Sustainability Surveys

Sustainability is a core value at UNH because it is about creating a healthy, just, prosperous, and verdant world. We have numerous ways in which we engage with the UNH community to inform our work. One way we engage our community is through surveys. Surveys help us to develop benchmarks for various initiatives as well as to inform ongoing and new projects.

Student Literacy & Culture Assessment

The Sustainability Institute and the Dean of Students worked together to develop a sustainability literacy and culture assessment for all undergraduate students. This survey is a synthesis of best practices from other universities such as University of Michigan, Colorado State University, and American University. The resulting instrument was administered to the campus community in November 2016 with a follow-up conducted in April 2017. This survey targeted undergraduate students and is administered annually.

The student survey targeted all undergraduate students. Our goal was to compare classes of students rather than following a specific group of individual students. The student survey was sent out by the Dean of Students and the Director of the Sustainability Institute. The student survey was completed by 1,894 (16%) respondents in November 2016 and 189 respondents in April 2017 via Qualtrics. Participants were asked to answer a range of demographic questions to ensure the sample was representative.

Students indicated a high level of sustainability understanding. For all literacy assessment questions, over half the participants answered correctly.

A large number of students reported that they were concerned about waste and recycling on campus. To address this issue, Residential Life engaged students in reducing waste in the dorms. This past year, students reduced waste in the dorms by 10%. The survey showed that there is some confusion over what is sustainability. A significant amount of communications work is underway on campus to facilitate a universal understanding of what sustainability means. This work is helping us to bring the campus together around sustainability.

Click here to view or download the student literacy and culture assessment.

Employee Sustainability Knowledge & Perspectives Survey


The University of New Hampshire Sustainability Institute, Human Resources, and Community, Equity, and Diversity worked together with the UNH Survey Center to conduct an integrated survey of UNH faculty and staff members to better understand their knowledge and perspectives on a broad set of questions related to sustainability. The survey was conducted to help guide the University's sustainability efforts moving forward.

We would like to thank all of the staff and faculty who participated in the survey. The collective input allows us to gain insight into important issues on campus and helps us focus energy to continue to make UNH a better university and employer.

Summary of Results

Click here to view or download the summary of results.