Scientific and technological community members outlined their views on needed changes to the HLPF as part of an intergovernmental review.
After the co-facilitators for the review released a zero draft on 12 February, the STC Major Group suggests further modifications and welcomes several aspects of the proposals.
A revised draft is expected to be released on 8 March for consideration at an informal consultation on 12 March.
Scientific and technological community members outlined their views on needed changes to the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF). UN Member States are conducting a review of the HLPF as well as the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), and stakeholders and experts are submitting inputs and proposals.
In response to the zero draft of a UN General Assembly resolution on the review, issued on 12 February 2021, the Scientific and Technological Community Major Group suggests further modifications for governments’ consideration. The letter suggests that the draft resolution:
- Clearly address the role of the UN Multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation (STI Forum), which the authors said needs to be better connected to the 2030 Agenda, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development (FfD), the HLPF and the FfD Forum, by making the STI Forum a key stage in the HLPF preparatory process;
- Clarify the role of the Commission on Science and Technology for Development as helping to enable an effective science-policy interface for the 2030 Agenda; and
- Highlight the important role of scientists and engineers in preparing countries’ voluntary national reviews (VNRs) of SDG implementation, to ensure the use of robust data and scientific evidence.
The letter welcomes several aspects of the zero draft, including the proposal to hold the Council’s annual high-level opening segment earlier in the year to foster effective feedback into the HLPF and ECOSOC for the remainder of the year, strengthening the HLPF’s focus on SDG interlinkages, making VNR sessions more interactive, and giving the Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR) and its independent scientist authors a more prominent role.
The co-facilitators for intergovernmental consultations on the HLPF and ECOSOC reviews are Alexander Marschik, Permanent Representative of Austria, and Cheikh Niang, Permanent Representative of Senegal. They are holding a series of intergovernmental consultations in February and March 2021 to finalize a draft resolution for adoption by the UN General Assembly (UNGA).
The most recent consultations took place on 26 February and addressed aspects of the zero draft including the proposal to move the High-level Segment from July to February, the proposed themes and SDGs for review in 2022 and 2023, and the participation of stakeholders and Major Groups in ECOSOC and the HLPF.
A revised draft is expected to be released on 8 March for consideration at an informal consultation on 12 March. [Input from STC Major Group]