Foreign Affairs and the 2030 Agenda: The relevance of SDGs to foreign policy and international security

Diplomacy and SDG


The HLPF side event was co-organized by the Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations and Adelphi to better understand how the SDGs could be leveraged to achieve foreign policy objectives. Draw on a recent study “Driving Transformative Change: Foreign Affairs and the 2030 Agenda”, the discussion explored the role of foreign policy in the global sustainability architecture and the idea of “Sustainable Foreign Policy”. The event also discussed the geopolitical implications of Agenda 2030 and its links to peace and security.

The concept of “Sustainable Foreign Policy” was considered as an effective tool to facilitate the global implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As reflected in the 2019 HLPF, despite high-level commitments to sustainable development, most of the governments did not take serious steps on implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In 2019, after 5 years of the proposal of Agenda 2030, none of the SDGs has been achieved. The scale and speed of implementation are far lagging behind that the possibility to fulfil sustainable targets by 2030 seems to be waning. To fill the gap between vision and reality from a diplomatic approach, the concept of “Sustainable Foreign Policy” was proposed with the purpose to transform conventional foreign policies into strategies that could foster multilateral cooperation which serves as the cornerstone to the achievement of Agenda 2030’s ambitions and longlasting international peace.  

Representatives from several countries were invited to share about their implantations of SDGs and its implication to their county’s foreign policy. In which, Jordan reinsure its implementation on SDGs, such as the provision of quality education and medical services would continue to include refugees who are habiting in its territory. Situated in the middle of the conflicting region, Jordan has also promised to continue to strengthen their economic resilience, international cooperation and reject extremism and international isolation. 

Meeting: Driving Transformative Change – Foreign Affairs and the 2030 Agenda: The relevance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to foreign policy and international security

Date/Location: Tuesday, July 9, 2019; 13:00-14:30; Auditorium, Permanent Mission of Germany, New York, NY


H.E. Dr. Christoph Heusgen, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations;

Ms. Stella Schaller, Adelphi;

H.E. Dr. Sima Bahous, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the United Nations;

H.E. Mr. Jürg Lauber, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Switzerland to the United Nations;

Ms. Anne Hammill, Director, Resilience, International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD);

Ms. Jimena Roesch, Senior Fellow at the International Peace Institute (IPI); former Counselor at the Permanent Mission of Guatemala to the UN and lead negotiator in the negotiations for the SDGs and UN climate change policy;

Mr. David Steven, Senior Fellow and Associate Director, Center on International Cooperation at New York University (CIC-NYU);

Mr. Oli Brown, Chatham House


Written By: WIT Representative Jeremy Tong

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