Build Back Better

On a recent call co-hosted by Goal 17 Partners for our network with colleagues from the UN, Dawda Jobarteh, Global Head of the SDG Strategy Hub, shared his insight on how the UN is thinking about recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic using the SDGs as the framework.

The recovery, he said, will need to address health issues caused by the virus as well as issues of misinformation, socio-economic struggles, and a rise in gender-based violence. He urged attendees of the call to think about the way that they rebuild so that they do so in a way that “builds back better” and addresses some of the issues that were emphasized by this crisis, and prevents another one. 

After Dawda’s remarks, attendees on the call engaged in a conversation about questions such as how companies are viewing the SDGs, and how to build on partnerships being formed during this crisis to tackle other global challenges. Many companies shared insights into their plans for the next few months and how they have had to shift the way they talk about their work and pursue their corporate and sustainability goals. 

The theme of partnerships and trust ran through the call as both private and public sector leaders shared that the crisis has broken down barriers and allowed for collaborations that previously would not have been possible. This theme was underscored by Dawda’s remark that “partnerships will play a huge role in how we are going to move forward to deliver a fairer, just, equitable, and cleaner planet.”  

For the private sector — which the public expects to play a leadership role through the health crisis and eventual economic recovery — trust in leaders, employees and partners will be one of the ingredients to building back better. As we have seen based on the actions of many companies – including among our Goal 17 Partners – they know the time to earn it is now.