2019/06/12 Dresden, Germany
Dresden, 12 June 2019. – State Minister Thomas Schmidt and Dr David Malone (Rector of the United Nations University (UNU) and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations) signed an agreement today in Dresden. Under the agreement, the Saxon State Ministry for the Environment and Agriculture (SMUL) and the United Nations University Institute for Integrated Management of Material Fluxes and of Resources (UNU-FLORES) will work more closely together and develop joint projects in the area of environmental science and policy.
“I am sure that the cooperation will be very fruitful. UNU-FLORES and the SMUL are thematically closely interlinked. Our shared interests lie particularly in the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals at the regional level. This agreement will also contribute significantly to our efforts to achieve our technical goals in the environmental and resource sector. I am thinking, above all, of circular economy and zero waste, and sustainable land use as well as water protection and drinking water supply,” said Minister of State Schmidt.
“The United Nations University is grateful for our strong partnership with the Free State of Saxony under the auspices of the Ministry of Higher Education, Research, and the Arts (SMWK). We are very pleased that with this MoU our cooperation will be expanded and the Free State of Saxony will have more direct access to the excellent scientific work being conducted at UNU-FLORES here in Dresden,” stated Rector Malone. “With its emphasis on natural resources, forestry, and environmental policy, the Ministry of the Environment and Agriculture (SMUL) is a natural partner for UNU-FLORES in the fields of research and knowledge mobilisation.”
Until 2021, a PhD position is to be created at UNU-FLORES for three years with reference to the technical focal points of SMUL and the research topics of UNU-FLORES. Both partners want to agree on further concrete measures in the next one and a half years. The joint organisation of the “Sustainability Day 2019” with a focus on development cooperation is already planned for autumn 2019. UNU-FLORES will contribute its international expertise and technical advice. In addition, a joint side event is to be planned as part of the international Dresden Nexus Conference at the beginning of June 2020. The conference will be held for the third time in Dresden by UNU-FLORES together with the Technische Universität Dresden and the Leibniz Institute for Ecological Urban and Regional Development. The topic will be “Circular Economy in a Sustainable Society”. Saxon companies that have been awarded the seal of the “Umweltallianz” and are active in the field of environmental services management will actively participate and contribute to knowledge sharing of practices.
“UNU-FLORES’s efforts to advance a Nexus Approach, to harness the benefits of synergies arising from integrated management of resources, will be greatly strengthened by the MoU with the Saxon Ministry of Environment and Agriculture. The strong support and commitment from the Saxon government, contributing to the excellent progress made by UNU-FLORES since its inauguration in December 2012, is commendable and greatly appreciated,” emphasised Prof. Rattan Lal, Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of UNU-FLORES, who also took part in the meeting.
Dresden has been the seat of UNU-FLORES since 2012, one of two institutes of the United Nations University in Germany. UNU-FLORES deals with integrated strategies for sustainable resource management. The focus is on emerging and developing countries. The Saxon State Ministry of Higher Education, Research, and the Arts supports the institution together with the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research; TU Dresden provides in-kind contributions. UNU-FLORES is one of 14 institutes and programmes based in twelve countries, which together form UNU, a global think tank and a postgraduate teaching organisation based in Tokyo.
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Photo of the presentation of the funding agreement available in high resolution here. Use of the photo must be accompanied by the credit: SMUL/Annie Schoppe