The sixth annual STI Forum will be held from 4 to 5 May 2021. The Forum will be convened by the President of ECOSOC who has appointed two co-chairs - H.E. Mr. Andrejs Pildegovičs, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Latvia to the United Nations, and H.E. Ambassador Mohammad Koba, Charge d’Affaires of the Indonesia Mission to the United Nations. As per its mandate, the Forum will be organized by the UN interagency task team on STI for the SDGs (IATT), convened by UN-DESA and UNCTAD, and the 10-Member Group of high-level representatives appointed by the Secretary General.
As in previous years, the theme of the STI Forum will be closely aligned with that of the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), to be held from 6-15 July 2021, but have an exclusive focus on the role and contributions of science, technology and innovation. Accordingly, the theme for the STI Forum 2021 is: “Science, technology and innovation for a sustainable and resilient COVID-19 recovery, and effective pathways of inclusive action towards the Sustainable Development Goals”.
STI Forum is part of Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM)
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development launched a Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM), which had been established by the Addis Ababa Action Agenda in order to support the Sustainable Development Goals. Member States agreed that it would “… be based on a multi-stakeholder collaboration between Member States, civil society, the private sector, the scientific community, United Nations entities and other stakeholders and will be composed of a United Nations inter-agency task team on science, technology and innovation for the sustainable development goals, a collaborative multi-stakeholder forum on science, technology and innovation for the sustainable development goals and an online platform.”
The collaborative Multi-Stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (STI Forum) is convened annually by the President of ECOSOC and expected to “discuss science, technology and innovation cooperation around thematic areas for the implementation of the sustainable development goals, congregating all relevant stakeholders to actively contribute in their area of expertise.” It will “provide a venue for facilitating interaction, matchmaking and the establishment of networks between relevant stakeholders and multistakeholder partnerships in order to identify and examine technology needs and gaps, including with regard to scientific cooperation, innovation and capacity-building, and also in order to help facilitate development, transfer and dissemination of relevant technologies for the sustainable development goals”.
Member State Briefings
30 March 2021
25 February 2021
H. E. Mr. Mohammad Koba
Ambassador, Charge d’Affaires of the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations, Co-Chair of the 2021 STI Forum
H.E. Mr. Andrejs Pildegovičs
Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Latvia to the United Nations, Co-Chair of the 2021 STI Forum
The UN Interagency Task Team on Science, Technology and Innovation for the SDGs (IATT) is calling upon scientists, engineers, economists, policy analysts, and UN staff experts to contribute to a background report on “Emerging science, frontier technologies, and the SDGs – Perspectives from UN system and science and technology communities”.
Themes: We are looking for substantive contributions in either one of the following areas on issues that you would like to bring to the attention of policy makers:
- Lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic for the science-policy-society interface;
- Rapidly emerging frontier technologies and emerging science issues (for the SDGs)
Theme (b) focuses on rapidly emerging technologies that progress so fast and have such broad-ranging socio-economic and environmental impacts that they pose serious challenges for institutions to adapt. Examples include - but are not necessarily limited to - highly interdependent, emerging technology clusters in the areas of automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, biotechnology, nanomaterials, and various digital technologies. While contributions are welcome along this entire scope, you may want to note that this year’s report will have a special feature on the impacts of frontier technologies on energy and environment.
Format: We are looking for concise contributions of around 1,600 words (excluding references and Annexes) in the form of science-policy briefs, comprising abstract, outline of empirical facts and issues, and policy recommendations. Authorship will be fully acknowledged. The contributions would ideally be grounded in peer-reviewed literature. They would be quantitative comprising tables, figures or infographics, as appropriate.
Submissions will be peer-reviewed. Upon review and acceptance, individual contributions will be included in the IATT report and/or posted on the UN Website as standalone briefs. With your submission, you also permit us to use and consider them for other UN reports and presentations.
Note: We continue to also welcome longer empirical research papers (3,000 to 16,000 words) as input to our ongoing work, but we will not be able to process them in time for the IATT report 2021.
Timeline: We are looking forward to your submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com, as soon as possible and no later than 1 April 2021. For planning purposes, we also encourage you to inform us as soon as possible about the topic of any contributions you plan to submit.
All submissions received by 1 April 2021 will be considered for the 2021 report. Late submissions are also welcome in support of our ongoing work.
UN DESA, in collaboration with the Co-Chairs of the 6th STI Forum, organized an online briefing to share information with stakeholders about the STI Forum, including opportunities for stakeholder participation and contribution. The online briefing took place on 6 April 2021, 8:30AM – 9:45AM (EDT/New York Time).
For more details, see here.
Tuesday, 04 May
Session 1: STI Lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic
Special event: Dialogue between the outgoing and incoming 10-Member Group*
Session 2: Effective paths towards the SDGs: STI for ending poverty and hunger, enhancing human well-being and building resilience
Session 3: Effective paths towards the SDGs: STI for transforming economies toward equity, sustainability and climate action
Special event: STI and harnessing global opportunities for transformations in 2021
Wednesday, 05 May
Session 4: Ministerial Session: STI policies and initiatives for sustainable development - best practices and lessons learned
Session 5: Emerging science and technology trends, challenges and the SDGs
Special event: Digital Cooperation in the Decade of Action
Special event: Promoting Inclusion to accelerate innovation
Session 6: Supporting national capacities through the TFM
Session 7: Delivering in Decade of Action for achievement of the 2030 Agenda and its SDGs: Next steps for the TFM and its partners
Side events may be organized on the margins of the STI Forum and should be related to its theme "Science, technology and innovation for a sustainable and resilient COVID-19 recovery, and effective pathways of inclusive action towards the Sustainable Development Goals", which corresponds closely to that of this year’s High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF). All side events will in virtual format. Side events may be held on the day prior to the Forum (3 May), as well as on the days of the STI Forum itself, but cannot overlap with official sessions (4-5 May; except 9am-12.15pm and 3pm-6.15pm, NY time).
Side events should correspond to subjects featured in the STI Forum. For example they could examine opportunities for accelerating progress towards in-focus SDGs and targets under review at the HLPF 2021, ways to support COVID-19 recovery through STI including the application of lessons learned for STI in the process, rapid technological change, addressing inequalities, improving the science-policy interface, or capacity building on STI for SDGs among others. Proposed side events should directly address at least one of the following guiding questions:
- In the immediate term, what are some of the most promising developments in science, technology and innovation (STI) for accelerating progress towards the SDGs, especially the in-focus SDGs or SDG targets with a 2020 timeline? How can access to these, in particular for the most vulnerable groups and countries, be scaled up quickly and lead to transformations across the 2030 Agenda?
- What are the most promising ways that STI can be harnessed towards a permanent shift toward low-carbon economies and inclusive, equitable development?
- Are there examples of innovations, technologies, lessons for scientific research or policy making that have emerged during the COVID-19 crisis that can contribute to a transformative path towards SDG achievement? How can these be shared and scaled up?
- What are countries doing to improve capacity for applying STI for the SDGs, including in managing rapid technological change?
- How can one address the divide across genders as well as socio-economic groups when it comes to the fields of science, technology and innovation?
- Side events can be organized by Member States, UN entities, intergovernmental organizations, NGOs and other organizations in consultative status with ECOSOC.
- Organizations that are not in consultative status with ECOSOC will need to have a co-sponsor (Member States or UN entities) to organize their side events.
Responsibility of side event organizers
- Each side event organizer is responsible for choosing and hosting their virtual event platform. Registration, login information and password access will have to be transmitted to participants no later than 26 April 2021.
- Organizers must bear ALL the costs incurred, including as they relate to platform use, technical support required as well as publicizing and actively promoting their respective side events.
- Organizers should hold their side events in English or make their own interpretation arrangements.
- Organizers should address one or more of the subjects presented above (‘Thematic focus’).
- Organizers should make the side events as interactive as possible, including by allocating sufficient time for dialogue with the audience.
- Organizers should provide a half-page summary of the key recommendations and messages within one week of the completion of the side event to the UN Secretariat.
Submission of side even requests
Organizers are requested to submit details about their side event not later than 9 April 2021 through an online form (Deadline CLOSED). Once approved, the side event will be listed in the programme of side events of the STI Forum 2021.
Should you have any questions, please contact Mr. Arthur de la Cruz, Division for Sustainable Development Goals, UNDESA (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The STI Forum 2021 Call for Innovations is initiated by the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs in collaboration with Global Innovation Exchange at Results for Development. It seeks innovations developed or adapted to address COVID-19-associated disruptions that will remain relevant beyond the pandemic to help accelerate progress towards one or more of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).The call is currently accepting applications until Friday, March 26, 2021. Please click here for more information.
The Sixth annual Multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (STI Forum) will be held from 4-5 May 2021 in entirely virtual format. The event will be webcasted (UN Web TV).
There is no need for Member States to register for the STI Forum as they will receive the link to the virtual platform through the “ECOSOC meetings” page in the e-deleGATE Portal (edelegate.un.int). Please note that only the members of the delegation who intend to speak during the virtual meetings should log into the “Interprefy” virtual platform. Other members of the delegation may view the proceedings on the webcast (UN Web TV) and would not need to join the virtual platform. Please see the participant guide for more information.
UN agencies/IGOs/IATT/10 Member Group/others
There is no need for UN agencies/IGOs to register for the STI Forum as they will receive the link to the virtual platform through the “ECOSOC meetings” page in the e-deleGATE Portal (edelegate.un.int). Please note that only the members of the delegation who intend to speak during the virtual meetings should log into the “Interprefy” virtual platform. Other members of the delegation may view the proceedings on the webcast (UN Web TV) and would not need to join the virtual platform. Please see the participant guide for more information.
IMPORTANT: IATT members or other representatives from UN entities, the 10 Member Group, and invited speakers and panelists without access to the e-deleGATE Portal can register here by 23 April 2021. For more information or in case of any issues opening the registration form, please contact: Mr. Arthur De La Cruz (email@example.com) or Ms. Adi Ziona Adamit (firstname.lastname@example.org), Division for Sustainable Development Goals, UNDESA.
Representatives of STI stakeholders who wish to attend the STI Forum must register by completing a dedicated registration form by 23 April 2021 -please click here. STI stakeholders will be able to follow the proceedings through the webcast (UN Web TV). A selected number of representatives will be able to make interventions and access the virtual platform. More information will be posted on the STI Forum’s website.
For more information or in case of any issues opening the registration form, please contact: Ms. Naiara Costa, Outreach and Partnerships Branch, Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG), UNDESA (email@example.com).
This is an entirely virtual event and journalists can follow the event via webcast (UN Web TV).