Shaping Resilient Societies: Can One Succeed?

The Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, the Swiss Federal Statistical Office, the University of Zurich and the University of Geneva have the pleasure of inviting you to their virtual event at the High-level Political Forum (HLPF).

According to the Sustainable Development Report of 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic is a setback for sustainable development everywhere. The pandemic has impacted all three dimensions of sustainable development: economic, social, and environmental. This event will address the current crisis and how to brace for future shocks through transversal, cross-sectoral and cross-societal responses. Leading experts will highlight the rationale toward developing sustainable and resilient societies, arguing that this transformation can only take place if pending challenges are co-defined, response mechanisms codesigned, recovery policies coimplemented and co-monitored by all stakeholders involved. They will reflect on data ecosystems, as a tool for evidencebased decision making, as well as compounding effects of global dynamics of change, demographic shifts, urbanization and growing inequalities. They will show that, in addition to measuring progress, data fosters accountability and that data and monitoring are necessary to ensure no one is left behind. This event will allow a dive in the topic before being discussed at the 3rd UN World Data Forum, from 3–6 October 2021 in Bern, Switzerland.


  • Opening by Pascale Baeriswyl, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Switzerland to the United Nations, Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, New York
  • Keynote by Peter Messerli, Director, Wyss Academy for Nature, University of Bern
  • Panel discussion:
    • Dr. Sheila Aggarwal-Khan, Director, Economy Division, UN Environment Programme;
    • Dr. Ola Awad, Co-chair of the High-Level Group for Partnership, Coordination and Capacity Building and President of the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics;
    • Prof. Nikola Biller-Andorno, Director, Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine, University of Zurich;
    • Prof. Giacomo de Giorgi, Director, Institute of Economics and Econometrics, Geneva School of Management and Economics, University of Geneva;
    • Prof. Markus Stoffel, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Geneva
    • Dr. Volker Türk, Assistant Secretary-General for Strategic Coordination in the Executive Office of the Secretary-General at the United Nations Headquarters in New York (tbc)
  • Closing by Mamokgethi Phakeng, Vice-Chancellor, University of Cape Town; Agenda Contributor, World Economic Forum

Register here

Event Details