Digital at UNGA 78
eTrade for all Newsletter
The High-level Week of the 78th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 78) took place from September 18 to 26, 2023.
This year’s annual high-level General Debate gathered world leaders to engage under the theme, “Rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity: Accelerating action on the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals towards peace, prosperity, progress and sustainability for all.”
Heads of State and Government and ministers explored solutions to the intertwined global challenges to advance peace, security, and sustainable development. Many leaders acknowledged the importance of incorporating digital advancements into their development plans, highlighting pressing issues related to bridging the digital divide, ensuring equal access to digital opportunities, and using technology for the greater good of society.
DiploFoundation’s AI tool and human experts provided a comprehensive overview and in-depth analysis of the general discussion at UNGA 78.
Heads of State and Government gathered at UN Headquarters in New York on 18-19 September 2023 to review the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and its 17 SDGs.
They emphasized the commitment to bridging the digital divides, ensuring widespread digitalization benefits, enhancing digital infrastructure, promoting digital literacy, and strengthening social protection systems through partnerships, technological innovations, and digital literacy. Leaders also paved the way for a Global Digital Compact to accelerate SDG achievement.
Scope of the Summit of the Future
At UNGA the decision titled, “Scope of the Summit of the Future”, was adopted and the UNGA President was requested to appoint two co-facilitators for “A Pact for the Future,” which will comprise a chapeau and five chapters on:
- Sustainable development and financing for development (FfD)
- International peace and security
- Science, technology and innovation, and digital cooperation
- Youth and future generations
- Transforming global governance
The Global Digital Compact and a declaration on future generations are expected to be annexed to the Pact for the Future, if agreed by intergovernmental consensus.
To support the negotiations, the UN Secretary-General has published 11 policy briefs that build on proposals contained in Our Common Agenda.
- Roadmap for the Intergovernmental Process on the Global Digital Compact
- A Global Digital Compact – an Open, Free and Secure Digital Future for All (Our Common Agenda Policy Brief 5
- Our Common Agenda Policy Brief 8: Information Integrity on Digital Platforms
- The World Economic Forum held the Sustainable Development Impact Meetings 2023 (SDIM23) in New York from 18-22 September.
- The Forum released new insights on the global economic outlook, the effect of AI on jobs, and the importance of restoring and safeguarding nature.
eTrade for all partners on digital at UNGA 78
ESCWA, ITU, DCO
Along the UNGA78, ESCWA launched with ITU, DCO, and partners a call to action at the “Digital for Sustainable Development (D4SD)” event to support the implementation of the “Arab Digital Agenda 2023-2033”, which was adopted by Heads of States, and aims to achieve the SDGs.
The DCO takes its seat as an observer for the first time at UNGA78. Five of its member states, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Cyprus, Pakistan, and Rwanda, launched the “UN Group of Friends for Digital Cooperation” to facilitate international digital cooperation and advocate sustainable growth of the electronic economy, promoting prosperity and social inclusion globally.
WIPO showcased WIPO GREEN as a game-changing digital platform driving positive global change to advance SDG13 on climate action. WIPO GREEN aims to harness the power of digital to connect providers and seekers of green technologies across the globe now covering 130,000 technologies from over 140 countries and leading to more than a thousand matches around the world.
The African Development Bank and Google formalized cooperation aimed at advancing digital transformation in Africa by signing a Letter of Intent during the Global Africa Business Initiative at the UNGA. The agreement underscores a shared commitment to harness emerging technologies, extend and improve infrastructure, and refine talent and skills in the continent.
Members of the Commonwealth Artificial Intelligence Consortium (CAIC) met on the margins of UNGA to endorse concrete plans to harness the transformative power of artificial intelligence (AI) for sustainable development. The meeting reflected the Commonwealth Secretariat’s holistic approach towards ethical and responsible use of AI, in collaboration with global technology firms and world-leading research institutions and universities.
ITC and UNCTAD joined hands for the SDG Action Weekend during UNGA 2023 and discussed financing opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises. Findings and recommendations for action include increasing long-term supply-chain finance and building the digital infrastructure of small businesses with the help of smart policies and multinational corporations.
On 17 September, ITU and partners convened for SDG Digital at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. This event took stock of the achievements, gaps, and opportunities on how digital is supporting the 2030 Agenda and catalyzing greater action on the SDGs. As a part of the SDG Action Weekend, the event focused on bringing solutions for the SDGs to scale – including through the launch of a set of High Impact Initiatives.
As part of the UN’s dedicated SDG Action Weekend, the SDG Digital GameChangers Award Ceremony took place on 16 September at UN Headquarters in New York. Jointly organized by ITU, UNDP, and other partners and supporters, the award was presented in five categories: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, and Pioneer.
The SDG Digital GameChangers Award honours individuals and organizations working on digital solutions to accelerate progress on global goals. The winner in the People category, Tech Herfrica, founded by eTrade for Women community member Imade Bibowei-Osuobeni, is a social impact organization that is enabling wealth creation and breaking the cycle of poverty for women and girls in rural African communities.