At University of Galway we recognise that research is key to providing the necessary knowledge, evidence base, solutions, technologies and innovations to support the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Our Strategic Plan 2020-2025: Shared Vision, Shaped by Values‌‌; invites ambition in research that underpins the following 5 key areas:

the front of University of Galway Biosciences Research Building

Research centres

University of Galway supports a large number of research centres related to sustainability and the environment, for example, The Ryan Institute is University of Galway’s largest research institute supporting 92 projects and 500 researchers to advance sustainability research and partnerships that contribute to the majority of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).‌

Ryan Institute

The Whitaker Institute at University of Galway researches innovation and change. The Whitaker Institute has adopted an innovative, multidisciplinary and transformative approach in its research on challenges facing business and society in Ireland and internationally. The Whitaker Institute carries out research in many areas, including the Environment, Development and Sustainability

Whittaker Institute Logo

University of Galway Research supporting the UN SDGs

As the research community at University of Galway continues to make significant contributions to achieving the goals of sustainable development, it is important that we recognise and record this work.

Consider how your research contributes to the UN SDGs and the associated targets and complete this short form: My Research and the UN SDGs

The information provided by you will be used to track progress and contribute to:

Distribution of SDG-related publications (sourced from Scopus)

The distribution of University of Galway's SDG-related publications across all SDGs 1-16 sourced from Scopus shows that 40% of University of Galway's research publications are related to SDG 3, Good Health and Wellbeing. 

pie chart showing NUI Galway research output per SDG in 2022

An‌ overall analysis of University of Galway's research output aligned to the UN SDGs between 2017 and 2021 was carried out by the Planning & Institutional Research Office in September 2022. The analysis shows that University of Galway has a proportionally higher than the Irish and global average output in addition to SDG 3 in:

  • SDG 6: Clean Water & Sanitation 

  • SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production 

  • SDG 14: Life below Water 

  • SDG 16: Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions

Decarbonising Research Methods

In November 2022, two PhD students at University of Galway organised hybrid interdisciplinary workshops on the topic of Decarbonising Research Methods. 

The workshops included participation from approximately 40 researchers from all disciplines across universities in Ireland and further afield (Canada, Germany, North America and the United Kingdom). Participants had the opportunity to discuss the carbon management of their own research methodologies and advance ideas about how the research undertaken in their institutions could be decarbonised. 

They outline their recommendations in this report, primarily directed towards policy-and-decision-makers in University of Galway. It could also be used as a tool by interested researchers to lobby their own institutions or to develop their own set of decarbonising principles.