Ana Pau Linas
Dec 7, 2017

Do companies use SDGs as an advertising strategy?

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Few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to debate this subject and thus, investigate both sides in the coin.

First, I was amazed by how many companies presume to meet or promote programs related to the SDGs. However, since companies mainly look for profit, this makes me wonder if they truly care or they just want to show off among the market? I would like to know what does the Int'l community think about this!

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  • Alissa Vuillier
    Aug 8, 2018

    When looking at the sustainable development goals, or destitute situations around the world, we often default to picturing traditional avenues like NGOs and traditional means like aid as the solution. However, in my opinion, it's important to change our perspective by, instead, looking to social enterprises as the key. There are already countless examples of social enterprises working in developing countries with a joint purpose of turning a profit and contributing to a sustainable development goal. Often, these social enterprises are scrutinized because many believe the aforementioned goals are mutually exclusive. Despite the perceptions of some, I believe that these goals can actually go hand in hand. I would go so far as to say that social enterprises are exactly what is needed if we intend to meet our SDGs at all. These are what I view as the benefits that social enterprises hold: (1) Mutual interests - Whereas, with aid, the only party benefitting is the recipient, the projects that social enterprises launch are better able to be sustained because the interests of both parties (the recipient and the company) are met. (2) Innovation - The very nature of companies are that they must constantly innovate in order to survive. This means tremendous benefits for the developing countries in which they work as they will have access to the best and newest innovations. (3) Promoting sustainable livelihoods - As the old adage goes, "If you give a man a fish, you will feed him for a day. But, if you teach a man to fish, you will feed him for a lifetime." As noble as it is, aid is only a temporary solution, like putting a bandage over a wound. The presence of social enterprises can create jobs for locals, stimulate innovation, and provide long-term support, boosting local industries in the process. Oftentimes, this innovation through social enterprises even comes from local social entrepreneurs, leading to an even greater impact on the livelihoods of those in the country. If we are to make any progress on our sustainable development goals, discovering the best method to achieve that progress is a necessity. I'd love to hear your thoughts and discuss this pertinent issue—what are the best mechanisms by which to achieve the SDGs? https://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/business_models/david_wilcox/how_make_sdgs_truly_sustainable_social_entrepreneurs_cri https://medium.com/unleash-lab/implementing-sdgs-by-leveraging-social-entrepreneurship-and-international-cooperation-4cbe30b0b845 https://www.britishcouncil.org/society/social-enterprise/news-events/news-report-think-global-trade-social https://www.britishcouncil.org/society/social-enterprise/news-events/news-social-enterprises-tackle-SDGs
  • Aung Myo Htun ( Kelly)
    Dec 3, 2017

    The United Nations Security Council adopted unanimously, on 9 December 2015, a ground-breaking resolution on Youth, Peace and Security which recognizes that “young people play an important and positive role in the maintenance and promotion of international peace and security” . https://www.youth4peace.info/UNSCR2250/Introduction
  • Aung Myo Htun ( Kelly)
    Nov 4, 2017

    ​According to the UN, youths are defined as being between 15 and 24 years old, but it can be different in different countries.​ At the present, youth suffer directly from risks and challenges such as political affairs, state building, loss of education, lack of opportunities, social miscommunication and peer pressure. Especially in under-developed countries, a significant number of youth suffer the effect of unstable and unbalanced political crises and peace processes. For example, in Myanmar, there are many that lack opportunities to participate in state building and politics because of the under-military government regime that has been in place for the past 30 years. Today, we are trying to participate in state building to implement youth development, economic, social change and so on by our respective skills. However, many youth lack these abilities and opportunities, especially in rural areas.  I strongly support BTD, because it is one of the platforms that any youth can join. Every country should have at least that kind of platform concerned with political opinions to learn experiences of other youths who are from different countries. How can we do more so that the youth can participate in state building and peace processes? Please give me your suggestions for youths who live in rural areas of our countries. Thanks with many love, Aung Myo Htun (Kelly) Myanmar