2030 Journal / UNESCO Beijing


Moving Targets – The 2030 Journal Project 

The 2030 journal is an initiative launched by Beijing’s International Centre for Creativity and Sustainable Development (ICCSD) under the auspices of UNESCO, an editorial venture that takes as a point of departure the Sustainable Development Goals in the 2030 New Urban Agenda, ratified at the 2016 Habitat III Conference in Quito. Four SDGs of the total seventeen were selected to each provide a thematic blueprint for the four issues that compose the series – they are Sustainable Cities & Communities, Decent Work & Economic Growth, Affordable & Clean Energy, and Quality Education.  

Developed by B/Side Design – downlad the pilot issue at this link

This publication project explores the transformative affinities and productive contradictions of processes and ideas that bind localized protocols of economic, urban, and socio-cultural character to communal survival on a global expanse. The time capsule from which it takes its title, 2030, stands here as a symbolic buoy around which we at times gravitate closer and at times move the farthest apart – a metaphor for the peripatetic feat of theoretical and practical creativity that as humans we endeavour in tackling the phenomena that challenge, shape and hope for a more equitable and sustainable future. As a research venture, this journal aims at creating a new platform for knowledge, perspectives and cases generating from the Chinese experience to enter dialogue with concurrent international studies, and thus open new conduits for their mutual understanding.  

2030 is not about the latest or the newest. It is a collection of precise positions and punctual testimonies as told in different textual and visual contributions ranging from academic essay, to image gallery, journalistic report as well as personal notation which locate resonances of intellectual and practical agency across diverse fields of knowledge and their originating contexts. These juxtapositions of literary styles as forms of insight shelter discursive trajectories that, while assertive in their findings, offer readers open-ended avenues of further reflection around chosen topics that are pinpointed throughout by tags found on the margins of pages.

Each issue is structured in two main halves, their divide marked by a section titled Visualize Me – pages dedicated to unique works of data visualization and info graphics pertinent to each theme.

With this visual crevasse at its heart, the journal’s first part comprises three chapters – The Big Picture, The Small Picture, China Logs – which constitute the core discursive receptacles staging dialogue between world-views and localized insights, by than introducing Chinese perspectives of relevance for their responsive capacity to shared global challenges and ambitions. The following sections – Serial Innovators, The Future of Things, Global Classroom – introduce concrete initiatives and individual works of poignancy that celebrate a perpetual drive towards innovation originating from the private and educational sectors, and strive to generate real-world impact from the bottom-up of start-up offices, school labs or design studios.    

This first issue which takes the 11th SDG as its subject – Sustainable Cities & Communities –  delves into thinking practices around the anchoring concept of ‘resilience’, a moniker of social, economic and urban constructs predicated on remedial ecologies of reciprocation and co-actualization. A dedicated column dubbed The Point, which will recur in every issue, offers an in-depth look at its hard-to-grasp contours. We have featured propositions of enlightened pragmatism and intellectual capacity that respond to what is urgent and risk-inducing for the perpetuation of our spatial and social environs, with the ethically minded intent of creative strategies that foster new relations of proximity, not based on strategic interest but trustful affinity.   

2030 is yesterday, it is today and it is tomorrow – a perpetually moving target whose distance is measured at the crossroads of disciplinary convergences and the multiplicity of further horizons we create for ourselves towards the goal of even global growth. 

Beatrice Leanza

Creative Director 2030 journal

Beijing, June 2017