“ISO will support this relevant Index”
Rob Steele, Davos Jan 2015
Secretary General International Organization for Standardization

Background

The deterioration of nature capital continues rapidly and is increasingly putting countries, businesses and individuals at risk. The idea of the Global Sustainability Index Institute Foundation in support of the implementation of the Sustainable Develoopment Goals and the UN springs from the united goal among Unite Nations officials, senior business leaders and NGOs who have challenged the corporate sector and the academia to develop an index that will rank companies on their sustainability in a transparent manner (UNGSII).  The fragmentation of regulation and legislation regarding sustainability around the globe is an obstacle to reward those, who are thriving to create value sustainably and effectively hinders growth in the market for sustainable investments. The proposal has been discussed at the UN in Geneva several times by experts in a variety of fields, including science, business and Government. The goal is to launch the UNGSIndex by 2017. 

Objective

The UNGSIndex will overcome the limitations of current evaluation systems, such as inadequate transparency on evaluation criteria and methodology, a low level of expertise of analysts, backward looking analysis with limited prognosis, and potential conflicts of interest. In this way, the index will allow a meaningful comparison of companies that will increase awareness on sustainability and drive investment on this basis.

Proposal

The UNGSIndex will be a multi-stakeholder, not-for-profit initiative endorsed by the United Nations and housed in the Global Sustainability Index Institute in support of the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the UN  as an international Foundation based in Vaduz with the aim of providing an evaluation and comparison of companies’ sustainability performance in a transparent manner. The UNGSII will develop tools to provide guidance and benchmarking to companies and stakeholders, including investors, to as to encourage progress, but also put them under pressure to improve sustainability performance.  Existing assessment and measurement approaches will be used as a starting point to ensure that best practice is fully integrated. Bottom line success will be the driving force of the UNGSII. The criteria for the index will favor those companies who are working not only to limit the environmental and social footprint of their activities, but to achieve a net positive impact in other words those companies aiming at win-win rather win-lose relationships with their customers, employees and other stakeholders.

Current Activities

Global Goals Conference (GGC)

To introduce the UNGSII and its campaigns to the world, the first annual Global Goals Conference will be launched in December 2017 at the UN in New York. All the world’s heads of states, global corporations and research institutes will be invited to understand and embrace the SDGs and their unfolding deployment as part of greater humanity’s quest for greater political, financial and social ROI.  The GGC will be organized as both breakout networking and plenary sessions celebrating the case studies of the award-winning heads of states, entrepreneurs, schools, universities and media players who have achieved the most in regards to implementing the 17 SDG’s since their birth in 2015. Videos, books, and teaching material will be provided to all participants. The UNGSII is currently contemplating the GGC as a 4-day ship-based event that will commence at the UN in New York, then unfold over a four-day period while en route to Bermuda December 4-8, 2017.

Global Goals Award Show (GGAS)

In addition to the above sessions, the GCC will also feature what we hope to become the world’s most important television show, the Global Goals Awards Show. Envisioned as The Oscars meets the Nobel Awards, the GGAW will honor invited heroes across the political, corporate and entertainment worlds for their  measurably significant SDG activities and social action. It is our intent to globally broadcast these awards, and to draw upon the UN’s extensive constellation of social impact-oriented global celebrities, producers and international media partnerships to build a truly compelling show with global reach and impact, along with other complimentary media events.

UN SDG Executive Masterclass Program

In addition to the Substantiation and Activation, SDG Education is the third major goal of the UNGSII.  The unexpectedly powerful global embrace of the SDGs in their first year has provided enough concrete best practice cases – enough to develop a rich executive MBA curriculum. The UN’s MBA program is now being designed for 2017 launch to influence and empower private sector leaders who desire to accelerate sustainability via the full deployment of the 17 SDGs and their 168 detailed sub-targets across the world’s corporations and governments by 2030. It is a rotating masters program in collaboration with prestigious global universities across multiple continents. It focuses on practitioners who don’t have time to spend a full year at university, but who are passionately looking for a tailor-made program offering both (1) access to knowledge, cutting edge research and case studies from the world’s best scholars from Harvard, Oxford, Hamburg etc, and (2) ‘speed-dating’ access to those in charge of hosting the SDG processes within the UN itself and across its esteemed institutional partners. The master classes will take place at the UN Palais des Nations in Geneva, the UN headquarters in NY, and at the UN hubs in Bonn and in Vienna. Thanks to UNGSII partner UN Academic Impact, unique networking opportunities across 1300 global universities will be an additional part of the program. In order to ensure the high quality of both Scholars and participants the groups will not exceed 30 students per class. UNGSII is charging 20.000€ for its 4 week certified MBA certificates.

UN Global Sustainability Fund (UNGSF)

In tandem with its launch, UNGSII is launching the UN Global Sustainability Fund, a new type of impact micro-investment venture fund. The UNGSF is dedicated to founding, funding and nurturing the next generation of socially, environmentally and technologically conscious entrepreneurs developing market solutions that maximize the deployment and impact of any or all of 17 SDGs. Deploying both a proprietary startup acceleration platform; and raised, donated and endowment capital;  the UNGSF’s additional missions are to generate revenues for financing future UNGSII programs, grants and partner initiatives; and to host online and global competitions, deliver online resources, create opportunities for SDG Ambassadors and mentor students across the planet. The UNGSF is being co-founded  by UNGSII Founder Roland Schatz, Draem Ventures Founder Ari Eistenstat and Grameen Solutions Co-Founder Aziz Ahmad.  The UNGSF intends to aggregate an initial $10 million fund to finance its first 1000 SDG-centric startups.

UN Global Sustainability Network – UNGSII Brand Ambassador Program (UNGSN)

Finally, the UNGSII’s mission to help Activate the global embrace of the SDG’s has lead to the creation of a multi-tiered membership organization created to foster a community of advisors, fellows, partners, UN MBA students and graduates, innovators, and diplomatic envoys working together to coordinate and pool efforts and resources to achieve the 2030 agenda. Public officials, business leaders, academic experts, cultural mavens, nonprofit innovators, youth activists and organizational intrapreneurs will all be invited to apply to participate in forums that advance the mission of the UNGSII. As a stakeholder community, UNGSII Ambassadors will have the opportunity to serve as bridges between the vital work of the United Nations/Global Goals team and their ever-expanding local and  regional networks. In this capacity, all UNGSII Ambassadors will act as liaisons and messengers for our global SDG-driven sustainability programs.

The Ambassador of Hope School Competition

The UNGSII has identified youth as a particular focus and the proposed competition would fit well with this aim. The challenge laid before the school children involved would be to present concrete suggestions of how to improve intercultural or interfaith dialogue and cooperation or even just community harmony. The precise framing of the challenge posed would be open for negotiation in each case but the objective would be to lead the children to reflect on both their experience of cooperation and their ideas for how to enhance it. As they run the competition on own leadership on all levels: school, town, regional and (inter)-national level it encourages their will for leadership. The first competition took place May/June 2016 in Vietnam.

Establishment and funding

The UNGSIndex  needs an independent institute to collect relevant data, undertake additional research and coordinate the progress of the participants, and after two years, decides on the concrete principles of the UNGSI.  The main partners of the UNGSII in the early stage will be the banks, commercial or private.

UNGSII Executive Board

Roland Schatz and Ari Eisenstat