About Us


We are the Nordic chapter of the global Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN).

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Our network consists of universities and knowledge institutions in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

Our members

Our Leadership Council comprises eminent experts on sustainable development from academia, business, civil society, and the public sector.

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From Knowledge to Action for the Sustainable Development Goals.

To achieve a sustainable society, we need change, and change requires knowledge. We at SDSN Northern Europe connect Nordic knowledge institutions to communicate what sustainability is all about and to promote joint learning and sustainable solutions.

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About us

"The Nordic countries are amazing when it comes to making things happen, and because of this you have a fantastic global voice."*

The UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Northern Europe is an action-oriented network focusing on mobilizing Nordic scientific and technological expertise to solve problems and create a more sustainable society. The network links knowledge to action in order for society to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Climate Agreement.

Each person matters in the work to achieve a sustainable society. Yet sustainability can be a complex and overwhelming task. Luckily, academia has the role of understanding the complexity of sustainability. For example, can you imagine all the interconnections among the 169 pre-targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?

And sustainability is not just about understanding a complex structure of cause-and-effect relationships, but also about understanding and considering a long-term perspective. To illustrate this seemingly simple concept, do you normally think of your grandchildren when you decide to take a flight to Paris? It feels good to know that academia does better in this respect than most people.

* Guido Schmidt-Traub, Executive Director of the global SDSN

Where We Come From

Despite a long tradition of research, education and innovation for sustainable development, only a fraction of the results of these activities are utilized to steer society in a more sustainable direction. Therefore, the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) was established in 2012 under the auspices of former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to mobilize global scientific and technological expertise to promote practical problem-solving to reach the SDGs.

The secretariat of the global SDSN is located in Paris, France, and New York, USA. World-renowned Professor of Economics Jeffrey D. Sachs is the director of SDSN.

SDSN Northern Europe was launched in February 2016 as a regional network to support the Nordic knowledge institutions in their implementation of actions to achieve the SDGs.


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You Find us Here

SDSN Northern Europe includes all SDSN member institutions in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The network is hosted by Gothenburg Centre for Sustainable Development at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Professor, Network Co-Chair Jan Pettersson janp@chem.gu.se

Jan Pettersson is professor of environmental atmospheric science and is Director of the Gothenburg Centre for Sustainable Development at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg.

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Professor, Network Co-Chair Katherine Richardson kari@science.ku.dk

Katherine Richardson is professor of Biological Oceanography, director of the Sustainability Science Centre and vice dean at Copenhagen University.

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SDSN Northern Europe Leadership Council Members

Leadership Council
Council Member John Kornerup Bang

John Kornerup Bang is head of sustainability strategy and shared value initiatives at Maersk and brings 20 years of experience working on sustainable globalization.

Council Member Stig P Christensen

Stig P Christensen is a strategic advisor and director at SPCadvice and former senior R&D director at COWI.

Council Member Annik Magerholm Fet

Annik Magerholm Fet is professor of Environmental Management, Systems Engineering and Life-cycle Analysis, and vice rector of NTNU in Ålesund.

Council Member Carl Folke

Professor Carl Folke is director of the Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, and founder and science director of the Stockholm Resilience Centre.

Council Member Katarina Gårdfeldt

Gårdfeldt is appointed by the Swedish Government as Director-General for the Swedish Polar Research Secretariat, SPRS. She is Associate Professor in Environmental Inorganic Chemistry at Chalmers University of Technology. Her research is mainly focused on atmospheric transport and transformation of mercury species in Polar regions.  She is the initiator and previous Co-Chair of the SDSN Northern Europe.

Council Member Tarja Halonen

Tarja Halonen is a Finnish politician who was the 11th President of Finland, serving from 2000 to 2012 – the first female head of state in Finland.

Council Member Serena Kao

Serena Kao is an experienced banker and current chair of the San Teh Foundation – a family-funded foundation.

Council Member Kaisa Korhonen-Kurki

Kaisa Korhonen-Kurki, PhD, Adjunct Professor in environmental policy. She works as Program Director of the strategic research programmes “Keys to Sustainable Growth”,  “Changing Society and Active Citizenship” , “Adaptation and Resilience for Sustainable Growth” at the Academy of Finland, and as Research Coordinator at Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science, HELSUS.

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