09 July 2019 - 19 July 2019
New York, USA

High-level Political Forum & High-level Segment of ECOSOC 2019

The Digital Revolution and Sustainable Development: Opportunities and Challenges: TWI2050 launches it second report at the HLPF 2019.

Photo by STEMShare NSW on Unsplash

Photo by STEMShare NSW on Unsplash

The Digital Revolution, which although is arguably the single greatest enabler of sustainable development, has, in the past, created many negative externalities like transgression of planetary boundaries. Progress on the SDGs will be facilitated if we can build and implement detailed STI roadmaps at levels that range from local to global. This is central as STI drives all SDGs and one of the most fundamental disruptive changes in human history – the digital revolution which puts comprehensive artificial intelligence at the centre. A major challenge will be how to use the transformative nature of digitalization to create wealthy and inclusive economies and societies. 

The High-level Political Forum in July 2019 under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council is reviewing SDGs 4, 8, 10, 13, and 16. The theme is "Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality".

Report Launch

To support the HLPF, TWI2050 is launching its second report in a dedicated side event: 

The Digital Revolution and Sustainable Development: Opportunities and Challenges

Date & Time: July 12, 14:45-16:00

Venue: S-1522-23 @ UN HQ

Moderator and opening:

  • Nebojsa Nakicenovic, IIASA
  • Dirk Messner, UNE-EHS and WBGU


  • Heide Hackmann, ISC
  • Peter Messerli, University of Bern and GSDR
  • Tateo Arimoto, JST and GRIPS
  • Leena Srivastava, TER
  • Kazuhiko Takeuchi, IGES
  • Shantanu Mukherjee, UNDESA
  • William E. Colglazier, AAAS
  • Discussion 

Organizers and co-organizers:

While the Digital Revolution cuts across all SDGs, the side event will focus on its role in empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality. The global scientific initiative The World in 2050 (TWI2050) has been developing integrated pathways based on interdisciplinary knowledge that achieve multiple SDGs, harnessing synergies and mitigating trade-offs. The side event will present the role of technological change in these pathways with a focus on the SDGs under review and will provide examples of proven and emerging technologies and innovations that can accelerate progress towards the selected SDGs.

The second report by TWI2050 will be launched during the HLPF. The side event will present insights into the recommendations to policy makers in how they can harness the power of the digital revolution to enable the achievement of the SDGs and which challenges they need to overcome, providing guidance in formulating roadmaps. 

Side event report by IISD

Other Events during HLPF

Science policy interface including the briefing from the independent group of scientists on the Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR)

Date & Time: July 11, 11:00 – 13:00

Venue: Conference Room 4 @ UN HQ

Role of STI: Strengthening Climate-SDGs synergy

Date & Time: July 12, 13:15-14:30

Venue: S-1522-23 @ UN HQ

Nebojsa Nakicenovic will present the new TWI2050 report. 

2019 ECOSOC Session High Level Segment

During the 2019 session of ECOSOC on "Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality", Nebojsa Nakicenovic has been invited as a panelist in the session on "Where are we heading? Visions and projections for the future of the SDGs”.

Date & Time: July 19, 10:00-13:00

Venue: ECO Chamber


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Last edited: 26 July 2019


Nebojsa Nakicenovic

Emeritus Research Scholar Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions Research Group - Energy, Climate, and Environment Program

TWI2050 initiative

TWI2050 Report 2019

The Digital Revolution and Sustainable Development Opportunities and Challenges

HLPF 2019


International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
Schlossplatz 1, A-2361 Laxenburg, Austria
Phone: (+43 2236) 807 0 Fax:(+43 2236) 71 313