Qatar renews commitment with additional $10 million for UNDP Accelerator Labs expanding support for local innovation

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) renewed their partnership this week with a commitment of an additional $10 million for the UNDP Accelerator Labs, the fastest and largest learning network on sustainable development working in 115 countries.

The two organizations signed a renewal agreement for the period 2022-2025, bringing Qatar’s total support to the UNDP Accelerator Labs at $30 million. From climate change to the future of work to digital transformation, the UNDP Accelerator Labs are defined by their ability to find, test, and iterate solutions and to learn from local innovators to advance learning on how to solve the world’s global development challenges.

With this investment, the Fund reaffirmed the State of Qatar’s role, through this investment, as a visionary founding investor of the UNDP Accelerator Labs, together with the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany.

“Innovation of all kinds- technological, social, cultural- needs to be at the heart of sustainable choices we make today. This support for the UNDP Accelerator Labs shows Qatar’s foresight and willingness to learn from home-grown solutions and invest in bottom-up change that can shape institutions and societies in these unprecedented times. This partnership supports these new ways of working which are critically needed if we want to address our world’s interconnected crises and steer us back towards the Sustainable Development Goals,” said Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator.

“A significant objective of QFFD is the accomplishment of inclusive and sustainable development. The renewal of the partnership with UNDP is a successful step towards this target. We are honored to continue our collaboration with such an important partner to fulfill the development needs in an innovative and unconventional way. We are pleased for the continuation of this collaboration with UNDP to tackle fundamental risks and strengthen resilience worldwide” said HE Khalifa Al-Kuwari, Director General of Qatar Fund for Development.

This agreement marks a new milestone, recognizing that the network of 91 social innovation labs is delivering on its promise to reimagine sustainable development for the 21st century. In 2021, the Labs addressed 152 different development challenges, covering all 17 SDGs. They introduced 29 new kinds of innovative and unusual data sources such as the use of satellite data to combat deforestation, or the use of artificial intelligence to tackle air pollution. The Labs discovered more than 2,000 innovative solutions at the grassroots level covering all 17 SDGs.

The UNDP Accelerator Labs are helping deliver on bottom-up development that is centered around the concept of “co-creating” a greener, more sustainable future together and helping senior decision makers keep up with an accelerated pace of change and the new kind of uncertainties that the world faces.

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