Sustainable Development Goals
Addis Ababa Action Agenda recognises science, technology and innovation as a means to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Since November 2018, the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission has been working to share and develop the European experience on Smart Specialisation Strategies (S3) as one of the global methodologies for Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Roadmaps for the achievement of SDGs. At the same time, there has been a growing focus on SDGs in EU Member States and EU Neighbourhood. That is why the work stream on Smart Specialisation and SDGs has been divided in two synergetic parts.
1. Cooperation with UN DESA and UN Inter-Agency Task Team (IATT) on on STI for SDGs Roadmaps.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development established the TFM to support the application of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
In this context, the Joint Research Centre (European Commission) started collaborating with the United Nations Inter-Agency Task Team (UN IATT) on Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for SDGs, as part of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM) and is currently member of the working group on STI for SDGs Roadmaps and of the working group on Capacity building on STI for SDGs.
In the framework of the STI for SDGs Roadmaps working group, the Global Pilot Programme on Science, Technology and Innovation for SDGs Roadmaps was launched in 2019 with an initial group of five pilot countries (Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Kenya and Serbia), to test and adjust the newly developed "Guidebook for the Preparation of STI for SDGs Roadmaps". In February 2021, Ukraine also joined the programme. JRC is leading the pilot activities based on Smart Specialisation methodology both in Serbia and Ukraine. In parallel, JRC is supporting the development of the STI for SDGs roadmap in the Czech Republic.
In the context of the elaboration of the Guidebook and the Global Pilot Programme, JRC has been collaborating with different UN Agencies such as UN-DESA, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNCTAD and the World Bank, together with other international partners such as the Government of Japan and the OECD.
In 2021, the work of the UN Inter-Agency Task Team on STI for SDGs roadmaps, including the Global Pilot Programme and the Partnership in Action, has been acknowledged and praised in two United Nations General Assembly Resolution n. 76/213 and 75/316, highlighting the importance of expanding and fostering collaborations, as well as continuing to disseminate the advances and best practices in STI for SDGs.
The Partnership in Action on STI for SDGs Roadmaps serves as a multi-stakeholder, informal group to generate support and advocate the implementation of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism, particularly as concerns the work on STI for SDGs Roadmap. Acknowledging the need to leverage technological innovation to address climate change and foster a sustainable, inclusive and equitable transition of economies, the initiative is designed with the aim of broadening international partnerships and secure the commitments and resources for the pilot projects and beyond. It aims to (I) build up national STI capabilities for the SDGs, including through COVID-19 recovery and the SDGs, (II) boost international knowledge and technology flows for the SDGs, and (III) broker international STI collaborations for the SDGs.
2. Sustainability dimension of Smart Specialisation: contributing to SDGs through place-based innovation.
The European Union is committed to the Global Agenda 2030 and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that should be applied in all external and internal policies. As science, technology and innovation (STI) can help achieve progress in all the SDGs, in 2018 the JRC launched a work stream focused on embedding the sustainability dimension in Smart Specialisation Strategies. This new conceptual framework and methodological approach provides reflection and guidance allowing reorienting Smart Specialisation Strategies to better contribute to SDGs and the European Green Deal throughout the whole policy cycle. From the new metrics and diagnostic approaches, through inclusive governance and stakeholder engagement, to policy mix, financing and budgeting aligned with sustainability goals. This approach allows policy makers to localise sustainability challenges in different territorial contexts and translate them into innovation policies fostering sustainability transitions. As a result, key reports have been released on Directionality and Policy Coherence, Theoretical and Conceptual Framework, and Identification of STI potential to address SDGs.
Throughout this work, several practical examples on the alignment of Smart Specialisation Strategies with SDGs at different territorial levels were identified from national, regional and urban to international partnerships.
The eighth annual Multi-Stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals takes place on the 3rd and 4th of May, 2023 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The UN inter-agency task team on STI for the SDGs (IATT) organizes the Forum, convened...
As the Arctic regions continue to attract increasing global policy attention, a new evidence-based scientific report, published on March 2023, aims at providing insights on how the smart specialisation strategies developed at regional level address sustainable development challenges and the...
Under the theme of “Science, technology, and innovation for building back better from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) while advancing the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, the seventh multi-stakeholder forum on STI for the SDGs was held on 5-6 May 2022. The...
SMARTER Stream by JRC: Urban and rural transformations for sustainability and resilience
Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals Roadmaps in Sub-Saharan Africa: Kick-off meeting and capacity building training workshop
Peer-to-peer policy workshop: The implementation of Science, Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development Goals roadmaps in Czechia, Serbia and Ukraine
The revised EU Arctic Policy highlights smart specialisation as an important approach for innovation policy helping to strengthen the capacity and resilience of the European Arctic societies and economies (European Commission, 2021). With its overarching goals to foster structural transformation,...
- TERAS Jukka; EIKELAND Sveinung; KOIVUROVA Timo; SALENIUS Viktor; MIEDZINSKI Michal
This report introduces a tested reflection framework that aims to provide guidance for enhancing the sustainability outcomes of Smart Specialisation strategies. To make the framework accessible and useful for policy makers in all interested regions and countries, the JRC consulted and tested the...
- MIEDZINSKI Michal; COENEN Lars; LARSEN Henrik; MATUSIAK Monika; SARCINA Angela
Serbia is one of the first countries to join the Global Pilot Programme on STI for SDGs Roadmaps. Supported in this process by the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission and UNIDO, the country developed its roadmap using the smart specialisation approach. This policy brief...
- FUSTER MARTÍ Enric; MASSUCCI Francesco; MATUSIAK Monika; QUINQUILLA Arnau; BOSCH Josep; DURAN SILVA Nicolau; IRIARTE HERMIDA Mauricio