The Global Goals Charter kicked-off 2016 by a succesful meeting on Monday the 25th of January hosted by Worldconnectors and Rabobank. Here’s a summary of the highlights:
As an introduction, Worldconnector Herman Mulder opened the meeting to kick-off the Global Goals Charter for 2016.
Business is one of the key players in achieving the Global Goals, was a key message in the contribution of Peter Bakker, President and CEO of WBCSD (World Business Council for Sustainable Development). He explained how the Global Goals stand for a radical transformation that make every country in the world a developing country. There are three major issues that should be confronted directly: food (in 2050 there are approximately 10 billion people), cities (in 2030 70% of the population lives in cities) and energy. The LCTPI (Low Carbon Technology Partnerships Initiative) can address a large share of the Global Goals, whilst addressing food loss and waste can take up another large part of the solution. Interestingly, despite our perception that the Netherlands does not undertake sufficient action regarding sustainable development, we are number 7 on the global scale of ‘sustainable readiness.’
Christiaan Rebergen, Deputy Director General at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Department of International Cooperation, reflected on the perspective of the government in achieving the Global Goals. He pointed out that the Global Goals are aspirational, as they do not merely concern developing countries but are also a vital guidance for us in the Netherlands. The Department plans to write a note to the parliament on the Global Goals, set an agenda with 10 concrete actions, build on the presence of the EU in Amsterdam and work together with NGOs and businesses (in the Netherlands and Europe). He explained that the Global Goals agenda should not only be a governmental agenda and that the contribution of business and civil society are essential. In light of this, he regards the Global Goals Charter as a valuable initiative.
From an NGO perspective, Bart Romijn, Director of Partos, indicated that by creating an image of what will happen if we achieve the Global Goals, they will truly come alive. He also reminded us that we should not forget about the so-called “elephants in the room”: such as subsidies for fossil, tax evasion and weapons. However, thankfully, there are many great initiatives – also from business forerunners – that break through. He saw potential in the Charter and explained how important a joint perspective is from civil society, business, financial institutions, government and academia.
Adrian de Groot Ruiz, member of Worldconnectors and executive director of True Price, explained the journey of the Global Goals Charter so far since 2014. He emphasized that the Charter aims to bring together three persons that can help achieve the Global Goals: the problem owner, the solution provider and the financier. He also presented the Charter workplan, currently in progress, in which the actions taken thus far will be concretized. The workplan contains the objective of the Charter, which is to create an enabling environment for joint action by business, civil society and governments. It proposes four workstreams:
(i) coordinate societal contributions to the Global Goals,
(ii) enable Global Goals Solution partnerships,
(iii) share knowledge and scale up, and
(iv) communicate about the progress.
Governance will be covered by a steering board, which consists of representatives from business, civil society, academia and government. In addition, a secretariat, operations group and communications group will execute activities, track progress and communicate. The next step is finalizing the workplan during which the signatories of the Charter will be consulted in the coming months.
Lastly, Magnus Magnusson, Head of Government Relations Northern Europe at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, reflected on the Global Goals and the Charter from the Foundation’s perspective. He explained the main focus of the Foundation on three dimensions of living: food, health and safety. By investing in innovation, knowledge sharing and especially data, the Foundation aims to achieve, where possible, measurable social change. This is in line with the Global Goals agenda and the partnerships supported in the Netherlands.
1. As follow-up of this kick-off we will finalize the workplan. To do so, we will consult a variety of stakeholders from business, civil society and government, and of course you, the Charter signatories.
2. DSM is seeking partners to form a Food & Nutrition platform under the Global Goals Charter. If you are interested in joining this stream, please contact Alba Tiley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us in case you have any questions or would like to discuss opportunities for collaboration.