SDG Lab: multi-stakeholder innovation and collaboration for the 2030 Agenda

Business as usual will not suffice in order to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Develop­ment and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDG Lab, established in 2016 in Ge­neva, addresses this in using innovative and experimental methodologies and processes. It promotes Geneva and Switzerland as implementation hub for the Agenda, leveraging the unique ecosystem of actors, including the financial sector, to ensure policy and action for implementation of the Agenda. 

Región/País Tema Período Presupuesto
A nivel mundial
Política del sector público
Sector not specified
Participación democrática y sociedad civil
10.12.2019 - 31.12.2022
CHF  4’750’000

Since 2015, all UN agencies are working towards reaching the targets of the SDGs. Still, systemic change and transformative approaches are needed and require innovation, experimentation and acceleration where impact is highest. 

As the operational hub of the 2030 Agenda, with 33 international organisations, 181 Missions, 750 NGOs, renowned academic centers and a strong private sector, Geneva has an incredibly dense ecosystem of involved actors. It tends, however, to be siloed and fragmented and has no strong coor­dination authority. There is thus a great potential in working across siloes and strengthening collabora­tion, innovation and systemic approaches towards the SDGs. Switzerland’s contribution harnesses Geneva’s unique position and potential by support­ing the Lab, thereby helping to achieving the SDGs and promoting Switzerland’s and Geneva’s im­portant role for sustainable development.

Objetivos The aim of this contribution is to accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda by enabling the very diverse ecosystem of SDG actors in Geneva and beyond to maximize their joint contributions to SDG challenges.
Grupos destinarios

Its primary focus is on Geneva-based actors as well as key people in governments and organizations around the world who are driving efforts to achieve the SDGs.

One major target group for phase 2 are the Member State Missions in Geneva. With additional resources, the SDG Lab will be better able to scale-up its work to the needs of this audience. This would enhance its ability to contribute to progress at country level.

In addition, the SDG Lab will seek to reach select UN audiences in New York, Bonn, Rome and Nairobi.

Efectos a medio plazo


The increased engagement of SDG practitioners in Geneva strengthens the steadily growing multi-stakeholder and multi-sectoral ecosystem.


Member States and other actors actively use Geneva’s SDG expertise to address in-country challenges.


SDG actors utilize the tools and lessons from the SDG Lab model in their own activities. 


Partners of the SDG Lab engage in strategic partnerships and the provision of funding.


Resultados previstos:  

The Ecosystem has been aligned to the paradigms of the SDGs (indivisibility, universality, collaboration, transformation).

Ideas have been piloted and courses of action have been tested.

A menu of services for SDG actors has been made available and its value assessed.

Resources for SDG implementers have been mobilized.

Resultados de las fases anteriores:  

1. Forged strategic partnerships around Agenda implementation : International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), Canton de Genève, 4SD, REOS Partners, University of Geneva, Tsinghua University, and United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR).

2. Co-created the Geneva 2030 Ecosystem, a Geneva-based multi-stakeholder group of 110 organizations and 350 individuals mobilized towards realizing the 2030 Agenda.

3. Advanced the SDG Finance Theme by incubating three multi-stakeholder initiatives: 1) The SDG Pipeline Builder and 2) The Swiss Centre for Blended Finance 3) Building Bridges Week.

Dirección / Officina Federal responsable COSUDE
Crédito Cooperación al desarrollo
Contrapartes del proyecto Contraparte del contrato
Sector privado
Organización de las Naciones Unidas (ONU)
  • Other UN Organisation
  • Sector privado extranjero Norte

Coordinación con otros proyectos y actores

The SDG Lab supports UN reform, it coordinates with UN projects and actors, and with other stakeholders in Geneva and beyond.

It supports involvement of the Geneva-based actors in the monitoring and review mechanism of the 2030 Agenda.

It fits with the strategic goals of the Global Institutions Division of SDC. There are synergies with the project “Accountability for the SDG” and its implementing partners.

Synergies exist with the activities of the United Nations and International Organisations Division (UNIOD) of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) and with the Swiss Delegates for the 2030 Agenda. The Lab is part of the network that is supported by FDFA’s Dispatch on International Geneva. 

Presupuesto Fase en curso Presupuesto suizo CHF    4’750’000 Presupuesto actual suizo ya emitido CHF    3’153’859