25 September 2015 - 27 September 2015
New York, USA

UN Sustainable Development Summit and related events

IIASA, in collaboration with the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) will be involved in a series of important events in and around the United Nations Summit on Sustainable Development Goals.

© kasto | DollarPhotoClub

© kasto | DollarPhotoClub

In September 2015, the United Nations will convene to adopt the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which were designed as the follow-on to the Millennium Development Goals which concluded in 2015. 

IIASA researchers are working on wide-ranging research to support the SDG process, both in advance of and after the development of the goals, for example The World in 2050 project, and the Nexus Solutions for Sustainability project, both launched earlier this year. IIASA Director General and CEO Professor Dr. Pavel Kabat serves on the SDSN Leadership Council. He and IIASA leaders including Deputy Director General Nebojsa Nakicenovic and Special Adviser Chin Min Lee will participate in a number of meetings related to the SDGs surrounding the Sustainable Development Summit.

Kabat's week in New York will also include meetings with high level policymakers and leaders, as well as meetings focused on educational and research projects. On 26 September, Kabat will join IIASA Distinguished Visiting Fellows Jeffrey Sachs and Johan Rockström to discuss The World in 2050 project with Frans Timmermans, Vice President of the European Commission.

The SDSN is also organizing a number of public events in New York related to Sustainable Development. More information>>

IIASA participation in the sustainable development debate

23-24 September
3rd Annual International Conference on Sustainable Development

The Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the Global Association of Master’s in Development Practice (MDP) are hosting the 3rd Annual International Conference on Sustainable Development on September 23-24, 2015, at Columbia University in NYC.

This year’s conference theme was “Implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): Getting Started.” The aim of the conference was to identify and share practical, evidence-based solutions that can support SDGs, which were adopted at the historic UN Summit immediately following the conference. 

The conference was livestreamedl. A video of the first day of the conference is available to watch online. 

On 23 September, IIASA Director General and CEO Professor Dr. Pavel Kabat gave a keynote presentation entitled "Systems Science for Sustainability," and participated in a panel discussion, "How We Get Started: Perspectives from the Experts."

24 September
7th Meeting of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network Leadership Council

IIASA Director General and CEO Professor Dr. Pavel Kabat is a member of the leadership council and took part in the meeting. The objectives of this meeting are to:

  • Agree on strategy and governance structure for SDSN to support implementation of the SDGs comprising: Country- and regional-level mobilization around the SDGs, Strengthening the Universities to support innovation, education and the SDGs, Launching the SDSN’s SDG Center for Africa, SDSN analytical work in support of the SDGs, and the SDSN Online Global University of Sustainable Development Solution Initiatives 
  • Explore how SDSN can support successful outcome at climate conference in Paris (COP21)
  • Celebrate the impending adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals

24 September
Cities Committing to the SDGs: A High-Level Mayors Event
This event brought together world-leading Mayors and local government representatives to pledge their support for the UN’s new Sustainable Development Goals and to commit to implement the agenda between now and 2030.

25 September 
UN Sustainable Development Summit
More than 150 world leaders were expected to attend the UN Sustainable Development Summit from September 25-27 at UN headquarters in New York to formally adopt an ambitious new sustainable development agenda. This momentous agenda serves as the launch pad for action by the international community and by national governments to promote shared prosperity and well-being for all over the next 15 years.

IIASA Director General and CEO Professor Dr. Pavel Kabat attended the debate and plenary session which included an address by Pope Francis, and an address by the Austrian President Heinz Fischer, in which he expressed the country's support for Nebojsa Nakicenovic as a candidate for chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

In an address by the Austrian President Heinz Fischer on 27 September, he expressed the country's support for Nebojsa Nakicenovic as a candidate for chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). © Peter Lechner/HBF

26 September
Earth League: Climate Risk and the Finance Sector

On September 26, 8.30 AM, at New York Climate Week, the Earth League, in collaboration with the Swedish Minister for Climate and Environment, Åsa Romson, will be hosting a high-level round table on Climate Risk & the Financial Sector in partnership with UNEP FI, WRI, and the Global Challenges Foundation. IIASA Director General and CEO Professor Dr. Pavel Kabat and Deputy Director General Nebojsa Nakicenovic are both members of the Earth League, and Nakicenovic will attend the event. 

ReportInvestment Needs to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals: Understanding the Billions and Trillions

26 September
UN Private Sector Forum
Hosted by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations Private Sector Forum 2015 will focus on the role of the private sector in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  Convened in the context of the UN summit for the adoption of the post-2015 development agenda, the interactive Forum is designed to increase understanding of efforts underway by the private sector and civil society, and provide a platform for the private sector to announce long-term goals and partnerships that will make an important contribution towards achieving sustainable development for all.  

29 September 
Sustainable Finance for Deep Decarbonization
Co-hosted with HSBC, this event will bring together leaders from the financial sector, as well as academic researchers to consider the potential offered by the Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) in the 16 highest carbon emitting countries of the world. IIASA research has been an important input to the DDPP and researchers from the Institute will participate in the workshop. 

These pathways, that will guide the transition towards clean energy, are essential to mobilize the financial community to promote a long-term approach to energy finance, and accelerate progress towards a zero-carbon-emission society. Speakers will include senior business leaders from infrastructure funds, carbon trading companies, sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, and issuers of green bonds.

HSBC Office, 452 5th Ave, New York, NY 10018

IIASA Research and the Sustainable Development Goals

IIASA is leading new research projects providing scientific support for the implementation of the SDGs to 2030 and beyond:

In addition, IIASA research on energy and climate played an important role in several of the SDGs: the 2012 Global Energy Assessment provided the backbone for the quantitative goals in SDG7, which is focused on energy. IIASA research related to climate change has also provided important inputs to SDG13, which is focused on climate change mitigation.

IIASA researchers have also already begun working closely with policymakers on questions about SDG implementation. At the Alpbach-Laxenburg Group meeting earlier this month, the group released a statement identifying the key next steps for achieving the SDGs. 

Alpbach-Laxenburg Group: Making the Sustainable Development Goals a reality

Recommendations from the Alpbach-Laxenburg Group (ALG) identify the key issues—challenges and barriers, outcomes and next steps—to support the effective implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). More

Nature Comment: How
can science support sustainable development?

Monitoring, data gathering, and evaluation processes are vital for the successful implementation of the multiple aims of the Sustainable Development Goals, argue leading researchers in a commentary in Nature. More

The World in 2050:  Pathways towards a sustainable future

A new research project, announced today, will develop pathways to achieve sustainable development within a safe and just operating space of a stable planet. More

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Last edited: 14 September 2016

Alpbach-Laxenburg Group

Synthesis Document: Meeting the challenges involved in making the transformation to sustainability a reality. (PDF)

The World in 2050 Project

Follow the SDG summit on Twitter

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