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Director-General's remarks at the Beyond Lab launch event

Tatiana Valovaya

Beyond Lab launch event (formerly SDG Lab)
 Tuesday, 30 April 2024, at 4.00 p.m.

Mezzanine, Building E, Palais des Nations



Ladies and gentlemen, 

Welcome to the Palais des Nations for the relaunch of the SDG Lab.

With the Lab being firmly grounded in my Office at UNOG, it is not by coincidence that the relaunch is taking place at the Palais. The Lab has been playing an instrumental part of UN Geneva and the International Geneva ecosystem since its inception in 2017 as a space for social innovation.

Let me extend our gratitude to Switzerland and Ambassador Lauber for their steadfast support to the Lab.

The beauty and strength of the Lab – as a laboratory at its core – is its ability to be flexible and adapt to the changing face of multilateralism and the complex challenges we are collectively addressing to make sustainability a way of life.

Today, we are happy to introduce the new Beyond Lab, which, over the past year, has been developing a new strategy, focus areas and a programme of work, all with the focus on enabling true systems change for long-term sustainability. 

The Lab has done this in consultation with many of you present here today, from Member States and UN entities to civil society, youth networks, academia, and the private sector.

An important part of the Lab’s new focus is reorienting its activities as a ‘policy (design) and think and act tank’ to explore what comes next for sustainable development and long-term sustainability, and to already look at how we can build on the momentum of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals and go beyond.

The global challenges we are facing today – and tomorrow and in the future – requires all of us to rethink our current approaches to sustainable development. What we need is a systems transformation to change the unsustainable pathway we are on towards one that places long-term sustainability at the centre. The Lab’s work on Beyond GDP is a good example of such an approach. 

I invite you all to remain engaged with the Lab in co-creating and promoting solutions for long-term sustainability.

Thank you.


This speech is part of a curated selection from various official events and is posted as prepared.