I was in Sydney on Monday to address the Annual Presidents’ Meeting of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities – a grouping of major centres of learning and research from right around the Pacific Rim. I spoke on the relevance of the SDGs to the Asia Pacific, noting that income inequality has been rising and that the “grow now, clean up later” approach to development has left the region with major environmental challenges. That makes a focus on SDG 10 on significantly reducing inequities and on the three environment SDGs on climate change and on ocean and land based ecosystems especially important.
I suggested that universities could help drive progress on the SDGs through their dedication to education (SDG 4), through cross disciplinary research to support meeting the complex and interlinked goals, through support for evidence-based policy making and monitoring and evaluation of progress, and through advocacy. Universities have high status in society, and their voices are listened to. <a href="APRU 26 June 2017APRU 26 June 2017
I was in Canberra in recent days for the Crawford Australian Leadership Forum held each year at the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University (ANU). My theme was on the leadership required to meet the challenges of achieving sustainable development. I commented on the role of leadership at all levels from global to national and local; on the need for leadership on Official Development Assistance and on supporting financing for development more generally; and on the roles of civil society and the private sector. I also elaborated on some of the obstacles to be overcome in order to reach the ambition of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Here’s the full text: http://www.anu.edu.au/news/all-news/rt-hon-helen-clark-the-leadership-we-need-sustainable-development-challenges
Statement at ESCAP panel 18 MAY BANGKOK
Today I was on a panel at ECOSOC in Bangkok, speaking on how the UN can support countries to implement the global and regional agendas. There are many synergies between these, and one hopes that the aspirations so firmly expressed in the 2030 Agenda will resonate with the regional integration agendas. It’s almost an understatement to talk about regional integration in the Asia Pacific when there are big trans-regional initiatives under way – China’s Belt and Road initiative is an obvious example. The Shanghai Co-operation Organisation also spans from Russia to the Far East and South Asia.
My key points – that there must be human development benefits for all living along the big corridors for transport and connectivity; and that the action lies at the national level for mainstreaming and prioritizing global and regional agendas. UN Country Teams will always be advocates for human development. Their work must be context specific to be relevant. See my statement – link above.