Date of event: 15 June 2017

Location: Northumbria University.

Event description:

The proceedings began with the showing of several short films produced by Project Everyone to help raise awareness of the Sustainable Development Goals. The films can be found here.

Professor John Wilson, Northumbria University

Making Global Goals Local Business – Newcastle was formally opened by Dr Alex Hope, Senior Lecturer, Newcastle Business School, who welcomed attendees and introduced Professor John Wilson, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Business & Law), Newcastle Business School. Professor Wilson thanked attendees for coming and gave a brief description of the University’s wide ranging interests in sustainability and stating that “sustainability was in our DNA”. The welcome was concluded by Steve Kenzie, Executive Director, UN Global Compact Network UK who presented some information about the SDGs Roadshow and why it had been undertaken, including a Eurobarometer survey that looked at awareness of the SDGs across Europe and found it was lowest in the UK. He also introduced attendees to the UN Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative.

Steve Kenzie, UNGC Network UK

After the welcome session, Steve Kenzie began the main event with a presentation on What are the SDGs? He gave a brief account of how the Goals came into being and an overview of the Goals. He then did a deep dive into Goal 2 to demonstrate their scope and richness. Steve Kenzie’s slides are included in the event slide deck available here.

The next session, Why should businesses in the Northeast care about the Goals? was presented by Dr Alex Hope. He shared a number of statistics to demonstrate the unique challenges and opportunities in the North East, forming a compelling argument for making the North East the UK’s most responsible business community.

SDGs Dot Voting – Newcastle

During a short break, participants were invited to take part in a ‘Dot Voting’ exercise on the SDGs. By using black and white stickers, they were asked to indicate which of the SDGs represented business opportunities for their city today and which instead would be opportunities in five years. The results of the exercise are shown in the right-side chart (click image to view full size).

After the break, the programme resumed with a panel discussion, What opportunities do the Goals offer? How can business get involved? moderated by Dr Alex Hope. The panellists were:

  • Professor Ron Beadle, Newcastle Business School
  • Gareth Kane, Terra Infirma
  • Vincent Richardson, Positive Money
  • Reverend Canon Glyn Evans, North East Initiative on Business Ethics
  • Steve Kenzie, Executive Director, UN Global Compact Network UK

The panellists introduced themselves and spoke about their engagement with the sustainable business agenda. A more detailed summary of the discussions will be uploaded here in the coming days.

Dr Alex Hope brought the event to a close thanking the speakers and attendees for their support.

Further resources:

  • Download a .pdf 2-pager listing all the SDG targets here.
  • More details on the Global Goals can be found here.

For further information please contact the UK Network Secretariat:

This SDG Roadshow event was supported by: