At a high-level breakfast event on the Post-2015 Agenda in New York this morning attended by the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Save the Children presented its new report “Getting to Zero: How we can be the generation that ends poverty.”

In light of the current discussions on how to take the post-2015 development framework forward, the organizers reminded participants that an end to extreme poverty is within our reach. They propose a number of ‘zero goals’ which aim to finish the job that the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) started. Key to achieving these include addressing income inequality and improving governance.

The aim of the research presented in the report was to project future rates of change for several dimensions of poverty, and to see whether zero goals could realistically be achieved under ‘business as usual’ trajectories. If not, might macro-level improvements in the distribution of income and quality of governance help to bend the curve towards zero?

Results suggest that if current trends in both areas continue, we are highly unlikely to see the achievement of zero goals by 2030, even with strong economic growth. If income inequality is reduced and governance improved, however, global child mortality rates could be brought down to 20 per 1,000 live births (from 67 in 1990), and 98 percent of children who start primary school reach the final grade. Numbers could be even further improved with the scaling up of poverty reduction programmes.