Launch of the platform: Global Citizens connected for Sustainable Development

Message by the UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education

The UNESCO Associated Schools Project Network is the world's largest network of educational institutions, with more than 9 900 schools in 180 countries. Our schools lead the world in building the education of the future.

One important aspect of UNESCO's support to ASPnet schools is that we provide online collaborative tools to help students and teachers share their experiences and learning with their peers across the globe.

In 2013, we launched an online platform on biodiversity that brought together 500 participants in 84 countries.

Today, I am pleased to launch the ASPnet platform on "Global Citizens connected for Sustainable Development".

Why this topic?

I am sure you will agree with me that we live in a globalized, interconnected and interdependent world. The challenges facing us and our planet are many. Moreover, they cannot be understood or solved only locally, but require collaboration across borders.

We must all understand and address these challenges, so that we can be active, responsible global citizens.

Education for sustainable development helps us to develop the attitudes, skills, and knowledge to make informed decisions for the benefit of ourselves and others, now and for the future. It is one of ASPnet's most important themes and approaches, along with other issues dear to the United Nations such as peace and human rights education. The promotion of global citizenship is directly linked to the realization of peaceful sustainable development.

As ASPnet students and teachers, you have many opportunities to promote global citizenship, through flagship projects, school partnerships and sharing ideas.

With this platform, you will discover how global citizenship education and education for sustainable development are implemented around the world. You will find out what UNESCO is doing, and how you can support sustainable development in your school. The platform has many links to websites, publications and other materials that can inspire you and give you ideas for how to make a difference!

By sharing your ideas with other students, teachers and experts worldwide, I hope you will advance your own thinking on what it means to be a global citizen today - and for tomorrow. You will have the opportunity to discuss issues that affect all of us, such as solidarity, responsibility, diversity, security, equality, sustainability and creativity...among many others. You will also be able to find partner schools with whom you may want to develop a shared project, and make your work visible.

This platform is yours. Let's connect for sustainable development and a better world!

Let's get started!