COVID-19 and Building Back Responsibly

The impact of Covid-19 has been unprecedented, not just in the tragic impact on lives, or the disproportional impact it has had on the most disadvantaged communities, but also in terms of what we have seen can be achieved. As lockdown restrictions ease and we all negotiate living in a ‘new normal’ we must not lose the opportunity to understand what factors made change happen at a pace previously unimaginable, and apply this to address the underlying inequalities and climate challenges that existed before Covid-19 that it has so dramatically highlighted. To drive this, Business in the Community has spent the last month in conversation with over 100 business leaders and a further 500 practitioners and partners to understand what Covid-19 has taught us about how we could turn ambitions into action. Now is our moment to not simply slip back to a new normal, seeing the last few months as a series of heroic acts, but instead to seize the opportunity to accelerate action. Join us to hear and share your thoughts with a diverse panel of business game changers on their experiences and reflections, and how they plan to take these actions forward in their businesses to Build Back Responsibly.

Responsible Innovation Framework

This webinar marks the launch of Business in the Community’s Responsible Innovation methodology, including a panel of expert innovators. Every company is innovating daily just to stay ahead, and even more so as we look to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. But to what extent are the impacts of these innovations on our communities and environment considered? This year has seen Business in the Community develop and pilot a new approach to responsible innovation, which enables innovators to identify and mitigate unintended consequences and capitalize on opportunities to support our communities, protect our environment and meet the Global Goals. Responsible innovation has been shown to reduce risk and bring cost reductions, improved brand value, increased resilience, enhanced employee, customer and supplier relationships, and ultimately, more innovation. By joining this webinar, you will receive the tools needed to put the Responsible Innovation Framework into practice within your businesses. There will also be opportunities to collaborate and innovate responsibly together.

For more information, contact Elena Perez, Events Manager at BITC, Elena.Perez@bitc.org.uk.

Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data’s Fifth Anniversary Town Hall

Our fifth anniversary is coming up and we’re getting ready to celebrate. On September 25, we’re hosting a virtual gathering to launch the publication of our five-year report, to reflect on progress since our founding in 2015, and most importantly, to hear from you. We want to hear about your favorite data memories, some of the biggest challenges you’ve worked through, the biggest difference in SDG data that you see now versus five years ago, and we want your input on what the next five years should look like.

Have something to share? Send us an email, tweet it with #Data4SDGsAt5, and/or come to the townhall. We’ll see you online.

Global Blockchain Business Council’s Blockchain Central UNGA

The Global Blockchain Business Council’s (GBBC) Blockchain Central UNGA will bring together leading voices in technology, policy, and business to discuss the role of technology and community in accelerating progress toward achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

This year’s Blockchain Central UNGA will be entirely virtual, open to the public, and live-streamed, allowing stakeholders and citizens across the globe to tune into thought provoking discussions, fireside chats, and presentations on the issues our global community is tackling to create a more secure, equitable, and functional societies for all.

Keynote Speakers:
Akon, Grammy-nominated Artist, Producer, Tech Entrepreneur

Megan Roberts, Deputy Director of Policy Planning, UN Foundation

Superintendent Linda Lacewell, NYS Department of Financial Services

David Treat, GBBC Board Chair; Senior Managing Director & Head of Accenture’s Blockchain Business

Leanne Kemp, Founder & CEO, Everledger; Chief Entrepreneur, Queensland, Australia

Charles Sims, Head of Technology, LA Clippers

Nature for Life Hub: Part 1

To coincide with the 75th UN General Assembly, UNDP and partners are creating a four-day “Nature for Life Hub”- a virtual space where global leaders will share stories on the importance of nature for sustainable development. Leaders participating in the ‘Nature for Life Hub’ will invite a virtual audience to engage in lively, thought-provoking exchanges, and will engage a wide variety of sectors, including governments, businesses, financial institutions, youth and local communities. All events will showcase nature-based solutions in policy, in practice, in communities, in art – but most of all, in action. 

Sept 24, DAY 1 – SDG DAY: Celebrating the value of nature in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

Sept 25, DAY 2 – BUSINESS AND FINANCE DAY – Greening our wallet in development, finance and business.

Each day will culminate in key messages to be issued by the coalition of partners to be fed into the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework negotiation process, CBD COP 15 and Climate COP 26 negotiation processes. 

Nature for Life Hub: Part 2

To coincide with the 75th UN General Assembly, UNDP and partners are creating a four-day “Nature for Life Hub”- a virtual space where global leaders will share stories on the importance of nature for sustainable development. Leaders participating in the ‘Nature for Life Hub’ will invite a virtual audience to engage in lively, thought-provoking exchanges, and will engage a wide variety of sectors, including governments, businesses, financial institutions, youth and local communities. All events will showcase nature-based solutions in policy, in practice, in communities, in art – but most of all, in action. 

Sept 28, Day 3 – GLOBAL AMBITION DAY: A planetary response to our planetary emergency.

Sept 29, Day 4 – COMMUNITY DAY: Celebrating the power of local action, and the role of indigenous peoples and local communities in our planetary response.

Each day will culminate in key messages to be issued by the coalition of partners to be fed into the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework negotiation process, CBD COP 15 and Climate COP 26 negotiation processes. 

Business Fights Poverty NYC Online 2020

Join us for a week of inspiring and engaging content, live events, peer networking, and community-led learning to drive connections, conversations, and collaboration around how we rebuild better after the pandemic. The event will explore how business and its partners can help create an equitable and resilient future, and each day we will deep-dive into a specific theme:

  • Imagining the Future We Want (Monday);
  • Creating an Equitable World (Tuesday);
  • Helping People Survive and Thrive (Wednesday);
  • Building Resilient Livelihoods (Thursday);
  • Shaping System-Level Partnerships (Friday).

The event is co-hosted with AB InBev and Visa, and a range of supporting partners, including Anglo American, Mars, Nestlé, and Standard Chartered. Content partners include Harvard Kennedy School Corporate Responsibility Initiative, the UN Office for Partnerships, WBCSD, Business in the Community, The Partnering Initiative, and the League of Intrapreneurs.

Roundtable: Driving leadership action to Build Back Responsibly

With COVID-19 impacting the world over, the 75th United Nations General Assembly Week (UNGA) will be a key moment in the 2020 calendar for the world to focus on social and environmental challenges and accelerate collaborations to meet the Global Goals.

This roundtable is part of a series of virtual events, which Business in the Community (BITC) is running to elevate the conversation and drive action on how business can Build Back Responsibly.

Over the last month, we have been in conversation with over 100 business leaders and a further 500 practitioners and partners, to understand what Covid-19 has taught us about how we could turn ambitions into action. Now is our moment to not simply slip back to a new normal, seeing the last few months as a series of heroic acts, but instead to seize the opportunity to accelerate action. So to coincide with this year’s United Nations General Assembly week, we will be bringing together influential business leaders across our network to create faster, bolder, bigger action.

This event is by invite only. For more information, contact Elena Perez, BITC’s Events Manager, at Elena.Perez@bitc.org.uk

SDG Moment

Convened by the UN Secretary-General, the SDG Moment consists of a three-hour virtual meeting with Heads of State and Government and SDG partners. The meeting will seek to strengthen accountability and create a sense of urgency, ambition and transformative possibility around the Decade of Action. It will also serve to underscore the importance of the 2030 Agenda as the north star for the COVID-19 response and recovery. The meeting will place a strong emphasis on priorities relating to poverty and inequality; climate change and nature; and gender equality, while cross-cutting issues such as finance, human rights and technology will be considered throughout.

CFA Society New York Global Policymaker Series

A webinar and in-person series featuring perspectives from current and former policymakers, in addition to senior think tank and practitioner representatives with valuable policy insights, by CFA Society New York, sponsored by CFA Institute, and presented in partnership with the Foreign Policy Association.

Global Policymakers Series (GPS) is a collection of exclusive events that convene current and former policymakers, in addition to senior think tank representatives with valuable policy insights, for technical discussions concerning the impact of regulatory, multilateral, fiscal and monetary policies on financial markets and the global economy. GPS launched in June 2020 owing to the critical role policy decisions were playing on investment performance in light of COVID-19.

Monetary and fiscal policy response were taken to unprecedented levels during the Great Recession. The policy response to the financial stresses brought by COVID-19 is likely to exceed the response during the Great Recession. Longer-term, global public pension underfunding, increasing sovereign debt levels, entitlement underfunding and the risks presented to some sectors by technological innovations may require even larger policy responses. GPS will dig deep into these topics and go well beyond the headlines and political noise that obscure real debate and analysis.

Making Global Goals Local Business: Getting Started

Our Getting Started webinar is aimed specifically at businesses that are trying to develop a better understanding of the SDGs, and how they relate to their work.

This 1-hour webinar will discuss what the SDGs are, demonstrate why business should be engaged, and present practical guidance on how to get involved. The second half of the webinar will take the form of a Q&A session and open discussion.

FEMROOT Africa: The Importance of Females in Science, Tech, and Innovation in the African Context

This roundtable discussion will highlight the importance of science, technology and innovation (STI) in an African context, indicating how these are the driving forces in the economic growth of especially in developing nations. This discussion will also point out the need for women to be a part of this conversation, as it will be facilitated by women in engineering, thus indicating the importance of diverse team in the tech industry. All these discussion points will be dwelling on SDGs 4 and 5 (Access to Quality Education and Gender Equality), which ultimately feed into the achievement SDGs 1, 2, 8, 9 (No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Decent Work & Economic Growth, Industry, Innovation, & Infrastructure).

Youth SDG Summit

As the largest youth generation in history, it’s time to step up. The 2030 Agenda clearly applies to all of the world’s 1.2 billion young people, who currently make up 16 per cent of the global population—and to the 1.3 billion young people who will call the world home by the year 2030.

During the 75th anniversary of the United Nations’ General Assembly, we are calling on youth around the world to action to acknowledge the work being done already for the Global Goals, and the work that is still left to be done. We are hosting the Youth SDG Summit to empower young leaders to continue their work toward the Global Goals. The Youth SDG Summit is invitation only.

The theme of day 1 of the Youth SDG Summit is For People.
The theme of day 2 is the Youth SDG Summit is For Planet.

Wiki Loves SDGs Edit-a-thon

Project Everyone is organising a week-long edit-a-thon where volunteers from around the world will come together to create new Wikipedia articles for the Global Goals and improve existing pages. The aim of this is to create a buzz around the Goals, mobilise a global community and democratise knowledge.

Global Goals Day of Factivism

We need accurate data to help us understand the state of our world, know how much progress we need to make and see the impacts of COVID-19.

For 25 September, the five year anniversary of the Global Goals, Project Everyone is organising the Global Goals Day of Factivism. On this day, we will share ten up to date facts about the state of our world right now and inspire people to take action from supporting campaigns to changing their habits.

High-level meeting to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the UN

UN Member States agreed in June 2019 that the UN will mark its 75th anniversary with a one-day, high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly on Monday, 21 September 2020 on the theme, ‘The Future We Want, the UN We Need: Reaffirming our Collective Commitment to Multilateralism’. They also planned to convene a Youth Plenary related to the 75th anniversary, and to hold observance ceremonies to commemorate the signing of the UN Charter on 26 June 2020 and UN Day on 24 October 2020.

The declaration that will be adopted at the high-level meeting on 21 September was agreed in July 2020. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this event will take place primarily in a virtual format, with pre-recorded statements by heads of state and government. 

Premiere of “Nations United: Urgent Solutions for Urgent Times”

“Nations United: Urgent Solutions for Urgent Times” sets out what must be done to tackle the world’s biggest issues, from COVID to poverty, inequality, gender discrimination, climate change, justice and human rights. It is the first film of its kind to be broadcast globally and is premiering on the United Nations YouTube channel.

This film is produced by 72 Films and writer, director and UN Sustainable Development Goals Advocate Richard Curtis. The broadcast of this film will also mark the UN’s 75th anniversary, as well as the 5th anniversary of the Sustainable Development Goals.

From Global Vision to Local Action: Connecting Waste-Pickers in Ghana to a Global Marketplace for Plastic

Ghana is one of many countries where a vibrant ecosystem of waste pickers is critical to keeping the country clean, but where the system operates “below the radar,” limiting pickers’ capacity to connect to potential buyers and recyclers. As part of the World Economic Forum’s Global Plastic Action Partnership (GPAP), an innovative pilot project is bringing together the Government of Ghana, SAP and other GPAP partners to leverage IT to create transparency in the value chain, ensure pickers earn fairer wages, and ensure that companies and consumers know when they are accessing premium “social plastics” to better protect communities and the environment. This session will focus on how to initiate and implement innovative solutions in local communities and foster discussions on what corporate, government and NGO partnerships need to do to have true global impact.

Multilateralism Reimagined: Towards a UN and multilateral system that is more democratic, rules-based and inclusive

As the world is fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, we see heightened global insecurity and anxiety. International cooperation is under severe strain due to heightened geopolitical tensions and rivalry. The rules-based order upon which the UN Charter was conceived is being challenged. Our UN, and the multilateral system more broadly, needs to answer to the real anxieties of people with practical responses.

To solve the global challenges of our times – from COVID-19 to climate change, raging conflicts and unchecked technological advances – we need more inclusive international cooperation rather than a regression to narrow nationalism. The SDGs are our common road map for the future we want. To realize the 17 SDGs we need stronger partnerships and deeper involvement from civil society, the private sector, trade unions, local governments and other relevant stakeholders. This message emerged loud and clear from the UN75 global consultation.

Through a multi-stakeholder discussion with the private sector, academia, the UN, youth and civil society, speakers will explore ideas and thoughts on how these stakeholders can participate in and reshape the multilateral system to deliver better on the SDGs.