More from UNDESA Vol 20, No. 08 - August 2016

The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2016

The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2016 is the Secretary-General’s inaugural report on the SDGs and was launched on 19 July 2016 in New York, during the Ministerial Segment of the High-level Political Forum. It presents data and analysis on the SDGs for a wide audience with charts, infographics and analysis on selected indicators for which data are already available. 

The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2016 is the first account of where the world stands at the beginning of implementation of the 2030 Agenda.  At the start of our journey, one in eight people still live in extreme poverty; nearly 800 million people suffer from hunger; an estimated 5.9 million children die before they reach age 5; 1.1 billion people live without electricity; and water scarcity affects more than 2 billion people. The 2030 agenda promises to leave no one behind and to reach the most vulnerable first. The report stresses that several population groups remain at large disadvantage. The statistics presented in the report show how important data are for systematic follow-up and review of progress and to provide evidence for decision-making at all levels. The data requirements for the global indicators are vast and unprecedented, and constitute a tremendous challenge to all countries, calling for coordinated data-generation efforts involving stakeholders worldwide.

Accompanying the report is the Global SDG indicators database, which was also launched on 19 July 2016. This database is the clearinghouse for data on the global SDG indicators and includes both country level data as well as regional and global aggregates. The metadata for each indicator and data series will accompany the data. The SDG indicators global database will be under continuous development, adding new data visualization tools and graphs in order to make the database accessible and useful to a wide audience. This database is managed by the United Nations Statistics Division of UN-DESA.

The report is prepared by the Statistics Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, based on data and information provided by the United Nations system and other international agencies.

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The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2016

New Report Finds that Stronger Bridge between Science and Policies is Needed to Achieve Sustainable Development Goals

Understanding the scientific basis for action will be needed to achieve the ambitious and transformative goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, according to a new report issued by the United Nations during the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.

The Global Sustainable Development Report 2016, an assessment of a broad array of scientific literature pertaining to the sustainable development agenda, was prepared by UN DESA and draws on the technical expertise of 245 scientists and experts.

The Report concludes that “if no one is to be left behind in 2030, the notion of inclusiveness cannot be treated as an afterthought. Rather, it should be an integral part of institution design and functioning; of research and development, and of infrastructure planning and development, to mention only topics covered in this report.”

Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Wu Hongbo said the GSDR “underscores the importance of preserving a window for the interaction between science and policy at the High Level Political Forum.” He added, “Science is needed more than ever to inform the implementation of the ambitious new Agenda. In turn, science needs to be responsive to the questions that this new Agenda puts forward. ”

According to the Report, whether particular strategies succeed in reaching those left behind depend on many factors, from country-specific circumstances, to their design, targeting methods and practical implementation. Examples of interventions reviewed for the report that aim to reach the furthest behind first include targeting those suffering the most from stunting, area-based interventions targeting the poorest locations, and strategies to provide shelter for homeless people.

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Global Sustainable Development Report 2016


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