Green Impact

What is Green Impact?

Green Impact is an environmental accreditation scheme that brings together staff and students across the University to play an active role in improving the sustainable practices of their office, building or department. At the end of the year – joined by the Vice-Chancellor – teams, students and management come together to celebrate the part they have played in creating a positive impact at the University at the Sustainability Showcase. We are looking forward to hosting the 2018 showcase at Oxford University Museum of Natural History.

Green Impact is open to teams of all sizes, across the university: any office, building, department, laboratory or college can participate.

Over 4,000 sustainable actions have been completed so far by over 70 teams across the University as a result of Green Impact - and it’s not just taking place at Oxford. Over 60 universities participated in Green Impact last year, and this number is only set to grow.

Why get involved?

Green Impact is now running for its fifth successful year at Oxford. Getting involved in Green Impact empowers staff to make positive changes to their workplace, making new connections across the University, and developing new skills.


  • Develop a team and build new connections within your building or department
  • Reduce utility bills and environmental impact
  • Generate positive press for your department
  • Receive recognition for the sustainability improvements you’re already making
  • Join a great network of staff, students, departments and divisions
  • Take advantage of opportunities for personal and professional development
  • Support the University to meet its Environmental Sustainability targets
  • Have fun and try something different
  • Gain valuable student experience through Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA) accredited training.

How does Green Impact work?

How does Green Impact work?

Green Impact runs as an annual cycle which guides teams through a common programme of activities to improve year-on-year performance.

  • Teams of staff (and student project assistants) form within buildings, offices or departments.
  • Teams are guided through a common programme of activities and practical actions suggested by a simple online framework (the Green Impact workbook).
  • The workbook also offers advice and resources to assist teams in making valuable sustainable improvements in their workplace.
  • Teams are supported throughout the year by the Environmental Sustainability team and the Green Impact network of staff across the University.
  • You can have a look around the online workbook here by clicking ‘register’ on the right of the page.
  • The more actions that are completed the more points are scored, leading to a ‘Working Towards’, Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award. There are also Special Awards available for Innovation, or particularly inspiring individuals: Environmental Heroes.
  • Progress is verified by trained student auditors at the end of each year, followed by the popular Sustainable Showcase, which celebrates and rewards each team, and other sustainable successes across the University, for their achievements.
  • You can read more about the 2017 Sustainability Showcase here.


How to get started…

Any department, building, faculty or college can take part in Green Impact.

You can have a look at the Green Impact teams who have already signed up on the online workbook here by clicking ‘register’ on the right of the page and scrolling through the drop-down list of Green Impact teams.

If there is already a team set up that it would be appropriate for you to join, the Environmental Sustainability team will put you in touch – email us at

If not, we will support you through the process of forming a team – contact us to get started. 

Student opportunities and training

Student Green Impact Project Assistants

Student project assistants work with staff teams to support and encourage them through the year to tackle the changes suggested by Green Impact. This can be hugely rewarding, and only takes a few hours per month.
A full role description is available here: Student Green Impact Project Assistants
Email to find out more or sign up.

Student Green Impact Auditors

Every May, we recruit student Green Impact auditors who spend one day training and then auditing Green Impact teams to assess and certify the progress they’ve made. It is a really fun day and our students always enjoy the experience. No previous skills are required: all auditors receive a full morning of Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA) approved environmental auditing training (great experience for the CV) before completing their audits. You will gain experience in project management, sustainability, auditing, communications and time management. A full role description can be found here Green Impact Auditor role description 2018 (71kb)

Email: to find out more or sign up.

Student testimonial

Youmin Rong is a third year DPhil student from Trinity College, studying Materials Science. Youmin took part in Green Impact as an auditor in 2015.
‘As a student, Green Impact auditing is a privileged opportunity to learn the essence of becoming a successful professional auditor.
It is very rewarding to see individuals, departments and/or colleges becoming more environmentally sustainable, and receiving the recognition they deserve.'
Other opportunities to get involved

Find out about other opportunities to get involved in environmental sustainability at Oxford

Further information

Click on the links below:

Department of Materials supports Green Impact

The RSL is participating in the Green Impact scheme 

Said Business School supports Green Impact

Department of Engineering Science supports Green Impact