Making the SDGs actionable in South America: Insights from Peru and Colombia

Published: 10 Sep 2019
Type: News

Geneva, 10 September 2019: At the end of August, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) had the pleasure to be part of important engagements and collaborative efforts to advancing business action on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Peru and Colombia.

In Peru, WBCSD’s Global Network partner Perú 2021 held its annual conference, Perú Sostenible. As the most significant sustainability event of the country, the event attracted some 2,000 participants from the private, public and academic sectors in Peru and provided an opportunity for a deep-dive exploration into the progress the country is making on the SDG agenda.

The conference included a high-level plenary, a sustainability fair, as well an award ceremony recognizing the achievements of eight winning projects of private companies, social or environmental ventures, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), whose business models align with and contribute to the SDGs.

The event was opened by an address from the Prime Minister of Peru who provided a challenge to business to support the realization of the SDGs.

James Gomme, WBCSD’s Director of SDGs, also attended the event and provided a keynote address on the role of business in realizing the 2030 Agenda.

The plenary explored sustainability through the lens of five key themes: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Pacts, zooming in on important, cross-cutting topics such "Gender Equity" (SDG 5), "Sustainable Cities and Communities" (SDG 11) and "Clean Water and Sanitation" (SDG 6).

The realization of this event generated significant momentum to advance implementation, drive new alliances and concerted action across Peru. “The Sustainable Peru movement has just begun. Today we met, now we have to take action and play for the same team”, said Augusto Townsend, co-president of Perú Sostenible, in the closing ceremony.

Read this WBCSD Insight on business efforts in Peru toward making the SDGs actionable, including the role played by Perú 2021.

In Colombia, WBCSD collaborated with its Colombian Global Network Partner CECODES to organize a deep-dive workshop on the SDGs with leading Colombian businesses.

During the course of a half-day event, attendees from approximately 20 companies explored global and local progress on the SDG agenda, shared best practice on SDG integration and conducted a series of exercises exploring questions around how business can use the SDGs to consider business risks and opportunities, what stakeholders expect of business with regard to the SDGs and what some of the key challenges are for business to engage with the SDGs. This also involved discussions around approaches to include the SDGs into corporate disclosure in a meaningful way. Furthermore, the workshop covered latest trends and developments across the business and human rights landscape and zoomed in on the critical linkages between the SDGs and corporate respect for human rights.

This workshop, in which James Gomme shared WBCSD’s perspectives on the above topics, was part of a series of ongoing engagements by CECODES which continues to actively promote business action on the SDGs throughout its extensive network of companies and partners.

Read this WBCSD Insight on business efforts in Colombia toward making the SDGs actionable, including the role played by CECODES.

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