From the SDG Summit to the Summit of the Future: Building the UN We Need

16 September 2023, 14:15 – 15:45 EDT

UN HQ Conference Room 4

or Watch on UN Web TV

Panelists will discuss how the 2024 Summit of the Future may best accelerate the implementation of the outcomes agreed at the SDG Summit by promoting effective UN reform for a stronger, more accountable and inclusive multilateral system.

Working across the UN’s three pillars of sustainable development, peace and security, and human rights, the SDG Summit will generate renewed commitments to achieve the 2030 Agenda to be reinforced by the September 2024 Summit of the Future which, in turn, will aim to modernize the international machinery needed to support Member States and other Stakeholders. Doing so can create tangible multiplier effects: as peace and justice are enhanced through SDG16, poverty can be reduced through SDG1 & SDG8. Equality and non-discrimination are promoted through SDG10 which can create opportunities to mitigate climate change in SDG13. While decisions must ultimately be taken by Member States, the transformation necessary will come about through inclusive processes which build on learning and inculcate ownership from diverse communities and actors. 

This side event will present an Open Letter to World Leaders focused on seizing this once-in-a-generation opportunity to review and improve global tools for managing global challenges. It will feature the participation of communities with tremendous first hand experience including persons with disabilities and persons discriminated against based on work or descent, alongside youth representatives, leading scholars, UN diplomats, and former statespersons. It will encourage more ambitious, forward-looking thinking and deliberation on global governance renewal and innovation in the run-up to the Summit of the Future following the SDG Summit. 

Per A/RES/76/307, the General Assembly gave a mandated role to the Major Groups and Other Stakeholders (MGoS) to participate and engage in the preparatory process of the Summit of the Future. In line with SDG 17, speakers will be invited to demonstrate how the active promotion of civil society & stakeholder inclusion, participation and collaboration in the intergovernmental processes for the Summit of the Future will accelerate the implementation of the outcomes agreed at the SDG Summit. Speakers will also be asked to reflect on how a comprehensive Monitoring and Tracking Mechanism should be developed to ensure accountability and facilitate course corrections in implementing the agreed outcomes of both the SDG Summit & Summit of the Future.

Guiding Questions

  1. Flash forward to the same time two years from now, what is your best case scenario? What does an ideal outcome of the next two years look like to you?
  2. What has been one key lesson learnt in this process so far and what is one thing you think has worked well, or should be recalibrated to ensure success moving forward?
  3. From your perspective, what two key entry points for advancing essential innovations, at the SDG Summit and Summit of the Future. In other words, what will be key accelerators of success?


  • Maria Fernanda Espinosa, Executive Director, Global Women Leaders: Voices for Change and Inclusion & Former President of the General Assembly
  • H.E. Mr. Adonia Ayebare, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Uganda to the United Nations
  • Maher Nasser, Director of Outreach, UN Department of Global Communications
  • Arancha González Laya, Dean of the Paris School of International Affairs and former Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of Spain
  • Oli Henman, Co-Chair, Major Groups and Other Stakeholders Coordination Mechanism & Global Coordinator of Action for Sustainable Development
  • Saru Duckworth, UN Foundation Next Generation Fellow
  • Paul Divakar Namala, Convenor, Global Forum of Communities Discriminated on Work and Descent (GFoD)
  • Philipp Schonrock, Director, Cepei & Together 2030
  • Maria Joao Rodrigues, President, Foundation for European Progressive Studies
  • Tawanda Mutasah, Vice President for Global Partnership, Oxfam America
  • Kizito Byenkya, Deputy Director of OSF Global Advocacy and Co-Director of Washington Office, Open Society Foundations