Advancing Sustainability Through Multidisciplinary Collaboration

The SLC serves as a vital convening body to bring together stakeholders from across the university to: 

  • develop innovative solutions that advance existing priorities
  • strategize new sustainability practices and challenges 
  • enhance communication and collaboration across schools and divisions 

Comprised of over 125 members from across the university, the Sustainability Leadership Council (SLC) was launched Earth Day 2019 and has continually been advancing the university’s initiatives around sustainability, fostering multidisciplinary collaboration and supporting the work of the Office of Sustainability.

Join JHU's Sustainability Leadership Network

Get Involved with SLC

The Sustainability Leadership Council welcomes faculty, student, and staff participation from across the entire university to help envision, champion, advocate, and implement progress towards JHU's sustainability goals. The member nomination period is open late Spring and early Summer for the following academic term.

Committees & Working Groups

The Sustainability Leadership Council is comprised of committees which contain Working Groups tackling various aspects of sustainability at JHU.

SLC Steering Committee: The SLC is led by a steering committee of faculty, student, and staff members, including chairs and representatives of the contributing SLC Committees.

The Co-Chairs of the SLC are:

  • Bob McLean; Operations Committee Co-Chair, and Vice President, Facilities and Real Estate 
  • Peter Winch; Research & Academics Committee Co-Chair, and Professor, BSPH Department of International Health

Membership Matters Working Group: Oversees recruitment and selection of new members.

The Research & Academics Committee includes representatives of every department and academic program offering degrees and courses related to environmental sustainability. The committee seeks to build bridges and identify synergies between current and evolving academic offerings, facilitate collaboration between programs, and strengthen JHU’s role in preparing graduates for leadership and careers in environmental sustainability. 

Working Groups: 

  • Campus as Living Laboratory: is establishing a new program focusing on empowering students and faculty to use JHU’s physical campuses as testbeds for innovation that advance on-campus sustainability solutions.
  • Sustainability Research Network: organizes a series of university-wide seminars and events for students and researchers focusing on cross-disciplinary sustainability issues. 
  • New Initiatives: inventories existing research & academic initiatives and identify opportunities for new initiatives at JHU, such as new institutes or academic programs.

The Environmental Justice Committee is committed to (1) mitigating the unfair exposure of poor, marginalized, and BIPOC communities to harms associated with pollution, waste, and industrial land & water use, and (2) supporting communities’ autonomy and visions of change. We work to promote environmental justice through various initiatives on the JHU campuses, in the greater Baltimore community, and beyond.

Working Groups: 

  • New Initiatives 
  • Community Engagement 
  • Communications 
  • Operations & Planning Working Group

The Operations Committee seeks to address opportunities for improving the daily operational and business practices of Johns Hopkins across all areas of its environmental footprint, including energy, waste, food, water, transportation, wellness, procurement, and more.  

Working Groups: 

  • Green Labs: supports the expansion of JHU’s Green Labs program focusing on engaging lab users to conserve and reduce energy, water, waste, and other resources through a mix of strategies.
  • Green Fleet: addresses sustainable transportation initiatives at JHU, focusing on university vehicles and student and employee behaviors, addressing topics ranging from vehicle electrification, employee commuting, procurement incentives, student transportation choices, and much more.
  • Food & Dining:  addresses sustainability in JHU’s food and dining locations, including topics ranging from local and sustainable food procurement, food security, climate-friendly diets and reducing GHG emissions in food programs, food growing opportunities, nutrition and menu design, and more.
  • Zero Waste Planning: identifies waste related opportunities and challenges, research zero waste best practices, and works collaboratively to implement programs to set JHU on a path to a zero waste future.

The Engagement Committee works to identify programs and strategies that foster sustainable behavior change among individuals at Johns Hopkins, enhance sustainability literacy and awareness, and strengthen strategic communications to improve information sharing. 

Working Groups: 

  • Student Sustainability Network: works to strengthen connections between students organizations involved in sustainability across the university, in order to build a network of connected students and to increase communication, collaboration, and awareness of student sustainability efforts at all levels.

Learn More

Annual Progress

Review projects and efforts of the Sustainability Leadership Council through Annual Reports.

Annual Symposium

The Annual SLC Symposium is held each spring, featuring guest speakers to share dialogue on critical topics including climate change, environmental justice, and more.