SDSN Black Sea

Hosted by:
  • Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTh)
    Thessaloniki, Greece

SDSN Black Sea was officially launched in October 2018 at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTh). Its vision is to unite the people in the Black Sea region under the goal of sustainable development. It aims to protect and preserve the region’s vulnerable ecosystem and to build programs around economic transformation, youth unemployment, innovation, and sustainable tourism.

Regional Powerhouse for Sustainable Development

In October 2019, the network co-organized the international Conference “Implementation of the UN 2030 SDGs in the Black Sea Region.” It was highlighted that many cross-border problems exist among countries of the region. Thus, regional actors such as SDSN Black Sea are crucial in providing a regional dimension to SDG implementation.

SDSN Black Sea supported the 3rd Sustainability Summit for South-East Europe and the Mediterranean, organized by SDSN Greece and The Economist Events. Stakeholders from government, academia, public and private sectors discussed the status of SDG implementation in the region, stressing the challenges and opportunities related to critical issues such as migration and security, climate change, and tourism.

In March 2020, SDSN Black Sea co-organized the 1st International Conference on Blue Growth in the Black Sea Region entitled “Ecosystem Services on River-Sea Macro-Ecosystems”. The conference offered a framework for free debates, exchange of ideas, best practices, and knowledge. Such exchange allowed to identify new directions for conceiving policies to implement a regional Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda.

Happiness Webinar

The network celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the Earth Day by participating in the 24-Hour Webinar organized by SDSN. Prof. Theodossiou, Chair of SDSN Black Sea, joined world-renowned academics in a session on inclusive and sustainable economic growth and human well-being, while SDSN Black Sea explored the interlinkage between wellbeing and urban environment in the session “Happy Cities: Strategies and Applications in Pursuit of Urban Wellbeing.”

Looking Ahead

SDSN Black Sea has been impacted by the cancellation of numerous events due to the global pandemic. In the coming months, these events will be revisited:

  • Baku Forum 2020 and the SDSN Black Sea Regional Meeting (March 2020)
  • Perspectives and Challenges of defossilization in South-Eastern Europe and Eastern Mediterranean (May 2020)
  • Thessaloniki Sustainability Summit “Sustainable Cities and Ports” (September 2020)
  • 4th Sustainability Summit for South-East Europe and the Mediterranean” (October 2020)

The network will further grow its membership base by involving more research and educational institutions in the Black Sea Region. Secondly, SDSN Black Sea Youth is expected to launch soon.

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTh) was founded in 1925 and is the largest university in Greece, covering all disciplines, consisting of 11 faculties and 41 schools. It is widely recognized as a vibrant center of learning which draws its inspiration from a long tradition of academic achievement. It hosts three UNESCO Chairs, including on Education for Human Rights, Democracy and Peace, the International Network of Water-Environment Centers for the Balkans, and the C2c Center for Integrated Water Resources Management.