Higher education must drive efforts to promote greater working across disciplines and sectors in order to generate the knowledge needed for meeting the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development (Global Goals) by 2030. This is what IDS Director, Professor Melissa Leach told senior higher education and research experts from worldwide universities, government departments including the UK Department for International Development and UN agencies at the Wilton Park and Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) event, Higher Education: global engagement to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals 2030.
Professor Leach said:
“The world has set down an ambitious framework for a fairer and more sustainable world in the Global Goals. If higher education and academia is to help meet this challenge head on, we must reach out beyond the traditional divides of disciplines, departments, sectors and borders and work together to generate knowledge that is informed by lived realities and that can respond to the unprecedented environmental, social and political disruptions of our era.
“Continued commitments from governments to invest in national and global research infrastructures are essential.”
Professor Leach also emphasised the importance of higher education and those working elsewhere to recognise and address the Global Goals as a package, with goals closely interlinked and mutually dependent. Moreover, to keep in mind the five cross cutting principles that underpin the goals – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnerships – as well as their central ambition to leave no-one behind.