CBAS Holds STI Forum Side Event to Strengthen Potential of Digital Technologies for SDGs in Post-COVID World

May 08, 2023

The International Research Center of Big Data for Sustainable Development Goals (CBAS) held a side event to the eighth annual Multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (“STI forum”) on May 2nd, 2023, in support of sustainable development in the post-epidemic era with big earth data at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The side event, themed “Big Earth Data, Strengthening Potential of Digital Technologies for SDGs in Post-COVID World”, was webcast live on UN Web TV.

Professor GUO Huadong, CBAS Director-General, highlighted in his opening remarks the urgency of making efforts to bridge data gaps, promote equitable access to data, invest in capability building, and support developing countries to fully participate in the digital economy.

The event showcased scientific assessment progress of Chinese scientists on the UN sustainable development goals including SDG6 (clean water and sanitation), SDG7 (affordable and clean energy), SDG11 (sustainable cities and communities) and SDG17 (partnerships for the goals).

"Big earth data was closely related to the statistics of agriculture, environment and human settlements," said Ronald Jansen, Assistant Director, Chief of Data Innovation and Capacity Branch of Statistics Division/UNDESA.

Scientists and experts discussed latest progress and challenges concerning big earth data in support of sustainable development in the post-epidemic era using digital technologies, and how to better leverage the role of big earth data in the mid-term assessment of the UN SDGs, as well as interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral multilateral cooperation.

"CBAS was launched under the initiative of President XI Jinping as part of China’s on-going efforts to promote SDG implementation and develop scientific cooperation," said LIU Liqun, Counsellor, Head of the Division of Economic, Science & Technology Affairs of Permanent Mission of the People's Republic of China to the United Nations. "Amidst the multiples crises of food, energy and finance, the international community should work together to respond to challenges such as environmental degradation, climate change and growing political tensions," he said.

This side event was co-organized by International Society for Digital Earth (ISDE), International Centre on Space Technologies for Natural and Cultural Heritage (HIST) under the auspices of UNESCO, Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR), CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence on Space Technology for Disaster Mitigation, and China Association for Science and Technology (CAST).

The event was moderated by Gretchen Kalonji, Former ADG for Natural Sciences of UNESCO, and JIA Gensuo, Deputy Director of CBAS.

The year 2023 marked the mid-term review of 2030 Agenda. Participants called for joint efforts via the open platform to deal with data challenges and promote the use of big earth data to make it play a larger role in implementing the SDGs.