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1. Select a sustainable event venue

If you are not holding your event at the University of Basel then, in the search for a venue, you can assess a venue's alignment with certain sustainability criteria or specifically request fulfilment of these. Apart from ease of access by public transport or bicycle (see Mobility), you can also pay attention to the environmental management (e.g. electricity supply, heating, waste management) of a conference centre or hotel. Guidance is also provided through ISO 14001 certification, which ensures compliance with certain environmental requirements.

Further Information:


  • ISO 14001 - Information about Environmental Management Standard ISO 14000

2. Ensure accessibility

In order to select an accessible venue you should take the following criteria into account: doors easy to open and shut, toilets and sinks for the disabled available and preferably close by, ramps for wheelchairs should be at least 120 cm wide and should end at the same height as the entry, furnishings must allow sufficient space for passageways (not all those affected may necessarily wish to sit only in the first row), the buffet must also be accessible for wheelchair users. Signs and information boards should be mounted with their centre at an average viewing height of 130–140 cm.

Further Information

  • Service Centre for Study without Barriers - For further information on accessibility you are welcome to contact the Service Centre for Study without Barriers at the University of Basel. Contact: Patricia Winter, Tel. 061 267 17 19, patricia.winter-at-unibas.ch
  • Ramp-up.me - this website by the Sozialhelden (social heros) contains lots of information about how to ensure accessibility during events.

3. Consider waste management

In the first instance, always try to avoid waste (see links to waste-related tips). Where events are held on the premises of the University of Basel, the relevant building caretakers will look after the provision of adequate waste and recycling bins. If your event is taking place at a venue outside of the university, you should make arrangements with the appropriate service providers for adequate waste collection bins to be provided with clear (possibly multilingual) instructions regarding waste separation for recycling. Particularly at larger events with an international audience, you should encourage recycling and possibly make people aware of this at key locations.

Further Information

  • For events held at the “Kollegienhaus”, you can contact the Building Services Department (“Ressort BHTS”) regarding questions on the topic of waste disposal: bhts-at-unibas.ch

4. Sensible ventilation and heating

Try to create a comfortable indoor climate at the venue, as well as reducing energy consumption, by avoiding excessively warm rooms in winter or excessively cool in summer. In cold weather, ventilate by fully opening windows hourly for a short and intense air exchange, rather than leaving the windows continuously in the tilted open position. Also ensure that windows in unoccupied rooms are closed and the doors are not left continuously open. It is important that you make those using the rooms, such as staff and guest speakers, aware of these measures. To achieve a comfortable and energy saving indoor climate in rooms with air conditioning at the university, you can contact the relevant building caretakers at the Building Services Department (“Ressort BHTS”).

Further Information

  • For events held at the “Kollegienhaus”, you can contact the Building Services Department (“Ressort BHTS”) regarding questions on the topic of ventilation and heat: bhts-at-unibas.ch

5. Save electricity during the event

At the event venue you can also save energy by turning off electrical equipment, such as projectors and laptops, during the breaks and avoid using stand-by mode. If you are able to choose equipment yourself (e.g. renting a sound system) then you should select energy efficient options. Also pay attention to switching the lights off in the rooms during breaks and after sessions and let your staff and guest speakers know that this should be done.

Further Information

  • topten.ch (in German) - The information portal for energy-efficient electrical appliances will show you the most efficient appliances in each product category.

6. Decorate environmentally friendly

When it comes to decorations, try to choose sustainable products. You can, for instance, use potted flowers for decoration that can be distributed amongst staff or visitors after the event. With cut flowers you should look for the Bio-Bud (“Bio-Knospe”) label or choose regional providers, so as to avoid long distance transportation.

Further Information

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