Reporting both live and virtually from Bonn, Germany, The Global Festival of Ideas launched its three day revolutionary “playable conference” today with word that it’s not too late for you to chime in.

The “Playable Conference” is mixing digital platforms, ‘trialing’ new ideas and fostering innovative collaborations to catalyze heretofore unimagined solutions to tackle the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“We have to remain relentless in our pursuit of the sustainable development goals,” says UN High Commissioner Alaa Murabit.

The core of the conference addresses three development challenges:

[list type=”minus”]

  • Inequality: How can we challenge inequality and exclusion in a rapidly globalizing world?
  • Sustainability and Growth: How can we promote economic growth and prosperity with environmental sustainability?
  • Disruptors: How can we protect individuals and communities caught up in shocks and disruptors?


“To ensure that by 2030, the SDGs become a reality for everyone, everywhere, we must innovate in the way we think about communicating the goals, building partnerships, and push for more people-centred action at the local, regional and global levels,” underlined Sarah Poole, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Deputy Assistant Administrator.

“This festival is unique. It marks the beginning of a revolutionary gathering of global shapers and thinkers … and provides for dynamic and interactive space to support and influence SDG implementation.”

In her keynote address, Murabit, a medical doctor, stressed the importance of “unlikely allies” collaborating for the good of all humankind, noting that SDG5 (Gender equity and empower all women and girls) “gets me out of bed every morning. It’s a desire and a drive to ensure that women and girls around the world have the same opportunity as their male counterparts.”

[title type=”h4″]Get Involved[/title]

[list type=”minus”]


As the conference continues, other innovative platforms like Progressia and the SDG Knowledge Hub continue to play a vital role in elevating consciousness and action on the Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Progressia is an imaginary land-locked country in sub-Saharan Africa where over 1/3 of the world’s poorest people have not benefited from progress over recent decades. Visitors explore the complications and trade offs residents experience as they figure out how to implement the SDGs and “balance economic growth, environmental sustainability and social inclusion.”

The SDG Knowledge Hub highlights the key issues, regions, and projects related to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. A recent guest article Agriculture in the 21st Century: New Landscapes for People, Food and Nature addresses the interconnection between addressing food security (SDG2) through sustainable agriculture and the other SDGs on poverty, water, biodiversity, sustainable cities, sustainable energy, and climate change.

Indeed, a new paradigm of inclusive agriculture green growth is needed, and this can be achieved through four actions: considering agriculture a key contributor to multiple SDGs, not just SDG 2 on zero hunger, building cross-sector coalitions, transforming our financial systems, and advancing research and education. Through these four steps, we can not only feed the 9 billion amply, but also do so in ways that sustain our ecosystems, empower local communities and build more resilient cities. (Authors Tim Christophersen and Seth Shames.)