Turning Point Dialogues

The Turning Point Dialogues are an integral part of the Global Week to #Act4SDGs and aim to inform and inspire participants about key issues like climate action and poverty alleviation, human rights, combating global inequalities.

Through the Dialogues, change makers from across the world will share their vision for how we can turn it around, and will issue a call to action for audiences to take action in their own lives and through their spheres of influence. Stay tuned for a special selection of NEW Turning Point Dialogues to be premiered here across the Global Week to Act4SDGs

Turning Point Dialogues : Global Week to Act4SDGs

Turning it around for youth empowerment through visual story telling

In collaboration with Canon

Premiere date: 18.30 CET, 16 September 2021

Creative education has the power to transform the lives of young people to overcome trauma, grow artistically and gain skills to enter the global marketplace. Visual story-telling provides a vehicle for empowerment that can open new opportunities and provides a tool for tackling sustainability challenges by capturing the reality of the photographer’s lived experience, whose work in turn can spark positive and sustainable change. Canon and Lens on Life are turning it around for youth empowerment through visual storytelling.


Turning it around through Inclusive Food Systems

In collaboration with the Rome Centre for Sustainable Development, UNDP

Premiere date: 18.30 CET, 23 September 2021

The first ever global Food Systems Summit comes at a sobering moment. More food is being produced than ever before, yet around a tenth of the global population was undernourished last year, with numbers higher due to the pandemic. Current food systems suffer two major deficits. They are not inclusive, as shown by COVID-19, where food scarcity and insecurity increased particularly for those already poor or marginalized. Current food systems are also not sustainable, leading to land degradation, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity losses, obesity, poor nutrition and hunger. Climate change is both a driver and a consequence of hunger. And hunger drives conflict. This special edition of the Act4SDGs Turning Point Dialogue series will explore the intersection between food systems and climate, gender, COVID-19 and conflict – to unpack what it will take to transform food systems as a vehicle for change for people and planet.


Turning it around for SDG progress

In collaboration with UNDP and Samsung

Premiere date: 18.30 CET, 25 September 2021

Bold and urgent action is needed to put us on track towards the Sustainable Development Goals, whilst allowing people and the planet to prosper. The SDGs are more relevant today than ever as they are a shared agenda for a better future for all. To commemorate the 6th anniversary of the SDGs this special conversation, with the Administrator of UNDP, Achim Steiner, unpacks what it will take to undo the devastating reversals of progress that we’ve seen as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic - so we can keep the promise of the SDGs and ensure an equal, fair, green and just post-COVID world.


Turning it around through Localised Action

In collaboration with UCLG

Premiere date: 18.30 CET, 27 September 2021

The 2030 Agenda and the SDGs are very ambitious frameworks that set the bases for a sustainable future. In this context, Local and Regional Governments around the world are advocating for the SDGs as a roadmap to recovery, making these ambitious commitments a reality on the ground. Local and Regional Governments are playing a key role in the implementation of the SDGs by making sure that the world that we construct is built on the expectations, aspirations, and dreams of the citizens and communities. As cities and territories are being unique enablers of this transformation, localization of the SDGs remains a core aspect for sustainable development. Join this Turning Point Dialogue to know more about how local governments are turning around and advancing with daring actions towards the definition of a new social contract while imagining and building more inclusive, innovative, and caring cities and territories with their communities.


Create your own Dialogue

We are inviting people and organizations everywhere to create their own discussion under our special format Turning Point Dialogues +! Invite SDG changemakers and thought leaders that inspire you and share their vision for SDG action. Check out the full guidance note on how to plan and produce your own session.

Turning Point Dialogues: Play:Fair music activation

Turning Point Dialogue 1:

Music for People and for Planet

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Turning Point Dialogue 2:

Young People Turning it Around for Climate

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Turning Point Dialogue 3:

Turning it Around for Good Food for All

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Turning Point Dialogues:
SDG Global Festival of Action




Ms. Ponti holds an MA in Political Science from the University of Milan and has completed an executive education programme from INSEAD in Global Management, Finance and Partnerships. She started her career with the Italian NGO Mani Tese. One of the main architects of the UN Millennium Campaign, Ms. Ponti served as Global Deputy Director and Regional Director for Europe for over a decade and was at the vanguard of innovative campaign initiatives, building multi-stakeholder coalitions, mobilizing resources and forging long-term partnerships between civil society organizations, local government, parliamentarians, media, the private sector and the UN. Prior, Ms. Ponti was an advocacy and resource mobilization specialist with UNICEF and the UN Secretariat. She also served as Chief Operating Officer of Catapult -a girls and women’s right crowdfunding platform and as Special Advisor on post-2015 during the final negotiations of the Agenda 2030 for the global network Social Watch. Ms. Ponti was appointed as Director of the UN SDG Action Campaign in July 2018.



Co-Founder, Lens on Life Project

Sam Powers is the co-founder of Lens on Life Project and oversees the organisation’s strategy and operations. Powers began his career working with youth as a tutor in East Los Angeles while enrolled in university studying international affairs. An avid photographer and filmmaker, he started teaching classes to youth in-need in Brooklyn, New York while working with a local grassroots organisation, planting the seeds for Lens on Life. In addition to his work with Lens on Life, Powers also serves as an advisor to a New York Artificial Intelligence company that provides real-time information alerts to first responders and the United Nations amongst others.


El Moughrabi

Sustainability Engagement Lead, Canon EMEA

Jeanine is an experienced sustainability professional who has spent the last 5 years working in different areas across the field, including educational awareness, scientific research and corporate sustainability strategies. In 2016, Jeanine completed her bachelors degree in Environmental Biology and Ecosystems, during which she gained the valuable experience and knowledge needed to complete and publish her research. Jeanine is currently working with Canon EMEA as their Sustainability Engagement Lead. She covers a vast range of countries in the developing regions where she has worked on developing and implementing various sustainability strategies and initiatives across her region, including expanding and delivering the Canon Young People Programme.



Director, The Rome Centre for Sustainable Development, UNDP

Musonda Mumba is the Director for The Rome Centre for Sustainable Development under the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in close collaboration with the Italian Government’s Ministry for Ecological Transition (IMET). The Centre focuses on three priority areas: climate change, sustainable development, and nature protection. In her role, Mumba provides strategic leadership on these matters through convening, collaboration, connecting, and co-creation as the world navigates complexity and uncertainty, with the aim of achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals collectively. She is also the Chair of the Global Partnership on Forest and Landscape Restoration (GPFLR) and also Vice-Chair for the Collaborative Partnership for Forests (CPF). She has over 25 years’ experience in environmental and conservation issues globally, and has published widely in various journals, newspapers, articles, and contributed to book chapters. Before joining UNDP, Mumba was the head of United Nations Environment Programme – UNEP’s Terrestrial Ecosystems Programme, and served in various roles over a period of 12 years. A Zambian national, she received her BSc. Ed. at University of Zambia and her Ph.D. at University College London in wetland conservation and hydrology.



Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Italy

In 2001 she was elected for the first time to Parliament in the constituency of Umbria. From December 2001 to 2005, member of the National Executive Committee of the Democrats of the Left, with responsibility for Foreign Affairs. In 2005, she took responsibility for the national organisation of the Democrats of the Left and contributed to the establishment of the Democratic Party. She served on the Foreign Affairs Committee until 2006. In 2006, re-elected to the Chamber of Deputies and served as Vice President of the “Olive Tree” Parliamentary Group until 28 April 2008. She served as Vice President of the Parliamentary Group of the Democratic Party until November 2009. She was elected Vice President of the National Assembly of the Democratic Party during the 2009 Convention of the Democratic Party. On 2013 general elections, first candidate on the list of the Democratic Party in the constituency of Umbria and first Vice President of the Chamber of Deputies from 2013 to 2018. From July 2018 to September 2019 member of the National Secretariat of the Democratic Party. She is currently member of the National Directorate of the Party. On September 2019 she was appointed Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. On March 1st, 2021 she has been appointed Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.


Nnoli Edozien

Chair of the Board, Circular Economy Innovation Partnership (CEIP) Africa

Dr Ndidi Nnoli Edozien chairs the boards of the Circular Economy Innovation Partnership (CEIP) Africa, Growing Businesses Foundation and Afrikairos GmbH, Germany. She serves as ACCA Africa Advocacy Program’s Corporate Governance & Sustainability Committee Chair. She is a member of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Stakeholder Council, and Nigeria Integrated Reporting Committee. She co-chairs the Private Sector Advisory Group (PSAG) on SDGs, inaugurated by the Nigerian Presidency in 2017, and Welt-ethos Institute Finance & Economics Research Group under whose founder’s intellectual guidance she commenced her work on the SevenPillars Sustainability Methodology in 2004. Her civic and social responsibility initiatives include serving her home, mega-city Lagos, by sitting on the Governing Council of Lagos State Employment Trust Fund and the Circular Lagos Initiative. As the initiating Group Chief, Sustainability and Governance Officer, Dangote, she operationalized sustainability for Africa’s largest manufacturing conglomerate between 2017 and 2020, for which she was recognized as the 2020 Sustainability Executive of the Year by Cemex Africa. Immediately prior, she served as faculty, teaching sustainability, ethics and social entrepreneurship at the Lagos Business School and subsequently at the China European International Business School. She has also taught at the Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences and served as a Fellow with the University of Edinburgh, Scaling Business in Africa. She has served the Bottom of the Pyramid, promoting financial inclusion for women and youth entrepreneurship through the Growing Businesses Foundation, which she founded, since 1999. She co-founded and serves on the Board of Directors for Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services, Boost Technology (Nigeria), Rising Tide Africa and Vroom Africa – with a common focus of supporting Start-Ups to become Scale-Ups. She is an alumnus of the London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) and Wharton Business School and holds a Ph.D. in Sustainability & Governance from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt. She was voted into the Executive Committee of the Club of Rome in 2020.



Administrator, UNDP

Achim Steiner became UNDP Administrator on 19 June 2017. The United Nations General Assembly confirmed his appointment following his nomination by Secretary-General António Guterres. In April 2021, the General Assembly confirmed his appointment to a second four-year term beginning in June 2021.

Mr. Steiner is also the Vice-Chair of the UN Sustainable Development Group, which unites 40 entities of the UN system that work to support sustainable development.

Over nearly three decades, Achim Steiner has been a global leader on sustainable development, climate resilience and international cooperation. He has worked tirelessly to champion sustainability, economic growth and equality for the vulnerable, and has been a vocal advocate for the Sustainable Development Goals.

Prior to joining UNDP, he was Director of the Oxford Martin School and Professorial Fellow of Balliol College, University of Oxford. Mr Steiner has served across the United Nations system, looking at global challenges from both a humanitarian and a development perspective. He led the United Nations Environment Programme (2006-2016), helping governments invest in clean technologies and renewable energy. He was also Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi. Achim Steiner previously held other notable positions including Director General of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, and Secretary General of the World Commission on Dams.

Achim Steiner has lived and worked in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Latin America and the United States. He graduated in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (MA) from Worcester College, Oxford University and holds an MA from the University of London/School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).



Young Leader, Generation 17

Shomy Hasan Chowdhury is an advocate and young leader for the Generation17 initiative, supported by Samsung and UNDP. She is a multi-award-winning Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) activist from Bangladesh. Shomy is the Co-Founder of a global youth-led organization, Awareness 360, which now trains 1,500 young activists in 23 countries and has already reached over 150,000 people. She sits on the Advisory Board of multiple global platforms such as Youth Combating Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs), Social Enterprise World Forum, and Democracy Moves. She has received many recognitions for over a decade of social work, notably the President’s Volunteer Service Award (Gold) from President Barack Obama, the Putra Icon Award, and the 2019 Diana Legacy Award. She has recently been named a Forbes 30 Under 30 and highlighted as the Featured Honoree for Social Impact. Shomy has served as a Judge for numerous initiatives, including the Commonwealth Youth Awards, the Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition, Global Changemakers, Hult Prize Foundation, The Diana Award, and many more. She is also the first Bangladeshi citizen to sit on the 2021 Diana Legacy Award Judging Panel.



Secretary General, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG)

Emilia Saiz is a jurist by profession and has devoted its professional life to promoting the role of local governments in development as well as fostering relations between cities and their associations worldwide. She started her journey as local government international advocate in the founding organization of UCLG, IULA in 1997. She has led programmes dedicated to institutional capacity building and decentralized cooperation. She has actively promoted women empowerment, social inclusion and international partnerships. She played a critical role in setting up the Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments and has followed and represented local and regional governments in iconic international processes such as the Rio and Beijing + 20 as well the Climate Agreement the SDGs and Hábitat III. She has further been deeply involved in the institutional development of United Cities and Local Governments into a network of networks. During her work in the World Organization she has been appointed to numerous panels both in her personal and professional capacity. Her involvement in Cities Alliance, the General Alliance of Partners and the Cities Programme of the Global Compact are worth highlighting. Her mission as Secretary General of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) started in 2018. When asked about her priorities for coming years she mentions: ensuring that the global agendas are built from local priorities and that international action of local governments is understood as an indispensable role to fulfill local needs with solidarity, justice and accountability at the centre.


Malick Lowe

Mayor of Banjul, The Gambia

Madam Rohey Malick Lowe, is the first elected female Mayor of Banjul, Gambia. She was born and raised in Banjul. Madam Lowe is currently UCLG Policy Councillor, President of African Capital Cities Sustainability Forum, President Refela-The Gambia National Chapter, Executive Member Global Parliament of Mayors, and the 2nd Vice President of United Democratic Party National Executive. Mayor Rohey Malick Lowe is a proactive and hardworking individual with significant years of experience as an entrepreneur who has successfully been established within the tourism industry. She studied International Relations at the University of Falun in Sweden and her academic experience has provided her with a strong theoretical knowledge of public administration. She was also very active in the political arena and subsequently a member of a party called ‘Social Democrats’ which gave her the opportunity to serve as a key member of the Child Welfare Committee of Nyköping Municipality with the mandate to oversee the schools within her jurisdiction. She has demonstrated professionalism through her leadership style by being very diligent and formulated a total inclusion of all the inhabitants of the City of Banjul in policy processes and giving them a voice to engage in all decisions regarding their city. Furthermore, part of her governance also includes engaging all relevant stakeholders more especially Civil Society Organisations in Banjul for the betterment and development of the City. She has also been a key participant in several international forums advocating the localization of SDGs.


Diaz Romero

Mayor of Esplugues de Llobregat, Spain

Pilar Díaz Romero has been the mayor of Esplugues de Llobregat since 2006 and attached to the presidency of the Barcelona Provincial Council, where she also holds the position of Delegate for International Affairs. Currently, she is also Vice President of Localret. She is a telecommunications engineer and a PhD in telecommunications engineering (1994) from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, where she has worked as a tenured professor. She was the winner of the Ericsson Prize for the best doctoral thesis in mobile communications in Spain, awarded by the Official College and the Spanish Association of Telecommunications Engineers. 

Eradicating Preventing and Avoidable Blindness

Eye Care for All’s mission is to ensure that all individuals have access essential eye care. To remove cataracts and thereby eradicate preventable and avoidable blindness, this organisation offers free eyesight restoration surgery to the elderly, orphans, individuals with disabilities, prisoners and refugees in the Gambia.

Let’s Do it! World

#LetsDoItWorld began in Estonia in 2008 when 50,000 people came together to clean up the entire country in just five hours. 🇪🇪  World Clean Up Day celebrated the Global Week to #Act4SDGs through its World Cleanup Day campaign – the largest single peacetime civic action in human history. In 2020, they encouraged people to Clean up with a small group of friends or family or participate digitally by deleting digital waste from their electronic devices.📱  For more information, visit digital.worldcleanupday.org.

Website: https://www.worldcleanupday.org/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/worldcleanupday2020/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/worldcleanupday.ldiw/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/worldcleanupday

Sustainable Urban Planting Initiatives in Brasilia, Brazil

Comunitarius is a volunteer group of researchers, students and local leaders in Brasilia, Brazil who aim to positively transform cities and improve food security by introducing sustainable urban planting initiatives. The volunteers first identify locations where community members are affected by hunger and poverty. They then host campaigns to obtain donations of seedlings, organic manure, land and basic equipment. In the project’s final stage, volunteers mobilise community members to plant, grow and cultivate their own food. Along with this project empowering community members, it also increasing green spaces in urban areas.

Explore their action here: https://sdgactionawards.org/initiative/1166

Social media posting: The National Association for Sustainable Development of Pakistan

Founded in only 2020, The National Association for Sustainable Development of Pakistan has already made significant contributions to achieving the #SDGs. 🙌 As part of the Global Week to #Act4SDGs, @nasdpakistan has launched a Tree Planting Drive across the cities of Islamabad, Mardan, and Rahimyar Khan. 🌳 Over 500 trees will be planted in areas facing deforestation. Thank you for your incredible impact! #TurnItAround #GlobalGoals #ClimateChange #LifeOnLand

Website: https://nasdpakistan.org/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nasdpakistan/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NASDPakistan