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United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

HESI Partner Programme

Related Goals

17 4


Thank you for all that have applied to the HESI Partner Programme. The HESI Secretariat will be in touch in February 2023 with updated plans.

The aim of the HESI Partner Programme is to connect higher education institutions, networks, and student organizations to create a community of shared learning in support of SDG integration into curricula, research, programmes and campus practices and facilitate transfer of knowledge. The programme will draw from the diverse knowledge and experience of those working in different circumstances. A fundamental principle of the group is that everyone has something to offer, regardless of their stage in integrating the SDGs into their curricula, research, programmes or campus practices. 

All interested HESI members were welcome to apply to the part of the HESI Partner Programme. The application process is now closed. 


Activities of the programme 

  • Mapping of expertise and conducting needs analysis on integrating SDGs in the higher education community.  
  • Organize knowledge sharing workshops (virtual or in-person, depending on the availability of resources) on various aspects of identified expertise and needs. 
  • Pair organizations in partnerships to deepen relationships and knowledge sharing to advance SDG integration. 
  • Develop a simple toolkit on Integrating SDGs into higher education, drawing from existing material, results from the other HESI Action Groups, and from the knowledge workshops.  


Mr. Ola Goransson, UN DESA (, Ms. Jordan Friedman, UN DESA (, Mr. Jean-Christophe Carteron, Sulitest (


The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), can only be realized through strong partnerships between government and other partners across different sectors at the global, regional, national, and local levels. SDG 17, which reads “Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development”, recognizes partnerships as important vehicles for mobilizing and sharing knowledge, expertise, technologies, and financial resources to support the achievement of the SDGs in all countries, particularly developing countries.  

Higher education institutions play a key role in supporting implementation of the SDGs including by ensuring that future generations of learners have the skills, mindsets, and attitudes to truly transform organizations and societies. Since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda in 2015, a number higher education institutions have made impressive progress in integrating SDGs into their work - providing an interdisciplinary learning environment related to sustainable development, and the development of new programmes with focus on sustainable development, and the SDGs. Progress has, however, been unbalanced among higher education institutions in developing and developed nations in this regard.  

The Higher Education Sustainability Initiative (HESI) is an open partnership between several United Nations entities and the higher education community launched in the lead-up to the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (or Rio +20) in 2012, with the purpose of highlighting the critical role that higher education plays in achieving sustainable development.

Each year, HESI designates “Action Groups” to tackle topics related to higher education for sustainable development. These Groups draw upon the membership of the HESI community to carry out their work and are composed of several organizations and contributors. Results are published on the HESI website and promoted by the network. At the 2022 HESI Global Forum, the HESI Partner Programme was announced as a new action group by the co-chairs of HESI, UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs and Sulitest.

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Related Goals