Participation is everything!

On 21 October 2020, Chief Operating Officer of the BKMC, Katrin Harvey participated in the 15th Austrian CSR-Day, organized by respACT, the Austrian business council for sustainable development, as a panelist for the online afternoon session “Participation is everything”.

The CSR-Day is a business conference in Austria that invites businesses to exchange best practices, network, and cooperate on sustainability topics. This year, the event’s focus was put on entrepreneurial climate protection. Together with Prof. Dr. Pablo Collazzo, Managing Partner at Sequoia Management LLC and Dorothea Wiplinger, Sustainability & Project STOP Manager at Borealis Strategy & Group Development, COO Harvey discussed how international partnerships can lead through global crises.

During her presentation, COO Harvey highlighted the holistic nature of the SDGs, focusing on the significance of Sustainable Development Goal 17, Partnership for the Goals. Cooperation and multi-stakeholder partnerships are a combining component of all SDGs and can bring a better future for all.

She explained that to create a healthy environment, a thriving society, and a prosperous economy, we need a global game-changing plan. We need an unstoppable movement of cooperation on all levels, including an SDG based economic development to achieve Agenda 2030 in the next decade.

To make the SDGs a reality we need everyone on board. It requires global leadership and strong multilateralism, local stakeholder engagement with relevant and practical policies and budgets. It needs individuals from all ages and all parts of the world. A multi-stakeholder approach can be the ideal solution, a mix of government, academia, civil society, and businesses, a best-case scenario of cooperation and international relationships.

“The SDGs can become a success story, if all actors push in the same direction, are interconnected, and think systemically to design a better and more sustainable future.”

COO, Katrin Harvey

She also highlighted some concrete partnership opportunities in striving for the 2030 Agenda.

  • Education and workforce development
  • Strengthens the supply chain
  • Affordable products and services
  • Government capacity building

THE SDG PARTNERSHIP GUIDEBOOK: A practical guide to building high-impact multi-stakeholder partnerships for the Sustainable Development Goals, Darian Stibbe and Dave Prescott, The Partnering Initiative and UNDESA 2020.

Businesses are already starting to adopt a socially and environmentally responsible mindset and learning to understand their significance and their crucial role in implementing agenda 2030 in their own operations. Yet, there is a need for acceleration and amplification on all fronts.

Combining the efforts of academia, civil society, government, and the private sector, all stakeholders can find a win-win-win situation for all within the framework of the SDGs, as they offer a blueprint for sustainable economic development in the long-run. We are the last generation possible able to mitigate the effects that are exhausting our natural resources.

She ended her intervention with a call for action “Participation is everything, let us implement the 17 SDGs together in the next decade.”

To learn more about CSR-Day click here.