Eight years after the official birth of the SDGs there still seems to be a lack of collective action in the business community to support them. Or, perhaps, is there a lack of transparency? Governments at least are continuously repeating their calls for business action on the SDGs while they develop and fund projects with NGOs and civil society that do not have the impact needed to reach a single goal or even one of the 169 targets.
The first global meta study, led by Prof. Frank Bierman and Xian Sun, et. al. at the University of Utrecht (2022), clarified that “the scientific evidence suggests only limited transformative political impact of the Global Goals thus far”. Not a single transformative initiative led by business was identified. The Catalyst 2030 Awards for Systemic Change, on the hunt for companies contributing to the SDGs, presented SAP as winner for having committed 10% of its procurement spend to social enterprises and diverse-owned enterprises. A very noteworthy initiative. However, not what’s getting us close to reaching the Goals.
And yet, the business case for companies to contribute to the SDGs is strong as identified in several publications (e.g. BSDC and SSRN). While many of these companies communicate their own businesses’ activities with respect to the SDGs, they seem not to consider pure business-related collaborations a relevant SDG contribution. And those are the ones that can have a transformative impact for the SDGs.
This WEC Roundtable wants to identify collaborations with a large impact, that help to achieve one or more SDGs. It is an opportunity for business executives to get inspired under the Chatham House Rule.
This is a WEC Member only event. To request and invite, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
This event has passed. Please check out the full event summary below: