Academic joins hundreds of global experts and leaders at a United Nations event in Utah


A De Montfort University (DMU) academic joined hundreds of global experts and leaders at a three-day United Nations co-organised event in Utah.

Associate Professor Kim Sadique, Head of Community and Criminal Justice Division, spoke at the first International Academic Conference on the Sustainable Development Goals: ‘Why it Matters’ which drew attendees from Uganda, Peru, Afghanistan and Thailand.

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 She was one of 70 speakers presenting on topics linked to the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). DMU is the only UK university to be a global SDG Hub, representing SDG 16 – Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions.

The conference highlighted research and community engagement, harnessing knowledge sharing and best practices for the implementation of the Global Goals, with the dynamic mobilization of advocates and experts. 

Associate Professor Kim Sadique, a genocide expert, spoke about how quickly peace can be damaged, the conditions in which hatred can flourish and what we can do to disrupt this. She discussed the recent events in Leicester and how it had impacted upon community relations in the area.

Kim Sadique said: “It was such a great experience. It offered us an opportunity to showcase the work we do at DMU and to make connections with organisations around the world to further our research and work on the SDGs.”

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She added: “It was also a chance to engage in contributing directly to the public good. So many delegates volunteered an afternoon to work on a service project making up New Mother packs for refugees”.

Mark Charlton, Associate Director of Sustainable Development Goal Impact at DMU, was one of the organisers of the Why It Matters conference. He was presented with an award for his work on the event.

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He said: “I was really pleased when DMU was asked to help organise the conference as it demonstrated the reputation we have for sustainable development at the university.

“We want to help lead the global academic conversation on this and promote why it matters to a wider audience.”

 The conference was livestreamed in 80 languages, and the inaugural session is available here.

Youth representative Lauren Taylor said: “Two different words, two different meanings, two different truths. That is the amazing thing about global conferences like this.

“We have all come from different places, different lived experiences, and we’re all here to share our truths.”   

Posted on Tuesday 8th November 2022

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