Over the last 20 years the Institute of Environmental Studies (IES) has contributed to the global vision of sustainable development which we see as socio-economic development that protects and enhances the environment and social justice. Through world-class innovative research and interdisciplinary teaching in environmental studies and management we are responding to the challenges of the 21st century.
The IES delivers innovative, interdisciplinary, flexible and practical programs that combine a solid foundation in environmental management with choice from a wide range of cross faculty electives. Our students develop comprehensive knowledge and skills designed to enhance their careers and enable them to play a meaningful role in a sustainable future. Postgraduate programs by coursework or research  are available on campus and online. 

See 2013 IES ANNUAL REPORT  and the IES Strategic Plan 2014-17



What are the barriers to Rewilding Australia? image

What are the barriers to Rewilding Australia?

Wednesday, 29 April 2015 - 1:00pm – 2:15pm  |  IES Room 413, Level 4, Electrical Engineering Building G17 UNSW Kensington main campus
Rob Brewster from Rewilding Australia asks: Why hasn't Australia been 'rewilded' already? Are the barriers to rewilding financial, social, political, environmental, or a mix of these factors? What has been done, what can be done, and what is being done to make Australia's landscapes more diverse. Rob Brewster is an environmental scientist, and a MEM UNSW Alumni. The seminar will conclude with an 'in-conversation' with Daniel Hunter film maker and  PhD candidate.
Low carbon development image

Low carbon development

Wednesday, 8 April 2015 - 1:00pm – 2:00pm  |  LG03, Tyree Energy Technologies TELB, UNSW Kensington main campus

Dr Frauke Urban, University of London and Dr Johan Nordensvärd, University of Southampton, will discuss how low carbon development offers an alternative development model to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions to tackle climate change in a carbon constrained world, focussing on the opportunities and challenges to fair and equitable human development within the limits of our planet. Hope to see you there and to hear your ideas in the discussion.

 Fieldwork in the coffee fields  image

Fieldwork in the coffee fields

Wednesday, 18 March 2015 - 1:00pm – 2:15pm  |  IES Room 413, Level 4, Electrical Engineering Building G17 UNSW Kensington main campus

Melissa Vogt, IES PhD Candidate recently returned from a 4 season trip which included scholarly stays with the University of Havana and the University of California, Santa Cruz and fieldwork in Cuba and Costa Rica. The presentation will discuss the process of initiating and designing such a dynamic experience within a PhD program, carrying out fieldwork and some initial observations which will contribute to findings presented within the thesis on the coffee industry’s sustainability. see PDF


Open Letter from Scientists

Open Letter from Scientists

12 March 2015

64 environmental and climate scientists from Australian Universities have signed and open letter, concerned the 2015 Intergenerational Report underestimates the serious threat of global warming to future generations. 
"We call on the Australian government, and indeed the governments of all nations, to reconsider the consequences of ongoing emission of greenhouse gases and, as a matter of urgency, promote  much more rapid transition to non-polluting energy-generating methods."

Nuclear Energy - the facts

Nuclear Energy - the facts

23 February 2015

The new Royal Commission in South Australia into nuclear energy is a waste of time and money, says Dr Mark Diesendorf. We don’t need a long and expensive inquiry to see that the nuclear industry offers little potential for future growth in jobs or export income.       
Read more
to understand why the case to expand the nuclear industry stands neither on its life-cycle carbon dioxide emissions, nor increased safety, nor economy.

UNCCD climate change and desertification Impulse Report

UNCCD climate change and desertification Impulse Report

18 February 2015

UNCCD Climate change and desertification Impulse Report is now available. The ‘Impulse report’ is a preparatory document for the Third Scientific Conference of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), to be held in Cancun Mexico this March 2015. Professor Graciela Metternicht has contributed to the preparation of this document that will assist and drive discussion of delegates in the science-policy interface.  The Conference will focus on the contribution of science, technology, traditional knowledge and practices for combating drought, land degradation and desertification for poverty reduction and sustainable development.   READ MORE