Professor in Biosciences working on plants, Malaysia campus 

The University has a strong research portfolio in the fields of environment and sustainability, both in the UK and at our overseas campuses. Research centres and projects include:


Global research themes

The University has established Global research themes to grow and deliver an influential amount of world-class research and knowledge transfer addressing global issues and challenges. The five themes are:


Crops for the Future

Professor of Tropical Agronomy Plant and Crop Sciences, Sayed Azam-Ali.

Crops for the future is an international organisation dedicated to neglected and under-utilised crops. Opened in 2008, it is a joint venture hosted in Malaysia by The University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus and Bioversity International.

Crops for the future supports, collects, synthesizes and promotes knowledge on neglected and under-utilised species for the benefit of the poor and the environment.

Its activities are arranged into three major strategic objectives:

  • increasing the knowledge base for under-utilised crops ─ especially regarding sustained market access, nutritional security and health and climate change
  • identifying and advocating necessary policy change to promote the use of under-utilised crops
  • fostering capacity building about under-utilised crops


Creative Energy Homes

Mark Group ecohouse 

The University has built a number of real homes to conduct research into energy efficiency and low / zero-carbon housing. Working with various industry sponsors, the Creative Energy Homes showcase innovative energy-efficient homes of the future on a real street - Green Close - on the University Park Campus. 

Residents, mainly researchers working at the University, are tracked to see how they use the new technologies and how their lifestyles impact on energy use. Each house is different, allowing researchers to test different aspects of modern methods of construction.

Find out more about research on 'hard to treat, hard to heat' properties - making existing homes more energy efficient.  



Energy Technologies Research Institute

 member of staff conducting research in chemical technology

The Energy Technologies Research Institute (ETRI) is our world-leading, interdisciplinary energy research hub. It brings together over a hundred engineers, chemists, physicists, bioscientists and social scientists, who are collaborating with big-name companies.

Whether creating hydrogen fuel cells for cars or turning waste crops into fuel, our scientists’ collective goal is to create the technologies that will change the way we use and reuse energy and, ultimately, work towards a sustainable future.

Research areas include:

  • carbon abatement in clean fossil energy
  • energy vectors and storage
  • renewable energy
  • low-energy buildings
  • electrical grids
  • environment, policy and society


Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies

CSET Building with flowers and solar panels

The Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies, located at The University of Nottingham's Ningbo Campus in China, is led by the Department of Built Environment. It is designed to serve as a model building that demonstrates state-of-the-art techniques for environmentally responsible, sustainable construction.

The building aims to:

  • minimise its environmental impact by promoting energy efficiency
  • generate its own energy from renewable sources
  • use materials with low embodied energy
  • store rainwater and re-use grey water where appropriate
  • attempt to develop its own ecology and biodiversity within the site

The focus of research at the Centre is new and renewable energy systems and components for both domestic and non-domestic buildings.



Sustainability Team

Estate Office, University Park, Nottingham, NG7 2RD