New models of partnership

Will empowered citizens and true partnerships between public and private sectors drive a powerful development agenda? Unilever’s Rebecca Marmot and Sheila Redzepi explore how new models of partnership could help us deliver the Global Goals.

Sheila Redzepi and Rebecca Marmott

Rebecca Marmot & Sheila Redzepi

Rebecca Marmot is Vice President, Global Partnerships & the Unilever Foundation; Sheila Redzepi was previously Vice President, Global Advocacy, Unilever


The ties between public and private strengthened and we became true partners.

The business community embraced the development agenda as a key driver of quality growth – and sustainable business models and strategic investment decisions became the new norm

Hello 2030, 

In the 15 years since the launch of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), popularly known as the Global Goals, we have seen a brighter, more equitable and greener world emerge. 

Today no one is left behind and no child goes to bed hungry. Everyone enjoys basic necessities such as good drinking water and a clean, safe toilet. Women and girls have equal access to education, healthcare and job opportunities. Our food supply is sustainably sourced, and people live in harmony with the planet. 

While there were many factors that contributed to this new world, we believe that the emergence of new models of partnership and the creation of an enabling environment to facilitate transformative change were central to achieving the SDGs. 

These new models of partnership broke down pre-existing silos, created trust and leveraged the unique capabilities of different stakeholders to tackle global challenges at scale. This, in conjunction with clear accountabilities, enhanced the value of interventions and made for more effective measurement of progress. 

The business community embraced the development agenda as a key driver of quality growth – and sustainable business models and strategic investment decisions became the new norm. By connecting with consumers through the power of their brands and technology, business not only helped raise awareness and understanding of the SDGs among individuals but also engaged them as advocates for change. 

Recognising their respective strengths and collective goals, civil society organisations and the private sector – from small and medium-sized enterprises to multinational corporations – found new ways to partner and integrate the skills of social entrepreneurs and local communities in creating enhanced economic opportunities. 

And governments recognised the need to help foster and support these partnerships – delivering on their aid commitments, better leveraging domestic financing and building local capacity and national implementation plans. 

The ties between public and private strengthened and we became true partners. 

And at the heart of this progress lay empowered citizens who rewarded those businesses that embraced sustainability and held governments accountable for delivering on their promise for a better world. 

Working together we have achieved the brighter future that we so wanted for our children and generations to come.

Rebecca Marmot and Sheila Redzepi

Back to top