While innovative partnerships are already flourishing around the world, there is no doubt that there are challenges to overcome before they have the collective impact needed to achieve the SDGs.
One of the biggest hurdles is investment. As Tony Burdon, Head of Private Sector Department at DFID points out, "there is an annual finance gap to deliver the SDGs of trillions of dollars, vast sums of money. Public finance is insufficient. Much will have to come from the private sector as part of their business."
The public-private finance model is one area where there is clear scope for pioneering new ways of funding partnerships.
In 2015, for example, Unilever and DFID founded TRANSFORM, an innovation fund which brings private sector creativity and commercial approaches to solve persistent global development challenges. By aiming to enable 100 million people in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia to gain access to products and services that have been shown to improve health, livelihoods, the environment or wellbeing, it addresses a wide range of SDGs.
In 2018 we quadrupled our investment in TRANSFORM to £40 million, which is supporting projects in nine countries.