KOTA KINABALU: Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) was recently ranked 53rd in a global university ranking system for the most sustainable universities out of 1,050 higher educational institutes (HEIs) worldwide, climbing up 14 spots from 67th the previous year.

This put the university among the top 5% in the 2022 UI GreenMetric World University Ranking System, an Asian initiative started in 2010 across the globe to assess HEIs performance in terms of sustainability concept, revealed UMS’ corporate communication centre on Thursday (Dec 29).

The improved ranking is in line with its quest to become an HEI with fully sustainable campuses, in accordance with its appreciation of the EcoCampus concept, the centre said in a statement here.

“UMS has taken part in the UI GreenMetric initiative since 2014 as an approach to assess the university’s capabilities to complement Sabah’s sustainable development agenda.

“UMS ranking in the UI GreenMetric indicates it is progressing forward at the national level.

“The achievement of being the 53rd most sustainable university in the world is a result of the collective efforts and aspirations from all the faculties and centres at UMS to innovate and revolutionise their products and services to support the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) locally and internationally,” said the centre.

The press statement also revealed that UMS Vice Chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Kasim Mansor is expected to announce the institution’s increasing efforts on sustainability soon, which include introducing components of certain faculties and centres as living laboratories in 2023.

“A living laboratory is a formal partnership between a UMS research group, industrial players and communities to resolve a specific socio-economic problem.

“Ongoing problems such as increasing renewable energy consumption, sustainable waste management and on-campus water security are always the focus at UMS.

“The university will further socialise its outputs through these living laboratories, as exemplified by the hatchery of the Borneo Marine Research Institute (BMRI). An initial funding of RM500,000 has already been set aside this year for this purpose,” the centre added.

In the long run, UMS intends to put forward the established living laboratories to the Malaysian education authority to obtain recognition as the country’s centre of excellence in specific areas of science.