Group portrait. The 3rd Worldwide Meeting of National Young Academies of Science took place in Johannesburg, South Africa, on 20 to 21 July 2017, hosted by The South African Young Academy of Science (SAYAS) and co-organised by the Global Young Academy. Photo: SAYAS
At the Third Worldwide Meeting of Young Academies in Johannesburg, South Africa this summer, discussions were held about how Young Academies can contribute to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. This resulted in a joint statement suggesting that Young Academies can and should play a central role in conceptualizing, developing and implementing strategies to achieve the Global Goals.
Members Robert Lagerström, Associate Professor in Information systems architecture at KTH Royal Institute of Technology (far left), and Helena Filipsson, Professor in Quaternary geology at Lund University (third from the right), represented Young Academy of Sweden at the World Wide Meeting of Young Academies.
The joint statement underlines the role of science and research in achieving the goals of sustainability and poverty reduction. Young Academies are particularly well placed to contribute interdisciplinary science advice to Goals implementation: they are typically not working in disciplinary silos.
Young Academies are also well prepared in science communication and outreach activities. By engaging with schools and universities on the Global Goals, they can reach out to the next generation of future scientists. Moreover, Young Academies can assist the media in building science literacy on the Global Goals and by contributing to science articles in the popular media and online.
An important part of the work of Young Academies is making the Global Goals more familiar to our members. Helping each other to gain a better understanding of policymaking processes and evidence-based policymaking, as well as how to apply the UN policy framework to joint collaboration in the field of Global Goals implementation and monitoring, will provide important science policy competence building.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a set of 17 Global Goals, which are measured by progress against 169 targets. The SDGs cover a broad range of social issues like poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, gender equality and social justice.
On 25 September 2015, the 193 countries of the UN General Assembly adopted the 2030 Development Agenda titled “Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. Paragraph 51 outlines the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the associated 169 targets.