SDSN Australia, New Zealand & Pacific
Monash Sustainable Development Institute at Monash University
SDSN Australia, New Zealand & Pacific focuses on four main areas: i) fostering cross-sectoral action to support SDG localization, ii) mobilizing university action on the SDGs, iii) supporting the activities of SDSN Youth in the region, and iv) supporting regional contributions to global SDSN initiatives.
Empowering universities to address the SDGs
As part of our ongoing Accelerating SDG Practice initiative, organized jointly with Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTS), the network organized several forums to enhance our members’ capacity on the SDGs. Topics included how to engage staff and students on the SDGs, and how the COVID-19 crisis will affect this work. The network is also playing a leading role in the preparation of the SDSN guide Accelerating Education for the SDGs at Universities.
Advancing local SDG action
In February, the network launched the SDGs in Action initiative to showcase pioneering member projects that use the SDG framework as a tool to help governments, businesses, communities, universities, and others take ambitious “beyond-business-as-usual” action on sustainable development. The initiative is gathering case studies for a regional action report, and showcasing them in virtual forums.
Strengthening evidence-based policy making
In September 2019, as part of UNGA week in New York, the network teamed up with SDSN Canada to host a workshop introducing a global audience to Social Systems Evidence, a new online repository of the best available research evidence on SDG implementation for policy and decision makers. The platform is an initiative of two SDSN members, the McMaster Health Forum and Monash University.
Supporting Youth Action
In 2019, the network supported SDSN Youth’s SDG Students Program, aimed at engaging university students in SDG implementation. The program helped SDG Coordinators at six member-universities set up SDG Student Hubs and organize a range of events and activities – such as public lectures, campaigns and solutions labs – to encourage students to learn about, engage with, and take action on the SDGs.
Supporting Global Projects
Australia is contributing to SDSN’s Food, Agriculture, Biodiversity, Land Use and Energy (FABLE) initiative through the Land Use Futures project. Led by SDSN members ClimateWorks Australia and Deakin University, together with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), the project is working with a cross-sector coalition of organizations to develop pathways and build a roadmap to a sustainable food and land use system for Australia.
In August 2020, the network will host SDSN Director Jeffrey Sachs in a virtual regional tour, which will engage different audiences on how the region is tracking five years into the SDGs, and the role of the SDGs in the regional public health and economic response to the Covid-19 crisis.