In March 2017 at CSR HELLAS, in cooperation with the SEV Council for Sustainable Development, we organized a Conference with title “Commitment for Sustainable Development – 17 Global Goals for a better future”, focusing on the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the subsequent 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), that were adopted by the 193 member-states of the UN and present an ambitious global commitment for a sustainable way of exercising entrepreneurship in the whole world.

The common use of the term “development” is incomplete, since it usually refers to economic sizes, without ensuring development that will help us overcome the crisis by covering our current needs, while not undermining the ability of future generations to meet their own. This is the sustainability criterion, as it was recorded in 1987 in the Brundtland Report.
Recognizing this problem but also the challenges presented by rapid globalization, climate change, increasing urbanization, the technological revolution, as well as the intense competition for raw material and natural resources, we wanted to demonstrate, through this conference, how the SDGs can provide a road map for the adjustment and development of a new business model, that doesn’t take into account economic parameters exclusively, but also environmental and social ones as well as corporate governance issues.

Through the Conference we attempted to:

• Initiate a broader conversation between businesses and stakeholders regarding the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
• Present best practices that can also be utilized by other businesses or stakeholders during their adoption of SDGs in their business strategy,
• Promote cooperation and communication between stakeholders on the one hand as necessary prerequisites for achieving the SDGs, while on the other hand demonstrate the pivotal role of businesses and corporate bodies in this effort

The thematic areas that we covered in the Conference were:
1. THE AGENDA 2030 CONTEXT, where high-level representatives from the UN and the EC set the framework, while representatives from the Global Compact, CSR Europe and WBCSD presented initiatives with intending to help businesses integrate SDGs into their corporate strategy and actions.
2. THE CORPORATE APPROACH, where managing directors of businesses shared their experience, through the presentation of examples, best practices and ideas relating to the implementation of new business models, aiming at their effective contribution and response to global challenges that are covered by the SDGs
3. THE POWER OF COLLABORATION, where representatives from various stakeholders with experience of participation in cooperative initiatives demonstrated, through practical examples, the benefits and the impact of this approach

Participants in the Conference were representatives from global and European organizations, members of the business community, of policy-setting bodies, NPOs and other involved bodies, in order to share their opinions regarding the challenges, opportunities as well as practical solutions for the achievement of the goals on a corporate, local or national level.

Members participated in the initiative