The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: 17 Goals Agreed, Now for the Hard Part

23-09-2015

After more than two years of consultations and negotiations, 193 UN member states agreed on 2 August 2015 to a new sustainable development agenda that is as ambitious as it is fraught with potential pitfalls. Titled ‘Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development‘, the agenda will be formally adopted at the UN summit on 25-27 September in New York. With 17 sustainable development goals (SGDs), it aims for an economic and societal transformation, integrating all three pillars of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental. The sectorial scope of the new agenda is enormous, including areas such as migration, industrialisation and energy. The SDGs are universal in nature, creating responsibilities for all countries, spanning domestic development outcomes, assistance to other countries and global public goods. The EU has played a major role in the process and has fought hard for the inclusion of EU values such as human rights and good governance, and for effective implementation and review processes. The ambitious agenda creates implementation challenges at all levels, including indicators and data collection, communication and outreach, the financing challenge and the balance between universality and national ownership.

After more than two years of consultations and negotiations, 193 UN member states agreed on 2 August 2015 to a new sustainable development agenda that is as ambitious as it is fraught with potential pitfalls. Titled ‘Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development‘, the agenda will be formally adopted at the UN summit on 25-27 September in New York. With 17 sustainable development goals (SGDs), it aims for an economic and societal transformation, integrating all three pillars of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental. The sectorial scope of the new agenda is enormous, including areas such as migration, industrialisation and energy. The SDGs are universal in nature, creating responsibilities for all countries, spanning domestic development outcomes, assistance to other countries and global public goods. The EU has played a major role in the process and has fought hard for the inclusion of EU values such as human rights and good governance, and for effective implementation and review processes. The ambitious agenda creates implementation challenges at all levels, including indicators and data collection, communication and outreach, the financing challenge and the balance between universality and national ownership.