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Overview of RealKM-KM4Dev-K4DP knowledge management & SDGs campaign (update 6 May 2024)

An overview and 6 May 2024 update of the knowledge management (KM) and UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) campaign that is being collaboratively coordinated by RealKM Cooperative Limited, the Knowledge Management for Development Community (KM4Dev), and Knowledge for Development Partnership (K4DP.

Campaign history


  • The SDG Progress Report: Special Edition1 at the halfway point in UN Agenda 2030 highlights lack of progress towards Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • In response, the UN has since announced plans to reboot the flagging SDGs through the “Pact for the Future” which will be endorsed by UN member states at the “Summit of the Future” in September 2024. A zero draft of the Pact for the Future was released in January 2024 for consultation.

October 2023:

  • On 17 October 2023, the KM Global Network (KMGN) convened HacKMthon 2023, where RealKM & KM4Dev (represented by Bruce Boyes) were the challenge owners for Challenge B which looked at knowledge management (KM) & the SDGs.
  • Challenge B discussions highlighted how research by Sarah Cummings and colleagues2 had identified the lack of references to knowledge in the SDGs when Agenda 2030 was launched, leading to the preparation of the Agenda Knowledge for Development3, but that despite this, knowledge was still missing from the SDGs.

November 2023:

Key campaign call for action

RealKM Cooperative Limited, the Knowledge Management for Development Community (KM4Dev), and Knowledge for Development Partnership (K4DP) call on the United Nations, its member states, and all actors to:

  • acknowledge the critical role of multiple knowledges (encompassing local, tacit, experiential, community, and Indigenous knowledge) in achieving Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); and
  • embed and recognize the contributions of multiple knowledge in sustainable development through the formal adoption of the knowledge-based goals of the Agenda Knowledge for Development (new 4th edition in preparation, 3rd edition in the interim).

Key campaign call for action – documents

Key documents that are being used in advocating for our key campaign call to action are:

Campaign actions and status at 6 May 2024

  1. Open letter to United Nations and world governments in regard to Summit of the Future and Pact for the Future. Published in February, over 120 signatories so far.
  2. Submission on the zero draft of the Pact for the Future. Submitted by the three organizations individually on 12 February 2024, a copy of the submission is attached to the open letter at the above link.
  3. Multi-journal editorial project. Modelled on Chris Zielinski’s successful multi-journal editorials in health journals. The KM & SDGs editorial has been prepared by 21 co-authors, and invitations to publish it have been sent to 59 KM and development journals. Journals have been asked to publish the editorial by the end of June, before the UN HLPF in July. The first editorial4 has just been published by Sarah Cummings, editor-in-chief of Knowledge Management for Development Journal.
  4. UN Civil Society Conference Nairobi 9-10 May. RealKM, KM4Dev, and K4DP have registered 3 representatives each for the 3 organisations for this conference, which has a vital role in the development of the Pact for the Future. The aim is for our representatives to reinforce our key campaign call for action (see above) and also learn about relevant ImPACT Coalitions that we may decide to join..
  5. Libraries, archives, and SDGs project. Paper with recommendations prepared by Maureen Kenga and published
  6. Classification/ontologies/topic maps/concept mapping project. A potential expansion of the libraries, archives, and SDGs project. An initial scoping meeting was held on 2 May.
  7. Updating the Agenda Knowledge for Development to a 4th edition. With our key campaign call for action seeking the adoption by the UN of the Agenda, K4DP has initiated a process to update it to a 4th edition by the end of June, before the UN HLPF in July and aligning with the multi-journal editorial publishing timeline. An initial scoping meeting has been held, and KM4Dev has also convened a knowledge café on local knowledge, the outcomes of which will have input into Knowledge Development Goal 3 in the Agenda.
  8. Marketing and SDGs project. A project looking at how marketing can be used to support the SDGs and their uptake. Project is currently in the concept development stage.

Further projects are expected to be advanced.


  1. United Nations. (2023). The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2023: Special edition.
  2. Cummings, S., Regeer, B., De Haan, L., Zweekhorst, M., & Bunders, J. (2018). Critical discourse analysis of perspectives on knowledge and the knowledge society within the Sustainable Development Goals. Development Policy Review, 36(6), 727-742.
  3. Brandner, A. & Cummings, S. (Eds.) (2018). Agenda knowledge for development: Strengthening Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals. Third edition.
  4. Al-Shorbaji, N., Atsu, P., Boyes, B., Brandner, A., Camacho Jiménez, K., Cummings, S.J.R., Dewah, P., Dhillon, R., Habtemariam, F., Kemboi, G., Kenga, M., Kiplang’at, J., Mchombu, K., Prom, C., Ribiere, V., Sanz, R., Senaji, T., Senmartin, D., Tarus, I., Young, S. & Zielinski, C. (2024). Editorial. We urgently need multiple knowledges to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Knowledge Management for Development Journal, 18(1): 1-12.
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Bruce Boyes

Bruce Boyes ( is a knowledge management (KM), environmental management, and education professional with over 30 years of experience in Australia and China. His work has received high-level acclaim and been recognised through a number of significant awards. He is currently a PhD candidate in the Knowledge, Technology and Innovation Group at Wageningen University and Research, and holds a Master of Environmental Management with Distinction. He is also the editor, lead writer, and a director of the award-winning RealKM Magazine (, and teaches in the Beijing Foreign Studies University (BFSU) Certified High-school Program (CHP).

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