International Conference on “The Sustainable Development Goals in global perspective”

Date: 29-30 October, 2018

Host and Venue: Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna – ROOM 3

Scientific partners: A-id: Agenda for International Development and Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna 



As part of the mission to link academic knowledge with the real world, A-id: Agenda for International Development and the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna organize the SDGs in global perspective conference. This conferenceaims to address a constellation of normative and empirical questions concerning governance, financing, implementation, evaluation and achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Following a two-year process of negotiations and consultations, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) replaced the Millennium Development Goals in 2015. The 2030 Development Agenda is a fundamental blueprint for action for all countries, rich and poor. The list of 17 SDGs, 169 targets and more than 200 indicators serves as a wake-up call to the entire development community.

Parallel to the widespread enthusiasm across politicians and a large part of the development community, observers have expressed a number of concerns with the 2030 Development Agenda. Experts think that 17 goals and 169 targets are too many. Other practitioners and academics consider the SDGS as “unfeasible”, “too ambitious”, “not ambitious enough” and “unachievable” without a revolution of the mechanisms of development financing and evaluation. Another critique considers the SDGs in their current formulation as inadequate to prompt States to give full realization to human rights.

Simultaneously, the odd conception of international development as a transfer of money from rich to poor countries has progressively lost importance. The advent of new actors in development assistance, a changing political and regulatory landscape, synergies with the private sector, technologies, and the Internet, may significantly influence the distribution of responsibilities for sustainable development.

At the heart of this conference, there is the belief that, to capture the complexity of the SDGs, we need to bridge different academic disciplines, vernacular knowledge and local expertise. In this intellectual milieu, A-id and Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna invite practitioners and scholars from development studies, economics, public policy, law, political science, political theory, social policy, and sociology to submit abstracts and articles examining different aspects of the SDGs including but not limited to:

  1. Making sustainable development operational: the governance of the SDGs
  2. Economic, social and environmental pathways to sustainability
  3. Legal and normative implications of SDGs
  4. Indicators and data availability
  5. Financing the SDGs
  6. The relevance of the Belt and Road Initiative for the 2030 Agenda


This call invites researchers with an interest in international development, human rights and the SDGs to submit abstracts and papers on the topics identified above. The best papers will be considered for publication in a special issue of an international scientific journal.

Panel proposals are also accepted. Proposals for ninety-minutes panels should include the name of the chair, the name of at least three speakers, the abstracts of the papers and a brief statement of fit with one of the conference’s themes.

For abstracts and paper proposals, please anonymise your abstract and send a separate document with the following information: title of the paper, author name and affiliations to


Important Dates 

  • September 7, 2018: Abstracts submission for the conference
  • September 17, 2018: Feedback on the abstracts
  • Septemeber 21, 2018: Confirmation of participation by selected panellists
  • October 19, 2018: Submission of first drafts of the papers
  • October 29-30, 2018: Conference


Directions and further information

Abstracts should be between 300 and 500 words and should include the main points that will be covered in the article: theories, methodology, and findings.

Papers should be between 6000 and 8000 words.

Abstracts and papers should be submitted by email to:

Label your message “Abstract for the SDGs conference”. Save the file as the name of the first author.

For any queries related to the Call for Papers, contact us via:

The event is finished.


Ott 29 - 30 2018


8:00 am - 6:00 pm


Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies
Pisa, Italy
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