by Philippa Grand
4th December 2020

This year more than any has seen our social world rapidly changing with challenges to expertise and evidence-based knowledge, the effects of climate change, continued poverty and inequality, and now the need for COVID-19 recovery.

Back in 2015 the United Nations set up their Sustainable Development Goals to provide a blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. The 17 goals address the global challenges we face – find out more in this UN video.

As publishers of research across the social sciences, Bristol University Press and Policy Press have been committed to addressing global social challenges since Policy Press was established in 1996. Almost 25 years on, and especially following the events of 2020, we have the impetus to focus on this harder.

As part of this commitment, Bristol University Press is now signed up to the UN Sustainable Development Goals Publishers Compact, which was launched in October. The Compact is a collaboration between the United Nations and the International Publishers Association and is designed to inspire action among publishers to accelerate progress to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

Why does this matter? In a recent Transforming Society article, Alison Shaw, Chief Executive, said:

25 years of engaging with social challenges meant we knew better than anyone that, as a university press, it is vital to find ways to actively commission, curate and disseminate new ideas at times of massive social, economic or cultural upheaval. By offering peer-reviewed, fast-turnaround products that offer innovative ideas underpinned by evidence, we can contribute to policy and practice change as it happens.”

In signing the Compact we commit to ensuring that we will actively promote and acquire content on themes represented by the Sustainable Development Goals – see our Global Social Challenges web pages here – and that we will advocate for the SDGs among those it works with, including by looking at our environmental impact, developing our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion programme and seeking out other ways we can take action as a company.

This is a moment where we can really build on our long-standing commitment to publishing for global impact and social change and continue to publish with a purpose.

Find out more about impact our publishing on the global social challenges here.

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The views and opinions expressed on this blog site are solely those of the original blog post authors and other contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the Bristol University Press and/or any/all contributors to this site.

Image Credit: Paul Schafer on Unsplash