Going for Global Goals

This week, the United Nations (UN) gathers for its 75th General Assembly and Climate Week to examine the progress made against the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These goals were adopted in 2015 by the UN member states and are, in effect, a blueprint for how we’ll build the world we want to live in by 2030. Or as our and the UN Foundation’s former entrepreneur-in-residence Elizabeth Gore refers to the SDGs—“the world’s to-do list.”

With the events of 2020, this to-do list has never been more important and perhaps more challenging to achieve. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres recently addressed these critical needs and the sense of urgency for collective action to recover better together and create more equitable societies everywhere.

We have a role to play

We know as a global technology solutions provider, we are uniquely positioned to drive change on a global scale. Which is why we aligned 11 of our Progress Made Real social impact goals with the 17 UN SDGs – contributing to goals like Quality Education, Sustainable Cities and Communities and Reduced Inequalities. And we are laser focused on accelerating progress toward these ambitious goals. Here are just a few ways we’re going faster to drive measurable progress.

Advocating for progress on climate

When it comes to climate change, there is strength in numbers. Strategic partnerships are key as we work to influence policies and industry standards that will have big, sustainable impact over time.

  • We are working with the Business Roundtable’s Energy and Environment Committee and the Climate Working Group to update a policy position to materially reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
  • Michael Dell recently joined the World Economic Forum’s Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders, the only CEO-led climate action initiative focused on reducing supply chain emissions and prioritizing sustainable practices in product design and manufacturing.
  • And our own team members are getting involved through a partnership with CDP North America. This year, we are sponsoring a series of hackathons to turn climate data into actionable plans to achieve climate goals. Our first competition was with Dell team members on World Environment Day. More than 600 team members joined to tackle complex sustainability challenges like helping cities large and small reach 100 percent renewable energy by 2030.

Making stronger headway with digital skills 

Fourth-industrial revolution technologies—and perhaps even more important, the skills to make the most of them—can fast track 70 percent of SDGs. That’s why we’ve focused on access to technology, STEM education and digital literacy for more than a decade. 

Bringing critical skills and economic opportunity to underserved students will continue to be a priority as we work to address socioeconomic disparity and transform one billion lives by 2030. And scaling the impact nonprofits can have through technology will be key to that. In recent research, more than 82 percent of nonprofit leaders rated IT readiness among their top three challenges. Capabilities like cloud, donor data security and automated IT services are critical to serving constituents and communities. It’s why we set out to transform 1,000 nonprofits by 2030 as part of our goals.

Building a better tomorrow is hard work and there is always more to do and more to measure. As IDC recently noted, “This is the most significant step in driving real progress and a reality check for the tech sector on what it really takes to move a large technology company toward parity, racial equality, dramatically lower environmental impact, and broad support for local communities, all with an ethical mindset.” Metrics, target-setting and reporting are key if we are going to drive real progress and adjust along the way.

The Sustainable Development Goals are daunting. And it will take the whole world pitching in to achieve them. As for Dell Technologies, our Progress Made Real goals are our contribution to the world’s to-do list. It won’t be easy to achieve everything on our list, but one thing’s for sure—it will be worth it.

JJ Davis

About the Author: Jennifer "JJ" Davis

A seasoned leader with 20+ years of experience, JJ Davis oversees all aspects of Global Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility for Dell Technologies. In this role, she works closely with the Investor Relations and Government Affairs organizations to lead the corporate affairs strategy and foster alignment and advocacy across the diverse stakeholder landscape for the company. Her global team includes media relations, analyst relations, executive communications, team member communications, sales and partner communications, influencer relations, social media, direct giving and sustainability. She also founded the company’s marquee women’s program the Dell Women’s Entrepreneur Network in 2010 to support women entrepreneurs’ success worldwide. JJ started her public relations and public affairs career at the Arkansas Office of the Governor and has held various communications leadership roles for both corporations and agencies nationwide. A graduate of the University of Arkansas, JJ lives in Austin with her husband David, a third-generation entrepreneur, and three sons. She is active in her boys’ sports and the family foundation, The Aimee Melissa Davis Memorial Scholarship, supporting graduating seniors with Juvenile Diabetes. She is a member of the Arthur W. Page Society and a board member of the Dell Technologies Political Action Committee.