The United Nations Environment Programme, the World Trade Organization, the Geneva Environment Network, the Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the United Nations in Geneva and the Geneva Internet Platform - in cooperation with host organizations and other supporting organizations - organized the Sixth Dialogue of the Road to Bern via Geneva on Environmental Data.
About the Cross-sectoral Dialogues on Digital Cooperation
In preparation of the UN World Data Forum 2021, that will take place in Bern – Switzerland in October 2021 and as a way to enhance the role of International Geneva in digital cooperation, a series of Cross-sectoral Dialogues on Digital Cooperation are being organized. By addressing data issues through different angles, such as their collection, protection, sharing and use and by matching it at the same time with key sectoral dimensions like health, science, technology, intellectual property, business, climate, humanitarian challenges, trade or environment, we aim at enhancing the added value of data to ultimately accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The Cross-sectoral Dialogues will pave the way of the Road to Bern via Geneva. These Dialogues are intended to deliver Geneva’s contributions to the UN World Data Forum and to foster valuable and beneficial participation. The cross-cutting and interactive discussions of the Dialogues allow to combine the experience of different sectors while enlarging the perspective on digital cooperation.
Using Data and Digital Technologies to Advance Sustainable Trade and Environmental Transparency
Dialogue #6 on Environmental Data covered the theme “Using data and digital technologies to advance sustainable trade and environmental transparency”. This Dialogue showcased the latest digital sustainable trade and environment transparency concepts and tools, with an emphasis on the digital product passport concept. It brought in the perspectives of governments, businesses and other stakeholders on the potential use cases, challenges, opportunities and enabling policies.
By order of intervention
Chargé de mission; Head, Innovation Partnerships, Permanent Mission of Switzerland in Geneva
Director, Europe Office, UNEP
Aik Hoe LIM
Director, Trade and Environment Division, WTO
H.E. Amb. Manuel TEEHANKEE
Philippines Ambassador | Chair, WTO Committee on Trade and Environment
Director of the Economic Cooperation and Trade Division, UNECE
Co-Founder & CEO of Cirplus
Professor, Global Trade Alert, University of St. Gallen
Head, Data Science Section, Swiss Federal Statistical Office
Senior Analyst, WTO
Director, Forum on Trade, Environment and the SDGs
Advisor, DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CONNECT), European Commission
Head Digital Transformation, UNEP
Counsellor, International Telecommunication Union
Global Hub Director, Canada, Future Earth; Executive Director, Sustainability in the Digital Age
Manager, Value Chain Carbon Transparency Pathfinder, World Business Council for Sustainable Development
H.E. Amb. Chad Blackman
Barbados Ambassador | former Chair, WTO Committee on Trade and Environment
Professor, Founding Director of Diplo Foundation and Head of Geneva Internet Platform
Welcome and opening remarks
Session 1 | Accelerating sustainable trade through transparency and digitalization of data
Climate change and environmental degradation are some of the most pressing challenges for the today’s world. With the urgent need for us to create a sustainable future, data can play an important role. This session will
look at digital technologies, tools, and digital data and will bring in the perspectives of the private and public sector, academia and international organizations on the potential use, challenges and opportunities for digital
data to enhance transparency and advance sustainable trade.
The panel discussed the following questions:
- What are the costs, benefits, opportunities and challenges of digitalization of data?
- Can and, if so, how will the digitalization of data help advance sustainable trade?
- What are the recent transparency tools and initiatives towards the digitalization of trade and environmental data?
- How can digital technologies (such as blockchain) help progress toward sustainable production and consumption patterns and advance the circular economy and sustainable trade?
Session 2 | What is a digital product passport and why will it transform sustainable trade and environmental transparency?
In order to transition to a circular economy, managing resources sustainably and reducing pollution and wastes in the environment, it will be necessary to move to sustainable products through their full life-cycle. The digital product passport is an initiative that can utilize existing and emerging technologies to improve transparency and sustainable consumption. This session will discuss the concept of a digital product passport, as well as the opportunities and challenges and bring forward the key messages to feed into the UN World
The panel discussed the following questions:
- What is a digital product passport?
- How could a digital product passport enhance sustainable trade and transparency in the environment and climate performance of products?
- What kinds of environmental data standards, flows and infrastructure would need to underpin a digital product passport?
- What kinds of life cycle assessment policies, disclosure frameworks and labeling standards would be needed?
- What are the data as well as enabling policy and governance frameworks required to scale the digital product passport to the global level?
The key messages for the UN World Data Forum
The event is available on the DiploFoundation Youtube channel and on this page.