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SDG Bergen

About SDG Bergen

SDG Bergen is a strategic initiative by the University of Bergen to engage with the Sustainable Development Goals.

The University of Bergen (UiB) is one of Norway's leading comprehensive research universities. UiB has always been globally oriented, with long-standing research collaboration throughout the world.

Recognising the key significance of the 2030 Agenda, in 2017 UiB launched a university-wide strategic initiative to engage with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), spearheaded by the university's participation in the United Nations Ocean Conference and entering into several voluntary commitments with partner institutions.

As the first Norwegian university to institutionalise the 2030 Agenda, UiB organised the inaugural, high-level SDG Conference Bergen in February 2018, on behalf of the university sector in Norway and in cooperation with Norway's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Education and Research.

The 2018 SDG Conference Bergen was the first of its kind worldwide, and brought together more than 300 researchers, educators, politicians, government and UN officials, NGOs, and industry representatives to discuss how universities can contribute at the science-policy interface required for the goals of the 2030 Agenda. The conference laid the foundation for Norwegian universities to engage their researchers in innovative channels for science diplomacy. There was a student SDG gathering on the eve of the conference. The hashtag #SDGbergen saw the conference trending on Twitter as the most popular topic in Norway.

Among the key speakers at the 2018 SDG Conference Bergen were Norway's Prime Minister, Minister of Research and Higher Education and Minister of International Development, such UN officials as the secretary general of UNCTAD, and heads of international university associations. SDG Conference Bergen is an annual event.

As part of the commitment to host a national SDG conference for the university sector, UiB has created the SDG Bergen initiative to critically engage with the SDGs. SDG Bergen was initiated by the UiB Rector and his team. The academic steering group for SDG Bergen is headed by UiB's Vice-Rector for Global Relations, Professor Annelin Eriksen. SDG Bergen reports directly to the leadership and the university board.

A number of activities on sustainability and the science-policy interface are collected under the SDG Bergen initiative. The four prime SDG Bergen activities are:

  • The SDG Bergen Science Advice (SDG BSA) has been established to address and develop the science-policy interface. SDG BSA's Academic Director is Professor Edvard Hviding.
  • Ocean Sustainability Bergen (OSB) is a virtual centre working in ocean science and education. OSB's Academic Director is Professor Lise Øvreås.
  • The SDG Conference Bergen is the annual national conference for the university sector to engage critically with the SDGs. Academic Director for the 2020 conference is Vice-Rector Annelin Eriksen.
  • Utdanning 2030 (Education 2030) is a working group, which aims to integrate SDG-oriented activites in the education at the university. The group is lead by Vice-Rector Annelin Eriksen.

Building on the position as Norway's premier SDG-oriented university, UiB has established leadership through a national committee for the 2030 Agenda consisting of leaders from Norway's main research universities and advisers from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Education and Research. UiB has pledged to become carbon-neutral by 2030, as part of the SDG Bergen initiative.