Under the theme ‘Building Resilience through Hope’, and against the background of the COVID pandemic and global insecurity, the General Assembly’s opening will underscore the need for greater urgency and ambition to end the pandemic and ensure an equitable and green recovery and accelerated implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

As we work to end the pandemic everywhere and reboot the global economy, the choices we make will either secure human, economic and environmental health for generations to come, or reinforce old patterns that are destroying nature and driving societal division. An inclusive, sustainable and resilient COVID-19 recovery is critical to setting the world on course toward a just transition to a 1.5°C pathway that will also create jobs, reduce inequalities and improve health and food security, benefiting people, planet and the economy.

Our greatest challenge - which is at the same time our greatest opportunity - is to use this crisis to turn the tide, pivot towards a better future for all, leveraging increased and more effective international cooperation.

In addition to the General Debate, this year’s meeting will kick off a series of international UN conferences in 2021 that are expected to highlight action and solutions that will ignite the transformations needed to secure healthy, peaceful and prosperous lives for all. Further high-level events at UNGA will underscore these lead themes.

Women wears a mask
20 September 2021

SDG Moment

The 2nd SDG Moment to take stock of the 2030 Agenda will take place as we experience a deeply uneven response to the pandemic which risks creating a two-tier recovery, with significant implications for SDG progress.

Man work in front of the computer
21 September 2021

General Debate

From 21 to 27 September 2021, Heads of State and Government will address the General Assembly – in a hybrid format combining in-person and online speeches – following the theme for the 76th session: "Building resilience through hope - to recover from COVID-19, rebuild sustainability, respond to the needs of the planet, respect the rights of people, and revitalize the United Nations".

Two women look at an exhibit
22 September 2021

20th Anniversary of Durban Declaration

The 20th anniversary of the Durban Declaration and High-Level Event come at a time when the global movement against racism and racial discrimination has created new momentum to place racial equality and equity at the centre of the global and national agendas.

Two woman picking tomatoes at a vegetable garden
23 September 2021

Transforming Food Systems

The UN Food Systems Summit, held during the UN General Assembly in New York on September 23, is setting the stage for global food systems transformation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

A group of people demonstrating in a plantation
23 September 2021

Security Council Debate on
Climate and Security

Climate change and climate-related disasters can exacerbate risks that lead to conflict and insecurity. The Security Council Debate provides the opportunity to explore this pressing topic.

Solar panels
24 September 2021

High-Level Energy Dialogue

A sustainable energy transformation is crucial to address climate change and poverty and we’re running out of time. The High-Level Dialogue on Energy aims to advance action on SDG 7 and toward net-zero emissions and universal access to energy.


Additional highlights from UNGA


16-24 September 2021


Through meaningful content collaborations with leading media organisations, the SDG Media Zone will carry conversations spotlighting the transformation needed to achieve the SDGs.

22-24 September 2021


To highlight the ecosystem-wide solutions, plans, and investments needed to impact people’s lives and the future of our planet, the SDG Action Zone will run through the high-level week.

21-24 September 2021


Called the Interspecies Assembly, a video art installation is to be projected nightly at 8 pm on the north wall of the iconic UN Secretariat building in New York City.

20-25 September 2021


The ‘World in Progress II’ art installation will capture the artwork of children’s dreams of tomorrow in the grounds of the UNHQ.