On September 6, Helen Sooväli-Sepping started working as the Vice-Rector for Green Transformation at Tallinn University of Technology.
The area of responsibility of the new Vice-Rector includes the development of a model and test environment based on the development of resource efficiency in the campus and regional colleges, and the integration of the principles of sustainable development into the university’s curricula and activities. Furthermore, it involves the development of curricula and strategies for the circular economy, cooperation with other Tallinn universities, the private and public sector, and international networking.
“The younger generations have an expectation that we will be more environmentally conscious in every area of life. It could even be said that thinking and acting in an environmentally sustainable way is becoming a matter of personal hygiene,” believes Helen Sooväli-Sepping, adding: “Knowledge and skills in this field can be mediated by the university. And Tallinn University of Technology wants to be a leader in change here.”
Some good prerequisites exist for this: Tallinn University of Technology has set itself a goal to stand out in terms of climate and energy efficiency and to be the test centre of the city of the future. The goal is to become a climate-neutral university by 2035. “We want to be the leader of green transformation in Estonia,” confirms the Rector of Tallinn University of Technology Tiit Land.
Achieving the ambitious goal requires change and cooperation in all areas and activities of the university: research, teaching, organisational management, attitudes of the university community (including students), support activities, management and development of the campus and infrastructure. The achievements of the new Vice-Rector so far are a great match here: she has a doctorate in human geography (University of Tartu, 2004), and she was also the editor-in-chief of the Estonian Human Development Report ‘Spatial Choices for an Urbanised Society’. In 2019, Helen Sooväli-Sepping was awarded the Tallinn Honorary Decoration for her contribution to the development of co-operation in the field of urban and environmental management and to the supervision of numerous Tallinn-related urban studies.