On December 22, a webinar prepared by specialists of Lake Baikal Foundation for students of Russian universities who are currently preparing their applications for the All-Russian grant competition of social projects «Innosocium». Olga Amelkina and Vasilina Chernysheva, project managers at Lake Baikal Foundation, told the students about what sustainable development and the SDGs are, what are the criteria for a project in the field of sustainable development, about Russian and foreign projects in the field of sustainable development, about the areas of projects that are especially relevant for implementation in Russia, and also shared tips and their experience.
In the introductory part of the webinar, the speakers gave a brief digression into the Sustainable Development Agenda and the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Separately, the Foundation team spoke about the international context and prerequisites for problematizing the topic of sustainable development in the second half of the XX century. ‘In this part of the speech, we wanted to draw students’ attention to the connection between the current state of the sustainable agenda and the circumstances of its emergence,’ said Vasilina Chernysheva.
The second part of the webinar was devoted to social design: project criteria in the field of sustainable development, challenges that should not be forgotten. ‘I would like to draw attention to the fact that a project in the field of sustainable development must necessarily solve this or that socially significant problem, contribute to the achievement of the SDGs. However, do not forget about the beneficiaries in whose interests the project is being implemented: before starting the project, it is necessary to find out their opinion on your proposal to solve the problem,’ emphasizes Olga Amelkina.
During the event, the speakers repeatedly emphasized the need for an integrated approach to solving the problem. In addition to infrastructural changes and innovations, it is necessary to conduct educational events, highlight the project, attracting new supporters. It is also important to think about the sustainability of the project itself, so that after the expiration of the project, everything does not stop: this is both a question of having successors who are ready to continue what has been started, and the aspect of financing.
The main task of the third part of the webinar was the exchange of best practices of social student projects in Russia and abroad. So, the Foundation’s team told about the program «Trash Free National Parks». Referring to other domestic projects, the speakers mentioned the 2021 report on youth initiatives in the field of sustainable development prepared by Sustainable Development Solutions Network Russia. This is a network of organizations for developing solutions that contribute to sustainable development, established in 2012 by the UN. Olga shared her experience of implementing a student project aimed at achieving SDG 12, and cited the example of Uppsala University (Sweden), where there is a course on project management in the field of sustainable development. In conclusion, the students received advice on how important it is to treat the difficulties that arise during the implementation of the project and to remain positive.
The webinar was organized by the Innosocium Foundation, a social platform of the Roscongress Foundation, with the support of the Russian Society «Knowledge». The All-Russian competition of social projects «Innosocium» is aimed at grant support of student projects contributing to the solution of socially and environmentally significant problems. We thank the team of the Innosocium Foundation for the opportunity to speak on an interactive platform! The recording of the webinar is available via the link. Please note that «Sustainable Development» is one of the nominations of the competition, you can apply until December 27 inclusive.
Photo: Innosocium Foundation