Patrick Paul Walsh, University College Dublin, Ireland.
UN Scientific and Technological Community Major Group statement at the ECOSOC Partnership Forum, Plenary Session, 2 February 2022
Statement at 1hr and 35 min mark.
Plenary session 1, 9:30-10:50 AM EST.
Patrick Paul Walsh, University College Dublin and Senior Advisor to SDSN,
Excellencies, Distinguished Colleagues,
COVID-19 has highlighted our collective failure to generate open science, transfer capacity across nations, and deliver an effective Science Policy Interface (SPI) for all nations.
In a paper for International Association of Universities (IAU Horizons), we argue that the current knowledge for the SDGs in the Global Science Commons is far inside the knowledge frontier required to create a sustainable operating space for humanity . We have three recommendations to enhance the role of science in achieving the targets of SDG 17.
- Knowledge is not always free to access or oriented to the public good. Open science for the SDGs needs to be embedded in HEIs as a norm.
- HEIs need to be incentivized to build capacities in institutions in the global south, to ensure the Global Science Commons can deliver a safe space for all humanity.
- HEIs knowledge needs to be disseminated and shared at great speed, as we have witnessed during the COVID-19 crisis. Universities need to take advantage of entry points for science into policymaking and use effective mechanisms, including digital innovation, to deliver effective Science Policy Interfaces (SPI) at all levels of government.
HEIs and their networks need to encouraged by governments, donor agencies and institutions worldwide to focus on open scientific cooperation across borders and build the open knowledge platforms that enhance Science Policy interfaces..
We do have HEIs open to this mission, including members of the UN Academic Impact; The Sustainable Development Solutions Network; International Association of Universities, Organisations working within the UN Major group system and Higher Education Sustainability Initiative (HESI). Multi-stakeholder partnerships, led by governments, can harness the power of a global science commons to achieve many of the targets of SDG 17.