Our position on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

In September 2015, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The 2030 Agenda comprises of 17 universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), or Global Goals, which will guide policy and funding for the next 15 years, beginning with a historic pledge to end poverty.

Flags of all over the world.

Our position

We welcome and supports the 17 universal Global Goals, and 169 targets, and believes that an integrated approach implemented through partnerships and involving the private sector, across the multiple goals is crucial to achieving them. We particularly welcome the recognition of the importance of the growing burden of diabetes and other non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

As a global leader in diabetes care, we take a specific interest in health in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. We wish to offer our expertise and insights to ensure that the interfaces between health and sustainable development are recognised, prioritised and the individual targets reached.

Our view is that the targets are interlinked and that health is a prerequisite for sustainable development. From a human and economic perspective, efforts to enhance the health for all have potential to yield high returns on investment for all. Consequently, the company will systematically review its contribution to each of the 17 Global Goals and as a healthcare company we will put special emphasis on health and improving the wellbeing and life of people living with non-communicable diseases.

See our position on access to diabetes care.

Below are the targets where we as a company can make an impact by contributing with our knowledge and expertise.

We believe in taking a life-course and person-centred approach to non-communicable diseases worldwide. Particularly in low- and middle-income countries, our goal is to contribute to the development of healthcare systems, which can address the triple-burden of disease relating to maternal and child health, communicable diseases and non-communicable diseases (NCDs)

  • At a primary healthcare level, the strengthening of health systems is a goal in itself, which could lead to the integration of maternal and child health with prevention and control of NCDs
  • We view pregnancy as an opportunity to curb the rising diabetes pandemic by halting the intergenerational transfer of NCD risk factors to the unborn child.

  • We support the WHO Action Plan for the prevention and control on non-communicable diseases, 2013–20201 and welcomes the work of the WHO Global Coordination Mechanism on NCDs. We have set a long-term global target of providing quality diabetes care products to 40 million people by 2020. This ‘40by20’ long-term target is part of our contribution to the World Health Organization’s target of decreasing mortality from non-communicable diseases such as diabetes by 25% by 2025
  • Early diagnosis of both type 2 diabetes and pre-diabetes is essential so that people can engage in proper diabetes management to avoid or delay the onset of diabetes-related complications and the associated human and societal costs
  • We believe that there is a need to recognise that addressing diabetes effectively in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development requires an integrated approach that leverages the lessons learnt over decades in relation to the treatment and management of infectious diseases and builds on existing infrastructures, especially at primary care level
  • We believe that employers worldwide have a central role to play in the prevention and management of diabetes and other NCDs. We provide a healthy and engaging working environment. We strive to enable people to live longer, healthier and more productive lives 
    Learn more about health and safety in Novo Nordisk

We advocate for equal rights and accessibility to healthcare for all as stated in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

  • All people with diabetes should have access to diabetes services and no person should be denied access to effective diabetes care. Access to diabetes care is broader than just access to medicines. Health infrastructures, including the availability of skilled healthcare professionals, and medicines distribution systems constitute a central element of diabetes care and must be strengthened.
    Read more about our access to care
  • Policies that promote integration, synergy, and coordination across disease areas through a multispectral and patient centred approach must be encouraged and prioritised
  • We advocate for greater allocation of Development Assistance for Health (DAH) to NCDs to support developing countries in addressing the increasing burden of diabetes and other NCDs including through funding to support strengthening of health systems
  • We respect that it is the primary responsibility of governments and local organisations’ to provide healthcare in their countries. Our aim is to play an active role in furthering health and, supporting in selected areas where there are critical unmet needs. These efforts are activated through our long-term investments in the World Diabetes Foundation and the Novo Nordisk Haemophilia Foundation.

We believe that cities are important focal points for tackling diabetes as 65% of all people with diabetes live in cities, amounting to 279 million people. By 2045, this proportion is projected to rise to 75% corresponding to almost 473 million people.

We contribute with expertise and insights to ensure that diabetes and other non-communicable diseases on the rise in cities are high on the urbanisation agenda and are addressed by those managing and designing cities.

Learn more about our Cities Changing Diabetes partnership

We are committed to conducting our business in a financially, environmentally and socially responsible way. Climate change has global implications on all three dimensions, and poses a significant threat to human health and development. Therefore taking steps to reduce our impact is both an act of long-term risk mitigation and corporate responsibility.

Read our position on climate change

We have joined the RE100 initiative committing to making our electricity consumption 100% renewable.

We never compromise on business ethics. This is set out in the Novo Nordisk Way, a set of guiding principles which underpin every decision we make. We conduct all activities in an ethical, open and honest manner

Systematic efforts to reduce corruption and bribery are secured through the Business Ethics policy, internal policies and procedures, reviews and trainings of employees.

Read more about our business ethics standards

We believe it is important to create a level playing field for responsible business and contributes in multiple ways in industry and cross sector fora

  • We have been an active subscriber to the UN Global Compact since 2002, and a co-founder and member of the UN Global Compact LEAD from its inception in 2011

  • We support the work to enhance openness and transparency through national or regional Codes of Conduct, Codes of Practice and registers. These include:

    1. European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations Code of Practice

    2. European Commission and Parliament’s Code of Conduct for the Transparency Register

    3. US Code of Lobbying Ethics

    4. US Policy on Giving and Receiving Gratuities, Gifts, Entertainment and Other Things of Value; Bribery

We work to encourage and promote effective public-private partnerships as a means of creating value for all stakeholders. We work in partnership with governments, international organisations, patients and their organisations, civil society, healthcare providers, academia and industry bodies to improve prevention, early detection and standards of care for people with diabetes and other NCDs.

Many of these partnership activities fall under our Defeat Diabetes strategy or promote sustainable business more broadly. 

We believe that it is necessary to establish a formal framework to register, monitor and report on the commitments and actions of all actors, including the private sector, to address the SDGs.

  • As demonstrated by the success of the MDGs, it seems important to adopt solid quantitative indicators for the 169 targets and translate them into specific national targets as soon as possible
  • We account for performance through our integrated annual report. We also work to develop robust metrics to capture impacts of our activities and how these result in creation of shared value for society, stakeholders and the long-term interests of the business. 
Our positions

We have formulated positions on issues of relevance to our business and our role as a global corporate citizen.