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3 questions to Jeroo Billimoria, Co-founder of One Family Foundation and Catalyst 2030

Published 9 June 2023 in News

On June 22 and 23, 2023, a Summit for a New Global Financing Pact will be held in Paris, organized by France. Many leaders from States, governments, international organizations, civil society and the private sector will be invited to discuss solutions for financing global development and the climate transition. 

In order to decipher the stakes of this Summit, Focus 2030 aims to gather and highlight the point of view of organizations that are expert in their respective fields and is conducting a series of interviews with representatives of governments, international organizations, NGOs, think tanks, and others. 

Discover our Special Edition about the Summit for a New Global Financing Pact and all the interviews with experts conducted ahead of the Summit.


Interview with Jeroo Billimoria, Co-founder of One Family Foundation and Catalyst 2030

Written interview received on June 6, 2023.

Focus 2030: You are the co-founder of One Family Foundation, which incubates Catalyst 2030, an organisation whose aim is to achieve the SDGs by 2030 through cooperation, innovation and collective action. The Summit for a New Global Financing Pact aims to identify solutions to mobilise additional funding to tackle global poverty and climate change through a reform of the international financial architecture and innovative financing mechanisms. To what extent do you see this Summit as an opportunity to mobilise both global poverty and climate change constituencies?


Jeroo BillimoriaThis Summit is a golden opportunity to meaningfully prompt large-scale global financial reforms. There are four key steps necessary to making this happen.

1. Put development back in the hands of the community
Putting the power back in the hands of those affected is not only ethical, it is logical. By collaborating with community members to identify goals, develop plans and create collaborative relationships internally and with external actors sustainability can be baked into development—all while building on community strengths and local leadership.

2. Fund social innovators locally
Social innovators are usually members of the local communities and have been “living” the challenge for years. As such, they have developed solutions that have community buy-in, source local materials and populations and have proven track records of doing exactly what they have set out to do. The Turning Wheels report, published in May 2023 by members of the Catalyst 2030 network, highlights the incredible power of innovative, locally developed and implemented solutions to achieve the SDGs.

3. Create efficiencies in how aid is deployed
When solutions from the frontlines are funded, they are very efficient, very successful, and lose far less money to planning and administration than organisations which are non based in and led by the community. A study from Sharetrust estimates that total cost savings as a result of shifting 25% of UN/INGO ODA directly to local intermediaries would result in cost savings of 4.7 billion USD annually.

4. Implement three simple and innovative funding mechanisms

  • Implementation of the One Cent Principle contribution that will collect one cent per transaction on all digital credit card payments (annual contribution of 4.27 billion USD by 2026) as well as on international financial transfers (revenue of 153 million USD annually)
  • Return of subsidies/tax breaks by private companies once they turn a profit (just based on the US and EU data over 500 billion USD (subject to confirmation) could be generated annually)
  • Implementing a People and Planet tax of 2% on the global top 5,000 corporations (to mobilise 147 billion USD) and of 10% on the excessive luxury market (to mobilise 120 billion USD per year).

In developing the new financing “toolbox” at this Summit, there is a real opportunity for world leaders to commit to seeing frontline solutions and supporting them on global institutional levels. The New Allies handbook lays out simple, actionable and innovative ways this collaboration can happen. Partnering with social innovators, giving them a voice and a seat at the table will help ensure local communities needs are heard, innovative solutions are brought to the forefront and acceleration of the SDGs can be achieved.

Focus 2030The Summit for a New Global Financing Pact envisages encouraging private sector participation to mobilise more development and climate funds. How can we mobilise resources from the private sector?


Jeroo Billimoria: The discussion around mobilising resources from the private sector should not only be about new funds, but also about improving the existing business environment to become more sustainable and ethical. Product life cycle, accounting for negative externalities and creating better value for all involved throughout the value chain. By partnering with social innovators the private sector will be able to better account for these things whilst also creating better outcomes for the communities involved.

1. Commit to Circular Production and accounting for externalities
The current production model tends to skew towards short term use and disposal, which contributes heavily to the estimated 2 billion tonnes of landfill destined waste produced across the globe every year. Not only is this irresponsible, it is fundamentally unsustainable. The private sector must commit to creating higher quality and longer lasting products that can be repaired and when they have reached the end of their lifespan, recovered and broken down into elements that can be reused. Typically this last piece has been left to consumers and municipalities to “figure out”. The result of this is overflowing waste and valuable materials being destroyed. Where a circular model is not possible, in energy production for instance, the negative externalities should be accounted for and offset, in as much as is possible.

2. Commit to Partnerships with social innovators throughout value chain
Ethical material sourcing for products is one of the simplest things the private sector can actually do to create less damaging products benefiting local communities. By partnering with social innovators throughout the value chain, the private sector can source materials that are created/extracted in a less damaging way, creates sustainable livelihoods for those involved and supports holistic economic development in communities. When this has been done well, the economic and development knock-on effects have been substantial, delivering multiple benefits not only for those in the value chain, but also for the companies themselves with a better public image and greater employee satisfaction. Some good examples of this can be found in the Catalysing Collaborations report.

Focus 2030The polycrisis resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine and climate change is jeopardising the attainment of the SDGs. How can this Summit be an important moment to galvanise the international community and get it back on track with the 2030 agenda before the UN SDG Summit in September 2023 and forthcoming international moments (G20, COP28...)? What concrete outcomes would you expect to get the SDGs on track?


Jeroo Billimoria: The international community has deliberated and debated ; the war in Ukraine and the global pandemic have shown a global willingness to come together when a challenge or injustice is in front of us. Getting the SDGs on track is impossible without this same global willingness to sufficiently fund them and create meaningful partnerships with social innovators.

1. Partnering with social innovators
Local social innovators often serve as proximate leaders to the communities they service. Concrete commitments should be made to localise aid efficiently and appropriately by working with the global networks of social innovators. This allows more easy identification of pre-vetted organisations with innovative solutions, created by and for those at the frontline. A first step in giving a voice to the social innovators and creating the environment for partnerships to flourish could be achieved through the creation of a special advocate for social innovation within the office of the Secretary General. The person would be responsible for curating the spaces for the social innovators, government, the private sector, funding agents and civil society to come together to create meaningful partnerships, policies and practices for the achievement of the SDGs.

2. Collection and disbursement of funds
New funding mechanisms for the SDGs can deliver critically needed injections of new capital. However, oversight and disbursement will create a challenge. A global body can be created with the mandate to collect money from the responsible authorities into a fund, as well as oversee its distribution. The fund should have oversight from the UN and should follow consensus building principles, as laid out by the UN Global Compact and the Kampala Principles. The fund should follow the principals of subsidiarity, collaboration, accountability and non-exploitation and must take a whole of society approach – including the community, social innovators, government and the private sector in the design of distribution mechanisms.


  • The opinions expressed in this interview are those of Jeroo Billimoria and do not necessarily reflect the positions of Focus 2030.

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