Global Policy Watch Blog

SDG Indicators: Cross Threading and Classifying

Throughout the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is the commitment to the integrated nature of sustainable development. The challenge of how to capture this has shown some interesting dynamics, most recently in regard to the global indicators. Statisticians have sought to integrate their work across indicators on decent work and social protection, which can be found in SDGs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, and 16. Similarly indicators on gender equality go across many of the same goals. This cross-cutting dynamic should help to do more rather than less. Disaggregation across the goals should increase in income level, gender, age, and geographic location. Read more…

Obstacles to Women’s Rights and to the SDGs

During the United Nations observance of International Women’s Day 2016, Barbara Adams from Global Policy Forum and Social Watch addresses the obstacles to Women’s Rights: the unfair global trade and investment system and the lack of a debt workout mechanism deviate the resources that should ensure an universal social protection floor.

See the video here.

UN Statistical Commission takes up Global Indicators for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The UN Statistical Commission (UNSC) is comprised of Chief Statisticians from National Statistical Offices (NSOs) and has a working method of decision by majority vote, rather than by consensus. “Data needs are vast and the Data Revolution is reshaping the landscape quickly,” John Pullinger, former chair of the UNSC said in his opening remarks of the 47th session of the Commission. Read more…

What can we expect from the 47th Session of the UN Statistical Commission?

On 8-11 March 2016, the 47th Session of the United Nations Statistical Commission will be held at the UN Headquarters in New York. A major item on their agenda will be the consideration of the global SDG indicator framework, by which to measure progress on achieving the 169 far-reaching SDG targets generated by the Interagency and Expert Group on SDGs (IAEG-SDGs. After several rounds of consultation led by IAEG-SDGs co-chairs Enrique Ordaz (Mexico) and Lisa Bersales (Philippines), 231 indicators have now been agreed upon by the IAEG-SDGs. John Pullinger, Chair of the United Nations Statistical Commission, said that the Commission’s overarching commitment is to make sure “countries have the information they need to ensure that by 2030 no one individual, region or country is left behind.” Read more…

The UN development system: important, yet inconspicuous to Civil Society

The United Nations – a 70-year-old institution – has reached an inflection point and like other institutions, is facing challenges in rapidly demanding times, challenges to which it must adapt in order to survive. Some Member States are asking if this important institution will maintain its relevance and credibility. They’re asking whether the UN development system will be able to be country-led and to deliver to all countries, and in particular demonstrate its commitment to implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Read more…

The UN to discuss Inequality and Taxes

In addition to its full programme (see below), the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations has called for a special meetings in the first six months of 2016 to accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (ASD). The issues to be addressed require ambitious policy changes at national and global levels if the 2030 ASD is to be realized: Inequality and Tax Matters. Read more…

Technology and SDGs

One of the concrete commitments from the Addis Ababa Action Agreement and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2030 ASD) is the Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM). Spearheaded by Brazil and France, the development of the TFM has been described by Sérgio Rodrigues dos Santos of Brazil, as a “testimony to the strength of multilateralism through collective action.” Read more…

World Economic Situation and Prospects 2016

The United Nations has offered its annual assessment of prospects for 2016 in its World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) report. It opened with: “The world economy stumbled in 2015, amid weak aggregate demand, falling commodity prices and increasing financial market volatility in major economies.” In addressing the impact of the downward pressure on economies, UN ASG Lenni Montiel, explained that many countries, “specifically LDCs which rely on commodity exports, will be unable to sustain public spending on health, education, and climate change adaptation and mitigation efforts.” With LDCs reliant on the commodity export – most averaging 16% of GDP from the commodity industry – LDCs will not reach sustainable development goal 8, target 8.1, of 7% economic growth per year in GDP. (See WESP 2016, Box I.1 for more detailed outline of economic prospects for LDCs.) Read more…

Where next for the United Nations Development System?

By Barbara Adams and Sarah Dayringer

The UN has released the advance unedited version of its report of the UN Development System (UNDS), lightly entitled the “Implementation of General Assembly Resolution 67/226 on the Quadrennial Comprehensive Policy Review [QCPR] of operational activities for development of the United Nations system.” The UNDS comprises the activities of some 30 agencies – coordinated by the UN Development Group – and the intergovernmental bodies that provide guidance and oversight, such as the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and its commissions. This report is the key input for the ECOSOC Operational Activities Segment to be held at the UNHQ on 22-24 February 2016. Read more…