Is Switzerland serious about transforming into a sustainable society? Civil society movements, private company initiatives and revived political dynamics are changing the trajectory. Can politics keep up and become a promoter of transformational change? Our answer: A clear yes. The upcoming federal elections are the next best opportunity to shape Switzerland’s sustainable future. We therefore call on all candidates and all political parties to commit to the sustainability transformation and support the effective implementation of the Agenda 2030 and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
We look back to an eventful few weeks. During the SDSN Switzerland Conference in Bern in May, we set off to learning journeys on how to make our society more sustainable. We learned first-hand from compelling industry examples, such as sustainable value chains in textile, or from fascinating stories in the former Chamber of the Council of States about the role of women in Swiss politics. Several transformation pioneers concluded with their insights on how we can shape the necessary sustainability transition.
This newsletter marks also the handover from Michael Bergöö to Andreas Obrecht as Managing Director of SDSN Switzerland. Michael initiated the network in Switzerland and was one of the driving forces in building up the sustainability movement. Andreas – with a strong national, international and biodiversity background – will be instrumental in further strengthening SDSN Switzerland as a vehicle for change at the interface between science, politics and society.
The latest SDSN Switzerland publication "Shaping coherent policies across silos" shows Switzerland's new Sustainable Development Strategy can benefit from the interlinkages among the 17 SDGs The brief proposes an approach to identify synergies and trade-offs. At the same time, the Federal Council and the administration must strengthen the sustainability research and develop formats for better collaboration across sectors and actor groups.
The report is available in German and in French.
SDSN Switzerland is pleased to present the latest GAiA issue on Research for Sustainable Development Goals. This special focus edition entails interesting insights and experiences on how academia together with society can help putting the SDGs in action. Océane Dayer and Urs Wiesmann, Co-Chairs of SDSN Switzerland, are the guest editors of this issue and have contributed with an introductory article.
2019 SDG Index and Dashboard Report - European Cities
SDSN Global has released the first SDG Index and Dashboard Report on European Cities. The report compares the performance of 45 European cities on the 17 SDGs using 56 indicators. Which cities are closest to reaching the SDG targets and what are the challanges in achieving the different SDGs? The authors discuss these and other questions in the report and elaborate why the SDGs are important for European cities.
Nature Map Earth Project
Human pressure and land use change have led to significant loss of habitat and the species that depend on it. The biodiversity targets of the SDGs will be missed if the trend continues in the current direction. SDSN Global has contributed to the launch of the Nature Map Earth, providing necessary data to decision makers. This will support them in identifying priority areas and targets to achieve the conservation and restoration of nature and biodiversity.
Call for a sustainable higher education system
Students are demanding new priorities in the Swiss higher education system: Sustainabilty must be at the core of research and teaching but also the operations of the institutions themselves. Schools and universities need to lead in innovation and in creating a sustainable society. Sign the online petition and join the demonstration on 8 June 2019 on the Waisenhausplatz in Bern.
Auf zu neuen Ufern!/Vers de nouveaux rivages!
Please save the date for the WWF conference on the contribution of economic sciences to sustainable development, taking place on 25 September 2019 in Bern. During workshops and thanks to an interactive conference format, participants will get the chance to engage in interesting discussions on how economic sciences can find answers to the major global challanges of the 21 century. SDSN Switzerland is pleased to co-host this important event.
Sustainability in the trade agreement with Indonesia
The study by Elisabeth Bürgi Bonanomi from CDE at University of Bern examines the new EFTA-Indonesia trade agreement from a sustainability perspective. The analysis concentrates on the particular rules on the import of palm oil as well as on the specifc sustainability chapter of the agreement. The author concludes that this new approach could form a precedent and therefore be further refined in future trade negotiations.
Are you interested in knowing how Bern's institutions on higher education work with partners to create and implement innovations for sustainable development? Please mark 1 November 2019 in your calendars and take part in the Second Sustainability Day in Bern in order to engage with interested stakeholders from politics and the economy, visit project stalls, and enjoy interactive sessions and panel discussions.