Developments like rapidly advancing climate change should be a wake-up call for us

Timotheus Höttges CEO Deutsche Telekom

3 questions for Timotheus Höttges

Mr. Höttges, the world is facing enormous climate-related and social challenges. Are we heading toward an impasse or do you see ways how we can tackle these challenges successfully?I don't see an impasse, but rather a turning point. Developments like rapidly advancing climate change, worldwide wealth inequalities and dwindling resources should be a wake-up call for us. As threatening as these developments are, sticking our collective head in the sand is not acceptable to me. As citizens of the world, we should stand together and address global problems together, whether they are in Europe or worldwide. We can and have to overcome borders in order to successfully tackle global challenges. The member states of the United Nations (UN) have set the course with their adoption of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. The aim is to enable economic development and prosperity – in line with social justice and taking account of the ecological limits of global growth. All of the dimensions of sustainable development were therefore included for the first time - from the fight against poverty to global environmental changes. The core of the 2030 Agenda comprises 17 goals: the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).Ending poverty in the world, ending hunger, getting a handle on climate change - no small tasks that the United Nations have undertaken - how will this happen?The SDGs are likely the most ambitious goals that the world community has ever set for itself; goals that they want to implement in a short time frame of less than 5,000 days. Of course, these goals are not merely a guide for political activities in the coming years – they apply to us all. We are all jointly responsible for achieving these goals: the political and economic arenas, civil society as well as each individual with his or her personal conduct. And we need changes fast. Developments that focus on people and protect our planet. And this is where information and communication technologies and digital solutions come into play. They enable such fast changes, offer new opportunities for shaping how we live together on this planet and are a central key to sustainable development.How does "digitization" figure in this and what is Deutsche Telekom's contribution?It's simple: digitization connects, and not only people with people. Also people with machines. Bees with beekeepers. Cows with farmers. Cars with available parking spots. Washing machines with solar power plants. Digitization helps save valuable resources everywhere thanks to the simple exchange of information. Take water as an example. When a sensor measures how much water the field needs and sends the information to the sprinkler over the Net, the sprinkler can deliver the exact quantity needed. This way no drop is wasted. According to the SMARTer2030 study, 180 million liters of water can be saved in the agricultural industry by 2030.

A prerequisite for digital solutions is cross-boundary and global connectivity, which is one of our core competencies. Every year in Germany alone, we invest about four billion euros in expanding our network infrastructure, more than any of our competitors. We also contribute to sustainable development with many of our products, solutions and activities. Our customers can use our smart home solutions to more effectively monitor, control and reduce their energy consumption (SDG 13). Our broadband build-out gives many people access to digital education media (SDG 4). Our services in the e-health area improve medical care (SDG 3), and our cloud-based solutions help save energy and other resources in many sectors (SDG 13). We have committed ourselves to the SDGs and want to play a key role in achieving these goals. In this edition you will find some examples of where and how we are active.

M any people are currently questioning Europe. How about you? Telekom CEO Tim Höttges says: "We don't want to build walls. We don't want hate, or division. We want to share." Yes, not everything goes well in Europe at the moment. But – is this the right time for quarreling? There are massive challenges ahead of us. Soon, we won't have enough water. Super rich, or extremely poor – society is in danger of breaking apart. Millions of children are still dying every year because they don't have enough to eat. People are fleeing in droves from suppression and wars.

17 common goals for a better future together. Dead­line 2030. Telekom fully suports these goals.

The world is coming apart. In order to restore a permanent balance, we cannot afford to think about breaking up Europe. We need to move closer together. We need to stick together. Around the turn of the millennium, the 189 members of the United Nations lead the way. The came together for a master plan: the Millennium Development Goals. With not less ambitious a vision than making the world a better place. Starting with halfing poverty and hunger in the world in only 15 years, up to better environmental protections. The first part has already been completed successfully by the states. And they found the required courage for the next steps. As a sequel to the Millennium Development Goals, in 2016, the UN formulated the "Sustainable Development Goals". 17 common goals for a better future. Deadline: 2030.

Sustainable development goal 2 Ending hunger

Ending hunger, food safety, better food and promoting sustainable farming – that's the UN's second sustainable development goal. This goal should be attained by 2030. Our contribution

Sustainable development goal 4 High quality education

Guaranteeing access to inclusive, equal opportunities, and high quality education as well as a chance for life-long learning - that's the fourth sustainable development goal of the United Nations. Our contribution

Sustainable development goal 6 Clean water

Availability and sustainable management of water and sanitary provisions for all – That's the sixth sustainable development goal of the United Nations. Our contribution

Sustainable development goal 8 Decent work & a growing economy

The Supplier Development Program is a true win-win situation. It creates better working conditions at supplier companies, thereby improving employee loyalty and motivation, which in turn increases product quality and productivity. Our contribution

Sustainable development goal 9 Innovation

Building a resilient infrastructure, advancing inclusive and sustainable industrialization and supporting innovation – That's the ninth sustainable development goal of the United Nations. The goal should be reached by 2030. Our contribution

Sustainable development goal 11 Sustainable cities

With innovative solutions, we participate in the transformation of towns into smart cities. In this way, we support towns to grow sustainably and offer more comfort and safety to their citizens. Our contribution

Sustainable development goal 13 Climate protection

To take immediate measure for fighting climate change and its effects – That's the thirteenth sustainable development goal of the United Nations. Our contribution

Telekom fully backs these goals. And has a powerful tool: digitization. This issues takes a look at the Sustainable Development Goals and makes the achievements Telekom has already reached come alive. And it shows how you, too, can achieve a lot with only a little effort. Read, and find out how! Have a lot of fun browsing!