A world-class knowledge catalyst for the green economy and a more sustainable future.

The GLI will function as a central enterprise within the University that will provide strategic and administrative support to the various Nelson Mandela University initiatives working in areas related to sustainable futures. It will provide support to faculties and professional units involved in a variety of important sustainable development projects through collaborative planning, the dedicated pursuit of external funding, networking with external stakeholders, conducting expert research and impact assessments, providing evidence-based information for policy formulation and providing a stakeholder portal for the exchange of ideas and best practices in creating more sustainable futures. Whilst the GLI will be trans-disciplinary, it will be located at the George Campus.

The Nelson Mandela University George Campus is situated on 88 hectares of land surrounded by pristine forests alongside the majestic Outeniqua mountains.


GLI George Campus Features

The Rio Summit in 1992 saw the world come together in arguably the largest-ever environment-focused event held to highlight climate change, high desertification, species loss and land degradation amongst many others.

Nations committed to nature-centred treaties for the first time focused on biodiversity, climate change as well as forest management.  For the first time ever, a major environment conference adopted a nature-centred approach toward environmental issues (http://www.un.org/geninfo/bp/enviro.html)

The Rio+20 Summit in 2012 highlighted the following as key priority areas: poverty eradication; food security, nutrition and sustainable agriculture; energy; sustainable transport; sustainable cities; health and population; and promoting full and productive employment, decent work for all, and social protections.

The 2013 review of the MDGs (United Nations, 2013) highlighted the following key issues:

  • environmental sustainability is being severely threatened
  • global emissions of carbon dioxide have increased in excess of 46% since 1990
  • approximately one third of marine fish stocks have been plundered
  • an estimated 863 million people live in slums in the developing world.