On February 26, 2021, the II International Cooperation Forum “SDGs. Business Practice Tools”, organized by the National Network of the Global Compact (Russia) in cooperation with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) for liaison with the Russian Federation and the Joint Program of the Russian Federation and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights was held supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation and the UN Information Center in Moscow.
The Cooperation Forum «SDGs. Business Practice Tools» has been held in Moscow since 2020 initiated by the community of international initiatives and programs that contribute to the comprehensive transformation of Russian companies in favor of the 2030 Agenda (Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (SDGs). Discussions and expert networking within the Forum are focused on raising Russian business awareness of relevant SDGs business tools, development of impact management business competencies, exchange of experience and information on effective solutions applicable for corporate management systems, as well as acquaintance with current practical approaches, methodologies and solutions supporting the SDGs.
The 8-hour marathon of the Cooperation Forum 2021 was held in a blended format: key speakers and guests, limited in number for the purposes of epidemiological safety, worked at the site of the SAP Digital Leadership Center; the external audience was connected to the Forum broadcasts on several resources (Forum website http://sdgforum.globalcompact.ru, sdg-media.ru platform, the Plus One (+1) Project site, as well as on a dedicated YouTube channel).
The Forum was attended by over 60 speakers from various Russian cities (Moscow, St. Petersburg, Izhevsk, Perm, etc.); international experts of the Forum got in touch from Austria, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Poland and Switzerland.
The structure of the Forum allowed for a pre-forum, which included an interactive workshop by Accenture Russia on the SDG Ambition, a new international program under the UN Global Compact, and the Opening Ceremony, as well as the main sessional program, which included three semantic modules ("SDG Ambition vs SDG Impact. Measuring goals or progress?", "SDG Tools. What current business tasks do SDG-oriented tools solve?" and "Partnerships. What does the SDGs context mean for NPOs?"), two special sessions (FAO session "Independent Dialogue at the UN Food Systems Summit 2021. How Partnerships Strengthen Food Systems", and the UNGC session "10th Anniversary of the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. International Business Standard for the SDGs"). It also allowed to ensure the work of the press lounge throughout the Forum, where a standalone discussion on Media and SDGs took place, several dozen interviews and expert comments were recorded, and the global “Rosimpact” platform, connecting impact investors, experts and social startups working to achieve the SDGs, was presented.
Among the experts and speakers of the main program were also Grigory Lukyantsev, the Russian Foreign Ministry Commissioner for Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law, Elzbieta Karska, member of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, Professor, Head of the Department of Human Rights Protection and International Humanitarian Law of Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski University in Warsaw (Switzerland), Oleg Kobiakov, Director of FAO Liaison Office with the Russian Federation, Rashid Aluash, Representative in charge of the Joint Program of the Russian Federation and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Sergey Korotkov, Director of the UNIDO Centre for International Industrial Cooperation in the Russian Federation, Vyacheslav Fetisov, UNEP (UN Environment) National Goodwill Ambassador, Chairman of the Central Council of the All-Russian Society for the Conservation of Nature, Deputy of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, two-time Olympic champion, seven-time world champion, Remi Fridman, Senior Adviser for Business and Human Rights of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (Switzerland), Jessica Lobo, Project Manager of the UNGC Network UK, Maksim Podberezkin, Executive Director of the UNGC Network Belarus, Andrey Filatov , CEO at SAP CIS, Vartan Dilanyan, CEO at Accenture Russia, Mats Friberg, Managing Director at 3M Russia and the CIS, and others.
RESULTS AND PROSPECTS
During the Forum, the official positions of Russia and the UN organizations participating in the Forum, as well as the embassies of Switzerland and Great Britain were presented, confirming the key public and UN officials’ highest attention to and concerns on the importance of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, considered as a whole and in reference to each other, and the role of business in essential global progress on the SDGs, which is currently assessed as insufficient.
The expert discussion at the Forum revolved around the impact on the SDGs and the ways to assess it, the problems of the SDGs correct interpretation to embed them in business strategies and practices, the specifics of synchronizing corporate goals with the SDGs, precise formats and tools for effective partnerships between NGOs, media and business in the scope of the SDGs, practical tools (digital, managerial, marketing, etc.) relevant to business objectives from the perspective of the SDGs, as well as ways and means to intensify collective action in favor of food security and human rights.
The results of the Forum's discussions, proposals and statements made during its course will be used to form a corpus of proposals on behalf of the National Network of the Global Compact (Russia) in cooperation with the UN family and international organizations in Russia to the expert councils in Russia aimed at promoting and achieving the SDGs (under the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation, the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, etc.), as well as to initiate and launch practice-oriented projects and programs to assist Russian business in aligning corporate strategies and practices with to the Sustainable Development Goals (including a public catalog of effective business tools for achieving the SDGs; dialogues ahead of the Food Systems Summit 2021; a special project aimed at implementing the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in Russian business; development of the SDG Ambition program and other UN Global Compact programs in Russia in 2021, etc.)
The results of this work will be presented at the III Cooperation Forum “SDGs. Business Practice Tools”, which is scheduled for February 2022. The Program Committee of the Forum is open to proposals for partnerships and meaningful participation in the work of the site in 2022.
Forum partners: UNIDO Center for International Industrial Cooperation in the Russian Federation, Russian Donors Forum, National Media Group, as well as SAP CIS, Accenture Russia and 3M.
Session partners: PhosAgro Group, Sakhalin Energy Investment Company Ltd., PAO Severstal, Philip Morris International.
Special guest: UN Global Compact Network Belarus.
Media partners: BRICS TV, + 1 Project, Agency for Social Information, Marina Bogomyagkova's Media Workshop, ESG-media.ru, SDG-media.ru, Strategy magazine, Business&Society and Kapoosta projects.
(in Russian only)
Forum materials (including the Forum program and brochure) can be found on the Forum website
YouTube posts updated following the Forum:
The full main program of the Forum:
SDG AMBITION. INTERACTIVE WORKSHOP
OPENNING. ENERGY FOR ACTION IN FOVOR OF SDGs
SDG AMBITION VS SDG IMPACT. MEASURING GOALS OR PROGRESS?
FAO SPECIAL SESSION. INDEPENDENT DIALOGUE FOR UN FOOD SYSTEMS SUMMIT 2021. HOW PARTNERSHIPS STRENGTHEN FOOD SYSTEMS
UNGC SPECIAL SESSION. 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF GUIDNG PRINCIPLES ON BUSINESS AND HUMAN RIGHTS. INTERNATIONAL STANDARD FOR BUSINESS IN FOVOR OF SDGs
PARTNERSHIPS. WHAT DOES SDGs CONTEXT MEAN FOR NPOs?
SDG TOOLS. WHAT MODERN BUSINESS CHALLENGES DO SDG-BASED TOOLS SOLVE?
"Rosimpaсt" platform presentation
“Media and SDGs” discussion
Media lounge interviews in "UN Global Compact Russia" playlist
Photo archive (by Yaroslav Nikitin and Daria Shlykova)
Main program photo archive
Photo studio archive