Sustainability and exchange

In a time, where global sustainable issues are greater than ever, there is a need for engineers who possess global outlook, insights and approaches – all of which are essential in finding solutions to the complex, multifaceted global challenges the world is facing today.

DTU strongly encourages all students to study abroad, in spite of the impact it also has on the environment, because we believe that there is so much to gain from the experience – which in the end can help make you a better, more global and hopefully sustainable engineer.

On this page, we wish to give you some sustainable ideas and tips, you can choose to incorporate into your exchange abroad.

Think about the focus of your stay

Consider why you wish to study abroad and what you would like to get out of it - on both a personal and academic level. And take that into consideration, when you choose which universities and destinations you apply for.

Maybe you are interested in adding a more social and environmental focus, while you are there? Then some ideas could be to:

  • look for courses in sustainability and get insight into the local challenges faced and how they are dealt with. That can be a great opportunity to learn about some of the global sustainable complexities from a new country's perspective.

  • check out if some of UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals are particularly relevant and interesting for your destination and if so - seek to learn more either at your host university or outside of it, while you are there.

  • join locals through extracurricular activities such as community engagement projects or maybe non-profit organizations with a local and environmental focus.

And finally, when you return home, share everything you have learned and use your findings and new skills in your further studies and career. And who knows, maybe you can use some of your inspiration in a Green Challenge project, when you return?

Small adjustments to leave a lighter footprint

Sometimes smaller adjustments can make a good environmental difference. Below are a few practical tips to how you may help make your time abroad more sustainable:

  • Support local and sustainable businesses and eat locally sources food
    By eating local products, you help support local farmers and restaurants reduce carbon emissions from food transportation, and ensure that you are eating food that contributes to the local ecosystem.

  • Think about transportation both to and from your host institution
    But also while you are there. When possible, minimize the amount you fly and take local transportation, bike, walk etc. whenever you can. And if you are up for it, consider living close to campus and walk to your courses every day - that can be another way to minimize your carbon footprint.

  • “Reduce, reuse, recycle”
    At home or abroad, ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ is always a great sustainable mantra.