Federal government takes steps to advance implementation of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Bern, 22.03.2019 - At its meeting on 22 March 2019, the Federal Council appointed two delegates for the 2030 Agenda. The 2030 Agenda constitutes a global framework for sustainable development and is the point of reference for Switzerland's sustainability policy. The Federal Council attaches great importance to the 2030 Agenda and is putting in place a new federal government structure to advance its implementation. The creation of an interdepartmental steering committee and the appointment of two delegates are core elements. The new structure will fully anchor the 2030 Agenda in Switzerland's federal administration. The 2030 Agenda will continue to be implemented within the framework of the sectoral policies of the federal offices and departments.

The 2030 Agenda brings together national and international efforts to find collective solutions to major challenges such as the consumption of limited resources and climate change. At its heart are 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A comprehensive baseline study has shown Switzerland's progress towards achieving the goals and where domestic and foreign policy action still needs to be taken. The results of this stocktaking were presented in Switzerland's national report to the UN in 2018.

An interdepartmental committee to coordinate implementation

To effectively address the challenges and opportunities, the Federal Council set up a 2030 Agenda steering committee on 14 December 2018. The federal agencies which bear the main responsibility are represented at senior management level in this committee. The committee steers and coordinates the efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda. This includes monitoring the SDGs in Switzerland, preparing the national report to the UN, setting priorities to reflect the biggest challenges and opportunities for Switzerland, setting national targets, coordinating appropriate measures and cooperating with the cantons, communes and non-state actors. The steering committee replaces the existing Interdepartmental Sustainable Development Committee (ISDC).

Two 2030 Agenda delegates take over operational management

On 14 December 2018, the Federal Council decided to task two delegates to coordinate the operational aspects of the efforts to implement the 2030 Agenda. At its meeting on 22 March 2019, the Federal Council appointed Daniel Dubas from the Federal Department of the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications (DETEC) and Jacques Ducrest from the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs as its 2030 Agenda delegates.

Daniel Dubas is a political scientist with a degree in sustainable urban development. He has headed the Sustainable Development Section of the Federal Office for Spatial Development (ARE) since 2013.

Jacques Ducrest is a diplomat with a legal background (LL.M and qualified lawyer). Since September 2017 he has been deputy head of the Sectoral Foreign Policies Division at the FDFA.

In addition to their coordinating activities, the delegates must report annually to the Federal Council on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. Their first report is due in January 2020.

Key elements of the policy cycle for sustainable development

At the national level, the 2030 Agenda will in future be implemented primarily through Switzerland's Sustainable Development Strategy (SDS). This will be realigned to cover the period 2020–2030 to ensure longer-term planning security and continuity. The SDS Action Plan will continue to be updated along with the new legislative programme every four years.

The steering committee will coordinate the updating of the Action Plan under the leadership of the DETEC delegate. The baseline study and national reports to the UN will be drawn up in the middle of each legislative period. The steering committee will coordinate this work under the leadership of the FDFA delegate.

This policy cycle in two-year intervals makes it possible to use the national report as a basis to take stock of the effectiveness of the measures adopted and to set new priorities for the subsequent SDS Action Plan. By the end of 2022 at the latest, the effectiveness and efficiency of this new organisational structure and its tasks will be reviewed and, if necessary, adapted.

Address for enquiries

Stephan Scheidegger, Deputy Director, Federal Office for Spatial Development ARE, Tel. +41 58 466 18 00 (Communication), stephan.scheidegger@are.admin.ch


The Federal Council

General Secretariat of the Federal Department of Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications; General Secretariat DETEC

Federal Department of Foreign Affairs

Federal Office for Spatial Development