Green Team, Coursera’s new environmental impact Employee Resource Group (ERG), is excited to share resources that educate and promote awareness, increase sustainability, build resilience for communities and solidarity among colleagues, and provide the skills needed to address urgent environmental concerns within our communities and on a global scale.
Green Team launched in April of 2021 in recognition of Earth Day, with several initiatives and events focused on raising awareness of the issues facing our planet today. Our efforts ranged from partnering with our Social Impact team to donate over one thousand pieces of old swag to underserved high schools to hosting virtual events such as a guided tour of a sustainable farm, do-it-yourself “upcycling” workshops, gardening classes, a vegan cooking class, a nature wellness workshop, and a child-friendly event focusing on turtles in Costa Rica. As Coursera is a certified B-Corp, Green Team will also play an important role in maintaining and improving our environmental impact score.
Learn and Build Awareness – Courses to broaden your understanding
In addition to our other initiatives, we’re excited to highlight a special collection of courses for both the Coursera team and the global Coursera community so that we can all learn more about topics such as climate change, sustainability, and environmental and social justice to ethical management and corporate responsibility, resource management, and environmental law and policy.
Our Earth’s Future is about the science of climate change and how to talk about it. You will learn from scientists in the fields of climatology, oceanography, earth science, and anthropology who study how climate change is affecting people, populations, and ways of life. Upon completion of this course, you’ll have an understanding of key scientific principles and issues surrounding this important topic.
In this course, you’ll become familiar with the academic approach of sustainability. You’ll explore how today’s human societies can endure in the face of global change, ecosystem degradation, and resource limitations. The course focuses on key knowledge areas of sustainability theory and practice, including population, ecosystems, global change, energy, agriculture, water, environmental economics and policy, ethics, and cultural history.
In this course, you’ll develop an understanding of key challenges and pathways to sustainable development and economic development that is socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable.
Change and Make an Impact – Courses focused on enacting positive change
This course is intended to help you understand, address, and respond to climate change as individuals and in partnership with your communities and political leaders. You’ll focus on how to translate learning into action on climate change in the areas of food, energy, transportation, and the built environments of cities.
This course is built on the assumption that It is no longer acceptable for organizations to focus entirely on financial success if they are to be competitive on the global stage. As you advance through the curriculum, you’ll expand your strategic thinking beyond your organization’s competitive financial environment to consider its broader impact on society. Through a variety of structured learning activities, you will gain an appreciation of how important sustainability will be for every organization in the future—and how to achieve it.
Many experts believe that environmental law may be the one institution standing between us and planetary exhaustion. It is also an institution that needs to be reconciled with human liberty and economic aspirations. In this course, you’ll examine these issues as you explore existing policies and laws governing pollution, water law, endangered species, toxic substances, environmental impact analyses, and environmental risk.
Grow your Knowledge – Courses focused on specific areas of environmental concern
In this course, you’ll explore why climate change adaptation is important in the African context. Africa is considered to be one of the most vulnerable regions to climate change, and climate models suggest that many of these climatic hazards will intensify as the global climate warms. The course will examine adaptation in theory and in practice through a focus on four sectors that are critically important for climate-resilient development in Africa: Water Security, Agriculture and Food Security, Ecosystems, and Ecosystem Services and Resilient Cities.
The focus of this course is on the Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs) of the world. You’ll get introduced to the concept and practice of ecosystem-based management and explore how LMEs are globally linked. You’ll also examine the importance of managing human impact from a range of different industries. You’ll review examples of effective management at this scale and consider the challenges and issues in ways that will enable you to actively use this knowledge to advance the sustainable development of the world’s oceans.
About Green Team:
Green Team was founded by a group of passionate Courserians from around the world who seek to leverage their global perspectives towards the betterment of our environment.
Roshni Khanna Workplace and Employee Experience Manager (India) and Green Team ERG Chair
I joined Coursera in April 2019 and look after the India team including onboarding, events,and logistics. When I joined Coursera, we had 13 employees in India; we now have more than 80. I always wanted to do something for the environment and at Coursera I now have the opportunity to do so. I believe when we respect our environment, then we get protection from our surroundings. It is our collective and individual responsibility to preserve and tend our environment and work to make positive change. I believe now is the time to stand up and save the environment. The Green team ERG is a step towards addressing this global concern.
Ashley Sutherland Workplace and Employee Experience Manager (Canada) and Green Team ERG Co-Chair
I’ve been with Coursera since July 2019 and am based in Toronto, where I take care of our Canada team, including onboarding, events, and facilities. During this time, our Canada team has grown from 10 employees to over 140. I believe wholeheartedly in our vision of a world where anyone, anywhere has the power to transform their life through learning. I also believe that caring for the environment plays a key role. Protecting our planet is so important, especially when it comes to learning. We have always learned from nature. Without it, learning and knowledge—and human potential itself—suffer. Green Team connects all of us to the efforts of caring for our environment and to our shared purpose of transforming lives through learning.
Nidhi Manchanda Enterprise Implementation Manager (Product Services) and Green Team ERG Recruiting and Partnerships Lead
I joined Coursera in March 2020 and I am a part of the Enterprise Services team. I am a computer science graduate and have previously worked as a data analytics professional. I have had the opportunity to teach 7th and 8th graders in a public school in India and that was my first exposure to the development space. Being able to give back to society and helping others has been the guiding principle of my life and it is what keeps me motivated. I see Green Team as an opportunity to contribute to a cause that is increasingly becoming a global concern.
Jennifer Stutchbury Workplace and Employee Experience Manager (UK) and Green Team ERG Retention and Engagement Lead
I’ve been working for Coursera since June 2018, taking care of the UK team, including onboarding, events, and logistics. In this time we have moved the London office 3 times and seen our team go from 8 employees to over 130 (100 of whom have joined us remotely during the pandemic!) The environment is something I care deeply about, and the Green Team is a worldwide team effort to make Courserians conscious of climate change and what we can do to safeguard the home of wildlife and our own future generations.
Rich Jacquet Chief People Officer and Green Team ERG Executive Sponsor
I am the Chief People Officer and have been working for Coursera since January 2019. I have been fortunate to have a successful career shaping culture and employee experiences in several technology organizations. I joined Coursera because I wanted to play a part in building a great organization that is changing the world. I feel the same way about the Green Team. I am honored that the team asked me to be the sponsor and I am happy to be with them on our sustainability journey.50