Sustained success

At the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Co-operation earlier this year, UN secretary general António Guterres underlined the role that China can have in mobilising resources to implement the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and to "stop runaway climate change". Acknowledging the potential for the Belt and Road initiative, Gutteres made a call for "inclusive, sustainable and durable" development.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, ratified by 193 nations back in 2015, and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a call to action by all countries to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. They address the global challenges we face, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, prosperity, and peace and justice. The SDGs provide a framework for business and society to work together to solve the world’s biggest challenges. Many governments, research funders and Higher Education institutions are directing efforts to address the 17 SDGs and the 169 specific targets that sit alongside them.

As one of the world’s largest developing countries, and the country with the fastest growing scientific and scholarly research (in terms of publication output and research significance), the importance of the role that China will play in the facilitating of sustainable global and regional development is increasingly clear.

China’s National Plan on Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was issued in September 2016. This marked the inception of China’s new strategy of "innovative, co-ordinated, green, open and shared development", which is also a decisive transition from high-speed growth to high-quality development. The Chinese research community, on the one hand, provides a rich intellectual discourse to support the design, planning, evaluation and implementation of the state’s grand development strategy. Additionally, it also provides a historic opportunity to observe and study a society that is undergoing fast transition of an unprecedented scale and complexity.

It is with this context that Springer Nature is launching a new award at this year’s Beijing International Book Fair, one that recognises the contribution of Chinese research to sustainable development.

Springer Nature imprints Springer and Palgrave Macmillan together publish more than 800 scholarly books by Chinese authors each year, and these books are integrated into Springer Nature’s many subject collections, which contain the latest research output from scientists and scholars around the world. By selecting and showcasing the most impactful sustainable development research experts from China, and by enabling economic, political, cultural, social and ecological studies to join engineering, computing and medical research on the same stage, Springer Nature aims to raise awareness of the unique contribution of researchers and publishers
to sustainable development, and scientific and scholarly collaboration, as well as to advancing discovery.

Awarding progress
The Springer Nature: China New Development Awards will be presented on 22nd August to 10 winning scholarly books and their authors, selected by a panel of Springer Nature editors and publishers for having made a significant contribution to research which will contribute to the delivery of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Researchers and publishers will be joined by government representatives at the awards ceremony at the book fair.

Winning titles include scholarly works from the social sciences, business and economics, engineering and technology, as well as the life sciences and the biomedicine research areas.

The China New Development Awards for academic books is one part of the Springer Nature SDG Programme, which features cutting-edge research from a wide range
of science, engineering, social sciences and humanities disciplines, as well as across brands, platforms and product types. By creating new partnerships and new ways of collaborating, we want to improve the process of sharing discoveries on the world stage, and help practitioners to develop innovative and effective policies, programmes and technologies to tackle major social, environmental and economic challenges.

Through the Springer Nature SDG Programme, we want to better support researchers to help them to attract the wider attention of the policy and business communities who can put research insights into action to solve regional and global issues.

Making meaningful progress towards the delivery of the SDGs requires strong, sustained interaction not only between professional communities, but also between the research fields themselves. The approach to tackle urgent societal challenges must be multi-disciplinary, as no one research area can solve the challenges of global hunger, poverty, or climate change. By breaking down disciplinary silos, both in publishing and across the global research community, the Springer Nature SDG Programme aims to inspire new connections and help deliver real progress.