The Natural Edge Project The Natural Advantage of Nations Whole System Design Factor 5 Cents and Sustainability Higher Education and Sustainable Development

"It is time that we made a stand and started spreading the message of how important SD is. We see that if our clients don't adopt sustainable principles then they will go out of business. If they go then we go to, enlightened self interest really. I am in wholehearted support of your book (The Natural Advantage of Nations) and see it as timely in its content and message."
Steve Gale, Australasian Sustainable Development Leader, Hatch Engineering




Cheryl Desha - Research Principal/ Lecturer

Dr Cheryl Desha is a lecturer in sustainable development at the Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering, Queensland University of Technology, and a Research Principal at The Natural Edge Project (TNEP), a non-profit partnership on research, education and strategy for innovation for sustainable prosperity.

Cheryl graduated in 1999 from Environmental Engineering at Griffith University (First Class Honours), receiving a University Medal and Environmental Engineering medal. She worked for consulting engineering firm Arup for four years, also undertaking work placement within the Queensland government. From 2004 Cheryl worked for Griffith University in formal collaboration with TNEP, as a lecturer in the School of Engineering and member of the Urban Research Program. In 2011 she moved to QUT as part of TNEP's transition to a new hosting arrangement.

Cheryl and the team from TNEP have developed a range of projects focused on education and training for sustainable development, including working with universities, professional bodies, government agencies, companies, schools and touring international keynote speakers. She is also a contributing author to The Natural Advantage of Nations (Earthscan, 2005), and co-author of Whole System Design (Earthscan, 2008), Factor 5 (Earthscan, 2009), and Cents & Sustainability (Earthscan, 2010).

In 2005 Cheryl was selected as the Engineers Australia Young Professional Engineer of the Year. In the same year, she was a member of the TNEP team which was announced winner of the prestigious Banksia Award for Environmental Leadership, Education and Training for The Natural Advantage of Nations, and the Engineering Sustainable Solutions Program. In 2010 she was awarded the university teaching medal for the Science, Environment, Engineering and Technology Group.

In the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014), Cheryl is focusing on developing TNEP initiatives related to rapidly transitioning engineering education to education for sustainability (EfS). In 2010 she completed her PhD on this topic at Griffith University, and is currently writing a guide book with co-author Charlie Hargroves on engineering education and sustainable development (EE&SD) including a model for rapid curriculum renewal. She also co-founded the Queensland node of the Sustainable Living Challenge at Griffith University in collaboration with the Port of Brisbane Corporation (2006-2008).

Cheryl’s career goal is to facilitate sustainable development by empowering society with emerging language, knowledge and skills related to achieving sustainable solutions. In particular she is committed to building capacity in biophilic urbanism (i.e. 'nature loving' development).

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Upcoming Text: EE&SD - A Guide to Rapid Curriculum Renewal