Event Reports

Sustainable Asia — Envisioning Your Future

by Peter Hefele

Workshop on SDGs for Young People From the Asia Pacific Region

Young people are key in helping build an inclusive and promote sustainable development in Asia. However these young activists lack experience and resources to implement their visions. Therefore Konrad Adenauer Stiftung-RECAP and the Hong Kong American Centre invited five teams from Asia to a workshop in Bangkok.

Since the introduction of the Sustainable Development goals in 2015 by the UN, the idea of “Sustainable Development” has transformed from a mere slogan to a global movement. Furthermore, more recently SDGs are not only including governments and international organizations but also individuals and local communities. The initiatives and ideas on a local level, developed and implemented by the people are crucial in tackling todays challenges such as climate change and sustainable development. Young scholars around the world have ambitious aims which can have a major impact to engage civic participation however often lack the know-how and resources to do so.

Konrad Adenauer Stiftung RECAP and the Hong Kong American Center have been hosting online seminars twice a month since May 2018 for five groups from different countries in the Asia Pacific Region. For the first time, these teams got to meet face to face with each other and us and our experts in a two-day workshop in Bangkok. The participating groups from Nepal, Pakistan, India, Indonesia and Mongolia have been developing holistic and innovative solutions for specific development challenges in their home region by applying local knowledge and advice from our experts.

The five teams gave their proposals for their projects at the beginning of the year and convinced us that they have clear understanding of the SDG’s and presented ambitious and communicative ideas. Their initial proposals have been continuously been improved through our webinar and each team have been working on their multimedia products. The following projects were worked on in the workshop in Singapore:

The teams presented their work and their videos to experts such as Dr. Glenn Shive from the Hong Kong American Center, Dr. Brant Knutzen, DJ Clark, Syed Nazakat and Kyi Kyi Seinn. All the videos and project presentations were already of a very high standard. During this workshop and with the help of the experts the members were able to refine their multimedia products. Each group will produce two videos, one for social medias such as Facebook and Instagram and one longer, detailed one for YouTube and websites. Expert DJ Clark, who has filmed i.e. for National Geographic, gave important knowledge on how to engage the audience and connect with them. Further experts gave guidance on how to improve each group’s respective scripts.

In January 2019, representatives from each team will attend the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Summit on the Environment 2019 in Singapore. Ministers and other high-ranking government representatives will meet to coordinate their countries’ joint efforts in climate-related sustainable development policies. Nongovernmental and civil society organisations from Asia-Pacific will seize the opportunity to join the Summit. The five project teams webinar will present their multimedia products to the ministers and participants. They further will take the opportunity to get in touch with other NGOs and build networks around Asia.

Logo of the Sustainable Asia webinar
The 17 Sustainable Development Goals