UN Sustainable Development Goals

As centres of knowledge and innovation, universities have a major role to play in developing solutions to global issues. This is why the
UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are an important aspect of the work we do at UAI and why we are so proud of the University’s THE Impact Ranking. We think it's critical for everyone in our community to understand what the SDGs are - so we raise awareness about them and aim to inspire and motivate people to take action towards their achievement.

“At the University of Alberta, we have a tremendous amount of work taking place already that contributes to the SDGs. At the same time, as one of the country’s leading research and teaching institutions and a leading international university, it is clear that there are major opportunities to achieve even greater impact. The 17 goals are a part of every person’s life in Canada and globally. We need to educate, raise awareness, and seek our own ways to contribute.”

Dr. Cen Huang, Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President (International)
Consider This: The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are for everyone — here’s why

About the UN Sustainable Development Goals

The SDGs were unanimously adopted by all 193 UN member states in 2015. They are universal and apply to all countries. The international community aims to achieve these goals, also known as the Global Goals, by 2030. The SDGs are about People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnerships. The 17 SDGs have 169 targets, and Canada has developed its own indicators to measure progress in achieving them (Towards Canada's 2030 Agenda National Strategy).

Learn more about how the University is contributing to the achievement of the SDGs from U of A's Sustainability Council.

U of A International and the UN Sustainable Development Goals

UAI is committed to being a champion for forwarding the SDGs both on campus and beyond. Following are some of the many ways we are advancing the SDGs in our work with local, national, and global communities.

International Week
International Week, an annual week of activities where speakers from campus, local and international communities speak to all 17 SDGs. Of particular note is our growing library of Global Goals Talks.
World's Challenge Challenge
World's Challenge Challenge is a competition, open to all students, to put forward a solution to a global issue in alignment with one or more of the SDGs. The winning team receives $10,000 towards the implementation of their proposed solution.
Welcoming Newcomers Project
Welcoming Newcomers Project through which refugee students brought to Canada via WUSC are supported in settling into life at U of A, where they receive a quality education (SDG 4).
Visiting Lectureship in Human Rights
Visiting Lectureship in Human Rights is an opportunity to learn from leaders engaged in protecting and promoting human rights (SDG 16).
Global Skills Opportunity Program - UNSDG Award for Students in Financial Need
The Global Skills Opportunity Program - UNSDG Award for Students in Financial Need provides awards of up to $10,000 to students seeking to go abroad to advance their knowledgement or engagement with SDGs.
Academics Without Borders Projects
Academics Without Borders Projects are coordinated by UAI to build capacity in universities in the developing world. U of A has participated in 12 projects since the organisation was created in 2009. (SDG 4)
Global Academic Leadership Development Program
The Global Academic Leadership Development Program has been delivered by UAI to more than 850 international university administrators to build their capacity to provide quality tertiary education in their home countries. (SDG 4)
Sponsored Student Program

Since 2008, UAI’s Sponsored Student Program has developed co-funding partnerships with scholarship providers around the world to expand the opportunities for international students to enrol in UAlberta degree programs.  Partners include foreign governments, charitable foundations, companies, and academic institutions. (SDG 4)

Global Education and the Sustainable Development Goals

Partnerships for the Goals

As global engagement specialists, UAI continues to seek out innovative opportunities for the U of A to collaborate with our international partners on initiatives that raise awareness and contribute to addressing the SDGs.

In the News

Featured Partnerships

Featured Projects

  • The Canada – Pacific Alliance Scholarship Program (2016-2021), managed by UAI and funded by the Government of Canada, provided scholarships to government employees with responsibility for management/oversight of the extractive resource sector in the Pacific Alliance member nations (Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru).  The scholarships supported trainees to register in professional Master’s or certificate programs, or professional development short courses, offered by Canadian universities, on topics related to sustainable extractive sector management. (SDG 12)

  • The Oman Ministry of Education Teacher Training Project (2016-2018), managed by UAI and undertaken with experts from our Faculty of Education, developed a series of training modules for the Ministry of Education’s Specialised Centre for Professional Training of Teachers.  The training modules were designed to build the capacity of 10,000 in-service primary school maths and science teachers across the Sultanate, and ultimately lead to better learning outcomes for Omani students. (SDG 4)