José Antonio Alonso, Professor of Applied Economy at the Complutense University of Madrid, reflected on the potential impacts of the United Nations 2030 Agenda during his presentation at the workshop “Leadership in the Post-2015 World,” which took place at the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site on the 14th of October, within the framework of the International Leadership Association conference.
His speech focused primarily on the the major changes that have occurred in the world over the past 50 years, as well as the need for new approaches to global governance, particularly with regard to inequalities between countries, which until only recently, were considered a question of belong either to the Northern or Southern hemisphere.
According to Professor Alonso, the world can no longer be understood in terms of this duality. A broad range of economic contexts now exist, meaning that there are contrasts both between different countries, and also internally, at the national level. That is why the Sustainable Development Goals and the new 2030 Agenda cannot be conceived in a lineal fashion. Rather, they must be put in the perspective of the same complexity that has transformed the world over the past decades.
Financing the 2030 Agenda was another theme addressed by professor Alonso during his talk. In his opinion, this is not a minor matter, since it will condition implementation efforts and progress toward goals. As this is also the speakers’ main field of work, his presentation was based on his own research findings.
The workshop explored the different types of leadership necessary to drive implementation of the new global agenda, with the participation of academics, business people, and staff members of multilateral programmes from over 20 different countries. Professor Alonso’s address opened the programme with an overview of the global context, followed by a dynamic work session led by Professor Fred Krawchuck of IESE Business School, and five parallel group discussions on specific themes of the 2030 Agenda: health, green economy, education, water and sanitation, and sustainable cities.
The following institutions, hosted at the Art Nouveau Site, participated as thematic speakers in the workshop: WHO Barcelona Office for Health System Strengthening, the European Forest Institute (EFI), the Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP), the Global University Network for Innovation (GUNI), the UN-Habitat Global Operator’s Partnership Alliance (GWOPA) and the UN-Habitat City Resilience Profiling Programme (CRPP).