• Published Date: 06/05/2021
  • by: UNDP

SDGs Impact: Why it Matters for Businesses?

Written by Aphinya Siranart, Head of Exploration, UNDP Thailand

 ‘Business as usual’ is no longer acceptable, and certainly not conducive to the creation of a sustainable future.

The business context has changed significantly in the last decade and is set to change further in the coming years as stakeholders bring their growing influence to bear. Consumers, employees, and other stakeholders, especially millennials, are becoming even more environmentally and socially conscious. Not only are they increasingly holding companies to account for their performance on various socioeconomic issues, but they are also voicing their expectations for companies to contribute to solve the most complex challenges of our time in view of supporting the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“The markets of tomorrow are defined by the SDGs, because they are focused on the challenges that, together with the business world, we can turn into solutions, and therefore markets for technology, for investment, for new business models.”

– Achim Steiner, Administrator, United Nations Development Program (2018)

The differing needs and values of all stakeholders demand management to adopt a wider perspective of growth, which goes beyond increased output and short-term financial returns. Recognizing that they will not succeed in failed societies, companies are balancing economic gains with social and environmental returns while also striving for an inclusive, sustainable, and long-term growth that benefits everyone – consumers, employees, supplies, shareholders, and communities alike.

By doing so, companies are not really sacrificing performance. In fact, they can do well while doing good. Many studies have found positive correlations between superior financial performance and commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues.[1] Researchers at Harvard Business School found that companies with processes in place since the early 1990s to measure, manage, and communicate performance on ESG issues outperformed a carefully matched control group over the next 18 years.[2] A 2017 study by Nordea Equity Research reported that from 2012 to 2015, companies with the highest ESG ratings outperformed the lowest-rated firms by as much as 40%.[3]

“To prosper over time, every company must not only deliver financial performance, but also show how it makes a positive contribution to society. Without a sense of purpose, no company, either public or private, can achieve its full potential

– Larry Fink, CEO, Blackrock (2018)

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the role of the private sector in supporting the achievement of sustainable human development is even more imperative today than ever before. It presents a unique opportunity for businesses to step up and turn this crisis into an impetus to achieve the SDGs. As a main source of employment and investment, the business sector plays a crucial role in efforts to protect their employees, contribute to a clean environment, support the vulnerable people, and facilitate business continuity for an inclusive, green and sustainable recovery

With these changing business environments, profits alone are no longer the measure of success and businesses must increasingly engage in sustainability reporting and impact measurement and management to improve performance, account for impact and publicly communicate sustainability data. While sustainability reporting and impact measurement both drive companies to improve performance and be more transparent, they have arisen in distinct contexts and have differences in their approach and focus.

A sustainability report is “a report published by a company or organization about the economic, environmental and social impacts caused by its everyday activities. It presents the organization’s values and governance model, and demonstrates the link between its strategy and its commitment to a sustainable global economy.” (Global Reporting Initiative: GRI) Sustainability reporting enables organizations to identify their impact on the economy, environment, and society and disclose them in accordance with a globally accepted standard.

From ESG to SDGs : Integrating SDGs Impact Measurement and Management Framework in Business and Investment Strategies

It is encouraging to see many Thai business having sustainability strategies, policies and codes of conduct in place with good ESG disclosure practices. While ESG guidelines provide a good starting point for sustainable business, it is not enough to help unlock the enormous potential of the private sector as a driver of positive social impact. The taxonomy is weak and the criteria for sustainability lens are not ambitious enough. ESG frameworks have focused mainly on policies and processes and provided basic reporting whether qualitatively or through a selection of ESG related KPIs. It gives minimal directions, especially for investors, to measure impact as well as track and compare progress between different companies. McKinsey’s survey revealed that investors believe that “they cannot readily use companies’ sustainability disclosures to inform investment decisions and advice accurately.”[4]

On the other hand, being an impactful sustainable business means fully integrating sustainability into the business strategy, operations, stakeholder engagement and supply chain management and hence the need for companies to properly conducting impact measurement and management (IMM). IMM allows companies to demonstrate and communicate impact and to make sure they are on mission rather than just for compliance or transparency.

So what is Impact Measurement and Management (IMM)?

According to the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN), “Impact Measurement and Management includes identifying and considering the positive and negative effects one’s business actions have on people and the planet, and then figuring out ways to mitigate the negative and maximize the positive in alignment with one’s goals”.

One of the defining challenges for impact practitioners has been the question of what, exactly, “impact” means and how best to deliver it. Without clear answers, it creates a source of inefficiency and misalignment between different players from beneficiaries to enterprises to financial intermediaries and to the owners of capital.

SDGs as a reference framework for Measuring and Managing impact

Back in 2015, the United Nations’ adoption of SDGs as a global vision for sustainable development was an absolute game changer in this field. Not only that the SDGs provide globally agreed definitions and disciplines for setting impact goals and tracking progress against them, but they also give businesses the targets they need to achieve concrete, positive impacts that truly leave no one behind. Consequently, we have seen more and more businesses start thinking of their impact in terms of contributions towards achieving the SDGs.

 “Business is a vital partner in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Companies can contribute through their core activities, and we ask companies everywhere to assess their impact, set ambitious goals and communicate transparently about the results.”

– Ban Ki-moon, Former United Nations Secretary-General (2015)

Impact in the context of SDGs is increasingly becoming an integral component in business decision making along with revenue and risk considerations. Just as financial reporting is essential for companies to inform their strategies, measuring and managing the SDG impact of a company is becoming relevant as stakeholders, other than shareholders, pursue higher standards of responsibility and accountability from businesses.

Beyond the need to heed society’s call for increased transparency and accountability, blending purpose with profit and integrating SDG impact measurement and management framework into business operations and strategies can provide companies with several benefits as follows:

  • Unlocking new business opportunities: The framework can help businesses identify new market segments, spot unmet customer needs, and as a result, develop and refine product and services offerings that are better tailored to customers’ needs. For example, by adopting such an IMM approach with the support from UNDP Business Call to Action, Thailand based social enterprise, Hilltribe Organics – a subsidiary of major organic food producer Urmatt Ltd., was able to identify a demand for organic egg.[5] Hilltribe has become the number one organic egg brand in Thailand and is now sold in major supermarkets as well as high-end restaurants and hotels. The enterprise is on the path to scaling up its inclusive business model by integrating more indigenous communities across Thailand into its agricultural value chain, thereby opening up new sources of revenue for its business as well as creating additional off-farm employment in food production.
  • Marketing and reputational building: Impact data allow businesses to better understand their customers, create more effective marketing campaigns, and as a result, increase customer engagement. Plan B Media, Thailand’s biggest outdoor media company, is committed to sustainable marketing strategies and creating business value by meeting stakeholders’ expectations. Acknowledging that digital media need to go beyond providing advertising and include content for public benefits, Plan B is partnering with UNDP to launch a series of campaigns that further the SDGs in Thailand such as ending violence against women and combating single use plastics.[6]
  • Strategic alignment and risk mitigation: The practice can ensure that companies’ activities are aligned with their mission and strategy as well as help identify risks that relate to both impact and financial concerns early on, thereby offering businesses an opportunity to correct action and prevent losses.
Getting Started: Using Business Call to Action’s Impact Lab to measure and manage your impact

IMM can be challenging if companies have never done it before and have no clue where to start. However, by realizing various benefits that IMM may bring, UNDP, through its Business Call to Action (BctA) initiative, has developed an online Impact Lab to support companies to effectively measure and manage their impact on the SDGs.[7] The Lab goes through the full impact management process over four self-paced modules that guide companies from assessing impact measurement readiness; planning for measuring impact and designing an impact framework; monitoring impact data; to analysing and reporting impact data. Through a step by step process, companies can define their Impact Value Chain linking business operations to the SDGs, designing their own SDG impact framework with a plan for collecting data that will allow them to measure, manage and communicate their impact.

About UNDP

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the United Nations’ global development network. UNDP works in about 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. Through assisting countries to align private sector activities and investments with the 2030 Agenda, UNDP has a long history of working successfully with companies from various sectors including energy, food and agriculture, consumer products, finance and information technology, in support of sustainable development.

In Thailand, our collaboration with the private sector takes various forms:

  • Facilitate discussions between public and private sector and the civil society on a specific development theme or industry sector;
  • Find solutions for development challenges through core business activities and initiatives that include low-income groups into value chains as producers, suppliers, employees and consumers;
  • Mobilize private sector financial and in-kind resources for sustainable development solutions;
  • Leverage innovative financing and partnerships solutions to mobilize private capital for the implementation of the SDGs;
  • Provide businesses and investors with the insights and tools they need to measure, manage, and authenticate their contributions toward achieving the SDGs.

For more information, please contact Ms. Aphinya Siranart, Head of Exploration at aphinya.siranart@undp.org

[1] Mozaffar Khan, George Serafeim, Aaron Yoon, Corporate Sustainability: First Evidence on Materiality. The Accounting Review (2016) 91 (6): 1697–1724.

[2] Eccles, Robert G. and Ioannou, Ioannis and Serafeim, George, The Impact of Corporate Sustainability on Organizational Processes and Performance (December 23, 2014). Management Science, Volume 60, Issue 11, pp. 2835-2857, February 2014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1964011 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1964011


[4] https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/sustainability/our-insights/more-than-values-the-value-based-sustainability-reporting-that-investors-want

[5] https://www.businesscalltoaction.org/member/urmatt-ltd-hilltribe-organics

[6] https://www.th.undp.org/content/thailand/en/home/presscenter/pressreleases/2019/undp-unveils-nationwide-campaign-to-combat-single-use-plastics–.html

[7] https://www.businesscalltoaction.org/


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  • Published Date: 01/10/2019
  • by: UNDP

Gorka Espiau and the learning from the Basque Country on conflict resolution

Tackle conflict through a lesson learned from the Basque Country with Gorka Espiau, a social innovation expert who believes “conflict can be reduced if we’re committed.” 

 “One of the most important question when working in conflict areas is, do you think change is possible?”

Gorka Espiau is a social innovation specialist and a Senior Fellow at the Agirre Lehendakaria Center for Social and Political Studies (ALC) who believes that conflicts happening in different regions of the world can be minimized by the combined power of people, innovation, and the conviction that change can happen. Espiau made a visit to Bangkok to share his experience at the talk hosted by UNDP Thailand on “How to Build Social Innovation Platforms in Conflict Areas: The Basque Experience”. on September 20, 2019 at TCDC Bangkok.

Situated in the north of Spain, the Basque Country was an area of conflict and violence. The Basque national groups were seeking their highest political objective of independence from Spain and France, and re-established the identity of a Basque nation. Violence grew between those with opposing ideas. There were armed conflicts and drug problems, and the GDP was lower than the level set by the EU. The region’s reputation deteriorated by the day, resulting in an economic collapse in the 1980’s and the unemployment rate that hit a historic low.

From that decade on, the Basque Country began restoring its stability started with the foundation of Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. Designed by Canadian-American architect Frank Gehry, the modern and contemporary art museum marked the dawn of change for the formerly conflict-ridden region.

The Basque Country was committed to change and conflict management. It didn’t use innovation for socio-economic advancement ‘after’ all conflicts were resolved, but simultaneously improving the cities and establishing peace through social innovation. The social innovation in question actually isn’t a specific type of technology but a new process or inventive approach that helps address existing problems and conflict peacefully.

The approach to working in conflict areas, Gorka Espiau concluded, is driven by one key idea:

“Do you think change can happen in conflict areas? No matter how bad the situation is, if people in those areas believe they can make change happen, there’s always a way.”

We’ve learned from Basque Country’s experience that there are five levels to building social innovation platforms in conflict areas, namely:

    1. Community Action
    2. Small / Medium Scale Projects
    3. Large Scale Projects
    4. New Services
    5. New Regulations

All five levels of action need to be taken in complementarily and integratively through listening. Listening is a process that needs to take place in conflict areas. It can mean providing a creative platform for people to share their stories and issues they face, come together to find an opportunity for change by talking and observing, because asking and listening is the way towards understanding; the platform can also gather opposing ideas in order to understand their reasons and motives (the process is called sense making), finding out what each person values, what they believe, and what drives them, and how they make sense collectively. Then, relevant actors work together (co-creation) to analyze the problems, inform others, create advocacy tools and learning space, and come up with an innovation, ideas or a new approach based on the needs of the local community, before creating a prototype of interconnected projects to experiment and verify results together. This would lead to systemic change through scaling, which not only raises the bar at the project level but also at the process level.

Change in Basque Country happened as a result of various actions, from the revival of the Basque language, a native tongue that was dying but the grounds of all of Basque civilization, to the resurgence of Basque cuisine – the Basque people, group of chefs in particular,  wanted to call attention to their local ingredients so they jumpstarted the food industry by incorporating the French techniques with traditional ways, and opening restaurants and cooking schools where students can start working at the restaurants upon the completion of their course. Today, Basque cuisine is well-known around the world, particularly pintxos and tapas. It also gave the region the global record of the most number of Michelin star restaurants per square meter.

Next is empowering the labor sector. When the Basque economy collapsed, workers were undoubtedly greatly impacted. Then came the establishment of Mondragon, a corporation and federation of worker cooperatives that support workers in numerous ways. The Basque’s people also influenced policy change for income equality, expanding seaports, underground train and airport constructions, as well as road and railroad maintenance. All this has enabled Basque Country to connect to the outside world and attract investors, which in turn increase employment rate. Moreover, the development also focused on workers with disabilities as one of the ways to improve social inequality. It created a process that supports these workers and organized trainings for them on skills that meet market demands. In addition, Basque Country has been committed to promoting the right to education to guarantee equal access and capacity for all youths. These are only a few instances of how the process of social innovation was used in the development, which evidently and effectively minimized conflict in the region.

The experience of the Basque Country shows that peace and development can be achieved without resolving all conflicts beforehand. Building peace can be completed hand in hand with social and economic development and addressing disparity. Citizens were informed and saw the collective goals that would take them forward. Finally, the region was able to rebuild its reputation and garnered worldwide interest in its success stories.

Using social innovation to affect change and resolving conflict at the same time has led Basque Country to hold a leading position in public health and education, and achieve GDP growth, an export rate of domestic products at 75% as well as one of the highest per capita income levels in Europe.

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  • Published Date: 27/09/2019
  • by: UNDP

What we learn from the process of creating sustainable human development through social innovation platform in the Deep South

When we talk about the topic of innovation, people usually think about some amazing things that only happen in a place like Silicon Valley. ‘Innovation,’ or ‘Social Innovation,’ in particular is often perceived as and associated only with cutting-edge technology, public services, and social entrepreneurship. However, there is much more to it. What does it actually mean? That depends. Innovation can be anything from the new ideas, solutions, tools, methods, approaches or the processes of doing things differently, which can eventually lead to a positive systemic change in our society. This, of course, includes the work in the conflict areas where peace is absent and violence is prevalent.

In the conflict areas, ‘innovation’ or ‘socio-economic development’ and ‘peace building’ are often seen as two separated topics. However, the study of the Basque Transformation by Agirre Lehendakaria Center for Social and Political Studies (ALC) led by Gorka Espiau, social innovation specialist, indicates that

• Conflict, violence, peace-building, human rights, health, education, and sustainable human developments are all interconnected in a complex way;
• Social innovation can improve the social and economic conditions in the conflict areas;
• Building social innovation platforms in conflict areas could help create a ‘sustainable peace’ – a definition that doesn’t mean just a situation without physical violence, but also includes human security in social, economic, and cultural dimensions.


Last week, UNDP had a chance to work with Gorka and his colleague, Iziar Moreno to introduce social innovation process and explore the possibility of creating social innovation platform for socio-economic transformation with groups of local authorities, civil societies, academia, and startups from the southern border provinces of Thailand – Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat. Our journey to the South begins with curiosity to see how social innovation platform can be created as a space to generate ideas/initiatives from the local communities where people face with complexities and extreme difficulties; and how this platform can help us to interconnect multiple development issues in the area.

What happened in the workshop?


1.Sharing of lessons learned from the Basque Country Transformation under extremely challenging situations

Gorka shared his experiences and lessons learned from the Basque case, where people suffered from a profound economic collapse, the highest unemployment rate in Southern Europe, and an image associated to violent conflict. Despite these challenges, today the Basque Country holds advanced positions in healthcare, education, and income per capita. Instead of violence, it becomes known as the city of development and this renowned success is what we called ‘the Basque Transformation.’ This sharing of the Basque case helps participants learn and contextualize.

To summarize the Basque case at a glance,

• The transformation in the Basque Country happened as a result of the people’s hopeful attitudes despite worst scenarios. The sense of urgency and the feeling that no one would help them made it possible for people to start creating something better for themselves. They believed that ‘Change is Possible.’ Their decisions were connected with common values and narratives, that is, instead of being remembered as a symbol of violence and conflict, they wanted the city to be remembered as a symbol of positive change.

• There were many actions that may seem unrelated, for examples, the decision to engage with Gugenheim Foundation and to invite Frank Gehry to build a museum in Bilbao and make it a symbol of transformation (resulted in what we later called the Bilbao Effect), the establishment of Mondragon, a corporation and federation of worker cooperatives, a movement of local chefs who brought in modern and French culinary skills to mix with their local ingredients and traditional cooking technique. Many restaurants are now awarded Michelin Star, and many other activities. However, looking closer, these actions all became the interconnected mechanism that helped accelerate the social and economic development, which eventually made Euskadi ta Askatasuna (ETA) decide to lay down their weapons, eventually leading to ‘sustainable peace.’

For more details of the Basque Transformation, stay tuned and check out our next article very soon!



2. Connecting the dot – what have we done?

A group exercise allowed participants to think about ‘new things’ that they have done or has already happened in their communities, from which resulted in positive changes. Participants were tasked to comprehensively define them in 5 categories.

    1. Community actions e.g., a small-group forums in mosque, to discuss support for for orphans, led to a new idea on fund-raising. They agreed to raise funds through garbage selling instead of donations. The garbage were later sold for use as fertilizer and to raise money to help the orphans.

    2. Small-medium scale entrepreneurship e.g., the establishment of Fiin Delivery, a food and document delivery service

    3. Large scale public-private partnership e.g., public-private partnership on water management system

    4. Public service e.g., an ambulance/emergency service in a remote village to take patient to a nearby hospital.

    5. New regulation e.g., Community cremation rules which is an agreement that all community members are to help with the funeral arrangement when someone dies.

Allowing participants to think in these 5 levels helped them see a clearer picture of connections as well as slowly began to have a common vision on social innovation that it isn’t something out of reach but is something that may have already be done in the area.


“It is about how we interconnect things that are happening in the  area, and that could be hidden due to violence and conflict, and how we create alternatives.”


3. Learn to ‘Listen’

To create systemic change, the first and foremost important process is ‘listening’.

We must ‘listen’ to the untold stories, to things that sometimes may not be said out loud in order to find the reasons behind people’s actions, attitudes and behaviors, as well as their beliefs and values in life to see the narratives and how the stories are making sense collectively (collective sensemaking)

Most importantly, we must find out if people believe that ‘change is possible or not’ as the belief can directly affect the development. For instance, in some communities, despite a lot of projects, budget or government support, young people still want to leave their hometown to find jobs somewhere else because they are taught by their parents that to be successful is to be able to work in the capital city. In contrast, in the place where people think that change is possible, they might open small businesses in their community to tackle unemployment challenge.

This process allowed participants to learn the importance of deep listening to identify the challenges and opportunities and see the connection between stories.



4. Co-creation 

Social innovation builds co-creation on human-centred design processes which help us overcome the traditional top-down approach. Participants together envisioned the future of the provinces they want to see as well as co-created and co-designed social innovation ideas and solution to prototype further.

Some interesting ideas and stories from the locals:

    • Participants shared common perspective that agriculture, food and sustainable tourism are opportunities. They take pride in their unique cultural richness and natural resources. But, due to the negative representation of conflict and violence in the media, less people come to visit this area and tourism cannot be promoted. They also feel that they cannot fully utilize their resources efficiently. At the same time, the provinces also have many talented people and interesting events but these are not represented in the media as often as the negative ones.

    • People see the opportunities to export both fresh and processed fruits, especially longkong and durian, to other provinces or neighbouring countries. In Narathiwat, local people mainly depend on rubber tapping. The authorities try to encourage people to grow other kinds of vegetable and fruits for additional sources of income. However, rubber tapping is seen as a way of life inherited from their ancestor. They still want to preserve the knowledge and local wisdom amidst unstable rubber price. The questions may lie in how to achieve the balance between maintaining identity and creating new economic opportunities – and that the solutions shall truly meet the needs of people in the community.

    • Participants see the possibility of partnership and connection to other communities. They present tourist destinations in their provinces, which can easily be developed into a sustainable community-based tourism. The travel routes can also be interconnected between various districts and provinces.

    • In some areas, extreme difficulties discouraged and make people lose hope in life. It is difficult to organize creative activities and many activists also stop their action on development issues. To solve the issue, participant suggested the idea of ‘PeaceLab,’ to use technology and media to support local people’s learning about human rights and sustainable peace.



Tools used for building social innovation platform



What we learned from the process?


1.Listening and reflecting to create systemic change

The most important thing that happened this process is that we listened to people from ‘every sector.’

This workshop convened participants from different groups, including local authorities, community leaders, entrepreneurs, startups, academia and civil society organizations.

By staring with a simple question, “How would you describe Pattani/Yala/Narathiwat to people who have never heard of your provinces before?” We were able to listen to different stories and different narratives from people, though living in the same province, who have different backgrounds, experiences, interests, and professions. And in these differences we found an interesting connection; people actually feel that they are connected by taking pride in the diverse cultures and identities of the area, including Muslim, Buddhist, and Chinese. They felt that the charm of the Deep South is that, despite the diversity, they can share the rich resources and co-exist with each other as reflected during the dialogue “Religious affairs, we do separately – Social affairs, we act together”


After that, more intense questions were asked. “What do you think are the challenges in the area that people know exist but have never spoken out loud?” The discussion made us see a much broader and deeper narrative and helped us visualize the connections in social, economic, and cultural dimensions from upstream to downstream.

From the observation of the atmosphere during the dialogue, we found that by having a listening space for people to tell their stories, people are more engaged and truly feel they are part of process. Moreover, it helps them to see the connections of different narratives and to not rush to the conclusion on ‘what is the right thing to do.’ The two keys to this listening process, especially for facilitators, are 1) to be a glass half empty and 2) to not make any pre-judgement and conclusion before knowing the whole stories.

Another important process is the reflecting after listening, and the collective sensemaking by which people give meaning to their collective experiences, visualized through diagram mapping. The purpose of this step is not to find solution to the problem but allowing participants to reflect on the connection of their own stories. As facilitators, we didn’t really have to worry if our linked arrows between each post-its are going to be right or wrong because, even they are wrong it will be a tool to encourage participants to think deeper and correct them. This mapping is a joint process which all participants are responsible together and which makes sure that everyone’s stories are in the picture.



2. The transformation is stemmed from the common belief that “Change is Possible”

The listening process should not occur only once, but repeatedly, every time and in every stage of development process so that we could gain a deeper understanding of the narrative. We have to dig deep to find hidden messages in each story – whether people think that ‘change is possible or not.’

The question may sound simple, but to make sure that the answers we get come really from their hearts is not an easy task at all. Especially in the areas plagued by daily conflict and violence, people tend to undermine their belief in change, development, and living a positive life. Participants might answer ‘Yes, I think it is possible, but…’ followed by many other conditions. This shows that they do not really believe in the possibility of change


So, the further question is that if people don’t believe that change is possible, what can we do? Maybe shifting the vision to focus on a much smaller action for a tangible outcome (or even show that what they have already done is actually the change itself) could be a better starting point to show that it is possible to create change. So, the question ‘is change possible?’ is important in a way that it helps with designing and shaping process of development in a sustainable way.

To summarize, ‘Transformative Change’ can only happen when people believe that change is possible. This belief will eventually be the driving force for individuals, organizations, communities, and society.



3.  A sustainable and systemic change must come from the local people themselves.

The intense workshop on listening, sensemaking, co-creation, and prototype allows us to see a new light of interconnected opportunities such as food and culture as previously mentioned. However, for the next step as facilitator, even though it is surely easier for us to lead the process as we know a lot about tools and familiar with the approach of social innovation, we may need to step back to open up a space for the local to come up with their own conclusions and interpretation, and find solutions that are most suitable for them. That way the interpretation and solution will represent the local needs and ways of life, and not being misrepresented by the outsiders.


The process of creating transformative change that is driven not by experts but by local people is much more challenging and complex. Of course, participants might not be able to connect the dots and grasp the essentials all together at once, but it is definitely a good beginning of creating a learning process for local people to get to know new tools and methods that can be used in a sustainable peace building process. We believe that this process will eventually lead us to sustainable developments in the southern border provinces of Thailand. At the heart of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), it isn’t merely working to achieve the 17 Goals, but it is working with ‘Leaving No One Behind’ lens.

Making sure that everyone from every sector, including the most vulnerable persons, is engaged in the process may take more time and is more complex, nevertheless, it enables the paths towards sustainable development and peace building.


“Social innovation should bring people together to have common missions. As a local community, we need to understand problems that we are facing and connect them with new ideas.”  



Mapping of the output from workshop


Most importantly, this workshop of building social innovation platforms in Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat would not be possible without the passionate participation from all participants.

I would like to take this opportunity to praise the representatives from all three provinces

Local Authorities from
Pattani –  Thanam, Bannok, Nambor, Trohbon sub-districts
Yala  –  Lammai, Banrae, Bannangsata sub-districts
Narathiwat – Wang, Changpuek sub-districts.

And startups, civil society, and academia

    • CHABA Startup Group
    • Sri Yala MyHome
    • PNYLink
    • Digital4Peace
    • Saiburi Looker
    • HiGoat Company
    • MAC Pattani
    • MAC Yala
    • MAC Narathiwat
    • Hilal Ahmed Foundation
    • CSO Council of Yala
    • Nusantara Foundation
    • Thanksin University
    • Institute of Peace Studies, PSU

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Submit Project

There are many innovation platforms all over the world. What makes Thailand Social Innovation Platform unique is that we have created a Thai platform fully dedicated to the SDGs, where social innovators in Thailand can access a unique eco system of entrepreneurs, corporations, start-ups, universities, foundations, non-profits, investors, etc. This platform thus seeks to strengthen the social innovation ecosystem in Thailand in order to better be able to achieve the SDGs. Even though a lot of great work within the field of social innovation in Thailand is already happening, the area lacks a central organizing entity that can successfully engage and unify the disparate social innovation initiatives taking place in the country.

This innovation platform guides you through innovative projects in Thailand, which address the SDGs. It furthermore presents how these projects are addressing the SDGs.

Aside from mapping cutting-edge innovation in Thailand, this platform aims to help businesses, entrepreneurs, governments, students, universities, investors and others to connect with new partners, projects and markets to foster more partnerships for the SDGs and a greener and fairer world by 2030.

The ultimate goal of the platform is to create a space for people and businesses in Thailand with an interest in social innovation to visit on a regular basis whether they are looking for inspiration, new partnerships, ideas for school projects, or something else.

We are constantly on the lookout for more outstanding social innovation projects in Thailand. Please help us out and submit your own or your favorite solutions here

Read more

  • What are The Sustainable Development Goals?
  • UNDP and TSIP’s Principles Of Innovation
  • What are The Sustainable Development Goals?


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