A quick recap of K2A Academy 2021

April 11- April 30, 2021 | Online

The UN Agenda 2030 – Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) address the global challenges including those related to poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice. To understand what sustainable development means and how to contribute to its advancement across South Asia, especially in the post pandemic context, is crucial.

The Knowledge 2 Action Network in South-Asia (K2A) funded by the Swiss universities Development and Cooperation Network (SUDAC) to curate an online academy with a special focus on SDGs. The 3-week online academy involved essential voices from South Asia and Switzerland, of academicians, decision makers, civil society, and importantly, from the grass root level. The program helped participants build skills to contribute, and take leadership in, the achievement of the SDGs with special focus on climate change, waste management and biodiversity.

Here are a few participants recalling their experience being a part of the 3-week academy.

Suparna Chatterjee, India

From getting to know what the challenges relating to biodiversity conservation, climate change and waste management in various South Asian nations and Switzerland are, to exploring unique new initiatives to solve these problems from various parts of the world, I have immensely enjoyed each session. Learning the Design Thinking principles and working towards solving the issue of Savanna conservation through the Design Thinking Approach, and working in teams with members from different countries with varied backgrounds, has been a very enriching experience for me! The programme is extremely useful to young professionals.

David Spoerlé, Switzerland

When developing solutions for the high complexity of global thematics like waste management and sustainability, they all share one thing in common, i.e they need to be developed with a human-centered perspective to really trigger change. That was my biggest takeaway here.

Dulki Seethawaka, Sri Lanka

I have found every session that I participated in interesting and valuable. Specially, learning new skills such as making podcasts and videos, was never something I would have tried unless for this course. I am very fortunate that I could be a part of this Academy and meet such diverse international panelists and participants. 

Ahmed Nayyar, Pakistan

For me, the major learnings from the academy is that the sustainable development goals are inter-linked, it is important to work on the cross cutting themes rather than working on each theme separately. The design thinking process was new to me. The academy also showcased the significance of podcasts, videos etc in impacting research and development initiatives. I will definitely utilize these new learning skills to bring a positive change in my community. Such small steps will definitely help in achieving sustainable development goals at a local level. 

Taha Aawar, Afghanistan

To be initiative through using the design thinking technique in terms of sustainable development aspects such as climate action, biodiversity, and waste management was the most important lesson I learned during the
great three weeks. I want to highlight that the program was very informative, new and helpful.

Drishti Upreti, Nepal

This program helped me to understand SDGs from different perspectives.  I was able to take a closer look at the unique initiatives and the effort it took to achieve SDGs. This was my first ever experience of attending an online academic course. It was conducted smoothly with wide varieties of perspectives and expert-opinions.