How Science Can Tackle the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Sep 25, 2019

In our newest blog post, Lindau Alumnus Samer Kurdi has a few suggestions how scientists can help tackle the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals: 

The keynote address during the #LINO19 opening ceremony by Nobel Laureate Brian Schmidt was entitled “Big Questions for Society, Big Questions for Research”, and was something that stayed with me throughout the week.

Schmidt spoke of political instability and uncertainties, technological advancement at an unprecedented scale, and unsustainable use of the Earth’s resources. And it is not just Schmidt who is talking about these challenges facing the world today.

In 2015, world leaders from 193 member states of the United Nations agreed to 17 goals for us all to strive towards for a better world by 2030. These goals have 262 corresponding targets, and 169 indicators – each of them aimed at ending hunger, fighting inequality and stopping climate change and collectively forming the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The goals provide a framework for us all – in governments, businesses, the civil society and general public – to work together to build – or at least preserve – a better planet and future life for everyone. These goals are unique in that they call on all countries: rich, poor, big, small, to work towards them. They are also exceptional as they recognise the importance of all industries and sectors in their success, and for us, this means that science and scientists must play a key part if the goals are to be achieved.

 

I believe the following three areas could be used to tackle the Sustainable Development Goals from a scientific perspective: curiosity and the quest for new innovation, embedding sustainable practices and materials, and effective communication.

Find his full article on our blog. 

What do you think is the best way to work towards the Sustainable Development Goals? Are they achievable at all?


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