Conversation Series

Uniting Business for a Better World: How the Private Sector Will Help Advance the 2030 Agenda and Beyond

TOKYO: On 21 March 2024, UNU will host a conversation with Sanda Ojiambo, CEO and Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact.

- Asia/Tokyo
Open to public

On 21 March 2024, UNU will host “Uniting Business for a Better World: How the Private Sector Will Help Advance the 2030 Agenda and Beyond”, a conversation with Ms. Sanda Ojiambo, CEO and Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact, and Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations. This event will start at 18:30 in the 2F Reception Hall at UNU Headquarters in Tokyo.

The world is lagging behind in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Over the past few years, the world has encountered several serious challenges, including the climate crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic, and conflicts in the Middle East, Africa and Europe — each of which has had an impact on the global economy, food security and overall stability. The 2030 Agenda offers a framework for businesses, governments and civil society to strategically think and act even in times of crisis.

As a special initiative of the United Nations Secretary-General, the UN Global Compact is a call to companies worldwide to align their operations and strategies with ten principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption. Its ambition is to accelerate and scale the global collective impact of business by upholding the ten principles and delivering the Sustainable Development Goals through accountable companies and ecosystems that enable change. With more than 20,000 participating companies in more than 160 countries, the UN Global Compact is the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative.

Ms. Sanda Ojiambo will join UNU Rector Tshilidzi Marwala for a conversation exploring the role of the private sector and businesses in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. What role does the private sector play in addressing the world's biggest challenges? What does multi-stakeholder action look like locally, regionally and globally? How can we ensure a future of responsible business leadership? And what are the challenges and opportunities for achieving the SDGs from a business perspective?

The UNU Conversation Series aims to foster audience participation; you are encouraged to engage with the speakers during the conversation and at the reception that will follow, where all event attendees are invited to enjoy hors d’oeuvres and drinks while exchanging ideas and making new contacts.

Please note that this event will be in English. Advance registration (by 20 March) is required. Please click on the REGISTER button above to access the online registration page.

Please be prepared to present identification at check-in. 

About the speaker

Sanda Ojiambo is the Executive Director and CEO of the United Nations Global Compact and is an Assistant Secretary-General. 

Born and bred in Kenya, Ms. Ojiambo has over twenty years of experience across Africa and globally, focused on sustainable development and sustainable business 

Sanda Ojiambo spent the first 11 years of her career working in the NGO sector and the United Nations, starting off in CARE International in Somalia and moving to UNDP Somalia, leading programmes in diverse areas such as Education, Safe Motherhood, Environmental Conservation, Governance and Capacity Building. 

After five years in Somalia, Ms. Ojiambo moved on to the IPPF Africa Regional Office, working on pan-African programming that focused on women’s health and rights. 

In 2008, Ms. Ojiambo joined Safaricom Plc, a Kenyan mobile telecommunications company. She provided technical guidance and leadership to teams that pioneered integration of the Sustainable Development Goals into Safaricom’s business strategy and the delivery of the first ever True Value reports for an African corporate; both of which are of immense interest to a broad ecosystem of stakeholders.  

In her current role as Executive Director and CEO of the UN Global Compact, Ms. Ojiambo leads the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative, building the strategic partnerships needed to drive impact and advocacy at local and global levels for the private sector.  She advises the UN Secretary-General and the Deputy Secretary-General on the contributions of the private sector to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, on the engagement of the UN with business and on key organizational partnerships with the private sector. 

She has served on a number of boards, including a Kenyan state corporation focused on attracting domestic and foreign investment to the country; and several other organisations working in impact investing, technology and gender equity.  

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