Online Events in October 2023 – ESD and SDG 12

In the last two weeks of October we organized three online events to reach out a wider audience with the message of the Earth Charter and connect with different initiatives.

Linking Sustainability and Quality Education: an overview from Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) for 2030 Regional Meetings (17 October 2023).

This was a joint event with Earth Charter International, UNITWIN Network on Social Transformation, UNESCO , IISDL Leuphana University (Germany) and UNESCO Chair at York University Toronto (Canada).

Three speakers participated in this webinar:

  • Mark Manns, Programme Specialist, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France.
  • Katrin Kohl, Coordinator, UNESCO Chair in Reorienting Education towards Sustainability. York University Toronto, Canada.
  • Daniel Fischer, Professor for Sustainability Education and Communication, Leuphana University Lüneburg, Germany.
  • Moderator: Alicia Jimenez, Earth Charter International and EC Center for ESD at University for Peace.

Mark Manns started presenting about outcomes from the Education for Sustainable Development 2030 regional meetings that UNESCO organized during the last 2 years, and what are the expected outcomes for upcoming global meeting in Japan (December 2023).  This ESD 2030 global network called aims to support countries in the implementation of education for sustainable development, through: 1) knowledge exchange and learning; 2) actions implementation; 3) collaboration; 4) monitoring and evaluation. 

As of October 2023, 97 countries are on board in relation to ESD 2030. Fifteen countries have finalized the plans to have a national initiative for implementation.   Thirty two countries are on track and fifty countries have started or expressed interest.

Katrin Kohl and Daniel Fischer are members of the UNITWIN Network on ESD and Social Transformation. They reflected on how ESD is furthering the understanding and practice of quality education in the context of current global challenges.

About the role of education, Katrin Kohl mentioned that to achieve sustainable communities, it would be advisable to embed education for sustainable development in all areas, to have competences to live meaningful life. The five dimensions of SDGs align very good with ESD:  for people, we need knowledge, for peace we need collaborative skills, critical thinking, for the planet, we need to think holistically.  These need to be part of strategies to further quality education.  She added that building a just a sustainable world is the vision, and ESD should support this vision as a means of implementation, not reducing it to implement only the current action plan of the SDGs. 

Daniel Fischer shared about the UNITWIN on ESD and ST Network mission that implies to incubate research, involve policy, and impact practice through evidence-based ESD engagement. He shared about innovative pedagogies that this UNITWIN is exploring to further ESD. For example, narrative approaches, active learning methodologies like citizen science projects, and Inner dimensions of learning using mindfulness techniques. 

Watch the recording here:

Higher Education and SDG 12 (25 and 27 October 2023)

The University for Peace, the UN Academic Impact Initiative and Earth Charter International joined efforts to organize two workshops on university experiences implementing the SDG 12. The first workshop was in English, the second in Spanish.

The main reason to organize these workshops was to follow up the commitment of University for Peace as the hub for SDG 12: “Responsible Production and Consumption” for the period 2021-2024, appointed by the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI). Both workshops were moderated by Alicia Jimenez, ECI staff member.

In the first workshop in English language, there were five speakers.  The workshop started with a presentation by Dr. Nika Salvetti, Visiting Professor at UPEACE, who gave an overview of the SDG 12, the main theoretical aspects related to what is sustainable consumption and production, the relevance of SDG12 in the current context, especially considering the latest information on the planetary boundaries. She share about how UPEACE is addressing SDG 12, especially through the “Responsible Management and Sustainable Economic Development Masters’ Programme”.

Amanda Bennett and Alicia Jimenez, staff members of Earth Charter International offered presentation on values and ethical principles associated with sustainable lifestyles, and shared pedagogical approaches that can be used to integrate the values and principles associated with a sustainability worldview in education processes.  Gabriela Montero staff member of UPEACE, shared about one experience at UPEACE to bring awareness about waste management and promote better recycling behavior.

Finally, Casey Harrison, University for Peace alumni and Director of Impact and Learning at Nuru International, shared about this organization’s work on SDG 12, more specifically on food security, promoting regenerative production, mitigating post-harvest loss, and climate change adaptation in several African countries.

Watch the recording here:

The second workshop, in Spanish, was organized in collaboration with the Observatory of Sustainability in Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Costa Rican Network of Higher Education Institutions for Sustainability.

There were 10 presentations in this workshop, the idea was to share many examples of what universities in Latin America, specially in Costa Rica, are doing to implement the SDG12.


  • Ethical foundation of sustainable lifestyles, the Earth Charter perspective.  Amanda Bennett, Programme Manager and Youth Coordinator, ECI.
  • Progress done by Universities in Latin America and Caribbean with the implementation of the SDGs.  Orlando Sáenz, Coordinator, Observatory of Sustainability in Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (OSES-ALC).
  • Experience of the Sustainable Waste Management Regional Network. Marco Tulio Espinosa López, University of Applied and Environmental Science (Colombia).
  • Regenerative Agriculture from a university perspective.  Tania Moreno, University of International Cooperation (Costa Rica)
  • Working with local communities through an open Classroom Module of the School of Architecture. César Guzmán Montero. Latina University (Costa Rica).
  • Universities promoting circular economy in communities.  Jonathan Chaves. National Council of Rectors (Costa Rica).
  • The Costa Rican Network on Food Waste Reduction experience.  Laura Brenes, Technological Institute of Costa Rica.
  • The case of the National University of Costa Rica with food waste. Julián Rojas.
  • The case of EARTH University of Costa Rica with food waste. Carlos M. Escobedo.
  • University leadership to promote sustainability: the case of Federal University of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil Rosamaria Moura-Leite.

Watch the recording here (in Spanish):