What’s Trending: Sustainable Development Goals News

February 12, 2019 | SDGS

Get the Latest SDG News from Around The World

In today’s information-driven world, it’s easy to get lost in the sea of content. It’s also increasingly difficult to find positive news stories that motivate you to keep giving back. We’ve created this roundup to help you stay up-to-date on the stories making waves in the SDG community—from artificial intelligence for social good to progress in India and beyond.
Here’s a recap of the SDG stories that inspired and motivated us in the latest news cycle.

Using artificial intelligence to fuel SDG progress

When you hear the words “artificial intelligence,” the first thing that comes to mind is likely the idea of robots taking over the world. But what if artificial intelligence (AI) could also be used to create a better world? That’s exactly the question the technology experts at McKinsey Global Instituteexplored this week in an article for the United Nations.

During the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, AI-fueled apps helped rescue workers locate safe escape routes for people trapped by the floodwaters. The free Seeing app from Microsoft is using AI to empower visually impaired people around the world—including in developing countries where resources are more scarce. A partnership among the World Bank, United Nations, Red Cross, Microsoft, Google, Amazon Web Services is tapping into AI to trigger early warning signs for famine. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

For a glimpse into AI for social good, check outthe McKinsey library, which includes 160 examples of AI being used to support the SDGs. Of the 160 cases, 29 are related to good health and well-being, while 24 involve the goal of peace, justice and strong institutions and 13 further efforts to provide quality education.
At Givv, we’re leveraging AI and the blockchain to help close the $1.2 trillion funding gap across the SDGs. As we build our community of Givvers and non-profits, we’re excited to continue leveraging emerging technologies for the social good.

Major SDG milestones in India

India is home to more than 1.3 billion people—191 million of which go to sleep hungry each night and many lack access to basic sanitation facilities. Driven by the SDG deadline of 2030, numerous agencies are working together across India to end hunger and improve health and well-being.

A recent article in the India Times shines a light on key progress points in India. The government’s Pradhanmantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) initiative is working toward its goal of building 20 million affordable houses for the rural homeless by 2022. The country is also tackling the goal of “sanitation for all” through the Indian Government’s Clean India Mission, which has committed to building 111 million latrines over the next five years. More than 80 million public toilets have been built in India since 2014, in what the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine’s Environmental Health Group Director calls “the most successful behavior-change campaign in the world.”

Columbia University’s call for SDG action

Are you a city-dweller working to make your community a more sustainable place? If so, then Columbia University’s Center for Sustainable Urban Development needs your help.
Although the SDGs are well-known to many, they’re not yet mainstream. (In one survey across 24 countries, only 1 in 100 people knew the SDGs “very well,” and 25% only knew the SDG name.) To raise awareness and inspire practical action toward the SDGs and the New Urban Agenda, Columbia University has launched a three-part Local Projects Challenge.
Now in its first phase, the project is seeking people who live in urban communities and contribute to their city in a variety of ways: education, urban professionals, government, the arts or civil society organizations. By completing a simple survey, you’re helping the university team understand the barriers to SDG awareness—and giving them first-hand research to fuel Phase II, which involves community-based projects that drive real progress toward the SDGs.Take the survey here
Are you an individual or corporation looking for new ways to make an impact? Are you involved with a non-profit that’s passionate about advancing the SDGs? Join the Givv movement today by becoming a Givver, corporate partnes or benefiting non-profits . There’s no cost and no catch—only endless opportunities to maximize your impact.