Inaugural Sustainable Development Impact Summit will be held in New York, 18-19 September

By Ariff Rose

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The World Economic Forum will convene its first Sustainable Development Impact Summit in New York on 18-19 September 2017. The Summit is dedicated to accelerating progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the Paris climate agreement through public-private cooperation and the application of technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The inaugural meeting will convene over 500 stakeholders and constituents from Forum communities including global business, government, civil society, Young Global Leaders, Social EntrepreneursGlobal ShapersYoung Scientists, academia and the arts in addition to world leaders already in New York for the UN General Assembly.


Building on discussions at the Forum’s Annual Meeting 2017 in Davos, Switzerland, the goal of the Summit is to identify scalable solutions that can significantly impact the sustainable development agenda. The Summit programme will include a special focus on the potential contribution of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, developing solutions originating in the Forum’s Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2017, which taken place in Dalian, People’s Republic of China.

“We have the ability to shape a future around common objectives and values, where human development is at the very centre of technological progress rather than threatened by it. We need to remind the global community of this when addressing the sustainable development goals and climate change in the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum.


“The Sustainable Development Goals can only be achieved with effective policies, action at all levels, and through a strong global partnership. Political leaders carry a responsibility to implement the 2030 Agenda but will only succeed if they mobilize jointly with different actors across our societies. I urge other leaders to join me in exploring key partnerships at the upcoming World Economic Forum Sustainable Development Impact Summit,” said Stefan Löfven, Prime Minister of Sweden, Founder of the Informal High-Level Group supporting the implementation of the SDGs 2030 Agenda (Brazil, Colombia, Germany, Liberia, South Africa, Sweden, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Tunisia).

The Summit will leverage the Forum’s 14 System Initiatives to highlight and support public-private cooperation that:


  •  Are multistakeholder, including alliances, partnerships and coalitions mobilizing to advance the SDGs
  • Focus on system change at scale
  • Harness the transformative potential of the Fourth Industrial Revolution through the application of science and technology
  • Have strong geographic and generational diversity
  • Have material and measureable objectives


Outcomes from the Summit will be taken forward within the Forum’s System Initiatives and through the Forum’s Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution in San Francisco, which opened this year. The Center is a hub for global, multistakeholder cooperation to develop policy principles and frameworks that accelerate the application of science and technology in the global public interest.

More information about the World Economic Forum Sustainable Development Impact Summit.