05 September 2023

Using insightful messaging and song lyrics, researchers aim to accentuate the collective insights on climate and sustainability, in anticipation of the United Nations' sustainability summit in September.

Maria Jernnäs outside with trees in the background
Maria Jernnäs Jenny Widén

The United Nations hosts the Sustainable Development Goals Summit every four years to monitor the progress of Agenda 2030 and its global sustainability objectives. The forthcoming summit is scheduled for September 18-19 in New York.

Maria Jernnäs is one of three researchers from the department of Environmental Change at Linköping University that is taking part in this project.
– According to evaluations, the outlook of Agenda 2030 isn't promising, says Maria Jernnäs.

What is the project about?

– Within this project, we have constructed a campaign designed to bolster research's voice in connection to the summit. It is essential to note that this initiative doesn't entail any new research; instead, it compiles research's foremost recommendations for attaining the global sustainability goals. In collaboration with a design agency, we've created campaign materials with short to-the-point messages, primarily disseminated through social media, tagged with #TimeToLead, Maria Jernnäs explains.

What are your aspirations for the campaign?

– The target demographic is extensive, and we hope to reach both politicians and decision-makers at various levels. By presenting research in a creative and accessible manner, we aim to generate a momentum leading up to the summit. The goal is to raise awareness concerning existing research, with the campaign functioning as a catalyst for concrete actions, Maria Jernnäs clarifies.

What key message do you seek to convey?

– We want to emphasise that we may not necessarily need more knowledge to act on the sustainability goals of Agenda 2030. Instead, it's about harnessing the knowledge already at our disposal. This campaign also underscores the f significance of diversifying knowledge production as a strategy for reaching the sustainability goals. The campaign materials include ten key messages, each accompanied by corresponding recommendations, presented through a fusion of imagery and tex, sometimes complemented by song lyrics to invoke emotive responses. These messages are based on extensive synthesis reports on climate and sustainable development from the recent years, Maria Jernnäs continues.

The campaign runs from the 4th to the 19th of September, and the project team anticipates widespread dissemination, particularly within the research community. Björn-Ola Linnér and Victoria Wibeck from LiU are also involved in the project. In addition to Linköping University, initiative benefits from the participation of the International Science Council (ISC), with the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) as the project lead.

More information is available at SEI's campaign page.

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