With the Sustainability Research Initiative, SCNAT, together with its sister institutions, promotes research on sustainable development and 2030 Agenda. It focuses on the joint handling of social issues of higher priority in overarching consortia.more

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Priority themes

We are identifying thematic priorities for science, oriented toward the need for action by society and the UN Agenda 2030 for sustainable development. These research priorities are supposed to provide researchers and research funders with inspiration and guidance for their work.

Priority Themes for Swiss Sustainability Research
Image: Hansjakob Fehr, 1kilo

Scientific contributions on transformations towards living together in equitable and sustainable ways do not simply consist of building knowledge on cause-effect relationships. They must deal with societal goals and value positions and illustrate how and by which means change can be brought about.

An agenda for sustainability research

Our work focuses on identifying cross-cutting societal priority topics that need to be set on the Swiss scientific agenda. We are developing them based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and their mutual interdependencies. Working groups summarise the state of knowledge and formulate key questions for research.

The following six priority themes were identified:

Using these six priority themes, the "White Paper on Sustainability Research" outlines the most urgent research needs.It was launched by the steering group on 8 December 2020.

Watch the highlights and most important statements of the discussion round on the launch of the White Paper here in this short video:

Lancierung des White Papers "Priority Themes for Swiss Sustainability Research" - Die Highlights