Contributing to a better world

Gandhi once said: “Be the change you wish to see in the world”. It is that mindset that makes the HZ see it as its duty to provide innovative education and research to contribute to a better world. And, in this context, by ‘better’ we mean ‘more sustainable’. Because if the world of today is facing one challenge that education and research can play a major role in, it is sustainability.

How do we get started?

In what way can our students and professionals contribute to a better society in relation to companies, institutes, governments, and civilians? That is the question we want to work on. Read more about it in our Institutional Plan.

In the HZ Institutional Plan, you can read more about our mission/vision, ambitions and core values. We are proud of the fact that the plan is the product of a close collaboration with our internal and external stakeholders.

HZ Institutional Plan 2022-2027 | Contributing to a better world

Complete plan | HZ Institutional Plan 2022-2027 | Contributing to a better world

The HZ contributes to a better world… educating higher professional education professionals as the personal University of Applied Sciences;, as University of Applied Sciences and together with partners, finding solutions for questions in the field of water, energy, and vitality;, as a regional partner for the Zeeland Delta, supporting the developments in the region.

With the Institutional Plan, the HZ clarifies what our students, employees, partners, and other stakeholders can expect from us. We have expressed this in four ambitions:

  • We are educator of professionals for a world in transition
  • We are valued institute in the area of water, energy, and vitality
  • We are the partner for social missions in our region
  • We are vibrant community for all parties

With this HZ leadership profile we want to implement the personal university of applied sciences and make the HZ agile and future-proof. And above all we want to be an enjoyable workplace!


We are a knowledge institute where education and research are seamlessly intertwined. In its practice-oriented research, HZ focuses on complex social issues in three areas: water, energy and vitality. When selecting research topics, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are our guiding principle. From our research and knowledge centres, HZ plays an active role in the fields of climate adaptation, water, coastal protection, energy transition and in the transition to a bio-circular economy.

In the coming years, we will focus even more on current complex (sustainability) issues.

Read the institution's plan >

At HZ, we are working on the future, which includes a sustainable working and learning environment. We do this by offering sustainable transport options to employees, such as a public transport chip card, bicycle, electric carrier bicycle, electric shared car, or the carpool app Nabago. We encourage sustainable travel by offering a higher allowance if you travel by bike or public transport. To our students, we offer GoAbout shared bicycles.

Housing development

When further developing school buildings, sustainable options are chosen: both in building materials and furnishings. In line with the Green Revolution Zeeland schoolyards, we have started greening our school environment, creating a green outdoor classroom and a food forest in collaboration with students. In doing so, we contribute to improving student welfare, biodiversity and climate adaptation. HZ plays a leading role in the development and greening of De Kenniswerf in this respect.

HZ Catering

HZ catering is in-house and is the first corporate caterer in the Netherlands to be Green Key (Gold) certified, due to its sustainability measures. From the HZ Green Office, students are closely involved in implementing improvements. They also work together with the HZ Vitality Manager. Lunches and drinks are vegetarian as standard, energy drinks have been removed from the range, there is soup from De Verspillingsfabriek, the range of salads has been expanded and fruit is mainly bought organically and locally.

The HZ combats waste; leftover food is handed out and the use of mugs is encouraged. The HZ separates its waste into four streams: plastic, paper, organic waste and residual. The coffee grounds are processed as compost in the HZ's Food Forest. Students grow oyster mushrooms on part of the coffee grounds.

HZ Green Office is an organisation of students and staff working together with internal and external partners to build a sustainable society. The Green Office organises weekly activities such as beach cleanups, and garden sessions in our student garden and our own HZ food forest and actions aimed at changing behaviour. The HZ itself and its surroundings serve as a living lab for working on sustainable innovation.

Read more >

SDG Events organises various events in collaboration with students, education and stakeholders, with one or more sustainable development goals as the central theme. The aim of the SDG Events is to be the connecting place in the region where practice, education and government come together for inspiration and awareness.

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