Dr. Raghu Raman, Director, Amrita Internal Quality Assurance Cell (Amrita IQAC), participated in the panel discussion titled, Measuring and Reporting on the Sustainable Development Goals, at Europe, the Asia Pacific and the Global Transformation Agenda Conference, The event was hosted by the European Union Centre of Excellence at RMIT University and supported by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union from March 24-26, 2021.

The online conference gave attention to a range of themes from researchers and others in the network for discussing and exploring a range of issues on the Implementation of the SDGs in the Asia Pacific region and the 'Transformation Agenda'.

Abstract of the panel: On September 25, 2015, the 193 United Nations (UN) Members adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Due to the importance and magnitude of this global commitment, different actors are pushing organizations to adopt the UN’s sustainable development agenda and be accountable about their contributions to the SDGs. In response, a number of organisations are embedding the SDGS into their business strategies and reporting processes. The SDGs can be used as an important sustainability framework to improve sustainability performance, demonstrate impact and drive change. However, meaningful measurement, transparency and accountability should be mainstream. The use of the SDGs should be recognised as an opportunity for organisations to maximise positive impact and share value by shifting their business-as-usual mindsets to a transformational leadership.

Dr. Raman’s talk focussed on “UN SDG aligned Sustainability Initiatives at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham”. The talk helped in understanding the strong foundational pillars of Amrita university since its inception, focusing on UN SDG goals with quality research work on social well-being and cost-effective solutions for society's bottom rung under the leadership of Chancellor Amma.

Overview of the 3 days Online Conference:

Opening and setting the scene by Renzo Mori Jr (Senior Advisor for Sustainable Development at RMIT)

First part: Examples of SDGs in use to improve sustainability performance and accountability

  • Donna O’Neill (Director, Corporate Citizenship at KPMG) talk on the topic “KPMG Australia’s Social Impact Framework and SDGs”:
  • Nina Greig-Towers (Relationship Manager Corporate Partnerships at The Salvation Army) talk on topic “Salvation Army’s approach for the 2030 sustainable development agenda”

Second part: How can we measure and report better on the SDGs?

  • Prof Nava Subramanian (Deputy Dean - Research and Innovation at School of Accounting, Information Systems and Supply Chain; RMIT University) talk on the topic “Reporting on the Sustainable Development Goals by Australia’s top 150 Australia:
  • Robyn Leeson: (Principal at STR Consulting and Vice-Chair of the Global Reporting Initiative's Global Sustainability Standards Board) talk on the topic “Trends, Opportunities and Challenges in SDGs Reporting”

Third part: International examples of universities implementing and reporting on the SDGs

  • Gustavo Loiola: Sustainability Coordinator at ISAE Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV), Brazil and Chair UN PRME for Latin America and the Caribbean talk on the topic “Reporting as a strategic tool for reaching SDGs in educational institutions”:
  • Dr. Raghu Raman (Director for Global Accreditations & Rankings in the Office of Vice-Chancellor, at Amrita University, India) talk on the topic “UN SDG aligned Sustainability Initiatives at Amrita University”:
  • Wrap up by Renzo Mori Jr (facilitator)

With the societal impact done by Amrita University, United Nations had officially recognized Amrita with two UNESCO Chair. Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham India’s first-ever UNESCO Chair on Gender Equality & Women’s Empowerment and second UNESCO Chair for Experiential Learning for Sustainable Innovation & Development.

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