Revitalizing Multilateralism for a Sustainable Future
Length Length

7 modules, accessible at any time

Effort Effort

5 - 6 hours per week

Price Price


Languages Languages


Video Transcripts Video Transcripts


Prerequisites Prerequisites


Requirements Requirements

An internet connection to access course materials

the origins of Our Common Agenda and the goals for the Summit of the Future in September 2024.

the multilateral process for adopting the three Compacts at the Summit.

the 11 thematic policy briefs that will inform the Summit and explore the new challenges and opportunities for multilateralism in the 21st century.

how you can contribute to reimaginging and revitalizing global cooperation in your spheres of influence.



This course is self-paced – you can enroll and complete the course materials at any time.

In 2015, the world came together to adopt an ambitious plan for global development: the United Nations 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Subsequent global shocks and setbacks, however, have increasingly underscored our shared vulnerabilities and hindered our progress towards a peaceful, prosperous, equitable and sustainable future. International cooperation and collective action are needed more than ever; yet our existing systems of multilateral engagement weren’t designed for the complex, interconnected, and rapidly-changing world in which we live.

It’s time for the United Nations to turbocharge.

In 2021, UN Secretary-General António Guterres issued Our Common Agenda, his vision for the future of international cooperation. Our Common Agenda aims to “turbocharge” action on the SDGs and, most poignantly, presents practical recommendations to transform global governance for the 21st century. Its publication started a conversation that will culminate in September 2025 at the World Social Summit where all countries will recommit to the UN charter and trust in multilateralism. The Summit of the Future in 2024 is an important step towards reinvigorating multilateralism where UN Member States will deliberate on three global compacts to transform international cooperation up to 2030 and beyond.

To support this vision and inform the Summit, the Secretary-General has released 11 thematic policy briefs to provide more detail on proposals for the Summit and aid Member States as they prepare for deliberations. The topics of these 11 policy briefs have been further condensed into five Chapters for the Summit, namely: Financing, Peace and Security, Digital Cooperation, Youth and Future Generations, and Global Governance.

The Summit of the Future marks a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” to reframe global governance for the future. Revitalizing Multilateralism for a Sustainable Future is designed to help you understand and prepare for it.

In this unique course, Prof. Patrick Paul Walsh will guide learners through the past, present, and future of the global development agenda, examining the five Chapters, 11 policy briefs, and three Compacts with the aid of renowned leaders in the field of sustainable development. Through recorded videos from the prestigious Global Classroom lecture series and other high-profile fora, learners will hear from experts in global governance, finance, digital transformation, and more, and consider the Summit of the Future in light of their insights.

Following the Summit, new modules will be added to discuss the outcomes and preparations for the 2nd UN World Social Summit in September 2025.


  • Pre-recorded lectures
  • Readings
  • Activities
  • Quizzes 

Lead Faculty

  • Faculty Image

    Patrick Paul Walsh

    Sustainable Development Solutions Network

This course is for

Policy professionals who want to understand the goals of the Summit of the Future

Development practitioners seeking knowledge on frameworks for global governance

Advanced undergraduates and graduate students interested in international relations, development, and other key concepts related to multilateralism

Private-sector actors, such as those who work in real estate development, technology, telecommunications, transportation, or energy – whose work can improve society


Course logistics and requirements

This course is self-paced – you can enroll immediately and complete the course materials at any time. We encourage students to engage with one another via the discussion forum. Any specific questions can be sent to the SDG Academy team at


Please note that this course is being offered audit-only, and therefore no certificate will be granted. The course is not credit-bearing on its own. However, some students have been able to negotiate for academic credit with their universities. Speak with your institution to see if this is an option for you.


Introducing Our Common Agenda and the Summit of the Future

The Summit of the Future: The Five Chapters




Peace and Security


Digital Cooperation


Youth and Future Generations


Global Governance

The Three Compacts

Pact for the Future

Declaration on Future Generations

Global Digital Compact

Enhancing multilateralism and thinking ahead

Following the Summit of the Future, a new module will be added to discuss the Summit's outcomes and preparations for the 2nd UN World Social Summit in September 2025.