On 15 December 2016, the UNU Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS) and the Ministry of the Environment of Japan co-organised the “Symposium on Achieving Sustainable Local Communities Through Partnerships with the Private Sector and Local Governments: Best Practices for the SDGs”. This symposium shared best practices and challenges in achieving sustainable local communities, and discussed the kinds of partnerships that can be developed between the private sector and local governments to reach the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in local communities in Japan.
Following opening remarks by a representative of the Government of Japan, UNU-IAS DIrector Kazuhiko Takemoto emphasised the importance of mainstreaming SDGs in business. Mariko Kawaguchi (Daiwa Institute of Research Ltd.) then delivered a keynote speech highlighting the merits of integrating the SDGs in regional revitalisation strategies.
Representatives from three Japanese cities (Kanazawa, Yakumo and Minamisanriku) presented best practices, and Yasuo Tsukamoto (Junior Chamber International Kanazawa) introduced fundraising activities related to SDG Goal 6 — “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”.
The panel discussion, chaired by Norichika Kanie (UNU-IAS), discussed the challenges of applying the SDGs in local communities. The panellists stressed the need for communities to interpret SDGs in their own contexts and then incorporate them into their strategies. The discussion also highlighted the importance of a bottom-up approach led by local citizens.
For more information, see the news story on the UNU-IAS website.