VHL the most sustainable higher education institution in the Netherlands


During the Sustainabul 2022, Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences (VHL) was named the most sustainable institution of higher education in the Netherlands. VHL achieved a 100% score for the Sustainabul 2022 on three of the four assessment points. In assessing the educational institutions, attention was paid to the integration of sustainability within the components of education, research, operational management and best practices. VHL was the only higher education institution to achieve a maximum score in the education and research components, the same result as last year. Back then, VHL finished in second place behind Wageningen University, which finished third this year. The Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam finished in second place.

Recognition by students and peer institutions

The SustainaBul is the ranking of Dutch universities and universities of applied sciences in the field of sustainability. It is an initiative by the national student platform ‘Studenten voor Morgen’ (Students for Tomorrow) with the aim of stimulating sustainability within institutions of higher education. The ranking is based on the extent to which the educational institutions have integrated sustainability into their education, research and business operations. The SustainaBul was awarded for the eleventh time this year during Groene Peper, the online event for sustainability at MBO, HBO and university levels.

Karen Eikenaar en Els Grooten, who received the prize on behalf of VHL.

Winner of the graduation prize

During Groene Peper, the winners of the 2022 Rachel Carson Graduation Prize were also announced. During a VVM Café on Wednesday evening 18 May, the nominees presented their research and engaged in conversation with someone from the professional field. For VHL, students Esther de Kroon (Environmental Science) and Sjoerdje Meijers (International Development Management) were nominated. Finally, Esther was voted the winner in the HBO category with her thesis Iron oxidation in groundwater using a hyperbolic water vortex system. She has been studying how to extract iron from drinking water in an energy-efficient way.

Esther de Kroon (l) receives her prize.