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Research and science diplomacy: SDG Bergen Science Advice

SDG Bergen Science Advice is part of a strategic initiative by the University of Bergen to create innovative channels for scientific advice.

As part of the SDG Bergen initiative, SDG Bergen Science Advice (SDG BSA) has been established to address and develop the science-policy interface. SDG Bergen Science Advice's Academic Director is Professor Edvard Hviding. The group includes prominent researchers and senior advisers in communication and international cooperation. The premise for SDG BSA is a common ground between the UN system, diplomatic missions and the university sector to be involved in global sustainability. SDG BSA reports to the SDG Bergen Steering Group.

In June 2017, the University of Bergen (UiB) held several meetings with parties in the United Nations (UN) system on the sidelines of the Ocean Conference. This prepared the ground for a direct link to the Norwegian Mission to the UN to develop dialogues for research-based advice and to explore more general channels for science diplomacy connected with the UN's work towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In July 2018, UiB was the first academic institution to be part of the official Norwegian delegation to the high-level political forum (HLPF) at the UN. As part of this, the university contributed with briefs and speeches during HLPF. In December 2018, UiB and SDG Bergen co-hosted the official Norwegian side event at COP24 in Katowice, along with Norway's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, and the University of the South Pacific.

Science diplomacy is a term used for scientific cooperation to build international partnerships. As well as international collaboration between scientific institutions such partnerships may encompass nation states, diplomacy, government agencies, voluntary organisations, and business.

There is a common ground between the UN system, various diplomatic missions and the university sector to be involved in work geared towards sustainability and the goals set in the 2030 Agenda.

UiB has established SDG BSA to encourage the university's researchers to engage in science diplomacy, science advice and to strengthen the science-policy interface. Universities need to be present in international high-level meetings, and SDG BSA is at the forefront in academia in this regard.

The aim of SDG BSA is to engage as many UiB researchers as possible in science diplomacy and scientific advice in relation to the 2030 Agenda.