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RCE Network

Scotland’s Regional Centre of Expertise on ESD officially acknowledged by the United Nations University

Scotland’s Regional Centre of Expertise on ESD officially acknowledged by the United Nations University

Regional Centres of Expertise (RCEs) were identified in response to the UN Decade on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)  (2005 -2014) as a mechanism to encourage development and strengthening of ESD practice across a defined region. Recognised through the United Nations University (UNU), an RCE is a network of formal, non-formal and informal education organisations, working  together to create solutions to sustainability challenges through dialogue, education and learning.

The UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005 – 2014 (UNDESD) influenced many LfS initiatives in Scotland – showcasing Scotland as a leader in the sector across the UK and globally. Following on from the UNDESD, the LfS community worked together to apply to the United Nations University to become a Regional Centre of Expertise. After being accepted in December 2012, Learning for Sustainability Scotland – Scotland’s RCE – officially launched on 19 November 2013 following eighteen months of planning and collaborating.  

Upon the completion of the DESD in 2014, RCEs are committed to further generating, accelerating and mainstreaming ESD by implementing the Global Action Programme (GAP) on ESD , and contributing to the realisation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

You can read our application to become an RCE here.

UK & Europe

Learning for Sustainability Scotland is one of a number of Regional Centres of Expertise across the UK and Europe.

With strong links to other existing and emerging RCEs across the UK and Europe, RCE Scotland regularly participates in events organised to further global collaboration between RCEs.

In June 2017, RCE Scotland (LfS Scotland) hosted the meeting of the UK Regional Centres of Expertise. You can read all about it here.

Details of European conferences can be found here.


As of December 2020, 175 RCEs have officially been acknowledged by the United Nations University worldwide. The Global RCE Service Centre is headquartered at UNU-IAS, where it provides assistance to individual RCEs and facilitates their communication and networking.

Global RCE Bulletins can be found here.

In 2021, COP26 is coming to Glasgow. Ahead of this, RCE Scotland is hosting two global webinars (4th February and 8th June) and the 12th Global RCE Conference from 16-18 November, which will take place online due to the ongoing COVID pandemic. Please click on the hyperlinks for more details.

Youth Coordination Network

Learning for Sustainability Scotland is an open network, acknowledged by the UN University as Scotland’s Regional Centre of Expertise (RCE) in Education for Sustainable Development. The Global RCE Network recently asked all RCEs to nominate a Youth Coordinator to help engage “youth” with the networks (by which they mean under 35!), and two of our Steering Group Members, Laura Curtis-Moss and Rebecca Petford, stepped forward to be Co-Coordinators for Scotland’s RCE.

Our Youth Network aims to offer events and opportunities which will encourage students and young professionals (aged around 18-35) who are interested in sustainability to engage with Learning for Sustainability Scotland. If you fall in to this age range, or work with people who do, or feel particularly young at heart, then please do join our Network!

You can email us to ask any questions or share your ideas. We would love to hear from you about what you would like from the Youth Network.