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ON THE PATH TO SUSTAINABILITY IN THE CERAMIC CLUSTER: EFFORTS FROM HIGHER EDUCATION

Today more than ever, and as the COVID-19 crisis has shown, climate change and the environmental deterioration of the planet, people's health and social inequality, are among the greatest challenges for governments, companies and civil society.

In the framework of the transition towards the challenges of sustainability, the International Labor Organization (ILO) in its recent report "Skills for a greener future: a global vision" has estimated that, by 2030, almost 25 million jobs will be created and a massive investment in training will be required for workers to acquire the professional skills necessary to fill these new job positions. Increasing investment in training people is one of the main worldwide measures to generate growth, equality and sustainability for present and future generations.

Training people on sustainability topics, now more than ever, is key to facing the future of the planet and society, as well as a strategic line of action for the survival, adaptation and development of organizations.

In this context, our research group at Universitat Jaume I have developed a project, with the Valencia Region's government Department of Sustainable Economy, Productive Sectors, Trade and Labor, with the focus on the promotion of sustainability practices for the business integrating the ceramic cluster, one of the most important clusters in the Castellón province. One of the actions related to the specific objectives of this project was the development of a virtual conference, where experts in sustainability issues (lecturers, managers, etc.), addressed different aspects of this topic, making a special focus on the contingent aspects defining the ceramic sector.

Attendants of this journey were sustainability and social responsibility managers of ceramic companies, lecturers and students of the degrees related to business management, which are potential employees of these ceramic businesses. We carry out an online survey to these attendants about awareness of the business opportunities opened up by sustainability practices and greater disclosure, specific sustainability-related topics on which attendants would have liked more information, and overall satisfaction with the conference topics.

The results of this survey will be presented and suggest future avenues for carrying out actions that contribute to the knowledge on the management of environmental sustainability, social impact and good governance and corporate transparency.