Press Release

Global Goals Week- Expo2020 Dubai

14 January 2022

Media Alert

Global Goals Week- Expo2020 Dubai

15-22 January 2022

Dubai, 14 January 2022 – Global Goals Week at Expo2020 Dubai, will serve as a platform for different players – from world leaders and policy-makers, to business leaders and citizens – to connect and work toward achieving the Global Goals at a critical time.

The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the foundations of our societies and economies and exposed the most vulnerable to unprecedented hardships. The Sustainable Development Goals were designed to address the very fault lines that the pandemic laid bare. At its core, Agenda 2030 promises to create peace and prosperity while preserving the planet, leaving no one behind.

The Global Goals Week will bring together representatives of governments, civil society, the private sector, the scientific community, academia, United Nations entities and other stakeholders to examine solutions, drive momentum and identify a path forward that brings health to all, revives economies and brings the most vulnerable people from the margins.



Global Goals Week, Expo 2020 Dubai



Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General

Melissa Fleming, UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications

Maher Nasser, Commissioner-General of the United Nations at Expo 2020

Sanda Ojiambo, CEO and Executive Director of UN Global Compact

Jayathma Wickramanayake, UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth

Dena Assaf, UN Resident Coordinator for the UAE, and Deputy Commissioner- General of the United Nations at Expo 2020







Sustainable Development Goals Background

The 2030 Agenda, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At its heart are 17 Goals, to improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests. For more information, go to

Amina J Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General, United Nations, said: “At the core of the 2030 Agenda is the need for urgent action to tackle growing poverty and inequality, empower women and girls and address the climate emergency. The world has still not embraced the pace and scale of change required to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Kicking off year two of the Decade of Action, Global Goals Week launching at Expo 2020 in Dubai presents a critical opportunity to demonstrate, at every level, our raised ambition and commitment to keeping alive and achieving the Global Goals, ensuring we leave no one behind and that we recover better from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “The United Arab Emirates believes in the importance of global collective action to create a future where everyone can thrive in peace, dignity and equality on a healthy planet. “By bringing the world together, Expo 2020 Dubai provides a launchpad to solve humanity’s greatest challenges, in the spirit of hope, resilience and optimism. Hosting the UN Global Goals at Expo 2020 is yet another further testament to our aligned vision for equitable, inclusive and sustainable communities for all.”


Hashtags: #UNxExpo, #GlobalGoals, #UNHub

Media contacts:

Sara Chatila, UN Resident Coordinator’s Office UAE,

Michelle Tong, UN Department of Global Communications,      


Global Goals Week Highlights:

SDG Media Zone – Saturday, 15 January – Thursday, 20 January

Hosted by the United Nations at the UN Hub, and in collaboration with the Pvblic Foundation and media partners, through a live format of interviews and panel discussions the SDG Media Zone will bring together UN principals, influencers and industry leaders to talk about innovative solutions and initiatives that address global challenges, such as inequalities, climate change and gender disparity. Speakers will include Epsy Campbell (Vice President of Costa Rica), Melissa Fleming (UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications), Maher Nasser (Commissioner-General of the UN at Expo 2020), Sanda Ojiambo (CEO & Executive Director ofUN Global Compact) and Dena Assaf (Resident Coordinator, UN UAE and Deputy Commissioner-General of the UN at Expo 2020).

United Nations Hub – Saturday 15 January – Saturday, 22 January

Throughout the entire week, various events will take place at the #UNHub to showcase how UN agencies work to achieve the SDGs relevant to their mandate. These include panel discussions by UN Women, UN Habitat, UN Global Compact, UNICRI, FAO, UNDP and the UNRCO and will address global challenges and solutions ranging from climate action, innovative and sustainable cities, criminal justice and security, life under water, and the role of girls, youth and people of determination towards a more sustainable future that leaves no one behind. Most events will be open to the public visitors and carried out in a hybrid format to allow speakers and participants to partake online. The #UNHub calendar for Global Goals Week can be accessed here.

Additionally, two exhibitions will be on display during the week: the “United Nations and the United Arab Emirates: Working Together for a Better Future” illustrating the strategic partnership between the UN and the UAE, national engagements to date and ambitious plans for the future ahead, and the SDG Art Exhibit - “Painting a Better World” showcasing the work of resident artists and their creative interpretations of the SDGs.

Visitors of all ages also have the chance to participate in fun activities to test their knowledge and take action for the SDGs. These include the SDG wheel trivia game and Expo’s SDG treasure hunt where participants can collect stamps and win SDG card sets and other prizes. Follow @UN_UAE for more details.

Al Wasl Show – Saturday, 15 January 

With Global Goals Week moving for the first time outside of New York, an inaugural tribute featuring Amina Mohammed (United Nations Deputy Secretary-General) will be held with a 360-degree projection that will illuminate the heart of Expo, the iconic Al Wasl Dome.

Global Goals for All Flagship Event – Sunday, 16 January

The Global Goals for All flagship event, co-curated by Project Everyone, will feature Amina Mohammed (UN Deputy Secretary-General), H.E. Reem Al Hashimy (UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai) Jayathma Wickramanayake (UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth), Sanda Ojiambo (CEO and Executive Director of UN Global Compact), H.E. Mariam Hareb Almheiri, UAE Minister of Climate Change and the Environment; Dr. Alaa Murabit (Director, Program Advocacy and Communications, Health, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation) and others as well as virtual engagements by  Richard Curtis (UN SDG Advocate) and Bill Gates (Co-Chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation). The panel will address the facts and solutions needed to inspire action around the world’s most prominent issues, including gender inequality and the climate crisis, on 16 January.

Water-Food-Energy Nexus Summit (co-organized by the UAE, the Netherlands & Jordan) – Tuesday, 18 & Wednesday, 19 January

Water, food, and energy security are central to sustainable development – particularly as demand for all three grows, driven by rising populations, urbanization, changing dietary patterns and economic growth. Featuring Jayathma Wickramanayake (UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth) and AY Young (UN Young Leader for the SDGs), this event provides a platform to exchange knowledge, best practice and lessons learned for greater water, food and energy security and strengthening regional and international policy coherence.

Global Goals Thematic Business Forum – Tuesday, 18 January

The Global Goals Thematic Business Forum calls upon business leaders to take full action in integrating the SDGs into core business strategies. Featuring Sanda Ojiambo (CEO and Executive Director of UN Global Compact) and Maher Nasser (Commissioner-General for the UN at Expo 2020), as well as female leaders from core industries to address gender equality and inclusive societies.

Co-Creating with Youth: Achieving the SDGs Together (co-hosted by Accenture and SAP) – Tuesday, 18 January

This panel discussion, featuring Jayathma Wickramanayake (UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth), Vladislav Kaim (UN Secretary-General's Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change) and Kristeena Monteith (2018 UN Young Leader for the SDGs), considers youth as a major force for Sustainable Development and changemakers for balanced economic growth, social equality and technological innovations. Young leaders will enter into conversation with private industry and academic representatives to answer the question: “How can we support youth to accelerate progress on Agenda 2030”?

SDG Storytelling Lab – Wednesday, 19 January

As expert storytellers, the creative industry has a pivotal role in inspiring action to achieve the SDGs. Bringing together creatives and changemakers, the SDG Storytelling Lab will explore opportunities to uplift stories of progress and uphold human dignity. Stories can be a powerful tool to bring people together in our shared humanity, amplify voices and foster agency for marginalized identities as well as influence positive social change. With Melissa Fleming (UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications), Kristeena Monteith (2018 UN Young Leader for the SDGs) and industry leaders, the Lab will be followed by a showcase of stories from three changemakers, each proposing a solution to address the SDGs, discover ways to use your creative talents to tell stories that empower, inspire and help to achieve the global goals.

Expo Live: Helping Women Thrive – Wednesday, 19 January

A vibrant panel discussion, including Keiso Matashane-Marite (Officer in Charge of the Gender and Women Empowerment Section in Gender, Poverty and Social Policy Division of UNECA), will be highlighting innovative solutions that improve the conditions and opportunities for women to thrive as workers and entrepreneurs.

Global Best Practice Programme Assembly – Thursday, 20 January

Featuring Melissa Fleming (UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications), Expo's Global Best Practice Programme celebrates local, simple and effective community-based initiatives that support the SDGs. This event will bring together young people, practitioners, intergovernmental organizations, startups, academics and awardees of Expo’s Global Best Practice Programme to share ideas, create networks and develop viable solutions for scale to create more impact and achieve the SDGs.

Women's Pavilion| Women in Arabia and Islam Practicing Sustainability – Thursday, 20 January

True stories and accounts of women leading the way in sustainable development, human and social development, and promoting human dignity and solidarity from various parts of the Arab and Islamic world will be narrated. Featuring Maher Nasser (Commissioner-General of the UN at Expo), this programme will highlight the catalytic role women in Islam and Arabia have played for centuries to ensure women from across the world reach new heights

Visions & Journeys Session – Thursday, 20 January

Featuring Melissa Fleming (Under-Secretary-General for UN Global Communications) and Maher Nasser (Commissioner-General of the UN at Expo), the session is designed to share, discuss and promote thoughtful visions, strategies and policies for a more gender equal future and to address two principal areas of focus: The transformative strategies and policies required to create a gender equal future, including best practices, lessons learnt and future aspirations; and personal journeys regarding the commitment to tackle gender-related barriers.

Global Goals Week Walk for Climate Action with Michael Haddad – Friday, 21 January

This walk led by UNDP Regional Goodwill Ambassador Michael Haddad across the Expo 2020 Dubai site aims to inspire collaboration for climate action and the Global Goals. Organized in collaboration with UNDP and Sweden.


Photo: © Expo2020

UN entities involved in this initiative

United Nations Resident Coordinator Office
United Nations

Goals we are supporting through this initiative