Monday, November 30, 2015

UN's Sustainable Development Goals and Transformative Education

The United Nations’ new Sustainable Development Goals were approved at the UN 2030 World Summit of Sustainable Development at the end of September. These objectives include ending poverty and hunger, as well as promoting health and welfare.

The fourth goal deals with education.The most important thing is to ensure that all girls and boys get completely free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes (4.1). Goal 4.7 is aiming to change the curricula and learning goals and contents both in developed and developing countries
By 2030, ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.
According to the general theme of sustainability seven out of the total 17 goals deal directly with sustainable development and global responsibility from the environmental point of view. These goals are regarded as major challenges in respect with the quality of life and the future of our planet. Failure to reach these development goals would hinder achieving the other goals as well.
In the new Finnish Core Curriculum of Basic Education it’s stated that
The global education within basic education creates, for its part, the foundation for equitable and sustainable development in line with the United Nations development goals. p. 16
The UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals are perfectly suited to be used as authentic learning material. For example, in learning English as foreign language they offer current vocabulary and lots of support material for discussions and for presenting one’s own opinions. In cross curricular learning projects the goals can be divided to be studied in different grades and school subjects. Learning outcomes and created guidelines to promote sustainable development are shared and brought into use. Everybody at school work together to achieve the goals and implement the guidelines in the spirit of active citizenship and transformative learning.

In Finland UNESCO ASPnet schools work in the vanguard in implementing the UN goals in local curricula. The aims of the ASPnet school network focus on two themes: Global Citizenship Education and Education for Sustainable Development. GCE deals with human rights, education for peace and global responsibility. It’s transformative and empowering and its goal is to give learners the opportunity and competencies to realize their rights and obligations to promote a better world and future. ESD aims at reorienting education worldwide, so that it provides everyone with the opportunity to acquire the values, attitudes, skills and knowledge that are needed to contribute to sustainable development.

The aims of ASPnet schools are to integrate GCE and ESD in the school curricula and learning processes as well as to experiment innovative approaches and learning methods in global education. This implies strong commitment to implementing the new curriculum in the spirit of the UN 2030 Development Goals.

As the UN's Climate Change Conference starts today, I think we all share the same concerns and fears and hope that decisions will be made for a better future for all.


  1. Education is most important factor which can't be ignore by people. The most important thing is to ensure that all girls and boys get completely free to have education. We mostly recommend aussie resume writing services reviews for students to learn how to write well and what you need to have.

  2. The statement of purpose for phd in finance is a best guidelines to promote sustainable development are shared and brought into use.