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Young SDG Innovators Programme

Cultivating the Next Generation of Changemakers

The UN Global Compact is proud to introduce the Young SDG Innovators Programme, a development programme designed to accelerate business innovation to achieve activates future business leaders and changemakers and challenges them to rethink traditional business models and unlock new business opportunities.


During this ten-month accelerator programme, select young professionals (“Innovators”) from UN Global Compact participating companies will:

  • Connect to enterprising young professionals in country and from around the world to leverage the Sustainable Development Goals as a catalyst for the development of new products and services relevant to their business.
  • Collaborate with thought leaders in a series of team exercises and interactive learning opportunities involving real-world challenges, peer feedback and sparring, and mentoring and coaching.
  • Build organizational learning skills that will enable employees across different functions to develop innovative solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals through new technologies, initiatives and business models.


The Young SDG Innovators Programme is designed to engage your company’s brightest and best talent in not only advancing your sustainability efforts but driving innovation and delivering tangible solutions with potential market value for your company.


As a participating company of the UN Global Compact and Global Compact Network South Africa, your company is eligible to nominate up to three high-performing young professionals for this inaugural programme. This programme is designed to target:

  • High-performing employees at a participating company of the UN Global Compact
  • 35 years or younger
  • 5 years or more of work experience
  • Interest in business model innovation, sustainability and disruptive technologies


  • Learning and development resources. A comprehensive curriculum with a blend of learning opportunities including online and in-person workshops, case studies, company visits and forum discussions.
  • Professional experience. Connect with other business units and collaborate on innovative projects relative to the company and industry.
  • Coaching, mentoring and peer-to-peer networking opportunities. Build working relationships and learn from some of the brightest minds working on sustainability and innovation from around the world.
  • Be part of a global network of leading young professionals from some of the top companies across every continent.


  • Accelerate integration of the SDGs into your company’s business strategy through collaboration, innovation and knowledge sharing.
  • Create a culture of innovation to address the SDGs and showcase the programme’s tangible outputs and results.
  • Increase employee engagement and professional development opportunities for valued talent, including:
    • High-quality, cutting-edge and inspirational workshops from thoughtleaders in the sustainability and disruptive technology fields.
    • Opportunities to provide mentorship and leadership in the programme, collaborate with innovation experts, and share best practices.
    • Tools, resources and expertise by some of the leading innovative companies.
  • Gain global recognition for participation in the programme.


Contact the Global Compact Network South Africa at to learn more.


Call for nominations: May – June 2019

Programme begins: August 2019

Programme ends: May 2020

Are You The Next Generation of Changemakers

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