Sustainable Development

Here's what happened at the Sustainable Development Impact Summit 2017

From left, Cheryl Martin, Head of Industries, Member of the Managing Board, World Economic Forum, Afsaneh Mashayekhi Beschloss, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Rock Creek, USA, Paul Polman, Chief Executive Officer, Unilever, United Kingdom,, Founder, Chief Executive Officer,, USA and Penny Abeywardena, Commissioner for International Affairs Mayor's Office, City of New York, speak at a closing plenary discussing "Leading for Impact". The World Economic Forum holds the Sustainable Development Impact Summit 2017 in New York, NY USA. Copyright by World Economic Forum / Ben Hider

The Sustainable Development Impact Summit 2017 in New York, NY USA. Image: Ben Hider

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Sustainable Development

This article is part of: Sustainable Development Impact Summit

Over 700 leaders came together to deliver on the ambitions of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris climate agreement. The Summit showed how public and private actors can cooperate on a multistakeholder platform in the global public interest, applying creative technological solutions that benefit all.

  • 700+ business, civil society and government leaders from over 70 countries and 160 organizations
  • 9 heads of state/government and 70+ senior government leaders, public figures and heads of international organizations
  • 80+ Social Entrepreneurs, Young Global Leaders and Global Shapers
  • 230+ women leaders
  • 60+ NGO, labour and religious leaders
  • 30+ Technology Pioneers and academic leaders
  • 40% business participants
Key Outcomes from the Summit

The Summit showcased over 25 global initiatives, partnerships and alliances, each focused on creating sustainable development impact. Through a series of high-level plenaries and roundtables and over 30 working meetings, common agendas were developed, commitments to mobilization renewed and new solutions and impact initiatives co-created:

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Meet the Summit Co-Chairs

"There is no time to waste on this journey. Goals matter. If we are to succeed, we also need business, academia, civil society and trade unions. There will be no progress without public-private cooperation. This is a business case." - Stefan Löfven, Prime Minister of Sweden

"The Sustainable Development Impact Summit provides an important annual role as a platform to accelerate business engagement with governments and civil society to advance public-private cooperation on the SDGs. The world’s greatest challenges can only be solved through collaboration and business engagement is key. For business, it is not just a moral obligation, but also an economic opportunity." - Feike Sijbesma, CEO and Chairman of the Managing Board, Royal DSM, Netherlands

"There’s a need to bring together strong institutions and robust scientific research and data, bolster accountability and promote inclusion, particularly through the greater involvement of women, to make better policy decisions." - Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, President of the Republic of Mauritius

"There is incredible tension between the dramatic innovation that is occurring and the issue of equality. The technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution offer the opportunity to drive progress to the SDGs." - Marc R. Benioff, Chairman and CEO of Salesforce Inc., USA

"There are two groups of investors, those whose eyes glaze over when you say “sustainability”, and those who know there will be returns. The problem is data is scattered and difficult to find. That’s why one of the initiatives that we are starting is a marketplace for sustainability and impact." - Afsaneh M. Beschloss, Founder and CEO, The Rock Creek Group, USA

"You can see skills being transferred from Africa to the West. The West can be so behind. Why should we not use [working to achieve] the SDGs as a way to break down barriers?" - Marianne Eve Jamme, Founder and CEO, SpotOne Global Solutions, United Kingdom

The co-chairs of the Sustainable Development Impact Summit 2017 in New York, USA
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Sustainable DevelopmentNature and Biodiversity
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