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United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development











Developed in a partnership between the Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) of UNDESA and UNITAR, the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) aims at reaching out to a high number of governmental officials and other stakeholders such as UN staff, local governments, civil society and others who expressed an interest in taking this course.


The learning objectives of the course are:

  1. To explain what STI for SDGs Roadmaps is and its importance in the national and global agendas;
  2. To describe the scope and purpose of the various levels of roadmaps;
  3. To list and explain the six steps in the STI for SDGs Roadmaps development process;
  4. To discuss the methodologies available for the STI for SDGs Roadmaps and what kind of support is needed;
  5. To distinguish the role of government and donors in the process.


The MOOC is structured based on the below modules:

  1. Introduction: It provides an overview of the course and learning objectives
  2. Roadmaps: This section introduces the fictional country Southlands and as well as starts the journey of discovering what is STI for SDGs Roadmaps and how different countries are approaching their development.
  3. Process: In this section, a learner will deep dive into the methodology and process of developing and implementing the STI for SDGs Roadmaps, including the needed core inputs, whom to consult and involve and, the six steps that a country would need in this process
  4. Roles: There are different roles for the key actors involved in the process. This section provides more detailed information on the role of government and recommendations from G-20 countries, and action plan levels.
  5. Support: International community could support the countries in different ways. This section introduces different available methodologies, pilot programme experiences, and real-life examples. It provides also a proposed joint template on development of STI Roadmaps for the SDGs.
  6. Summary: This last section provides a short summary of the course.


Virtual Briefing Flyer


On 5 April 2022, DSDG in collaboration with UNITAR organized a virtual briefing on "Supporting National Capacities through the Partnership in Action." The event was supported by European Commission Joint Research Center, UNESCO, and Japan. It launched the Massive Open Online Course – Develop and Implement Science, Technology and Innovation for SDGs Roadmaps – Level I. This new course aims to strengthen the capacities of various stakeholders at the country level to develop and implement national STI for SDGs Roadmaps as well as help mobilize the global community to assist in the endeavor. This free and self-paced course is open to all key stakeholders involved in the development and implementation of national and local STI for SDGs Roadmaps, with a particular focus on the central agency or ministry in charge of national development plans, Ministry of Science and Technology, or other agencies in charge of STI plans; or line ministries and/or a specialized agency or taskforce with the specific mandate to develop SDG plans.

Video Recording of the Briefing and Launch Event


Photos of the Briefing and Launch Event

Photo of Launch Event Photo of Launch Event


As an important input to the 7th STI Forum, to celebrate the launch of the Massive Open Online Course Develop and Implement Science Technology and Innovation for SDG Roadmaps - Level 1, developed by UNITAR and UNDESA's Division of Sustainable Development Goals (UN DESA/DSDG), partners and stakeholders gathered online and discussed its significance, journey and the road ahead for the United Nations Inter-agency Task Team on Science, Technology and Innovation for the SDGs (IATT).

Since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by the United Nations' General Assembly in 2015, the pathways to achieve sustainability have sparked global reflections and efforts. Meanwhile, inequalities, instability and environmental catastrophes multiplied.

Much like great societal transformations of the past, science, technology and innovation have an essential role to play to support urgent systemic changes and the advancement toward a more sustainable world. This is especially true given the unprecedented progress of this current era.

To assist member-states approach and mobilize these powerful leverages and much more, UN DESA/DSDG developed the Guidebook and  Operational Note for implementing Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for SDGs Roadmaps based on the work of the United Nations Inter-agency Task Team on Science, Technology and Innovation for the SDGs (IATT).

Drawing on this Operational Note, UNITAR and UN DESA developed a comprehensive, self-paced and free online course to strengthen countries and national stakeholders' capacities to develop and implement STI for SDGs Roadmaps as well as attract global assistance in doing so.

Through the journey of the fictional country of Southlands - inspired by pilot countries that received assistance to formulate their own roadmaps - participants will learn more about key concepts, methodology, processes, different approaches and stakeholders relevant to the development of STI for SDGs Roadmaps.

UN DESA and UNITAR encourage anyone interested in learning more about the topic and, more particularly, key stakeholders involved in these processes especially agencies and ministries in charge of national development, STI or SDGs plans to follow the course and start their journey to be an actor of change.

Visit this page and register here for the course.

The development of level 2 course on the design and implementation of STI for SDG roadmaps is already underway by the Joint Research Center of the European Commission and partners so stay tuned!


 Embedded video: trailer


Related Goals