Events around the 72nd UN General Assembly

By Debdipto Biswas

The UN General Assembly (UNGA), an event of tremendous significance, is always supplemented by a host of consequential development events. This year, for the 72nd version of the UNGA, it is no different.

September 2017 will once more see New York City transform itself into a policy hub, and become a space where thought-provoking ideas are showcased. The notoriety is two-fold.  Not only is it a chance for practitioners, academics and development enthusiasts to exchange views, but it is an opportunity for everyone to drive positive, global change.

We have created a database to facilitate communal engagement in these pressing matters. Only through widespread interaction can beneficial world transformation really happen.

This list is by no means comprehensive, but we do hope it is a summer mainstay of yours! In addition, we warmly welcome you to suggest more events, whether that is through the comments section or by email: We look forward to hearing your recommendations and seeing you at many of these events.

Event name Organiser Description Start date RSVP Type
72nd Session of the UN General Assembly UN The 72nd Regular Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 72) will convene at UN Headquarters on Tuesday, 12 September 2017. The General Debate will open on Tuesday, 19 September 2017. Tues 12 Sept  Invite Only
SWIPED – Using Tech to Protect Women’s Rights DDN Productions, Inc. Created in response to the resurgence of the global women’s march, the growing number of girls & women of colour being kidnapped in the US and Caribbean, and the disparity of women with leadership roles in tech companies; SWIPED is a conversation raising the question of the ability to utilize technology to prevent violence against girls and women while discovering those who are on the front lines developing tech tools in this emerging market. Tue 29 Aug Pre-registration (Free)
UNGA High-level Meeting on UN-Habitat Global Taskforce UN General Assembly (UNGA) President Peter Thomson will convene this High-level Meeting to discuss the effective implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the positioning of the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT), as called for in the New Urban Agenda adopted at the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III). Tue 5 Sep Invite Only
Focusing on Food Loss and Food Waste: 2017 Food Tank Summit NYC Food Tank This one-day event will feature more than three dozen different speakers from the food and agriculture field. Researchers, farmers, chefs, policy makers, government officials, and students will come together for discussions on diverse topics. The theme for the Summit is Focusing on Food Loss and Food Waste. Wed 13 Sep RSVP Type
Design Matters 2017 – Keynote with the Brookings Institution’s Amy Liu Association of Architecture Organisations Renowned city expert Amy Liu, director of the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program, gives a keynote address investigating ideas for achieving broad and inclusive economic development in cities in the face of globalization and demographic and technological change. Fri 15 Sep RSVP Type
Social Good Summit Mashable, UN Foundation, 92Y, UNDP Held annually during the United Nations General Assembly week, the Summit unites a lively community of global citizens and progressive thought leaders around a common theme: #2030NOW. A dynamic exploration of the world we want to live in by 2030, the Social Good Summit will focus on how we can unlock technology’s potential to make the world a better place. Sun 17 Sep Paid Registration
The 2017 Solve Challenge Finals MIT The Solve Challenge Finals in New York City is a live pitch event that will bring together selected innovators to pitch their solutions to a panel of expert judges and a live audience on Solve’s 2017 Global Challenges: (1) Brain Health, (2) Sustainable Urban Communities, (3) Women and Technology, and (4) Youth, Skills, and the Workforce of the Future. Sun 17 Sep Pitch idea
Business Fights Poverty NYC 2017: Rethinking Collaboration for the SDGs Business Fights Poverty The format is still in development; however, the program will likely focus on food and agriculture and be similar to the upcoming Oxford event but scaled back: plenary and working sessions. Mon 18 Sep Invite only
BSDC Special Initiative: Blended Finance Taskforce – input in the Abraaj Impact Investment Summit SystemIQ The Blended Finance Taskforce will participate in a panel discussion regarding the requirements from different types of institutional investors to mobilise capital at scale for sustainable development through blended finance. Mon 18 Sep Unknown
Behind every Global Goal: Women Leading the World to 2030 SystemIQ The Business Commission will host an event focusing on women’s leadership and the SDGs. The purpose is to elevate and celebrate the critical role women play in achieving the SDGs. A BSDC branded mini-report will be launched on women’s leadership and the SDG agenda. Mon 18 Sep Unknown
Scaling Impact Investing Abraaj, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) Senior-level institutional investors, impact investing practitioners, and the wider stakeholder community will come together for this flagship event to discuss how we can take impact investing to scale. What are the market dynamics that are driving the effort to mainstream impact investing? What will it take to scale efforts and bring more stakeholders on board? Mon 18 Sep Invite only
Climate Week NYC 2017 Opening Ceremony The Climate Group Climate Week NYC 2017 will gather leaders from business and government to demonstrate how continued investment in innovation, technology and clean energy will drive profitability and lead us towards a net-zero emissions global economy. Mon 18 Sep Invite Only
United Nations Private Sector Forum 2017 United Nations Global Compact The United Nations Private Sector Forum 2017 will focus on the theme of Financing the 2030 Agenda. Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals requires unlocking new forms of financing at an unprecedented scale, and ensuring the UN and its partners makes a strategic pivot to facilitating financial innovation, catalysing responsible business growth, and increasing private and public investment in the Global Goals. Mon 18 Sep Invite Only
Honouring Visionary Leaders, Celebrating Next Gen Trailblazers International Center for Research on Women All In for Gender Equality: Honouring Visionary Leaders, Celebrating Next Gen Trailblazers Mon 18 Sep Invite Only
Sustainable Development Impact Summit World Economic Forum The Summit seeks to spotlight the most significant, innovative and scalable examples of public-private cooperation solving development, environmental and other global social challenges. We have a unique opportunity to invite 25 Young Global Leaders and Alumni to participate and possibly present their scalable models that address the Sustainable Development Goals. Mon 18 Sep Invite Only
HSBC Sustainable Financing Briefing HSBC The HSBC Sustainable Financing Briefing will explore opportunities and challenges in the Sustainable Finance and Environmental, Social and Governance market. Mon 18 Sep Invite Only
The 2017 Concordia Annual Summit Concordia This year’s Summit will reflect the major issues impacting the U.S. and the global community at large, including the mounting refugee crisis, the rise of populism, investment in sustainable infrastructure, and the evolution of domestic health policy, among many others. Mon 18 Sep Paid Registration
Ai CEO Institutional Investment Summit & Index Series Capital Market Awards 2017 Africainvestor (Ai) The Africa investor (Ai) CEO Institutional Investment Summit is a unique CEO investor-issuer, invitation-only capital market leaders’ platform for global institutional investors and African sovereign wealth and pension fund investors to originate and intermediate capital market transactions in Africa. Mon 18 Sep Paid Registration
International Conference on Sustainable Development Columbia University Professor Jeffrey Sachs says it best:
“This year’s International Conference on Sustainable Development will be the most important and historic yet! Not only will the science and policy be at the cutting edge; the conference will take place on multiple campuses around the world, making it a truly global event. ICSD will host students from around the world, top scientists, and world leaders from politics to government to the UN. I urge everybody interested in sustainable development – the great challenge of our age – to come to ICSD.”
Mon 18 Sep Paid Registration
Global Goals Awards 2017 UNICEF Hosted by Melinda Gates, the private sector will be brought together to focus on next generation/youth engagement and the Global Goals. 5-6 awards will be presented to heroes in development. All individuals who are invited to the Gates Goalkeepers event on Wednesday will be invited to the dinner. Tue 19 Sep Invite Only
Africa Alternative Investment Intensive (AAII) – 4th New York Forum Afrieconomie Themed Leveraging Alternatives for Risk–Adjusted Returns, the 2017 AAII – 4th New York Forum is a practitioner–led, peer-to-peer ecosystem of institutional investors and fund managers that are committed to addressing the principal blocks to institutions with a strong appetite to build infrastructure, real assets, private equity, alternative credit, and private debt portfolios across Africa. Tue 19 Sep Paid Registration
Cities for Global Impact – Advancing the SDGS through Urban Action Danish Cleantech Hub The two high-level conference panels will discuss Healthy Cities for Better Living and Power the World with Wind as urban trends with potential for global impact. As the conference coincides with the UN General Assembly, the conference panels will also discuss how urban action can contribute to the advancement of the Sustainable Development Goals. Tue 19 Sep RSVP Type (Free)
Sustainable Investment Forum 2017 Climate Action Building on the success of 2016’s edition, the Forum will welcome over 400 attendees representing asset owners and managers, commercial banks, development banks, private venture capitalists, technology developers, mayors and national policy makers all looking to drive investment in green innovation. Tue 19 Sep RSVP Type
Africa America Institute Awards Gala Africa America Institute The Awards Gala brings together distinguished guests including African Heads of State and diplomats, international and senior U.S. government officials, business and civil society leaders, educators, journalists, philanthropists and other prominent figures who are working towards advancing economic and development progress in Africa. Tues 19 Sep Paid Registration
Carbon Forum North America 2017 The International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) Organised by IETA, the one-day conference provides a platform to exchange business-driven climate solutions, with a focus on carbon policy, pricing and finance. CFNA 2017 is an ideal forum to examine the latest state of climate action across North America, exchange ideas, and develop business opportunities. Tue 19 Sep Paid Registration
Conference on the Global Pact for the Environment Columbia University The conference will build on the successful June 2017 launch of the Global Pact in Paris, which brought together prominent leaders to discuss the draft pact and its role in moving the environment and development agendas forward. Wed 20 Sep RSVP Type
Business Solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) UNDP & Business Call to  Action The event will offer insights on the ways in which the private sector can accelerate the achievement of the SDGs, how companies can best integrate the SDGs in their business strategies, connecting them with the world’s most pressing needs and ambitiously responding to a rapidly changing business context. Wed 20 Sep RSVP Type (Free)
Gates Foundation Goalkeepers Event Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Hosted by The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Goalkeepers will convene determined thinkers to help attain the Global Goals target by revealing new and surprising data. There will be a special focus on women and girls, global health and the role of technology and innovation in delivering change. Wed 20 Sep Invite Only
Bloomberg Global Business Forum Bloomberg; Alibaba Group; MiSK; the philanthropic foundation of Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia; others The Global Business Forum will convene heads of state, CEOs, and NGOs to work together to inspire and support economic prosperity. Wed 20 Sep Invite Only
Low-Emissions Solutions Conference Multi (To be decided) The Low-Emissions Solutions Conference (LESC) is aimed at problem solving and global co-creation to inform nations about the latest technology developments in order to set common technological trajectories for a decarbonized economy as well as the transformations necessary in each sector. Sept 20 Paid Registration
We The Future: Accelerating Sustainable Development The Skoll Foundation and the United Nations Foundation The Skoll Foundation, UN Foundation, and TED hosting We The Future: Accelerating Sustainable Development Solutions to explore how we can learn from, strengthen, and scale effective approaches to the SDGs. Thurs 21 Sep Unknown
2017 Third Commissioner Meeting The Abraaj Group This year’s UNGA Commissioner meeting will be hosted by the Abraaj Group. A meeting agenda will follow in the coming weeks. Thurs 21 Sep Invite Only
The UN Global Compact Leaders Summit UN The summit brings together an international community of leaders from business, civil society, academia, Government and the United Nations to accelerate business action and partnerships to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Paris Climate Agreement. Thurs 21 Sep Invitation by Request
Geopolitical Risk Investor Education and Reception with Ian Bremmer Eurasia Group This event will help investment professionals to identify political factors that may have a profound impact on future investments and capitalize on various global mega-trends. Participants will gain an understanding of political risk and its influence on global markets, enabling them to anticipate the likely outcome of key geopolitical issues that may affect investment decisions and securities selection. Thurs 21 Sep Paid Registration
Data for Good Exchange 2017 Bloomberg The theme for this year’s edition will be “With Great Data comes Great Responsibility,” or how data science can be applied to solve public interest problems without losing its soul. This forum enables data scientists from academia, industry and public-sector actors from government and NGOs to build relationships, share insights and progress, and encourages them to work together on applying modern machine learning and data science methods to challenges in the public and non-profit sectors. Sun 24 Sep Registration and Full Agenda Coming Soon
Finance Disrupted Economist Event The Economist Initially seen as a threat, banking incumbents have acknowledged the profitability behind collaborating with fintech insurgents and the opportunity to create win-win partnerships. On September 28th at Finance Disrupted top venture capitalists and established banks will bring a holistic perspective to find out: who is succeeding, who is failing, and where is the new seed and growth capital going? Thurs 28 Sep Paid Registration
World Summit on Innovation & Entrepreneurship – Business in the age of intelligence UN Agencies, MNCs including Microsoft, PepsiCo & Cisco Intelligent Disruptions will fuel the next digital industrial revolution. The story of WSIE 2017 is organized around four connected ecosystems: (1) Artificial Intelligence, (2) Internet of Things, (3) Digital Commerce and (4) Experience Engineering. These ecosystems are the catalysts for major transformations given their expected market size by 2020 to be over $9.5 trillion with a yield of US$25-33 trillion in annual economic impact through cost reductions, efficiency gains & differentiated offerings. Mon 2 Oct Invite Only
Analysis of Sovereign and Country Risk Learning Solution Moody’s Analytics Seminar participants gain a detailed understanding of analytical methodologies used by Moody’s Investors Service for assessing sovereign and country risks in mature and developing markets. Mon 2 Oct Paid Registration
Reinventing Leadership: Implementing strategy in a disruptive age The Economist Reinventing Leadership: implementing strategy in a disruptive age will explore the following challenges:
1) How are leaders tackling this challenge in a market dominated by short-termism, and translating it into successful business strategy?
2) What kind of leadership reform is needed to achieve this?
3) How do leaders balance building resilient companies while continuing to design and implement strategies that drive value to their customers today?
Tue 3 Oct Pre-registration (Free)
EMPEA Members Reception in New York City EMPEA EMPEA Members-Only Reception in the evening Thurs 5 Oct RSVP Type
BSDC Special Initiative: World Benchmarking Alliance Consultation Effort BSDC; Aviva; the UN Foundation; Index Initiative BSDC, Aviva, the UN Foundation, and Index Initiative will launch the first in a series of global and regional consultations with stakeholders during the high-level week of UNGA on next steps in considering the creation of Global Goals league tables. TBC TBC


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