and hiking boots and join the ETH Sustainability Summer School on “Mountain Forests & Risk Management“.

Date: July 1 – 9, 2017

Place: Pfäfers, SG

Eligibility: all disciplines and all academic levels 

Application deadline: March 17

Zukunfts-Blog 2016 silver medal

ETH Zukunftsblog wins scientific blog award 2016

17.01.2017 The silver medal of the scientific blog award 2016 goes to ETH Zukunftsblog. With this award, “Science communicates” honors understandable and yet accurate blog posts about ETH research covering climate change, natural ressources, energy, world food system, and cities of the future. As part of Corporate Communications, ETH Zukunftsblog steadily ensures that ETH-researchers journalistically communicate their findings. Congratulations on this successful and distinguished illustration of scientific work.

Read more about the award.

Winter School: 'Cities for all' in Cartagena/Santa Marta, Colombia

30.11.2016 Held from 4 - 18 February 2017, this winter school will combine theoretical and empirical field research, engaging with local practitioners and stakeholders, to explore the requirements to make cities more inclusive for all. This winter school will challenge you to work in an intensive, cross-cultural setting identifying new development potentials in complex, real-life contexts for the two cities of Cartagena and Santa Marta, Colombia.

The Chair of Architecture and Urban Design (U-TT) is looking for motivated PhD and Master students from ISTP, D-ARCH and D-BAUG with a strong interest in urban development and socio-spatial exclusion. Students from other institutions can also apply.

More information:
Contact: Marie Grob,

VSETH KeepCup - the sustainable coffee cup

18.10.2016  Available now in all ETH Stores: the reusable VSETH KeepCup. After only 15 coffees KeepCup manages to compensate the CO2 emission of a common disposable cup. With KeepCup, all ETH cafeterias and bistros charge you 0.30 CHF less for a coffee or a tea until the 30 October 2016.

More information about KeepCup

Technology contributes to more equal opportunities

The Cybathlon is de­signed to ensure that the needs of people with disabilities have a more direct influence on the development of novel technical solutions that will substantially improve quality of life. At the world-premiere Cybathlon athletes with disabilities compete with each other using innovative assistive devices. The event facilitates discussion between technology developers and people with disabilities and fosters conversation between academia and industry.

The public competitions that will be broadcasted on TV as well as the public podium discussion prior to the Cybathlon contribute to a better understanding of the daily issues that those with disabilities face.

More information about the competition on October 8th, 2016.

ZHAW Wädenswil excursion

22 September 2016 - This year's excursion brought the Sustainability Network to the gardens of ZHAW Wädenswil on campus Grüental. ETH Zurich's Sustainability Network subsumes ETH-staff and associated external members who share an interest in sustainability related topics. The aim of the excursion was to broaden the participants' perspectives on applied research and education in sustainability. More information

Student-organized Sustainability Week wins ISCN-Award

14 June 2016 - The student-organized Sustainability Week wins the Excellence in Student Leadership award of the International Sustainable Campus Network (ISCN) at its annual conference in Siena. The award distinguishes student contributions increasing sustainability on campus, also by means of motivating others to bring in their ideas and initiatives to further sustainable development. The next (and fifth) Sustainability Week will take place between 5 and 11 March 2017.

For further information, read the article published in University of Zurich's news portal.

Bea Johnson
Photo: Michael Clemens 

Bea Johnson at ETH Zurich

6 June 2016 - Bea Johnson, author of internationally recognized book "Zero Waste Home" gave a talk at ETH Zurich within the framework of the event series "Pioneers in Sustainability". After her input, she was joined by three students on stage for a panel discussion. To revisit the event, watch the video here.

Final workshop sustainable catering

Final workshop of project “Sustainable Catering ETH Zurich”

14 April 2016 - At the final workshop of the project “Sustainable Catering at ETH Zurich” partners from system catering and administrative bodies of ETH Zurich, as well as further interested stakeholders from industry, NGOs, and other universities participated. Students of University of Zurich and ETH Zurich presented their recent findings from the interdisciplinary, three-year project managed by ETH Seed Sustainability in collaboration with the World Food System Center. From the results, the project team derived strategies aimed at reducing consumer-sided food waste, for example. Finally, the team presented an institutional program proposal. The proposal puts parts of the developed strategies to practice and outlines necessary steps towards sustainable catering at ETH Zurich. In a first step, caterers are motivated to become part of a carbon footprint reduction scheme. In a second step, a holistic sustainability program shall be developed based on intra-institutional dialog about relevant aspects in system catering at ETH Zurich.

More about the project Sustainable Catering at ETH Zurich and about ETH Zurich’s catering commission

Double "Gold" for sustainable buildings

14 January 2016 - The two new laboratory building projects of ETH Zürich, the BSS in Basel and the GLC in Zurich, have received the SGNI pre-certificates “Gold” by the Swiss Sustainable Building Council (SGNI). The SGNI system is a means to objectively assess the sustainability of buildings. It allows a comprehensive evaluation of the quality throughout the whole life cycle of the building. Beyond the consideration of ecological, economic and socio-cultural aspects, the standard recognizes technical, process, and location specific qualities of a building. The two buildings are scheduled to be opened in 2020.

More information about the buildings BSS and GLC and the Public Real Estate Management Division of ETH Zurich.

Registration open for CCES Conference 2016 (in English)

The Competence Center Environment and Sustainability (CCES) of the ETH Domain calls for registration to its conference on "Grand Challenges in Environmental and Sustainability Science and Technology". It will take place February 10-11, 2016 at ETH Zurich, Switzerland. The conference covers a broad range of scientific issues of great societal relevance. More information


Seed sustainability bachelor thesis wins Migros environmental award

With her seed sustainability thesis, ETH student Laura Germann won third place of the "Migros Umweltpreis".


This award is granted to the three best theses dealing with environment- and climate-related value chain issues. Laura Germann analyzed company- and productspecific enviromental balance data of a bakery. The analyses were performed to raise customer satisfaction and to increase environmental friendliness in offers and production as well as sales figures of the bakery. Congratulations to Laura Germann for her outstanding third place, which she achieved in competition with about 80 other participants.


Einladung zum Podiumsgespräch: Nachhaltigkeit und Karriere (in German)

Das Nachhaltigkeitsteam der Universität Zürich und ETH Sustainability laden am 12. November 2015 zu einem Podiumsgespräch im Rahmen der "Langen Nacht der Karriere" ein.

Führende Persönlichkeiten aus unterschiedlichen Branchen berichten darüber welche Kompetenzen es braucht, um Nachhaltigkeit und Karriere erfolgreich zu verbinden. Das Gespräch findet zwei Mal am Abend statt: An der UZH von 18:15 bis 19:00 Uhr (KOL-F-121) und an der ETH Zürich von 20:00 bis 20:45 Uhr (Raum E 1.1). Mehr Informationen zur Langen Nacht der Karriere 2015


Earth’s Treasures – How we use and value mineral resources


Special exhibition of focusTerra, 25. August 2015 – 28. February 2016

Mineral resources play a fundamental role in our daily lives. We take their availability for granted and their worldwide consumption is steadily on the rise. What are the long-term consequences of our increasing use of non-renewable resources? What challenges lie ahead for us?

This exhibition is about the formation, mining and use of mineral resources, and how we deal with products we no longer need. What can we do to ensure that resources are extracted in an economical, environmentally friendly and socially responsible way and that they are used and reused for as long and as efficiently as possible?

More information on the special exhibition

ETH Zurich publishes new Sustainability Report

25.06.2015 – ETH Zurich published its new Sustainability Report with reference to 2013 and 2014. Structured in five chapters, the comprehensive report outlines how the university integrates the principle of sustainability into its core activities. The report complies with the guidleines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the ISCN/GULF Sustainable Campus Charter. More

Successful first ETH Week 2015

06. - 11.09.2015
During ETH Week more than 100 Bachelor's and Master's students from all ETH departments, got the chance to work on an important societal challenge. Professors, CEOs, policy makers and NGO leaders helped the students to define a problem and develop their ideas. The first pilot project took place under the title “The Story of Food", a topic to which everyone could relate and that called for cooperation between people of different backgrounds.

More information and photos: Website and in the article of ETH News "The journey is the reward".  

We broke the 100-kg barrier!

27. April 2015: A huge thanks to all of you who have “donated” your organic waste. We’ve collected 109 kg of organic waste so far, and the energy it’s created is going directly to Zurich households. Check our website to find out just how much power our organic waste has made.  

What should we do with organic waste?

Organic waste is generated in the workplace every day, and if it just lands in with the rest of the rubbish we lose a valuable source of energy.

Let’s make energy for our city!

That’s why we are launching a pilot project on 1 April 2015: we want to encourage people in the HIL building on the Hönggerberg campus to separate organic waste from other rubbish, and then we’ll evaluate the results. The success of the organic waste campaign depends on ETH members’ active participation. More 

Pioneers in Sustainability

2 March 2015: What moves the movers and shakers? How do successful pioneers of sustainability live their own visions? We met sustainability pioneer Markus Freitag to discuss these and similar questions. Eight questions for Markus Freitag, a trailblazer of sustainable living.

Inspiring a journey of discovery

A very special kind of course catalogue has just been released. The first ever Critical Thinking annual programme presents ETH (teaching) events that focus on cross-disciplinary and interdisciplinary skills.

More information

Professor Dr. Steven Chu (Source: Stanford University, USA)

Richard R. Ernst Lecture: Energy, Climate Change and Sustainability

We are pleased to announce that Nobel Laureate in Phyics (1997) and former Secretary of Energy of the United States of America, Professor Dr. Steven Chu (Stanford University) will give a lecture on "Energy, Climate Change and Sustainability". His lecture will take place on Wednesday, March 11th, 2015 at 16:00 hrs in the Main Building of ETH Zurich and will be followed by a panel discussion. More information

Pioneers in Sustainability: Markus FREITAG at ETH Zurich

Event: Sustainability Pioneer Markus FREITAG at ETH Zurich

We are happy to announce that Sustainability Pioneer Markus FREITAG will come to ETH Zurich on Monday, March 2nd 2015 witin the framework of the student-organized Sustainability Week. ETH Sustainability supports the organization of the event "Sustainable innovation and careers" and cordially invites to an open dialogue with the world-famous bag maker, who gives truck tarps a second life. More information about the event


Third student-organized Sustainability Week from March 2nd to 6th, 2015

Over 50 students have organized a week program that deals critically, creatively and innovatively with aspects of sustainabiliy. More information:

ETH team awarded prize for energy management system

08.01.2015 |Today, the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) is presenting the Watt d’Or energy prize in the Energy-efficient mobility category to the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control. This award is in recognition of the technology the institute has developed in collaboration with Carrosserie Hess AG.
Read more

Pure Taste, No Waste!

That’s the slogan the ETH Sustainability team presented itself at ETH Campus Hönggerberg at the beginning of the semester.

The goal: To create awareness among students and staff about the importance of sustainability at ETH Zürich. The gift: Those who filled out a questionnaire about sustainability at ETH Zürich and gave constructive feedback received a sustainable drinking bottle. The message: With those drinking bottles, students cannot only drink and refill healthy tab water, but also contribute to reducing the ecological burden on the environment as opposed to the consumption of bottled water. It only took two hours before all 300 water bottles were gone.

Personal conversations and a questionnaire have made clear that members of the ETH Zurich community are very interested in the subject of sustainability and that they have concrete wishes and proposals in that regard.

This campaign also allowed the team of ETH Sustainability to present educational opportunities such as the ETH Sustainability Summer School or the ETH Seed Sustainability platform.

Read more

Green Guide Inspires Universities Around the World

22.10.2014 - Universities have the opportunity to create cultures of sustainability for today’s students and tomorrow’s leaders and to set their expectations for a better future. In providing real-world examples of environmental, financial, and social successes, the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) hopes to inspire innovation and creative action in universities around the globe.

ETH Zurich in collaboration with nine of the world's top research universities launched this week the "Green Guide for Universities – IARU Pathways Towards Sustainability." It includes 23 inspiring cases that have made a difference at IARU universities around the world.

Interested in learning more? Download a free copy of the Green Guide.

"How can research contribute to a sustainable future healthcare system?"

This was the main topic of the ETH-Talk 2014

1.10.2014 - Switzerland has an excellent healthcare system and the general public is satisfied with the service it receives. However, over the coming years and decades many challenges will have to be addressed. One of the challenges is our aging society, which means that an increase in chronic illnesses can be expected. Therefore, the Federal Council approved a comprehensive strategy entitled "Gesundheit 2020" (Health 2020). Scientific research can contribute significantly to reaching the goal of developing a sustainable healthcare system.

At this year's event, ETH Zurich presented innovative research results in the areas of prevention, diagnostic investigations and therapy methods, which was then followed by an open panel and audience discussion.

Please read the full report on our German website.

Call for Application

Winter School 2015: Engineering for Development (E4D)

“Global Water Challenges”


25.08.2014 – Global Water Management is one of the most urgent themes of our times. Pick up the challenge and join the Engineering for Development Winter School 2015. Experts will outline the issues and present their experiences from different parts of the world. You will work on different case studies from China, Bolivia, and Zambia. The goal of this programme is to promote the development of methods and products which are directly relevant for improving the livelihoods of poor people in developing countries. More information

Growing and thriving at ETH Zurich's Hönggerberg campus

20.05.2014 – Schweiz Aktuell (Swiss television) visited SeedCity, the community garden at ETH Zurich's Hönggerberg campus. SeedCity is one of three winner projects of the ecoworks workshop of 2010. The project is supported by ETH Zurich through basic funding and coaching. See the report

Call for Application: ETH Sustainability Summer School 2014

30.04.2014 - Do you want to learn more on how technological innovations offer amazing new perspectives for improving health? Are you interested in an interdisciplinary and intercultural learning environment? Do you want to get hands on experience and be part of a research project? Then apply now for the ETH Sustainability Summer School 2014 on "Future Health: Technology and Innovation". More information


Students organize 2nd Sustainability Week from 3 to 7 March 2014

12.02.2014 - The first week of March is Sustainability Week! For the second time, students from ETH and University of Zurich are organizing a one-week-long series of events with a focus on sustainability. More information (in German)

ETH-Talk 2013: "Spatial Planning"

11.10.2013 - Is Switzerland turning into a City? Solutions for sustainable spatial development.

More information (in German)

Participants of the ETH-EiABC Workshop

ETH-EiABC Workshop brochure published

20.08.2013 – The first phase of BuraNest, the Ethiopian model city project realized with the involvement of ETH experts, has been completed. We have supported a ten-day workshop for students of both ETH Zurich and the Ethiopian Institute of Architecture, Building Construction and City Planning [EiABC] to analyse the implications of the project scientifically.

Workshop documentation (PDF, 28.8 MB)

Cover ETH Sustainability Report 2011-2012

New Sustainability Report published

15.07.2013 - ETH Zurich publishes its second sustainability report. The report meets the GRI standard, which business circles recognise as one of the highest quality reporting standards. With this sustainability reporting, ETH Zurich has assumed a pioneering role in the academic environment and hopes other universities will follow its example.

Start der ETH Sustainability Summer School in Singapur

ETH Sustainability Summer School 2013 started

24.06.2013 - Today is the first day of this year’s Singapur-based ETH Sustainability Summer School on "Future Cities". Within the framework on the Summer School, a group of 30 Bachelor, Master and Doctoral students will conduct two case studies on urban design and network design.

Reto Ringger (Bild: Rainer Wolfsberger)

Sustainability pioneer Reto Ringger at ETH Zurich

29.05.2013 - ETH Sustainability welcomes financial expert Reto Ringger within its event series "Pioneers in Sustainability" today. He is a "Pioneer in Sustainability" of his own type: as one of the first people in the world, Reto Ringger maintained that the financial sector should take over its responsibility for a sustainable development of our society.

Mathis Wackernagel (Bild: Erik Johnson)

Sustainability expert Mathis Wackernagel at ETH Zurich

28.02.2013 – Mathis Wackernagel will today kick off ETH Sustainability’s new event series "Pioneers in Sustainability". The event series is directed towards students at ETH Zurich and other universities. It allows students to meet and interact with pioneers from the field of sustainability.

Podiumsdiskussion «Sustainability Dialogue with Leaders and Pioneers» (Bild: The Sustainability Forum Zürich)

Event: Socially and ecologically sustainable procurement

05.12.2012 - A socially and ecologically sustainable procurement system can help to protect limited natural goods and to guarantee a socially acceptable production in the countries of origin. But what are the requirements? And what do voluntary commitments bring? One event of the series "Sustainability Dialogue with Leaders and Pioneers" was dedicated to discussing these questions.

Page URL:
© 2017 Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich