Rapid developments, fuelled by technological innovations, have helped to bring unprecedented wealth to many parts of the world over the last century and nearly unlimited opportunities for personal development and increased wellbeing.
But this expansion has come at a cost to the planet and the people. And in an increasingly connected world, billions yearn for progress and have the legitimate aspirations of having the same opportunities as the well-off members of the global society.
This hope is embodied in Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) ‐ a global sustainability agenda with 17 ambitious goals, agreed in 2015 by 193 countries within the United Nations framework, to guide the world towards a better future for all.
Achieving the SDGs by 2030 is just not possible with the current development model. The resource base that fuel human development for all, now and in the future, poses a natural limit to the growth potential of our economic system under business‐as‐usual conditions.
A paradigm shift is needed, not only regarding our current development patterns – production and consumption processes but also how we transform the future. We need a new storyline, a narrative that takes into account the natural boundaries of the planet we all share, while at the same time embracing the opportunities that new technologies offer us.
To help shape these societal and technological transitions at the critical juncture we are at today, five independent technological research institutes jointly launched the Global Sustainable Technology & Innovation Conference series (G‐STIC).
G‐STIC aims to catalyse the process of better harnessing science, technology, and innovation to achieve the SDGs by 2030 and to improve human well-being and prosperity broadly.
G-STIC works across national and sectoral boundaries to identify innovative and feasible solutions that have the potential to strengthen and direct technological innovation to help the world achieve the SDGs.
G-STIC is focused on integrated technological solutions to complement the current multitude of solutions. Integrated technological solutions not just deal with one sustainable development challenge, but tackle multiple challenges at the same time to achieve significant social and economic benefits.
Integrated technological solutions are based on the holistic framework offered by the very concept of sustainability itself, taking the environmental, the social and the economic dimensions into account at the same time.
Integrated technological solutions are regionally differentiated and adapted to local, regional, or national needs.