New Data Needs Assessment Working Group 
On October 15, 2014, the SDSN in partnership with the UN Statistics Division, the World BankPARIS21, the Center for Global DevelopmentSimon Fraser University, and the Gates Foundation, convened a meeting on a needs assessment for SDG monitoring, the data revolution, and statistical capacity development. Following the meeting a working group will be formed to develop initial estimate of resource requirements by early 2015. read more »

Examining Public-Private Partnerships for Low-Carbon Technology Deployment
On October 10-11, 2014, the SDSN co-hosted the first in a series of low-carbon technology roundtables in Washington DC in partnership with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI), convening 60 experts from business, academia and government to help accelerate the development and large-scale deployment of low-carbon technologies. read more » 

Sustainable Cities: Investing in the Future
On October 14, 2014, the SDSN and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) organized an event entitled “Sustainable Cities: Investing in the Future” at the fourth biennial World Investment Forum in Geneva, Switzerland. Jeffrey Sachs moderated a panel which examined the role of private financing and foreign direct investment in developing sustainable cities. read more »

Back-casting for Agriculture 
On October 13-14, 2014, representatives from China, the UK, and Uruguay met at Rothamsted Research in Harpenden, England, to explore how back-casting approaches can be applied to address long-term sustainable development challenges in agricultural systems. Teams agreed to set 2030/2050 targets and model pathways for their agricultural systems. Over time this initiative will include other countries. read more »

Pratham Virtual Open Schools
Pratham, India’s largest education NGO, has launched a Solutions Initiative in partnership with the SDSN as a 2 year pilot providing online education to children who have dropped out or are struggling within the education system. The project aims to identify a scaleable and replicable model of high quality teaching that can reach the out-of-school child population in India– currently estimated at about 14 million children. read more »

ICSDP 2014 Conference Highlights
Photos and keynote videos from the 2nd Annual International Conference on Sustainable Development Practice (ICSDP) are available for view at We look forward to having you join us next year!

SDSN in the Media

Rapid Urbanization Demands Investment in Sustainable Development of Cities – Ghanaian Chronicle, October 23

Jeffrey Sachs: A New Macroeconomic Strategy – Project Syndicate, October 23

Josette Sheeran: China’s Economic Report Program (Video) – Bloomberg, October 22

Jose Maria Figueres: Climate change: Europe’s unfinished business – Aljazeera, October 22

Sunita Narain: Time For a Silent Diwali? (video) – New Delhi Television, October 21

Frances Beinecke: This Is How America Will Reduce Pollution and Stamp Out Our Carbon Footprint –Huffington Post, October 21

Jeffrey Sachs: Interview on COP21 in Paris (video) – France 24, October 21

WBCSD Issues Guide to Sustainability Metrics – Chemical Processing, October 20

Rosamond Naylor: Can We Feed the World in the 21st Century? (video) – Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, October 14

One Million Community Health Workers: Blue chip companies join forces with UN to provide better healthcare – The Guardian, October 13

Upcoming SDSN Events

  • November 16-19 – 3rd Global Youth Meet (event flyer) | Visakhapatnam, India
  • November 17 – Road to 2015:  A Pivotal Year for Sustainable Development (RSVP) | New York, USA
  • November 24-26 – 3rd Annual Meeting of the Low Carbon Asia Research Network | Bogor, Indonesia
  • December 12 – Side Event at COP 20 | Lima, Peru
  • February 3 – SDSN Financing for Sustainable Development Conference | London, UK

News from Our Partners

  • The Swedish Secretariat for Environmental Earth System Sciences (SSEESS) is offering planning grants up to SEK 100 000 to enable scientists to produce project proposals targeting one or several of five SDSN development priorities. Deadline to apply is November 14, 2014.
  • On November 15, the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS), together with the Tokyo Institute of Technology and the POST2015 Project, will hold a symposium on “Science and the Sustainable Development Goals” in Tokyo, Japan, and feature keynote speeches by H.E. Ambassador Csaba Kőrösi (Co-Chair of OWG) and Mark Stafford Smith (Chair of the Future Earth Science Committee). RSVP here.
  • On October 16, the Center on the United States and Europe at Brookings hosted Laurence Tubiana, special representative of France for the Paris 2015 Climate Conference & ambassador for climate change and Co-Chair of SDSN’s Leadership Council, at the 11th annual Raymond Aron Lecture. An audio recording of the presentation is available here.
  • On October 10, the Dubai Carbon Center of Excellence presented the State of the Green Economy report at the World Summit of Regions for Climate in Paris. The report was prepared in collaboration with UNDP and describes green economy initiatives in the UAE and beyond.
  • Several SDSN members participated in IARU Sustainability Science Congress in Copenhagen, Denmark, October 22-24, 2014. View the full congress program and webcast videos here.
  • The German Development Institute (DIE) and the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS) have jointly published a new book United Nations Post-2015 Agenda for global development: perspectives from China and Europe.
  • ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, the World Mayors Council on Climate Change, and the City of Bonn have opened a call for contributions for Resilient Cities 2015 – to be held June 8-10, 2015, in Bonn, Germany. Submit your abstracts by December 1, 2014 here.
  • The School of Management at Universidad de los Andes, Colombia, has issued a call for course proposals for its 2015 International Summer School. International faculty from renowned universities may apply to teach a course (in English) for a period of two weeks. More information is available here or via

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