Sustainable Procurement

Sustainable procurement is the process of acquiring goods and services that:

  • Meet users’ needs

  • Deliver long term value for money

  • Maximise social and economic benefits

  • Minimise damage to the environment and health

(Forum for the Future - Buying a Better World, 2007)

Sustainable Procurement Strategy

The University’s Sustainable Procurement Strategy requires Procurement Services to:

  • Embed sustainable procurement within the University’s purchasing procedures, practices, and policies.
  • Review all negative and positive environmental, social and financial impacts before commencing a tender exercise, and incorporate relevant sustainability requirements into the specification, assessment criteria, and contract performance/clauses where possible.
  • Work with the University’s contracted suppliers to manage negative sustainability impacts and realise positive sustainability benefits of contracts.
  • Provide training, guidance and tools to University staff so they can comply with and support the Sustainable Purchasing Policy.

Flexible Framework

The University uses the Sustainable Procurement Flexible Framework to measure and monitor progress on its sustainable procurement actions over time.

The Flexible Framework is a widely used self-assessment mechanism developed by the business-led Sustainable Procurement Task Force, which allows organisations to measure and monitor their progress on sustainable procurement over time.

Following an externally verified review in July 2016 the University was deemed to be operating at Level 4 of the DEFRA Flexible Framework.


For further information please visit the University Procurement Team website.