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The Association of Sustainability Professionals of Nigeria (ASPN) is set to host a virtual seminar on “Implementing SDG 8 in Nigeria: What Role Should the Sustainability Profession Play?” to understand the role of sustainability in advancing the development of effective policies around SDG 8.

The virtual seminar will hold on Monday, November 29, 2021, from 10:00 am -12:00 noon. Participation at the seminar is free and will be drawn from the public, private and development sectors. To participate in the webinar, registration via the link is required.

Unemployment and under-employment are major challenges faced by many developing countries such as Nigeria. As at the last quarter of 2020, the data from the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics put unemployment and youth unemployment rates at 33.3% and 53.4% respectively. Some direct outcomes of these two conditions are poor economic growth and poverty. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 8 is the global ambition set to address inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all. The goal identifies that not only should jobs be created but they should be decent and capable of lifting people out of poverty.

Over the years, organisations have played a critical role in addressing issues related to SDG 8 such as employment, economic inclusion, non-discrimination, capacity building, availability of a skilled workforce, elimination of forced or compulsory labour. Organisations have created job opportunities, offered apprenticeship opportunities, mentored young entrepreneurs, initiated skills development programmes, put in place mechanisms to identify child and forced labour throughout its supply chains, and developed policy against unfair hiring and recruitment practices, amongst many interventions. There is no doubt that sustainability professionals have been at the centre of developing and implementing these interventions for organisations,

Therefore, sustainability professionals have been and will continue to be crucial in the achievement of the SDGs, and it is on this backdrop that the Association of Sustainability Professionals (ASPN) has decided to organise a seminar on Implementing SDG 8 in Nigeria: What Role Should the Sustainability Profession Play?

This high-level stakeholder engagement programme aims to unravel the issues and challenges faced by the sustainability profession and its professionals in the implementation of the SDGs within the context of SDG 8 in Nigeria. This is in direct alignment with the objective of ASPN to support and enhance the development of the sustainability profession and advance sustainable development in Nigeria. The workshop will also provide a compelling examination of the state of the profession in Nigeria. This will include, how the profession has contributed to the sustainability evolution both in the fiscal policy, regulatory and private sector spaces; the capabilities and competencies required by sustainability professionals for the growth of the profession; and the solutions that will transform the profession to have a broader sustainable socio-economic development role in the holistic implementation of the SDGs and within the context of SDG 8.

Speakers at the seminar will comprise of leading voices in the sustainability space such as Ismail Omamegbe, Director, Advocacy & Stakeholder Relations Directorate, ASPN; Professor Chris Ogbechie, Dean, Lagos Business School; Professor Kenneth Amaeshi, Chair, Business and Sustainable Development, University of Edinburgh; Rukaiya el-Rufai, Partner, Sustainability and Climate Change, PwC West Africa; Amarakoon Bandara, PhD, Senior Economic Adviser, UNDP; Soromidayo George, Director, Corporate Affairs and Sustainable Business, Unilever, West Africa; Dr. Ndidi Nnoli-Edozien, Co-Chair, Private Sector Advisory Group on SDGs, Nigeria; Eunice Sampson, Director, Learning and Development Directorate, ASPN.

Participants at the seminar stand to benefit from the opportunity to identify ways of strengthening and developing the sustainability profession in Nigeria; contribute to an innovative transition that will have a significant impact in Nigeria by helping devise strategies for sustainable socio-economic development, inclusive growth and decent work; be part of and network with a community of practice to shape, drive and support the sustainability agenda across different sectors

Additionally, the seminar participants will also be able to understand the challenges associated with Nigeria’s SDGs implementation journey, the fundamental linkage between SDG8 and other SDGs that are required to be taken into consideration in developing effective policies around SDG8, and understand the trend (evolution and current state) of the sustainability profession in Nigeria and the contribution of the profession to the sustainability agenda amongst others.

About ASPN:

The Association of Sustainability Professionals of Nigeria (ASPN) is a body of sustainability practitioners set up to develop the capacity of members and support Nigerian businesses towards actualising sustainable business growth, while driving Nigeria’s sustainable development.

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