|This past Tuesday, we gathered with 70+ people in Brussels to discuss the SDGs: major shifts have been underway for development in the EU. While we were at European Development Days, the New European Consensus on Development was signed, a major agreement that defines the European approach to implementing the sustainable development goals. And, on the very day of our event this week, European countries affirmed their support for the new consensus: embrace your inner policy wonk and read the Council conclusions. One of the most impactful features of the new consensus is its rights-based approach to development, meaning that human rights, inclusivity, and equality must remain at the heart of development work – and crucial to make sure that no one is left behind. We would definitely call that “smart”. From a critical perspective, there are civil society concerns about what the new consensus might mean for migration, which is a hot topic. Can development and migration mix in a positive way? We think so – but it’s crucial to get it right and to listen to civil society’s concerns. And as one person said on Tuesday, we can’t abandon civil society anywhere. Last but not least, we spoke a great deal about public-private-community partnerships and community leadership, including women’s leadership and an even stronger focus on gender equality.
Bringing the grassroots perspective: Tariq Zaman (Universiti Malaysia Sarawak) and Ezra Uda (P.A.D.E Penan Sarawak Organisation) speak about their work in Sarawak.
Between now and 2030: we all have a lot of work to do – and as another speaker said, we must have more partnerships! A special thanks to our co-host of the event, the European Academies’ Science Advisory Council, and to all of our panelists yesterday! Hailing from Sarawak, Indonesia, Senegal, Tanzania, the European Commission, European Parliament, FAO / UN, ARE, International IDEA, CTA, CONCORD / WWF, Oxfam, Hivos, Azuri Technologies, GSMA, Energy 4 Impact… and beyond! Check out the programme for the full list of speakers & a few pictures below. We’ll share a report on this event soon.
Chair of the European Parliament’s Development Committee, Linda McAvan (S&D) addresses the attendees and speaks with SVI’s Bernie Jones.
SVI’s John Holmes addresses a packed house about Smart Villages’ new Findings Report, 2014-2017.
Karine Genty (European Commission), Sarah Rinaldi (European Commission) and Natalia Alonso brought the global and European policymaking perspectives.