SDSN European Green Deal Senior Working Group

SDSN European Green Deal Senior Working Group


The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement call for deep transformations in every region and actions by all parts of governments. With the European Green Deal (EGD), the EU has designed a comprehensive framework for decarbonizing the European economy, reducing pollution and wastes, and placing sustainable development at the center of the European policy agenda.

SDSN Europe has gathered a Senior Working Group, consisting of top-level academics and stakeholders, to mobilize expertise for the successful implementation of this transformative regulatory framework. SDSN Europe is ideally placed to provide evidence-based advice to European policy-makers, through the expertise and scientific knowledge of ten networks and over 360 member organisations across the continent.

SDSN’s European Green Deal Senior Working Group is led by Prof. Jeffrey Sachs and Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, both world-renowned economists and global leaders in sustainable development. To support the transformations in Europe towards the future we want, they have gathered a group of leading experts in the fields of sustainable development, environmental economics, green finance, corporate social responsibility and transformative policies. Together they contribute to the following objectives:

  1. Identify and promote technological and policy pathways for decarbonization by 2050 within and across EU Member States.
  2. Identify and promote adaptation pathways within and across EU Member States.
  3. Identify socially inclusive pathways that “leave no one behind”.
  4. Provide strategic recommendations and mobilize experts for the ongoing implementation of the European Green Deal through SDSN networks.
  5. Mobilize experts to rethink policies for clean energy supply and climate adaptation projects, across the economy, industry, production and consumption, large-scale infrastructure, transport, food and agriculture, construction, taxation and social benefits.
  6. Mobilize stakeholders in partnership with the SDSN European networks to guarantee local engagement and support for these policies.
If you would like to know more about the EGD Senior Working Group, please contact us at


Reports of the Senior Working Group

The European Green Deal includes wide-ranging goals for a climate-neutral, resource-efficient, technologically advanced, and socially equitable continent. EU leaders have also decided to integrate the SDGSs in the European Semester, the major process for the coordination of national economic and employment policies in the EU, putting ‘people and the planet at the center of EU economic policy’. Additionally, the EU has responded to the immense challenges posed by the pandemic with a strong ‘Next Generation EU’ package to boost economic recovery while pursuing Europe’s green transition.

In an attempt to connect the dots between these four major policy initiatives – the SDGs, the European Green Deal, the European Semester, and the EU recovery plan – the EGD Senior Working Group published a report, entitled ‘Transformations for the Joint Implementation of Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and the European Green Deal: A Green and Digital, Job-Based and Inclusive Recovery from COVID-19 Pandemic’. The report, published in February 2021, supports policymakers with actionable strategies that can guide EU-wide and national economic recovery in line with the continent’s overarching sustainability agenda. Click here to watch the full video of the launching event.

On May 3rd 2022, the group launch the second annual report, entitled Financing the Transformations for the Joint Implementation of Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and the European Green Deal’ which: provides an overview of the EU policies published since 2020 in support of the implementation of the European Green Deal, explores the financial implications of the Joint Implementation of Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and the European Green Deal, and stresses the need for private financial flows to be directed towards sustainable projects and activities. Europe has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to accelerate the transformation to sustainable societies, whereby governments intervene proactively and co-design a systemic green transition with broad participation of societal stakeholders. With the EGD Senior Working Group, SDSN aims to support this transformation and mobilize expertise from high-level stakeholders from a broad range of sectors. Click here to watch the full video of the launching event.



Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, University Professor at Athens University of Economics and Business (co-chair)

Prof. Phoebe Koundouri is a world-renowned environmental economics professor and global leader in sustainable development. She is a University Professor at the School of Economics and the Director of ReSEES Research Laboratory at the Athens University of Economics and Business. She is also the Director of the Sustainable Development Unit and EIT Climate-KIC at the ATHENA Ιnformatics Research Center. She is an elected fellow of the World Academy of Art & Science, the President of the European Association of Environmental and Natural Resource Economists and winner of the prestigious European Research Council Synergy Grant. She also acts as co-chair of the SDSN Europe and SDSN Greece network.


Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, President UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (co-chair)

Prof. Jeffrey Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, and bestselling author. He is the President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network and University Professor at Columbia University, where he serves as the Director of the Center for Sustainable Development. Prof. Sachs has been appointed as Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on the Sustainable Development Goals.


Prof. Leonardo Becchetti, Full Professor at University of Rome Tor Vergata

Prof. Leonardo Becchetti is Full Professor of Economics at the Faculty of Economics of the University of Rome Tor Vergata, where he also serves as Director of the Master in Development Economics and International Cooperation (MESCI). He is a member of the Board of the Italian Economist Society, president of the Ethical Committee of Banca Etica, and member of the Executive Committee of Econometica, an inter-university center for economic ethics and corporate social responsibility.


Prof. Stefan Brunnhuber, member of the Club of Rome

Prof. Stefan Brunnhuber is an economist, psychiatrist, and member of the Club of Rome. He is the medical director of the Diakonie-Klinik of Intergrative Psychatry in Dresden and Professor for Psychology and Sustainability at the University of Mittweida in Germany. Prof. Brunnhuber is Senator at the European Academy of Science and Arts (EASA) and member of the Board of Trustees at the World Academy of Arts and Science (WAAS).


Ms. Laura Cozzi, Chief Energy Modeler at International Energy Agency

Laura Cozzi is Chief Energy Modeler at the International Energy Agency (IEA). She oversees the Agency’s work on outlooks and forecasts and is in charge of overall consistency of modelling work and resulting messages. Ms. Cozzi is also Head of the Demand Outlook Division with responsibility of producing the annual World Energy Outlook, the IEA flagship publication. Prior to joining the IEA, Ms. Cozzi worked for the Italian energy company ENI S.p.A.


Prof. Marzio Galeotti, Director of Scientific Research at Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei

Prof. Marzio Galeotti is the Director of Scientific Research at Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei. He also serves as Full Professor of Economics at the University of Milan, having previously taught at the University of Bergamo and the University of Udine. He holds a PhD in Economics from the New York University.



Prof. Mariana Mazzucato, Professor at University College London

Prof. Mariana Mazzucato is Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London (UCL), where she is Founding Director of the UCL Institute for Innovation & Public Purpose (IIPP). Her previous posts include the RM Phillips Professorial Chair at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at Sussex University. She is a selected fellow of the UK’s Academy of Social Sciences (FAcSS) and of the Italian National Science Academy (Lincei).


 Mr. Carlo Papa, Managing Director Enel Foundation

Carlo Papa is Managing Director of Enel Foundation and previously served as Chief Innovation Officer of Enel Green Power. He is actively involved in think-tank activities with the Aspen Institute and the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Since 2015, he also serves on the board of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.


Mr. Ketan Patel, CEO Greater Pacific Capital

Ketan Patel is co-founder and CEO of Greater Pacific Capital, where he is responsible for overall firm strategy, leads the firm’s research and ideas team and heads the firm’s Investment Committee. Prior to founding Greater Pacific Capital in 2005, Ketan was a Managing Director in the Investment Banking Division at Goldman Sachs. He was also a Partner at KPMG, where he served as a member of the Board of Directors and member of the firm’s European Strategy Team.


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