In the context of the 2030 Agenda, many international organizations acknowledge the substantial contribution of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). New digital technologies offer great potential for promoting and accelerating sustainable development and can potentially support all SDGs, integrating and accelerating the three pillars of sustainable development: economic growth, social inclusion and environmental sustainability. With particular consider of  SDG 11 — making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable — ICTs are critical components for local governments in facing the challenge of unprecedented urban growth in cities all over the world.

These will be the key points discussed at a High Level Political Forum (HLPF) side event on July 9, 2018, entitled “The role of Information and Communication Technologies in the implementation of SDG 11”. Co-hosted by the SDSN’s SDG Academy, UNESCO’s Regional Bureau for Science in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Brazilian Network Information Center ( and its Regional Centre of Studies for the Development of the Information Society (, this panel discussion will feature the following speakers:

Panelists will debate the opportunities and challenges of the implementation of smart and sustainable cities in the context of the 2030 Agenda; discuss available data on the implementation of SDG 11 in emerging economies; present the role of ICTs in the development of sustainable cities, and in particular the importance of access to information for achieving both SDGs 11 and 16; showcase the solutions adopted by the local government of the city of Medellin in Colombia; and launch a new joint initiative: a MOOC on the SDGs and ICTs.

The event will take place at the Argentinean Mission to the United Nations (1 UN Plaza, 25th Floor), New York  from 1:00pm to 2:45pm on Monday, July 9. A light lunch will be served at 12:45pm. RSVPs are requested by the 4th at July at this link, and are required for those attendees not otherwise possessing a UN grounds pass or event pass:

Questions about the event can be addressed to:

Shannon Kobran, SDG Academy:

Tiina Elise Neuvonen, UNESCO: