Fostering Purpose-Driven Creativity with UN Technology Innovation Labs

Last week at Cannes Lions, SAP and Deloitte Digital joined Ascential in hosting engaging sessions at the Goals House, which inspired purpose-focused creatives to accelerate solutions and scale impact for the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).

Signature moments elevated awareness and engagement among leading brands with the United Nations Technology Innovation Labs (UNTIL) program, whose mission is to leverage emerging technology to transform societies, nations, and humanity as a whole. The launch of the UNTIL Lab for gender equality was a rallying point for creative leaders to accelerate purpose-driven initiatives.

SAP Next-Gen, Deloitte Digital, and Ascential aim to build on this momentum and work with UNTIL to foster a global consensus around the value of turning brands into movements and experiences that scale impact for the SDGs.

Harnessing the Power of Purpose Marketing

“Ascential shares a joint commitment with SAP and Deloitte Digital to work with the UN to accelerate solutions to the SDGs,” says Philip Thomas, president of Ascential Events and chairman of Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. “We look forward to broadening our collaboration with UNTIL across all 17 goals, opening new opportunities for the global Cannes Lions creative community to engage with the UN in impactful ways that advance the SDGs through purpose and experience marketing.”

“We look forward to collaborating with the SAP Next-Gen program and its partners, including Deloitte Digital and Ascential, and to scaling impact for all the SDGs through UNTIL initiatives that could be magnified through the global SAP Next-Gen Labs network and the global audiences of Deloitte Digital and Ascential,” says Dianne Dain, Global Partnerships, UN Technology Innovation Labs.

“Brands have an incredible position of influence to accelerate progress toward the UN SDGs, to activate communities around the world, and to inspire not just companies, but individuals to take action around purpose-driven initiatives,” says Alicia Hatch, chief marketing officer, Deloitte Digital. “Together with SAP Next-Gen and Ascential, we will collaborate with UNTIL to help brands realize how they can build movements that inspire action.”

“With the purpose-focused vision of Ascential, the inspiration of Deloitte Digital, and the global SDG leadership of the UN Technology Innovation Labs program, we were privileged to be a catalyst at Cannes Lions, uniting CMOs and creative leaders from the world’s top brands to actively support UN Global Goal 17,” says Ann Rosenberg, senior vice president and global head of SAP Next-Gen. “Building a consensus for brands for good is the starting point for the change that is needed.”

Crowdsourcing Climate Change Solutions

The UN Youth Strategy, Youth 2030, has the goal of facilitating increased impact and fostering young people’s engagement and participation in building a better future. To build on this strategy, UNTIL is launching the Youth Climate Hack at the 2019 UN Climate Action Summit. The social coding event will bring together young computer programmers, scientists, and other interested people under the auspices of the UN to develop new models and innovative solutions to solve climate challenges. Through a series of hackathons on four continents, young people will have the opportunity to use open data and apply technology concepts and practices to help solve climate challenges.

SAP Next-Gen will support the event and plans to host regional hackathon winners for a finalist competition during UN General Assembly week, highlighting the creativity and disruptive concepts of today’s youth. Partners will be invited to team up to enable next-generation, purpose-driven innovators with tools and methodologies to accelerate impactful solutions for climate action.

Scaling Impact with an Academy for the SDGs

Organizations must not only integrate and optimize business processes for efficiency but also ensure processes are sustainable and support the SDGs. To support this, SAP Next-Gen is launching an academy for the SDGs with Deloitte Digital. The academy aims to support the SAP ecosystem in collaborating with the UN Technology Innovation Labs program to accelerate solutions and scale impact for all SDGs.

“Imagine a world in which organizations can work with UNTIL globally, including at SAP Next-Gen Lab spaces at universities,” says Rosenberg. “We are launching the academy for the SDGs to support these collaborations with UNTIL and the global ecosystem of SDG innovators.”

Academy participants will gain knowledge and skills in using the latest technologies, such as blockchain, machine learning, augmented and virtual reality, the Internet of Things (IoT), analytics, and Experience Management solutions from SAP. New methodologies, such as Innovation 4.0, which uses science fiction thinking to reimagine the purpose-driven intelligent enterprise in the experience economy, will be covered. It will also feature learning content from SAP and partners; SDG success stories from the global SAP ecosystem of more than 437,000 customers in over 180 countries; best practices in design thinking from SAP, Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI), and the HPI D-School; and knowledge on experience management from Qualtrics.

SAP Next-Gen intends to roll out the first academy for the SDGs content later this year during UN General Assembly week.