The Sustainable Development Goals (Global Goals) were enacted in 2015 by the United Nations to elevate global development to a cross-sectoral, multi-industry effort bringing a wide array of new voices to the table to provoke an international development paradigm shift. As an international development professional, I have been working in this space for years, conducting negotiations with governments of developing countries to find meaningful solutions to elevate their countries economic growth and empower marginalized communities at the same time.
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) - are a collection of 17 global goals set by the United Nations. The SDGs cover a broad range of social and economic development issues. These include poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, gender equality, water, sanitation, energy, urbanization, environment and social justice.
But only while conducting interviews for Vehicles of Change with Danielle, I realized that there is a tremendous potential and power to combine our toolboxes and learn from each others voices. These voices include entrepreneurs and international development professionals at the same time. Even though both sectors come from different industries, entrepreneurship flourishes to make impact within the development process which creates a paradigm shift. This shift has opened up opportunities for nontraditional actors to get involved in development work. Any venture capitalist, high-tech wiz, or executive may not think of themselves as global development professionals - or even understand what the significance of the term means in its essence- but their work and mission goals is essentially tied and contributing to the Global Goals.
As I conducted 18 interviews in two cities, I found that entrepreneurship and International Development do not differ as much as Danielle and I initially thought they would. Both sectors, even though they have vastly different approaches, identify a problem in this world and find a meaningful solution to it. The paradigm shift happens when entrepreneurs and International Development professionals show each other's communities their methods and processes. Because, when we all work towards a common vision of creating change in the world, it translates into a common mission we all share.
The beacon of hope, we would like to offer through Vehicles of Change is for viewers to understand that they have the potential to create social impact and change the world’s narrative. We all bear a tremendous power and responsibility to transform our planet by 2030, creating a more social-impact driven and transformative society. What has stood out to me the most in Season One of Vehicles of Change? I’ve learned from our guests, that skill transfer, capacity development, and knowledge exchange is truly what matters when you connect these two different fields. This is when change really happens. We strengthen each others ecosystems, by sharing tacit and elicit knowledge. Because knowledge and knowledge transfer moves when people do, in particular if we elevate our global mindset and shift it towards local actions.
I understand, in particular those of you who are not immersed in the field of international development, that it is difficult for anyone (organizations, individuals and others) to engage with international organizations. There is no reason for that difficulty, or barrier, to continue. By merging two very different fields and combining them to achieve a goal of positive change, we can find commonalities and use them to the world’s advantage. Our ecosystem, culture, experiences, and personality have already equipped each of us with a unique skill set. Now it is really up to us, to use those tools and get in the driver’s seat of change.