ESDW 2017 Press Release (July 6th 2017)

The EUROPEAN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT WEEK 2017 was a great success with 4,031 activities in 30 European countries The third European Sustainable Development Week did not only receive high-level political support, but engaged a wide variety of societal stakeholders who organized activities in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Week showed the importance of […]

The EUROPEAN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT WEEK 2017 was a great success with 4,031 activities in 30 European countries

The third European Sustainable Development Week did not only receive high-level political support, but engaged a wide variety of societal stakeholders who organized activities in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Week showed the importance of sustainable development for many European actors.

The third European Sustainable Development Week (ESDW) took place from 30 May – 5 June 2017. This European-wide initiative was initiated by Austria, France and Germany and is supported by the ESDN, the European Sustainable Development Network (www.sd-network.eu). The ESDW’s aim is to stimulate and make visible all those activities, projects and events that promote sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Europe on a common online platform (www.esdw.eu).

The ESDW 2017 was a great success with 4,031 activities taking place in 30 European countries. The ESDW 2017 also reached more than 360,000 people, who are estimated to have attended these diverse events! On twitter, the hashtag #ESDW was seen over 400,000 times and the hashtag #ESDW2017 received over 25,000 impressions! This year’s ESDW showed the variety and breadth of sustainable development and how this concept is realized through practical activities at the European, national, regional and local level all across Europe!

The ESDW has received high level political recognition: First Vice-President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans endorsed the Week, the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, highlighted the importance and success of the ESDW at the 17th Annual Conference of the German Council for Sustainable Development on May 29th 2017,  and the French Minister for the Ecological and Inclusive Transition, Nicolas Hulot, inaugurated the launch of the ESDW 2017 with a special event, gathering a hundred stakeholders committed to the SDGs.

The ESDW was referenced in the Council of the European Union’s General Affairs Council Conclusions of 20 June 2017, whereupon the Council  (in §26) “underlines the need to raise awareness of EU citizens, especially its youth, and the private sector on the transformative potential of the 2030 Agenda and to raise levels of public engagement and responsibility and political leadership in addressing the SDGs at all levels, thus contributing to global citizenship and to raise awareness of the SDGs’ positive transformative potential; calls upon the Commission to carry out ambitious communication and awareness raising activities in this regard, building inter alia on the European Sustainable Development Week”

ESDW 2017 ACTIVITIES

For the second year in a row, the ESDW activities were linked to the global UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals The activities that took place during the ESDW 2017 were linked to each of the 17 SDGs, but were most frequently linked to (organizers could link their activities to up to 3 SDGs): SDG 12 “Responsible Consumption and Production” (1,862 activities); SDG 11 “Sustainable Cities and Communities” (1,442 activities); SDG 3 “Good Health and Well-Being” (820 activities); SDG 13 “Climate Action” (712 activities); and SDG 15 “Life on Land” (617 activities).

So far as data was available, the most common types of activities registered during the ESDW 2017 were educational events (768 activities), followed by conferences/workshops (580 activities) and community events (445 activities).  Other common types of activities were film/theatre events, contests, excursions/trips, exhibitions/open house, festival/markets, and sports events.

The most common types of organizers participating in the ESDW 2017 with their activities were local governments (644 activities), associations (567 activities), business (431 activities), civil society organisations/NGOs (407 activities), and educational institutions (361 activities). Other organizers included national governments, research organisations, individual citizens, museums and cultural institutions, and European institutions.

The main target groups were the general public (2,944 activities), youth/students (800 activities), professionals/experts (551 activities), and local communities (449 activities).

ESDW 2018

Building on the continued success of the past 3 years, and keeping with the ESDW tradition, the ESDW 2018 will take place on the same dates (May 30th – June 5th). We are already looking forward to the many interesting and creative activities that will surely be registered next year! Follow the ESDW on Twitter (EuropeanSDWeek) and Facebook (European Sustainable Development Week) to find out when opening event registrations for ESDW 2018 will be open!

Contact: Eric Mulholland, ESDW Office, Institute for Managing Sustainability, Email: eric.thomas.mulholland@wu.ac.at