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Responsible Procurement

As well as financial implications, the procurement of goods and services is one of the most significant direct and indirect environmental and social impacts of the University. UCL recognises the need to help its communities make informed and sustainable purchases to address these impacts.

Therefore, one of the core aims in the Procurement Strategy is to embed sustainability into procurement practices. Environmental financial and social impacts will be considered in ALL procurement processes, whereby reducing negative impacts and enhancing positive impacts.

Responsible procurement will enable UCL’s Environmental Sustainability Strategy and will support the UCL 2034 institutional strategy, contributing to Delivering global impact, Financing our ambition and Delivering a sustainable Estate.


What we are doing:

  • Increasing engagement with our suppliers - through launching the Net Positive tool, developing tailored action plans for all suppliers. This will address Modern Day Slavery in our supply chains.
  • Developing a circular economy model – where reuse, repair and recycling is the norm, which will inform our procurement strategy.
  • Upskilling UCL staff to make more sustainable procurement decisions – by providing them with the tools do so. We are already developing training for procurement staff, and enabling collaborative work between procurement and sustainability to utilise different expertise.
  • Ensuring sustainability is considered in ALL purchases – primarily through contributing to tender specifications, developing policies and processes and creating buying standards.
  • Monitoring procurement for sustainability risk and opportunity, to prioritise action accordingly -we have performed a Defra prioritisation exercise, which evaluates UCL spend and identifies focus areas. Our NETpositive tool means we are addressing risk down our supply chains.

Find out how UCL is putting these responsible procurement principles into action and our vision for the future by visiting our Green UCL Procurement Page