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UNEP participates in roundtable discussion on European research priorities to achieve sustainable solutions

On 3 February 2015, the Head of UNEP’s Liaison Office to the EU in Brussels Mr. Ulf Björnholm, joined the Members of European Parliament (MEPs), representatives of European and international organizations and businesses, research funders and leading researchers for a dialogue session at the European Parliament. The goal of this session was to identify strategic priorities for European research, particularly in light of a number of important new global agreements on climate, disaster risk reduction and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) expected in 2015 and for which scientific research will be critical for success.


In his address, Mr Björnholm underlined the ongoing key role of science in decision-making for our societies and the need for strong institutions to be able to translate the scientific findings to make them useful for decision-makers, as well as for science to be publicly available and up to date. Amongst others, he introduced UNEP Live, the new online platform for all to collect, process and share environmental science and research worldwide and explained that together with other UN agencies UNEP works to develop integrated indicators that will measure progress on SDGs. He also referred to UNEP’s role in spearheading the debate on how to adapt the financial system to sustainable development under the “Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System” initiative. This was welcomed by several members of the audience during the debate.


The event also saw the presentation by Future Earth of the Strategic Research Agenda, which urges the private sector, governments and civil society to work with researchers to co-design and co-produce a more agile global innovation system.


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