Global Councils on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The Global Councils on SDGs is a unique interdisciplinary network of decision makers from governments, international organizations, academia, and the private sector, who came together to share innovative practices and discuss the creative implementation of the SDGs at the national and global level. Based at the World Government Summit, the Councils aimed to work on creating new partnerships between countries, organizations, and sustainable development advocates for the implementation of SDGs.

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The World Government Summit is a neutral, non-profit organization at the intersection of government & innovation. It functions as a knowledge exchange platform for leaders in the public and private sectors to convene and collaborate with world-renowned experts in creating positive impact for citizens around the world.

The Global Councils on Sustainable Development Goals was launched as a cross collaborative project between the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre (FCSC) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) during the 'SDGs in Action' platform held at the World Government Summit (WGS) in 2018. The initiative aims to give visibility to the best approaches and ideas vetted by practitioners.

The Global Councils on SDGs is a unique interdisciplinary network of decision makers from governments, international organizations, academia, and the private sector, who came together from 2018 to 2020 to share innovative practices and discuss the creative implementation of the SDGs at the national and global level. During the Councils' two-year work plan, the network aimed to work on creating new partnerships between countries, organizations, & sustainable development advocates for the implementation of SDGs through the discussion of innovative solutions.

The objectives of the Councils were the following:
1. Identify factors which are inhibiting progress towards particular SDGs;
2. Find solutions to identified issues & develop a plan for the implementation of successful policies, programs, technologies and/or innovative service delivery mechanisms to resolve them;
3. Build a framework for knowledge sharing amongst multiple stakeholders, within and between countries, that will catalyse the Councils' vision of sustainability into the future.

The 'SDGs in Action' platform is a dedicated arena for experts in sustainable development and was one of the first global fora for the SDGs to be created in 2016. Since then, the platform grew to become synonymous with impact driven actions towards the SDGs. In 2018, the 12 Global Councils on SDGs were launched in an interdisciplinary network dedicated to promoting innovative thinking and creativity in the implementation of the SDGs and 2030 Agenda. In 2019, Leadership for achieving the goals, featured a combination of plenary sessions and Global Councils’ breakout sessions. It aimed to foster partnerships and cooperation among council members in their respective fields to support the implementation of specific goals. During December 2020, the first term of the Global Councils concluded under the theme “SDGs Global Councils: Preparing for the Decade of Action”, while the second term of the Global Councils on SDGs has been opened for self-nomination.

The 12 Global Councils on SDGs, each being chaired by a well-renowned figure, contributed to the global implementation of the SDGs. Their work plans had impact around the world – from creating multi-stakeholder platforms to enable the delivery of accessible, affordable & sustainable health solutions to ‘those left furthest behind’, to driving quality education through e-learning platforms for thousands of children, teachers, & indirect beneficiaries. Other Councils' work includes the development of ‘global best practices for gender balance (equality) tool kit’ led by the Vice-President of the UAE Gender Balance Council, Her Excellency Mona Al Marri, in collaboration with the OECD. Honourable Helen Clark, Former Prime Minister of New Zealand, led two distinctive programs called ‘Leadership4SDGs’, and Peace First. The former aims to support governments around the world to improve the delivery of SDGs using unique and peer-led leadership development programs, and the latter supporting a digital youth engagement platform to empower youth to create a just and peaceful world via digital tools, community support, start-up funding and more.

The second term of Global Councils on SDGs (2021-2023) opened in December 2020 with a call to self-nominations to the global society. Members from around the world nominated themselves to partake in the second term that will see a record number of Global Councils on SDGs drive impact towards the global goals. The formal inauguration will take place at the World Government Summit SDGs in Action platform, during Expo2020 Dubai. Expo2020 Dubai will commence on 1 October 2020, and close on 31 March 2021.

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