Global Philadelphia and the Sustainable Development Goal Mural Project




"We are so proud to be leading the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) right here in our World Heritage City – Philadelphia."  

- Zabeth Teelucksingh, President







A unique, multi-layered initiative, our SDG campaign combines a creative mix of ingredients: the interpretive power of art, the knowledge and resources of our local academic communities, the strong will of corporate and individuals sponsors and more. This combined with the financial contributions to local nonprofit organizations, truly exemplifies the shared goals within our city, and the community who supports us.

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Project calls attention to crucial sustainability issues with a timeline to make significant progress by 2030. GPA and local partners have created a comprehensive set of public artworks to raise awareness of these 17 elemental goals. But the project’s impact goes beyond the art.

The Five Ps

Taken one by one, the 17 SDG concepts may seem overwhelming in a world that is rapidly changing. But there is a simple framework to the goals, called the Five Ps.

  1. People Interlinks between 17 SDGs and the 5P principles: people, prosperity, plant, peace and partnership. Source: Modified from SDG Services [7]
  2. Prosperity 
  3. Peace
  4. Planet
  5. Partnership


The People, Planet, and Prosperity areas contain sets of goals relevant to each category. For example, among the People goals, you’ll find Zero Hunger. The Planet set includes Clean and Affordable Energy, and the Prosperity group includes Decent Work and Economic Growth.

Peace and Partnership are singular objectives. Of course, partnership is the necessary goal that ties all the others together, and partnership is what has made the SDG Mural Project a success.

Photo credit & Photo license


More Than Just Public Art

GPA and colleagues designed the project to have an impact beyond the visual aspect of the artwork. Each SDG installation is a collaboration between GPA, artists, sponsors, and nonprofit grant recipients.

The SDG Mural Project provides opportunities for outstanding artists to create relevant works on public display. Beyond the dynamic art, the endeavor also provides grant money in the amount of $3,000 to local nonprofits and educational institutions doing related work. Each chosen grantee receives increased visibility of their work thanks to local news broadcasts. 

This grant also brings forth a broader educational opportunity for the public, allowing Philadelphia residents to be acculurated on the importance of Sustainable Development in a variety of forms each time they pass a mural. Over the course of numerous unveilings, students have read poetry and performed music and dances, prominent public officials have spoke on the progress of the goals, residents and professionals from different sectors have had the opportunity to network, and artists have offered a view of their own creative vision for sustainability.


GPA’s Role

GPA initiated the program in 2020, deciding early to accompany each work with relevant grant awards to community groups and nonprofits.

Our role is to find sponsors and raise public awareness about these essential seventeen goals. After securing funding, we connect the sponsors, artists, and local nonprofits and businesses that embodied a particular goal, and then worked to activate it within that community.

GPA aligns the grant money with relevant organizations that are active in their communities, such as when Thurgood Marshall was the face of the mural in Center City at Project Home for SDG #16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions. GPA interns and staffers work closely with partners to push each deliverable to completion.

As each mural reaches its reveal date, we then promote the new, issue-driven artwork with press releases, our social media presence, online newsletters, walking tours, and meet and greets with the artists.

GPA is grateful for the opportunity to do meaningful work with many partners from Philadelphia’s impressive communities of artists, philanthropists, leaders, educators, and activists.


SDG Murals List

The 17 SDG murals have created 17 artist’s commissions and multiple grants to deserving organizations. They have also sparked countless thoughts and discussions on campuses and city streets. The beautiful, provocative works continue to raise awareness of sustainability issues for Philadelphians.

Want to see for yourself? Here’s where you can find these unique pieces of meaningful art.

Follow the links to learn more about each SDG Mural and how they align with the five P’s of the SDGS: People, Prosperity, Planet, Peace and Partnerships.


 Our SDG public art murals are appearing on walls all around our World Heritage City!

Click on the map icons to see for yourself. Be sure to plan a visit and take some pics.
Tag @globalphiladelphia #SDGPhl and send it to us at


SDG #1 Mural Art at ShopRite at Parkside,

sponsored by John and Susan Smith

Artist: Gabe Tiberino


SDG #3 Mural Art at vybe urgent care,

sponsored by vybe urgent care

Artist: David Guinn


SDG #4 Mural Art at Samuel Gompers Elementary School,

sponsored by Saint Joseph's University

Artist: Isabella Akhtarshenas


SDG #4 Mural Art at Saint Joseph University,

sponsored by Saint Joseph's University

Artist: Arthur Haywood


SDG #5 Mural Art at Friends Select School,

sponsored by Glenmede Trust Company

Artist: Barbara Smolen


SDG #6 Mural Art at the Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University

sponsored by The Academy of Natural Sciences

Artist: Miriam Singer


SDG #7 Mural Art at FDR Park Boathouse

sponsored by UPenn Kleinman Energy Center for Energy Policy

Artist: Eliza Nobles


SDG #10 Mural Art at Temple University,

sponsored by Temple University

Artist: Mat Tomezsko


SDG #11 Mural Art at Kipp Elementary

sponsored by TD Charitable Foundation

Artist: Nazeer Sabree


SDG #16 Mural Art at Project HOME Women of Change,

sponsored by The Harry and Catherine Halloran Foundation

Artist: Russell Craig


SDG #17 Mural Art at St. Mary’s Interparochial School, 

sponsored by St. Mary’s Interparochial School

Artist: Isabelle Cress




“I’m so encouraged by the organization embracing the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. There’s over 700 companies around the world, and every UN member organization has adopted these 17 Sustainable Development Goals, and we’re very proud to also be guided by them in our corporate social responsibility program, EarthView.

"We were so encouraged to see a Philadelphia organization taking such a leadership role in it. You’re all to be congratulated for that, and I look forward to how we continue to push those objectives forward.”

 – Jay H. Shah, CEO, Hersha Hospitality Trust (2019 Globy Acceptance Speech)




How does our SDG Campaign Work? 

Philadelphia walls will deliver SDG Goal Messaging:

The awareness-raising facet of this campaign will lead the way for other elements. Over the course of three years, beautiful works of mural arts are painted at strategic locations across the city. Each one will be an original work of art, painted by a prominent Philadelphia artist. Philadelphia will become an art gallery, devoted to the Sustainable Development Goal movement.


Sponsors of the paintings will enjoy the distinction of being identified with a goal, and enabling great art! 

Sponsorship fees will be donated to a nonprofit organization doing the real work of a particular SDG goal. The campaign will give greater visibility to these nonprofits and provide example-setting funding.  

Hosting sites 

Hosting sites will be admired for displaying the canvasses at their locations, and university-led research projects will accompany each SDG project.