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Helping to achieve global UN goals while protecting the poor

Research that hopes to help meet global sustainable development goals while protecting the wellbeing of the poorest across the world is set to be carried out at King’s.

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Research that hopes to help meet global sustainable development goals while protecting the wellbeing of the poorest across the world is set to be carried out at King’s.

The work will form part of an ambitious research programme to gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between humans and their environment in order to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs.)

In September 2015, 193 world leaders committed to the 17 global goals, with the aim of ending extreme poverty, inequality and climate change by 2030.  In 2017, a report discovered that understanding the multiple ways we, as humans, interact with and depend on the environment is essential to achieving these aims.

Now, £4.3 million funding has been announced for eight two-year research projects that delve further in to this.

One of these projects is led by Dr Kate Schreckenberg, from King's College London.

She and her collaborators in the UK, India and Sweden believe we can only realise the UN’s sustainable development goals if we recognise the possible trade-offs between meeting people’s lifestyle and wellbeing aspirations and preventing further degradation of our natural environment. They note that poor rural communities in the Global South are particularly dependent on nature to meet their daily food and income requirements.  This means they may be disproportionately impacted by decisions that affect how they can use their environment.

Kate explains, ‘reporting on the SDGs tends to happen at national level and can overlook the local-level reality of how some communities interact with and rely upon natural resources to avoid poverty.’

‘We hope that our work will improve understanding of how key policies – particularly those related to conservation and agriculture – affect the nature-wellbeing relationship at local level. In this way, the project may contribute to more appropriate environment-related policies and interventions which help achieve the overarching SDG aim of ‘leaving no-one behind’.’

Read more at: https://nerc.ukri.org/press/releases/2019/07-tase/