The SAFER community present at the global Vision Zero conference in Stockholm

Jun, 28 2023

For two days, the world's elite in road safety gathered in Stockholm to exchange experiences on the subject and pave the way forward towards the global road safety goal of halving the number of road deaths by 2030.

SAFER's core team and many collaboration partners were there to participate in the conversation with high-level representatives from governmental authorities, international organisations, the private sector, academia, policy makers, NGOs, municipalities, and development banks to exchange knowledge and experiences and to discuss the way forward in order to reach the global goals.

It has now been three years since the global ministerial UN conference on road safety in Stockholm and the launch of the nine recommendations in the publication Saving lives beyond 2020 - the next steps. The conference aimed to follow up the progress and gave us to link road safety to other sustainability challenges, to go from visions to implementation, and to take road safety to the next level.

Managing safety by the footprint concept
SAFER hosted a breakfast event where leading organisations working with traffic safety footprint in practice were invited. Together, we explored what we have learned during this three-year period and which actions we need to take to implement the new tool for corporate responsibility on a broader basis. Which obstacles have we found and how can we transform these into driving forces? The workshop participants agreed that the potential for the way of approaching traffic safety is huge, but challenges include for example access to relevant data and getting attention for this matter from the top management. Success factors mentioned were culture, leadership and using procurement as a sub tool for taking a systematic approach in the target-setting.

Well-attended networking dinner and road safety exhibition
As part of the Vision Zero conference, SAFER also hosted a side event together with Business Sweden and Vision Zero Academy to promote the exchange of ideas, knowledge, and technology between the Swedish road safety industry and Vision Zero conference visitors. Sweden’s minister for infrastructure and housing, Andreas Carlson, opened the event and welcomed about 150 guests to Volvo Cars Showroom in Kungsträdgården. During the event, selected SAFER’s partners explored and demonstrated examples of solutions the private sector can offer to take road safety to the next level.

Create momentum by including traffic safety in organisations’ sustainability agenda
The Global Ministerial Conference in Stockholm 2020 marked a real shift. The conference elaborated road safety as an integral part of United Nations 2030 Agenda, where health, climate and equity are the main headings. Road safety has a significant role in the 2030 Agenda not only by having its own target, but also as an enabler for other qualities and ambitions of the society. More importantly, road safety is now on the same level as global warming, equal rights, safe workplaces etc. and has a legitimate access to many processes and tools that could speed up the actions leading to a reduced global road toll. Targets for the sustainability goals are absolute and indivisible. We now also have the United Nations Resolution on Improving Global Road Safety and the Global Plan for the Second Decade of Action for Road Safety to support us.

Some of the topics discussed at the event were the 2030 Agenda as an enabler for road safety and vice versa, the private sector role and engagement, knowledge transfer and capacity building. Moreover, safe modal shift including safety for powered two-wheelers as well as new technologies and innovations were included in the dialogues.

The Vision Zero Conference was organised by the Government Offices of Sweden as a part of Sweden’s chairmanship in the European Commission, the Swedish Transport Administration and the Swedish Innovation Agency Vinnova. The conference was supported by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Bank’s Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF).