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Industry, unions and universities must respond to students

When studentmanifestet for the climate was launched in Sweden, the same day that the climate conference COP24 started in earnest in Katowice, it is a wide appeal, which we welcome. Student organizations from universities and colleges from Luleå in the north to Lund and Malmö in the south are participating, with students from the most diverse disciplines. We also see the tone as more positive and better inclusive – it is the employers who are challenged, not the companies, the business or the market economy.

We will follow up on the manifest at three levels:

A responsible business should receive the manifest with open arms, and especially appreciate that it is not business as such that is questioned, but its impact on the climate. In our very extensive contacts with the business community, including twinning projects, working groups, programme committee and board of directors, is the evidence clearer and clearer that the potential workers are now asking very sharp questions about what the climate goals the business has and what concrete work is carried out to reach them. Individual companies have long since demonstrated high climate ambitions and strong implementation, individually as a response to the zero carbon Sweden's challenges or by entering into associations as the haga initiative or 2030 secretariat.

All the business organisations in the Nordic countries have agreed that the EUROPEAN union should tighten climate change targets to 2050, and the confederation of Swedish Enterprise and the Entrepreneurs now have a unique chance to highlight the responsibility and leadership in climate change also on the home front.

Guess the studentmanifestets challenge?

At this year's climate summit in Poland, trade unions have taken an important step forward, and they are quite right to fight for that the conversion does not affect already vulnerable in the labour market. LO has also been very clear that they see the value of Sweden goes ahead in the change and be the example other countries are looking for – it is good for the environment and it strengthens Sweden's competitiveness and create jobs.

But this insight seems to have disappeared when it comes time for the wage bargaining rounds in which the last then a hundred in his pay envelope is still in focus. Studentmanifestet signals that future workers have broader priorities than that.

When will the unions push the responsibility for the climate as part of what workers are calling for, in line with the studentmanifestets challenge?

A rapidly increasing number of students places demands on their future employers to take greater responsibility for the climate. Many of them are graduate students or will in some other way to get the right university or college as future employers, which means that the requirements is also addressed to the right the higher education community. In addition, should, of course, the higher the universities respond to the focus on the workplace as students are demanding wherever they want to turn after studies.

We have a recurring, not least here on DN Debate, received the testimony that högskolelagens requirement to promote a sustainable development not at all adhered to in a sufficient degree, despite the fact that the requirement has been in existence for ten years.

Can universities and higher education institutions to sharpen their work to clear beyond what the law requires by adopting studentmanifestets challenge?

Studentmanifestet is limited to just students. It is wise, and the signal is important: Their ability to innovate, drive and skills will only benefit that is a part of the to cope with the climate challenge. We expect that employers, trade unions and institutions of higher education respond to students in terms of the climate, because climate benefits, and the custom of the proceeds goes hand-in-hand.

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