Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 13

Sustainable Development Goals Related Abstracts

13 Evaluating India's Smart Cities against the Sustainable Development Goals

Authors: Suneet Jagdev

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17 Sustainable Development Goals were adopted by the world leaders in September 2015 at the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit. These goals were adopted by UN member states to promote prosperity, health and human rights while protecting the planet. Around the same time, the Government of India launched the Smart City Initiative to speed up development of state of the art infrastructure and services in 100 cities with a focus on sustainable and inclusive development. These cities are meant to become role models for other cities in India and promote sustainable regional development. This paper examines goals set under the Smart City Initiative and evaluates them in terms of the Sustainable Development Goals, using case studies of selected Smart Cities in India. The study concludes that most Smart City projects at present actually consist of individual solutions to individual problems identified in a community rather than comprehensive models for complex issues in cities across India. Systematic, logical and comparative analysis of important literature and data has been done, collected from government sources, government papers, research papers by various experts on the topic, and results from some online surveys. Case studies have been used for a graphical analysis highlighting the issues of migration, ecology, economy and social equity in these Smart Cities.

Keywords: Migration, Housing, Smart Cities, urban infrastructure, Sustainable Development Goals

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12 Integrating the Principles of Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR): By Engaging the India Inc. With Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Authors: Radhika Ralhan

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With the formalization of 2030, Global Agenda for Sustainable Development nations have instantaneously geared up their efforts towards the implementation of a comprehensive list of global goals. The criticality of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is imperative, as it will define the course and pace of development for the next 15 years. This development will entail transformational shifts towards a green and inclusive growth. Leadership, investments and technology will constitute as key ingredients of this transformational shift and governance will emerge as a one of the most significant driver of the global 2030 agenda. Corporate Governance is viewed as one of the key force to accelerate the momentum of SDGs and initiate these transformational shifts. Many senior level leaders have reinstated their conviction that adopting a triple bottom line approach will play an imperative role in transforming the entire industrial sector. In the Indian context, the above occurrence bears an intriguing facet, as the framing of SDGs in the global scenario coincided with the emergence of mandatory Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Rules in India at national level. As one of the leading democracies in the world, India is among few countries to formally mandate companies to spend 2% from their CSR funds under Section 135 of The New Companies Act 2013. The overarching framework of SDGs correlates to the areas of CSR interventions as mentioned in the Schedule VII of Section 135. As one of the legitimate stakeholders, business leaders have expressed their commitments to their respective governments, to reorient the entire fabric of their companies to scale up global priorities. This is explicitly seen in the case of India where leading business entities have converged national government priorities of Clean India, Make in India and Skill India by actively participating in the campaigns and incorporating these programmes within the ambit of their CSR policies. However, the CSR Act has received mixed responses with associated concerns such as the onus of doing what the government has to do, mandatory reporting mechanisms, policy disclosures, personnel handling CSR portfolios etc. The overall objective of the paper, therefore, rests in analyzing the discourse of CSR and the perspectives of Indian Inc. in imbibing the principles of SDGs within their business polices and operations. Through primary and secondary research analysis, the paper attempts to outline the diverse challenges that are being faced by Indian businesses while establishing the business case of sustainable responsibility. Some of the principal questions that paper addresses are: What are the SDG priorities for India Inc. as per their respective industry sectors? How can corporate policies imbibe the SDGs principles? How can the global concerns in form of SDGs align with the national CSR mandate and development issues? What initiatives have been undertaken by the companies to integrate their long term business strategy and sustainability? The paper will also reinstate an approach or a way forward that will enable businesses to proceed beyond compliance and accentuate the principles of responsibility and transparency within their operational framework.

Keywords: Corporate Governance, Sustainability, Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR, Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs, India Inc, section 135, new companies act 2013

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11 Using Customer Satisfaction to Help Achieve Sustainable Development Goals in the Islamic Economy: A Quantitative Case Study from Amman, Jordan

Authors: Sarah A. Tobin

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Social justice outcomes, derived from customer satisfaction, serve as a main pathway and conduit for achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) because they prompt democratizing and socially-inclusive effects that are consistent with Islamic economic values. This paper argues that achieving higher levels of social justice and the SGDs is possible only through the realization of Islamic banking and finance customer satisfaction that aligns with Islamic values in the tradition of the Shari`a (or Islamic law). Through this key manifestation of Shari`a in the banks, social justice aims of achieving SDGs become possible. This paper utilizes a case study of a large-scale survey (N=127) comparing customer satisfaction between a conventional and an Islamic bank in Amman, Jordan. Based on a series of linear regressions, the statistically-significant findings suggest that when overall customer satisfaction is high, customers are more likely to become empowered citizens demanding inclusive, quality services and corruption-free management, as well as attribute their experiences to the Islamic nature of the financial endeavors. Social justice interests and expectations increase (and SDGs are more likely met) when a customer has high levels of satisfaction. The paper concludes with policy recommendations for Islamic financial institutions that enhance customer service experiences for better achieving the social justice aims of the Islamic economy and SDGs, including transparency in transactions, exemplary customer service and follow up, and attending to Islamic values in the aesthetics of bank.

Keywords: Social Justice, Customer Satisfaction, Sustainable Development Goals, Islamic economy

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10 Education for Sustainable Development Pedagogies: Examining the Influences of Context on South African Natural Sciences and Technology Teaching and Learning

Authors: A. U. Ugwu

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Post-Apartheid South African education system had witnessed waves of curriculum reforms. Accordingly, there have been evidences of responsiveness towards local and global challenges of sustainable development over the past decade. In other words, the curriculum shows sensitivity towards issues of Sustainable Development (SD). Moreover, the paradigm of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) was introduced by the UNESCO in year 2015. The SDGs paradigm is essentially a vision towards actualizing sustainability in all aspects of the global society. Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in retrospect entails teaching and learning to actualize the intended UNESCO 2030 SDGs. This paper explores how teaching and learning of ESD can be improved, by drawing from local context of the South African schooling system. Preservice natural sciences and technology teachers in their 2nd to 4th years of study at a university’s college of education in South Africa were contacted as participants of the study. Using qualitative case study research design, the study drew from the views and experiences of five (5) purposively selected participants from a broader study, aiming to closely understating how ESD is implemented pedagogically in teaching and learning. The inquiry employed questionnaires and a focus group discussion as qualitative data generation tools. A qualitative data analysis of generated data was carried out using content and thematic analysis, underpinned by interpretive paradigm. The result of analyzed data, suggests that ESD pedagogy at the location where this research was conducted is largely influenced by contextual factors. Furthermore, the result of the study shows that there is a critical need to employ/adopt local experiences or occurrences while teaching sustainable development. Certain pedagogical approaches such as the use of videos relative to local context should also be considered in order to achieve a more realistic application. The paper recommends that educational institutions through teaching and learning should implement ESD by drawing on local contexts and problems, thereby foregrounding constructivism, appreciating and fostering students' prior knowledge and lived experiences.

Keywords: Qualitative Research, Education for Sustainable Development, Sustainable Development Goals, context, natural sciences and technology preservice teachers

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9 Integrating Sustainable Development Goals in Teaching Mathematics Using Project Based Learning

Authors: S. Goel

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In the current scenario, education should be realistic and nature-friendly. The earlier definition of education was restricted to the holistic development of the child which help them to increase their capacity and helps in social upliftment. But such definition gives a more individualistic aim of education. Due to that individualistic aim, we have become disconnected from nature. So, a school should be a place which provides students with an area to explore. They should get practical learning or learning from nature which is also propounded by Rousseau in the mid-eighteenth century. Integrating Sustainable development goals in the school curriculum will make it possible to connect the nature with the lives of the children in the classroom. Then, students will be more aware and sensitive towards their social and natural surroundings. The research attempts to examine the efficiency of project-based learning in mathematics to create awareness around sustainable development goals. The major finding of the research was that students are less aware of sustainable development goals, but when given time and an appropriate learning environment, students can be made aware of these goals. In this research, project-based learning was used to make students aware of sustainable development goals. Students were given pre test and post test which helped in analyzing their performance. After the intervention, post test result showed that mathematics projects can create an awareness of sustainable development goals.

Keywords: Project Based Learning, Sustainable Development Goals, holistic development, natural learning

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8 Sustainable Development Goals: The Effect of a Board Structure on the Sustainability Performance

Authors: V. Naciti, L. Pulejo, F. Cesaroni

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This study empirically analyzes whether the composition of the board of directors (BoD) enhances sustainability performance, in order to understand how the BoD contribute to the integration of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in their businesses. Hypotheses are developed based on the agency theory and stakeholder theory. Using a system generalized method of the moment (SGMM) two-step estimator, with data from Sustainalytics and Compustat databases for 362 firms in six regions, we find that firms with more diversity on the board and a separation of chair and CEO roles have higher sustainability performance. Moreover, our findings provide that a higher number of independent directors is negatively associated with sustainability performance. This study contributes to the literature on corporate governance and the firm’s performance by demonstrating that the composition of the board of directors contributes to a better sustainability performance: by the implementation of a particular corporate governance mechanism, it is possible to integrate SDGs in the corporate strategy.

Keywords: Corporate Governance, Sustainable Development Goals, board of directors, sustainability performance

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7 Retail Strategy to Reduce Waste Keeping High Profit Utilizing Taylor's Law in Point-of-Sales Data

Authors: Gen Sakoda, Hideki Takayasu, Misako Takayasu

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Waste reduction is a fundamental problem for sustainability. Methods for waste reduction with point-of-sales (POS) data are proposed, utilizing the knowledge of a recent econophysics study on a statistical property of POS data. Concretely, the non-stationary time series analysis method based on the Particle Filter is developed, which considers abnormal fluctuation scaling known as Taylor's law. This method is extended for handling incomplete sales data because of stock-outs by introducing maximum likelihood estimation for censored data. The way for optimal stock determination with pricing the cost of waste reduction is also proposed. This study focuses on the examination of the methods for large sales numbers where Taylor's law is obvious. Numerical analysis using aggregated POS data shows the effectiveness of the methods to reduce food waste maintaining a high profit for large sales numbers. Moreover, the way of pricing the cost of waste reduction reveals that a small profit loss realizes substantial waste reduction, especially in the case that the proportionality constant  of Taylor’s law is small. Specifically, around 1% profit loss realizes half disposal at =0.12, which is the actual  value of processed food items used in this research. The methods provide practical and effective solutions for waste reduction keeping a high profit, especially with large sales numbers.

Keywords: Time Series Analysis, Food Waste Reduction, Sustainable Development Goals, particle filter, point-of-sales, Taylor's law

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6 Sustainable Development Goals and Gender Equality: Impact of Unpaid Labor on Women’s Leadership in India

Authors: Swati Vohra

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A genuine economic and social transformation requires equal contribution and participation from both men and women; however, achieving this gender parity is a global concern. In the patriarchal societies around the world, women have been silenced, oppressed, and subjugated. Girls and women comprise half of the world’s population. This, however, must not be the lone reason for recognizing and providing equal opportunities to them. Every individual has a right to develop through opportunities without the biases of gender, caste, race, or ethnicity. The world today is confronted by pressing issues of climate change, economic crisis, violence against women and children, escalating conflicts, to name a few. Achieving gender parity is thus an essential component in meeting this wide array of challenges in order to create just, robust and inclusive societies. In 2015, The United Nation enunciated achieving 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, one of which is SGD#5- Gender Equality, that is not merely a stand-alone goal. It is central to the achievement of all 17 SDG’s. Without progress on gender equality, the global community will not only fail to achieve the SDG5, but it will also lose the impetus towards achieving the broad 2030 agenda. This research is based on a hypothesis that aims to connect the targets laid by the UN under SDG#5 - 5.4 (Recognize and value unpaid care and domestic work) and 5.5 (Ensure women participation for leadership at all levels of decision-making). The study evaluates the impact of unpaid household responsibilities on women’s leadership in India. In Indian society, women have experienced a low social status for centuries, which is reflected throughout the Indian history with preference of a male child and common occurrences of female infanticides that are still prevalent in many parts of the country. Insistence on the traditional gender roles builds patriarchal inequalities into the structure of Indian society. It is argued that a burden of unpaid labor on women is placed, which narrows the opportunities and life chances women are given and the choices they are able to make, thereby shutting them from shared participation in public and economic leadership. The study investigates theoretical framework of social construction of gender, unpaid labor, challenges to women leaders and peace theorist perspective as the core components. The methodology used is qualitative research of comprehensive literature, accompanied by the data collected through interviews of representatives of women leaders from various fields within Delhi-National Capital Region (NCR). The women leaders interviewed had the privilege of receiving good education and a conducive family support; however, post marriage and children it was not the case and the social obligations weighed heavy on them. The research concludes by recommending the importance of gender-neutral parenting and education along with government ratified paternal leaves for at least six months and childcare facilities available for both the parents at workplace.

Keywords: Peace Studies, Gender equality, Gender Roles, Sustainable Development Goals, Social Construction, unpaid labor, women’s leadership

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5 Geographic Information Systems as a Tool to Support the Sustainable Development Goals

Authors: Gulnara N. Nabiyeva, Stephen M. Wheeler

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Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a multipurpose computer-based tool that provides a sophisticated ability to map and analyze data on different spatial layers. However, GIS is far more easily applied in some policy areas than others. This paper seeks to determine the areas of sustainable development, including environmental, economic, and social dimensions, where GIS has been used to date to support efforts to implement the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and to discuss potential areas where it might be used more. Based on an extensive analysis of published literature, we ranked the SDGs according to how frequently GIS has been used to study related policy. We found that SDG#15 “Life on Land” is most often addressed with GIS, following by SDG#11 “Sustainable Cities and Communities”, and SDG#13 “Climate Action”. On the other hand, we determined that SDG#2 “Zero Hunger”, SDG#8 “Decent Work and Economic Growth”, and SDG#16 “Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions” are least addressed with GIS. The paper outlines some specific ways that GIS might be applied to the SDGs least linked to this tool currently.

Keywords: GIS, GIS application, Sustainable Development Goals, sustainable community development

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4 Inequality and Poverty Assessment on Affordable Housing in Austria: A Comprehensive Perspective on SDG 1 and SDG 10 (UniNEtZ Project)

Authors: M. Bukowski, K. Kreissl

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Social and environmental pressures in our times bear threats that often cross-border in scale, such as climate change, poverty-driven migration, demographic change as well as socio-economic developments. One of the hot topics is prevailing in many societies across Europe and worldwide, concerns 'affordable housing' and poverty-driven international and domestic migration (including displacements through gentrification processes), focusing here on the urban and regional context. The right to adequate housing and shelter is one of the recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human rights and International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and as such considered as a human right of the second generation. The decreasing supply of affordable housing, especially in urban areas, has reached dimensions that have led to an increasing 'housing crisis'. This crisis, which has even reached middle-income homes, has an even more devastating impact on low income and poor households raising poverty levels. Therefore, the understanding of the connection between housing and poverty is vital to integrate and support the different stakeholders in order to tackle poverty. When it comes to issues of inequalities and poverty within the SDG framework, multi-faceted stakeholders with different claims, distribution of resources and interactions with other development goals (spill-over and trade-offs) account for a highly complex context. To contribute to a sustainable and fair society and hence to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the University of Salzburg participates in the Austrian-wide universities' network 'UniNEtZ'. Our joint target is to develop an options report for the Austrian Government regarding the seventeen SDGs, so far hosted by 18 Austrian universities. In this vein, the University of Salzburg; i.e., the Centre for Ethics and Poverty Research, the departments of Geography and Geology and the Department of Sociology and Political Science are focusing on the SDG 1 (No Poverty) and SDG 10 (Reduced Inequalities). Our target and research focus is to assess and evaluate the status of SDG 1 and 10 in Austria, to find possible solutions and to support stakeholders' integration. We aim at generating and deducing appropriate options as scientific support, from interdisciplinary research studies to 'Sustainability Developing Goals and their Targets' in action. For this reason, and to deal with the complexity of the Agenda 2030, we have developed a special Model for Inequalities and Poverty Assessment (IPAM). Through the example of 'affordable housing' we provide insight into the situation focusing on sustainable outcomes, including ethical and justice perceptions. The IPAM has proven to be a helpful tool in detecting the different imponderables on the Agenda 2030, assessing the situation, showing gaps and options for ethical SDG actions combining different SDG targets. Supported by expert and expert group interviews, this assessment allows different stakeholders to overview a complex and dynamic SDG challenge (here housing) which is necessary to be involved in an action finding process.

Keywords: Poverty, Inequality, Affordable Housing, Sustainable Development Goals

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3 Green Housing Projects in Egypt: A Futuristic Approach

Authors: Shimaa Mahmoud Ali Ahmed, Boshra Tawfek El-Shreef

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Sustainable development has become an important concern worldwide, and climate change has become a global threat. Some of these affect how we approach environmental issues — and how we should approach them. Environmental aspects have an important impact on the built environment, that’s why knowledge about Green Building and Green Construction become a vital dimension of urban sustainable development to face the challenges of climate change. There are several levels of green buildings, from energy-efficient lighting to 100% eco-friendly construction; the concept of green buildings in Egypt is still a rare occurrence, with the concept being relatively new to the market. There are several projects on the ground that currently employing sustainable and green solutions to some extent, some of them achieve a limit of success and others fail to employ the new solutions. The market and the cost as well, are great factors. From the last century, green architecture and environmental sustainability become a famous trend that all the researchers like to follow. Nowadays, the trend towards green has shifted to housing and real estate projects. While the environmental aspects are the key to achieve green buildings, the economic benefits, and the market forces are considered as big challenges. The paper assumes that some appropriate environmental treatments could be added to the applied prototype of the governmental social housing projects in Egypt to achieve better environmental solutions. The aim of the research is to get housing projects in Egypt closer to the track of sustainable and green buildings, through making a local future proposal to be integrated into the current policies. The proposed model is based upon adding some appropriate, cheap environmental modifications to the prototype of the Ministry of Housing, Infrastructure, and New Urban Communities. The research is based on an analytical, comparative analytical, and inductive approach to study and analyze the housing projects in Egypt and the possibilities of integrating green techniques into it.

Keywords: green buildings, Urban Sustainability, Sustainable Development Goals, housing projects, Egypt 2030

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2 Sustainable Development Goals 2030: A Case of Malaysian Priorities from the Perspectives of Undergraduate Students

Authors: Zurina Mahadi, Hukil Sino

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United Nations resolved 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015 to complete what Millennium Development Goals did not achieve. Accommodating 17 goals and 169 targets, Sustainable Development Goals are designated to be achieved over the next 15 years. A survey was conducted in July 2019 among the undergraduate students of a public university in Selangor, Malaysia, to learn their selection over Sustainable Development Goals, which they think is the most critical in the Malaysian scenario. This study adopted a qualitative approach, and data is gathered from a single instruction questionnaire administered to a purposive sample of participants. 13 goals were selected by the participants which are Goal 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 16 and 17 while none has selected Goal 7, 9, 14 and 15 which are ‘Affordable and Clean Energy’; ‘Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure’; ‘Life Below Water’ and ‘Life On Land’ respectively. The selected goals are then ranked according to the number of participants who chose that particular goal. Goal 8 is found to be at the highest position of the ranking while Goal 5, 6, 10, and 13 accommodating the lowest position. Goal 8, which is ‘Decent Work and Economic Growth’ is chosen by 13 participants as the most critical goal in Malaysia while Goal 5,6 10, and 13, which are ‘Gender Equality’; ‘Clean Water and Sanitation’; ‘Reduced Inequalities’ and ‘Climate Action’ respectively, are chosen by only one participant each. Issues highlighted by the participants are themed into 10 themes, which are job availability, cost of living, well-being, corruption, education, environment, gender, development planning, consumption, and partnership. The theme of the cost of living has the highest number of issues, followed by the theme of job availability and the environment. The theme of gender has the least number of issues, followed by the theme of corruption and development planning. In principle, these findings, therefore, conclude that from a public university students’ point of view, the most critical sustainable development goal is decent work and economic growth while the most concerning issue is the cost of living. The implications of these findings are students’ knowledge towards the current issues of development, and their views of future sustainable development are considerably high. This study, therefore, suggests their views be inculcated into local, sustainable development frameworks to increase the inclusiveness of the young generation as they are the future SDGs stakeholders.

Keywords: Sustainable Development Goals, Inclusiveness, cost of living, job availability

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1 A Comparative Analysis of Youth Entrepreneurship Challenges in Developing and Developed Economies

Authors: Jane Khayesi-Omalla

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Entrepreneurship plays a major role in world economies by facilitating socio-economic development through job creation, employment creation, wealth creation, creating innovation, and addressing various social, economic, and environmental critical problems in the world. Through entrepreneurship, entrepreneurs contribute to addressing various sustainable development goals (SDGs). There are several youth entrepreneurs in developing and developed economies who are making a significant contribution to development. Their ventures have the potential to contribute to addressing specific sustainable development goals such as SDG 1 (ending poverty), SDG 8 (creating jobs), and SDGs 5 & 10 (reducing inequalities). Despite this great potential and effort, both practicing and potential youth entrepreneurs experience challenges that impede their efforts to contribute to addressing critical global issues through entrepreneurship. A deep understanding of these challenges in both developing and developed economies is necessary to identify ways to support these efforts. Through a comprehensive literature review, this study conducts a comparative typology of challenges faced by youth entrepreneurs in developing and developed economies. It draws on extensive analysis of published literature to gather and map these challenges. It then compares and contrasts these challenges between developed and developing economies. Based on this analysis, the study proposes to examine the effectiveness of interventions and/or support mechanisms put in place by various governments, agencies, and groups to facilitate youth entrepreneurship in order to help them maximize their contribution through entrepreneurial activities. The results of this study will serve to identify improvements to existing support mechanisms and suggest new ones.

Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Youth, Sustainable Development Goals, Developed and developing economies

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