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SDG Synergies Digest – 10 July 2017

The SDG Synergies Digest (formerly the SDG Delivery Update) is a weekly compilation of news, opinions, reports and events on the Sustainable Development Goals and their implementation. The Digest also addresses synergies between the Goals and related frameworks, particularly the climate change agenda.


  • IGES and UN Global Compact Network Japan: SDGs and Business in Practice: Early Actions by Japanese Private Companies. This report provides an overview of current domestic and international trends related to private sector engagement on the SDGs. It outlines SDG-related actions of Japanese companies—based on the findings of an online survey targeting a total of 233 GCNJ member and associated companies/organizations—to review the current status of these actions and identify distinguishing features, offering recommendations on potential roles and expectations of stakeholders in deliver the SDGs.
  • Felix Dodds (Tellus Institute): Private sector contribution to financing the Sustainable Development. This paper outlines the focus in the UN system on, in particular, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting by companies, the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), the UNEP Inquiry recommendations and finally on the recommendations put forward for the President of the General Assembly by a 2016 Brookings Report. It takes stock of the history of the issue at the UN and maps the most important stakeholders that could support this agenda.
  • Together 2030: Voluntary National Reviews: What are countries prioritizing? This report reviews main messages from 38 of the 44 countries presenting Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) at the 2017 High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) starting 10 July at UN headquarters in New York. The purpose of the review is to provide information to civil society stakeholders for their engagement at the HLPF, and to make recommendations for VNRs in 2018 and beyond. Summarized messages are here, and an annex of country reviews is here.
  • Davis Adieno (CIVICUS): Citizen Data around Governance for the Sustainable Development Goals. This paper describes the use of citizen data in the context of SDG implementation, given that civic space is limited and that SDG 16 will not be reviewed at the HLPF until 2019. It notes difficulties around data availability or methodology to track tier II and III indicators. Adieno also notes that although citizen data complements official data through a broad range of approaches and technologies, there is broad consensus that it cannot replace it, but that citizen data is indeed useful in plugging data gaps or checking the accuracy and quality of government data.


  • G20 Summit. This summit was held 7-8 July 2017 in Hamburg, Germany. Further information is available at the above link.
  • 29th African Union Summit. This summit took place 27 June to 4 July in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on the theme “Harnessing the demographic dividend through investments in youth.” Further documentation is available at the above link, and a write-up by Catherine Benson Wahlen for IISD is available here.


WRI is a member of the IRF — a collaboration of 10 international research institutions providing critical thinking, integrated analysis and raising awareness around the 2030 Agenda. Further work can be found on www.irforum.org and all 10 partner websites.

We welcome submissions of any materials for this digest that you would like to see included during the week. Please e-mail Adam Fishman (afishman@wri.org) with suggested items to post, questions or comments. To subscribe to this weekly digest, along with other WRI newsletters, please visit this sign-up page on WRI’s website.