Tilburg University: Fair & Green

Tilburg University is committed to a sustainable society and encourages researchers, teachers, support staff, students, and stakeholders to actively contribute to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

CSR program

CSR programma

The world is facing major change processes as a consequence of political, economic and social turbulence. These changes will have a fundamental impact not only on the distribution of scarce resources such as energy, food, and water, but also on the globalizing labor market, diminishing the prospects of those who are already at a disadvantage.

Tilburg University’s greatest contribution to finding sustainable solutions lies in its research. Our study programs are aimed at promoting social responsibility among our alumni, for example, and our Master’s program in Law focuses on the role of law in the quest for sustainable solutions. This page describes steps the university is taking in its business operations to find solutions for problems in these areas. To this end, it has also drawn up a Corporate Social Responsibility Plan. Based on ISO 26000, this program spans the spectrum from sedum roofs on new buildings to fair business practices with suppliers and good labor conditions for employees.

CSR program

Tilburg University regards Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as an integral vision on modern entrepreneurship, centering on the premise that an organization will strive to add economic, ecological, and social value across the entire chain of its activities. The organization develops a clear strategic and operational plan for defining and carrying out this vision. In essence, CSR is a continuous improvement process and, as such, is never finished. After all, sustainable development signifies searching for a good balance between People, Planet, and Profit.
CSR is about building a healthier university by making considerations relating to environmental and social issues a part of institutional policy and business operations, as well as reporting on these issues to university stakeholders – including the public. Responsibility and accountability are therefore two sides of the CSR coin.

The CSR preliminary memorandum is available here (in Dutch only). The CSR program is incorporated in Tilburg University’s Strategic Plan 2014-2017.

ISO 26000

A practicable and transparent CSR policy calls for clear guidelines. The ISO 26000 method is a globally recognized directive that Tilburg University can use to further elaborate its efforts in this area, to communicate these efforts, and to demonstrate what it stands for. ISO 26000 distinguishes seven key CSR themes:

  1. Organizational management
  2. Human rights
  3. Labor practices
  4. Environment 
  5. Fair business practices 
  6. Consumer affairs 
  7. Community involvement and development

Ambition

The university is committed to demonstrably seeking sustainable alternatives in all cases and to considering such alternatives in its decision-making. It has furthermore set itself the ambition to be a pioneer in a number of key areas – including energy, the environment, and waste – in which it will take an integral internal approach to CSR while at the same time promoting it externally. CSR is a fundamental component of decision-making in these themes. This means that the CSR impact of all decisions must be made known in advance and that no decision will be taken before investigating possible alternatives that may contribute to achieving the envisioned ambitions. It furthermore means that decision-makers should be willing and able to account for any decisions they take that do not contribute toward this ambition.

Program organization

The Executive Board has organized a CSR steering group, comprised of the following members:

The project group is made up of: