Science, policy and business forum


The UN Science-Policy-Business Forum on the Environment, which will hold its sessions at the UN Headquarters in Nairobi from 8 to 10 March 2019 in the lead up to the Fourth Session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA 4).

Recommendations from the Forum inform the UN Environment Assembly and the UN’s work on the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement. Panelists and eminent personalities participating in the Forum will have an opportunity to attend the assembly and to contribute to high-level dialogues with Governments and other stakeholders.

Participating will be eminent scientists representing top scientific panels and institutions, Nobel laureates, artists, ministers, parliamentarians, industry and business leaders, young game changers in the science and business communities, heads of UN entities and civil society representatives.

Launched at the UN Environment Assembly in December 2017, the UN Science-Policy-Business Forum on the Environment is a framework designed to catalyze a more dynamic interface between science, policy, business and society. It is designed as an accelerator and incubator of innovation and positive change towards green solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Forum promotes opportunities for green investment, driven by advances in science and technology, empowering policies and innovative financing.

The Forum also promotes strengthening the evolving role of art and citizen science as well as creating the conditions to support and empower green technology startups.

This year’s Global Session of the Forum focuses on the nexus of science, innovation and entrepreneurship for the environment, and covers the following five key streams:
1. Science for Shaping Green Policies and Market Responses
A review of the latest recommendations from flagship environmental assessments released before the UN Environment Assembly, and discussions around the required policy responses and actions by the private sector and key stakeholders.

2. Foundation for a Global Digital Platform for our Planet
This stream builds on the Forum’s Extraordinary session hosted by the French the National Centre for Space Studies (CNES) in Paris on 18-19 October 2018 at and organized in cooperation with the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD), the French Alliance for Environmental Research (AllEnvi) and the Group on Earth Observations. Sessions will cover the following key tracks: Opportunities offered by Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning; Big Data, Earth observations and remote sensing, Governance, Equity and Ethics; Financing.

3. Changing discourse: Smarter, Greener Solutions for Cities
By 2050, 70% of the human population will live in cities. Innovative technologies – from E-mobility to green buildings – need to be leveraged to maximize the efficient use of natural resources and encourage environmentally sound choices by all players across all sectors. We need to alter not only the physical design and infrastructure, but also to encourage positive resourcing decisions, behavioral change and policy action.

4. Green Technology Startup Hub
Startups are not only transforming markets and economic growth; some are helping save the planet. Venture capital investment in startups has surged to its highest level ever — $148 billion last year alone. More than 40 Venture Capital-backed companies achieved billion-dollar valuations and joined the unicorn club.

The UN Science-Policy-Business Forum is launching a pioneering programme to identify, communicate and shed light on the contributions of this fast-growing sector. The programme will act as an accelerator and incubator of start-up innovation for the environment as it examines the enabling policies and actions required to use such innovation to transform the world into greener and more sustainable living.
The Green Technology Startup Hub will showcase some ground-breaking innovations for the planet presented by Startups from around the world with in-depth sessions focusing on specific projects, financing and the policy support required to mainstream solutions and to bridge the technology divide.

4. Innovative Solutions on Climate Challenge: Finance, Market and Non-State Actors
National pledges under the Paris Agreement will only bring a third of the reduction in emissions required by 2030 to meet climate targets, with private sector and sub-national action not increasing at a rate that would help close this worrying gap. This session, organized in cooperation with Green Climate Fund and Reuters Sustainability, examines means of harnessing the power of finance, market and non-state actors to fight climate change.

5. Healthy Food for a Sustainable Planet
We are producing and consuming more food than ever before, with detrimental impacts on human and planet health. Sessions will examine:

  • Agricultural transformation – sustainable and climate-smart agricultural models minimizing impacts on pollution - examples from rice sector and others including livestock sector.
  • Nutrition and healthy diets - embracing difficult questions and debates about meat versus vegetarian diets, also considering biofortification, plant health, which benefits in turn human health
  • Food waste – measuring and achieving food waste reduction at a global level

We welcome your active participation and your contribution to the event.

We would appreciate your confirmation by 25 January 2019.

Please register your interest to attend the Science Policy Business Forum through the the UNEA website:

For more information, please contact:

Shereen Zorba,

Head of the Secretariat of the UN Science-Policy-Business Forum on the Environment, / Skype: Shereen.zorba, WhatsApp/mobile: +254 788 526000


           Publication: The case for a Digital Ecosystem for the Environment

           Measuring Progress 

Download the briefing Note

PowerPoint Presentation: Un Science-policy-business  Forum On The Environment