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The SDG nexus Network

The Network in brief
SDGnexus Network


Funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) as a Higher Education Excellence Center in Development Cooperation (exceed), the SDGnexus Network is a global community of universities, research centers, and stakeholders committed to promoting the Agenda 2030 for sustainable development. The initiative aims to strengthen higher education so that effective and innovative contributions to realizing the development goals of the United Nations can be made. Supported for five years, starting in 2020, the network establishes a common research framework related to the inter-linkages, trade-offs, and synergies between the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To reach this goal we use our existing expertise, but also acquiring and sharing skills and knowledge in development-related subjects within and outside the network.

Three main pillars form the network:

  • Within a research framework based on five focal research areas, joint research projects between our network partners will be established.
  • Extended networking activities, such as an integrated training network or specially designed conferences, promote collaboration between higher education institutions and extramural actors.
  • Finally, qualifying the next generation of scientists as Agents of Change allow an adequate integration of alumni into the job market and academia. 


Right at the start, the SDGnexus Network consists of seven university core partners with four of them in Latin America (two each in Ecuador and Columbia), three in Central Asia (Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan) as well as extramural actors in both regions. Thus, the network liaises contact between countries with typical development challenges such as the resource curse or the middle-income trap.

Linking these partners and countries opens novel learning potentials, including comparative areas studies and policy perspectives. By involving not only educational institutions but also extramural actors, our network increases its capacity to deliver relevant results and policy impact while considering the development needs of our partner institutions.

Find out more about the involved partners and the SDGnexus Network-Team

Overall, the network builds bridges between science, education, as well as development, supports the identification of potential areas of intervention for decision-makers, and reduces the research gap in inter-linkages between SDG goals and targets. As a consequence, the SDGnexus Network represents a unique opportunity to strengthen expertise in development cooperation and an opportunity for alumni to become better equipped for contributing to their national economies and academia.