Campaigns and Engagement Projects

Driving change and empowering people to create a #SustainableLSE

 We share some of our recent campaigns and engagement projects

Without significant action, there may be more plastic than fish in the ocean, by weight, by 2050.
The New Plastics Economy — Rethinking the future of plastics, p.29.

#SustainableLSE Consultation

Creating a sustainable LSE is one of the commitments of LSE 2030. To articulate this commitment, and in light of the complex climate and ecological crisis we face, LSE has developed a new Sustainability Strategic Plan in close collaboration with the LSE community through the #SustainableLSE Consultation, and with support from the Sustainability Advisory Group.

As a social science institution we recognise that advancing environmental sustainability relies on a range of economic, social, political, cultural and behavioural factors, requiring contributions from LSE’s varied perspectives and disciplines. All students, staff, alumni and friends of LSE were invited to undertake the consultation survey and join the discussion via our themed event series.

Consultation resources

Sustainability Advisory Group

The Sustainability Advisory Group was formed end of 2019 to articulate the School’s commitment to creating a sustainable LSE, which was made in the LSE 2030 strategy. 

The group was chaired by Lord Nick Stern and met monthly between November 2019 and May 2020. It has since been replaced by a Sustainability Leadership Board meeting termly. 

Members represented a diverse section of the LSE community including senior representatives, academics, professional staff, and students. 

The Group acted as a facilitator, using the #SustainableLSE Consultation to hear diverse views from across the LSE community and to shape a new Sustainability Strategic Plan for the School. 

The group brought its recommendations to the School Management Committee as planned, and an implementation plan was developed to support the new Strategic Plan.


Plastic Free LSE

Campaign objectives

1. Support staff and student-led initiatives and projects to enable inividual action and learning.

2. Encourage individuals to reduce usage of single-use plastics and show easy, more sustainable alternatives.

3. Create discussion and raise awareness about the complexity of plastics.

4. Reduce the number of disposable coffee cups sold, single-use water bottles bought, and plastic disposable cutlery and water cups used around LSE.

The campaign also aimed to spark conversations on the nuance of plastic, realising that it has a role in today’s society but should be used, sourced and disposed of responsibly.

Delivery and results

The Plastic Free LSE campaign was launched in July 2018 by LSE Director Minouche Shafik and was the frame of our engagement initiatives for 2018/19.

The campaign targeted four products that were found most common in an internal waste audit:

1. Disposable plastic water bottles

2. Single-use plastic cups

3. Disposable coffee cups

4. Plastic disposable cutlery

The campaign provided the focus for many initiatives that followed that year including Green Impact, Reduce the Juice and LSE Green Week, having measurable impact in reducing plastics and the number of people engaged in the issue. Green Impact teams delivered 23 projects which targeted single-use plastics! Read about the projects here

Whilst our engagement campaigns have shifted on to other topics and areas, we continue to work to minimise single-use plastic around LSE and educate the LSE community on the issue of plastic pollution. 

  • The Plastic Free LSE Impact Report can be viewed here

Start today...

  • Give up bottled water. Carry a reusable water bottle around and have unlimited, free refills from any of the 77 water fountains around LSE!
  • Switch from a disposable coffee cup to a reusable mug. Earn yourself a discount each time you buy a hot drink by using a reusable mug. LSE branded Keep Cups available from LSE Catering outlets.
  • Stop using plastic cutlery each time you have lunch out. Take along your own reusable cutlery or why not eat in and use stainless steel? 
  • Make food shopping stylish with a reusable tote bag. Leave the plastic carrier bags in the store and carry with you your own reusable cloth bag. Buy an LSE branded one from the LSESU shop.

Keen to take it further? Here's 96 more ideas to reduce your plastic waste!

Use the links below to understand why this issue affects us all.


Sustainability in Practice lecture series

Hosting inspirational speakers from different backgrounds to share ideas and practice to deliver sustainable development. Listen back and explore public events on the LSE Player.