Monash champions global sustainability

Monash University has been named one of the world’s top performing universities against the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – a blueprint to attaining a better and more sustainable future for all.

The Times Higher Education today released its third and largest edition of the Impact Rankings based on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Ranked #18 globally, Monash University’s overall score improved from 93.6 (out of 100) in 2020 to 94 in 2021.

Monash has consistently improved in the rankings since its inaugural year in 2019 which ranked Monash 45 in the world. This year’s ranking represents a 40 per cent increase by Monash in the global rankings over three years.

Monash also ranked in the top 10 in four of the eight United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) submitted by the University, and was in the global top 30 in five SDGs.

This is a significant outcome with the number of universities tabled in 2021 doubling to feature 1,115 universities worldwide in this edition.

Monash University President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Gardner AC said the results were recognition of Monash’s strong commitment to sustainability, demonstrated through projects such as the University’s Net Zero Initiative and Revitalising Informal Settlements and their Environments (RISE) program, as well as its international partnerships and vast multidisciplinary research programs.

“Through our extensive local and international partnerships, global network of campuses, sustainable investments and world-leading research and education, Monash University is committed to achieving sustainable solutions for the betterment of communities worldwide,” Professor Gardner said.

“This capacity to work and influence beyond our borders, and to make real impact on some of the world’s most significant issues, is critical to becoming a global leader in sustainability. These THE Impact Rankings are recognition of the impact of that work in supporting our commitment to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

“I am incredibly proud of this achievement, and look forward to Monash continuing to empower our community to contribute positively to a sustainable future.”  

Monash’s top-ranked individual SDGs are:

  • 3rd for Sustainable Cities and Communities (SDG 11)
  • 8th for Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG 7)
  • 10th for Gender Equality (SDG 5)
  • 10th for Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG 8)
  • 25th for Good Health and Wellbeing (SDG 3)
  • 43rd for Partnerships for the Goals (SDG 17)
  • 46th for Reduced Inequalities (SDG 10)
  • 101-200 banding for Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (SDG 9)

Now in its third edition, the THE Impact Rankings are the only global performance tables that assess universities' impact on society based on success in delivering the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals - specifically looking at themes of poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice. The rankings compare universities against three broad areas: research, outreach and stewardship.

Monash University partnered with the United Nations Association of Australia to host the inaugural United Nations and Australia Sustainable Partnerships Forum earlier this week. On April 20-21, government of all levels, business, universities, students and organisations convened to discuss critical issues in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

For more information about the THE rankings, please visit: