Okayama University UNESCO Chair Speaks at UNESCO World Conference on ESD

The UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), organized by UNESCO and hosted by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), took place online over 3 days from May 17-19, 2021. During the conference, the UNESCO Chair in Research and Education for Sustainable Development at Okayama University (Chairholder: YOKOI Atsufumi, Okayama University Senior Vice President for Global Engagement Strategy) had the opportunity to report on the University’s various ESD efforts.

The UNESCO World Conference officially launched the new “Education for Sustainable Development: Towards achieving the SDGs (ESD for 2030)” framework - which has been greatly influenced by Japan’s education initiatives - and introduced a roadmap underlining priority action areas of the implementation. Over 10,000 people joined the online conference, with Ministers and Deputy Ministers of Education from 70 countries and 2,800 stakeholders across the world. On the last day of the conference, UNESCO member countries adopted the “Berlin Declaration on ESD”, a document outlining commitments for the member countries. It also proposes that the ESD for 2030 framework is the key to achieving all 17 SDGs.

On May 17, the Okayama University UNESCO Chair organized a special session with 13 other UNESCO Chairs directly concerned with ESD and sustainability. Furthermore, on May 19, Professor FUJII Hiroki of the Graduate School of Education, Okayama University (Vice Chair of the Okayama University UNESCO Chair) took the stage in a session related to priority action area 3 of the ESD for 2030 roadmap, which focuses on building capacities of educators. Acting as representative of Asia-Pacific region, Professor FUJII introduced various ESD teacher education initiatives at Okayama University and discussed future plans for empowering educators.

The Okayama University UNESCO Chair intends to further promote ESD for the achievement of the SDGs by strengthening cooperation with local, national, and international stakeholders based on the Berlin Declaration on ESD.

UNESCO World Conference on ESD (UNESCO website)[New window]

Introducing the Okayama University UNESCO Chair in a Special Session