As the Earth grows more populated by each passing day, humans find themselves faced with lots of problems, many of which are born from their own hands. Air pollution, crazy traffic, forest fire, drought, climate change, wastes thrown to the ocean; all of them are just a few of the many problems humans currently have to resolve. This situation drives the need to tackle the matters in our hands as quickly and effeciently as we can. In 2016, the United Nations (UN) pushed forward 17 goals called “Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”, a long-term agenda mapped until 2030 and echoed all over the 193 country members of the UN. SDGs then gets adapted by various programs in many countries with the same goal: attaining sustainable development.
Sustainable development involves a long-term perspective, concerned with interests and rights of future generations as well as of people today. In order to achieve that, there are three pillars that must be balanced: environmental, social, and economic. All three of them have the same level of importance; one cannot be neglected on the road towards a sustainable future, where there are sufficient economy, nurtured community, as well as a viable natural environment. To realize sustainable development, partnership, multisector collaboration, and multidiciplinary approach are sorely needed. The government acts as law and policy enforcer, private serves as economic and business doer, youth becomes the campaigner, and academics stands as SDGs Center of Exellence.
Not only must the approach towards sustainable development be done through multidiciplinary action, it also has to be inclusive, recognizing the need for all people to be involved in the decisions that affect their live. Such approaches include the technology to build sustainable area, as shown in the case of Bungin Technovillage; Value Engineering/Value Management (VE/VM) when developing a product or project; along with taking into account sustainable finance and human resource management in the line of business.
As stated before, youth plays a part in realizing sustainable development. The ASEA-UNINET recognizes this, launching their second Student Week, bringing forth the theme “Sustainable Development: A Multidiciplinary Approach”. The program was held from August 18—31, 2019 in Universitas Indonesia, Depok, Indonesia. Participants varied from several countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Philipines, Thailand, Vietnam, Italy, and Czech Republic. The student week was packed with lectures from outstanding professors and researchers with years of experience in their respective fields of interest. There were also institutional visits to BSD Sinar Mas Land, Jakarta Smart City, and Sentul City, as well as cultural visits to Indonesia Miniatur Theme Park and a Jakarta City Tour. Students also learnt more about Indonesian cultures, such as Indonesian language, gamelan, traditional dance, and a batik class.
The 2nd ASEA-UNINET Students Week concluded with presentations from four groups about sustainable development and how to realize it. There were presentations about building a sustainable city; implementing green design in buildings; a reverse vending machine for circular economy; and a campaign to reduce food waste called “Jangan Bazir”. The 2nd ASEA-UNINET SW proved that youths’ idea and creativity are the fuel needed to realize the sustainable life our future desperately needs so.
Contributor: Maria Gabriella, Bioprocess Engineering
Editor: International Office Team