The University of Wisconsin–Madison works to integrate and enhance research and education efforts in sustainability science and practice across all parts of campus. UW–Madison has a long history of scholarship in a broad range of topics relevant to sustainability, from using recycled industrial materials in infrastructure to ensuring the sustainability of rural agricultural communities. Creating solutions for the sustainability challenges of the future will require dynamic teams and a comprehensive approach that addresses sustainability problems such as water, finance, energy, health, food, and community. Addressing these challenges will require an educated workforce that is trained to consider sustainability broadly.
In 2010, a chancellor-appointed Sustainability Task Force recommended that the University of Wisconsin–Madison create a university office that would align academics and research to advance campus sustainability goals. Now, the Office of Sustainability serves as a campus-wide resource for sustainability. By facilitating sustainability education and partnering with campus units to improve operations and resource stewardship, the office represents the realization of a shared vision for a sustainable campus.