NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Nov 9, 2015) - Tomorrow, business leaders, government officials, United Nations delegates and representatives from civil society will attend a launch event for the Sustainable Development Goals Fund (SDG-F) new report, "Business and the United Nations: Working together towards the Sustainable Development Goals: A framework for Action" which was produced with Harvard Kennedy School CSR Initiative and Business Fights Poverty to examine deeper engagement by the private sector in development.
Unlike other narratives, this report offers a unique private sector perspective to provide insight and practical advice on how companies can address the new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and at the same time work on stronger co-creation and collaboration on development issues with other development actors, including the United Nations.
The SDG-F report is groundbreaking in that it builds on lessons learned from the Millennium Development Goals, as well as works to engage the private sector in the discussion of what works, what needs to change, and how the international development community must adapt. This includes taking into account a set of recommendations that offer a different perspective, critical to creating projects that will be more sustainable and lasting for the ambitious goals approved by the UN General Assembly this September. "Companies want more transparency and a way to simplify the UN engagement process, and foster a two-way dialogue, especially at the country-level", said Paloma Duran, Director of the Sustainable Development Goals Fund.
Among the members of the Private Sector Advisory Group is Sergio Fernández de Córdova, Co-Founder and Chairman of PVBLIC Foundation, who has been involved with the SDG Fund for over two years. In the report he was quoted emphasizing the importance of the publishing of the report, stating, "The UN can help overcome challenges to success and scale by promoting policies and best practices that have shown proven success and results. It can also take the lead in measurement and evaluation of projects and the dissemination of best practices."
The PVBLIC Foundation was featured within the report as one of the case studies due to its influential and successful role in helping to facilitate public-private partnerships. Within the case study, two of PVBLIC's most prominent partnerships are highlighted: including the Media for Social Impact (MFSI) platform in collaboration with the United Nations Office of Partnerships and the "It's On Us" campaign in partnership with the White House. The MFSI platform features an annual summit at the United Nations organized by PVBLIC to gather high profile media leaders and influencers and stress the importance of media in creating social impact. The 2015 MFSI Summit gathered over 350 of these media leaders, influencers and UN officials to help focus the media and advertising world's attention to the SDGs; launching a 15-year strategy called the Most Important Campaign. Additional emphasis at #MFSI2015 was put on the importance of partnerships between the various UN agencies and the private sector in order to create long term meaningful partnerships to aid the media and communications strategy for the SDG's.
The "It's On Us" White House campaign also highlights the power of media in relation to public-private partnerships. PVBLIC assisted The White House with the launch of a movement in the USA to raise awareness about sexual assault on college campuses. Utilizing their media influence, and the influence of the White House's strong brand, PVBLIC convened the private sector, colleges, universities and media partners around the issue. Since the launch of "It's On Us" last September, almost 220,000 people have taken the pledge to end sexual assault on college campuses; "It's On Us" PSAs have had over 10 million views online and campaign has generated over 3 billion media impressions.
In addition to all these initiatives, PVBLIC has also been bringing together media and communication resources to help the SDG Fund prepare for the official launch, by identifying key international partners who can help facilitate the effort in order to increase global awareness and action. Long term- PVBLIC has also committed to helping the SDG Fund to continue to increase visibility and identify strategic partnerships that add value from both the public and private sectors over the 15-year agenda.
Ambitious development agenda requires new types of partnerships
It is estimated that achieving the SDGs will require $3.3-4.5 trillion a year. As such, the scale of the new development goals sees business as part of the solution and offers a clear imperative for action. The report's findings suggest that companies want to be brought earlier into the planning and co-creation phase of development projects and would welcome clearer transparency in both the design and exploration of opportunities in the field. The report indicates that the UN can play an important role in sharing best practices and facilitating business engagement across sectors.
Included in the report are interviews with the SDG-F's Private Sector Advisory Group which highlight the value of expanding multi-stakeholder collaboration and leveraging the complementary expertise of new actors. Inevitably, business matters for the SDG's and vice versa. With this in mind, there is a need for UN agencies to create a clear entry point for country level collaboration and simplify the process for two-way business engagement, especially for purpose driven and system-level platforms.
Agenda for action: inspire, connect, equip
The report includes a clear agenda for action: Inspire-Connect-Equip. This section outlines what the UN can do to motivate and mobilize many more companies to get actively engaged in supporting the SDGs, how it can facilitate the process of business engagement with UN agencies and other delivery partners, especially at the country level with UN country offices and in exploring both core and hybrid models of development as well as impact measurement.
Uniquely, the SDG Fund is already investing in 21 countries engaging a wide variety of stakeholders. Created in 2014 by UNDP on behalf of the UN system to support sustainable development activities, it is the first SDG mechanism working to implement programs at the country level. The Fund works through joint programmes implemented by specialized UN agencies with national counterparts. With an initial financial contribution from the Spanish Government, the Fund currently has 22 additional donors.
In key areas such as food security and nutrition, the SDG-F brings together the expertise of varied UN agencies to offer more robust approaches to development with clear linkages to issues such as education, gender and economic development. The SDG Fund's specialized methodology helps to overcome the limitations of the traditional one sector or "silo" approach to development initiatives.
The SDG-F focuses on three thematic areas for poverty eradication including, inclusive growth food security and nutrition, and water and sanitation to address some of the most important gaps in achieving progress towards the new development goals. Equally important, all SDG-F programmes embed three cross-cutting issues: sustainability, gender equality, and public-private partnerships.
Participating in the new development agenda will require greater collective action and understanding of the various dimensions of how the UN can actively engage more creatively with business and other partners. The SDG-F is actively working to shape this new ecosystem and facilitate new alliances with both the public and private sector with the aim of supporting new learning and using this report as a springboard to continue this important dialogue.
To link to the report click here: www.sdgfund.org (available 10 November).
About Sustainable Development Goals Fund:
The Sustainable Development Goals Fund (SDG-F) is a development cooperation mechanism created in 2014 by UNDP, on behalf of the UN system, with an initial contribution of the Government of Spain to support sustainable development activities through integrated and multidimensional joint programmes. It builds on the experience, knowledge, lessons learned, and best practices of the MDG experience, while expanding its activities towards sustainable development and a higher attention on public-private partnerships. Gender and women's empowerment is a cross-cutting priority in all our areas of work. Follow us on twitter at @SDGFund
About PVBLIC Foundation:
PVBLIC Foundation is an innovative non-profit media organization that harnesses the power of media to drive social change. An aggregator of media across all platforms, PVBLIC works strategically to pair media space with key non-profits at the local, national and global levels. We utilize existing and emerging technologies to increase issue awareness around important causes and help non-profits amplify their message. At PVBLIC, we believe that media is the new currency. @PVBLICF or visit www.pvblic.org
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