The Observatory of the Universidad de Panamá raises awareness about the Sustainable Development Goals
Within the framework of the Conference on University Research and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), which was held at the Universidad de Panamá (UP), professor Rufino Fernández, assistant dean of the UP’s Departament of Public Administration, presented several expierences carried out by the SDG Monitoring Observatory of said University, with the aim of promoting awareness and citizen participation, beyond research.
Fernández explained that the Observatory is structured on six thematic axles: -the fight against poverty and for secure access to food within the framework of production and sustainable development; health and welfare; education; environment; economic development with social equity, and democratic governments- to be expressed through concrete actions: activities to raise awareness about the SDG and make them known by teachers and researchers; the creation of a Web page and social networks to disseminate information; the carrying out of the Public Policies for Sustainable Development; and Open Government, Citizen Participation and Sustainable Development graduate courses; the publication of the first number of the magazine Government and Sustainable Development, and the creation of a Reading and Reference Room, a place to impart the graduate courses, and a Meeting Hall.
He said that in addition to the aforementioned activities, the following are also being developed: a new strategic extension plan based on the SDG, the preparation of a university management proposal towards SDG, a Congress on Scientific Research within the framework of the SDG. Also, the Observatory will participate in meetings such as the CILAC-UNESCO forum, the National Meeting on Sustainable Development, and in seminars and workshops promoted by the National Government, unions and NGOs. The Observatory has also carried out alliances with the Observatorio de la Discapacidad ONDIS (Observatory on Disability), and with the Observatorio de la Niñez y Adolescencia en riesgo de Explotación Sexual OBESSNA (Observatory on Childhood and Adolescence at risk of being sexually exploited) of Panama.
Furthermore, he made emphasis on the need of obtaining more funding in order to continue developing the Observatory’s six axles of action. At the beginning it will depend on the research programs carried out by the different departments and research institutes, until it can count with enough funds to develop a specialized research program of its own.
The Conference University Research and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) counted with the presence of the members of the UNESCO-IESALC Government Council as panelists, and also with the attendance of authorities and representatives of the official Panamanian universities.