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SDG Update - 28 March

29 March 2016 – this week’s SDG Delivery Update provides a compilation of news, opinions, reports, and events on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and related processes, including an ODI report looking at the feasibility of meeting the SDG on halving the number of people living in poverty. 

The 22 March was World Water Day, photo: Water for People . Kate Harawa via flickr.com, creative commons licence


·         Chris Hoy (ODI): Projecting national poverty to 2030. This report provides an overview of current national poverty lines and examines the feasibility of meeting SDG target 1.2 by illustrating what levels of national poverty could exist in 2030. The paper considers a range of scenarios that explore the viability of the SDG target and the crucial role governments will play in choosing whether to change (or maintain) national poverty lines, noting the implications for both global and national policy. It concludes that most countries can achieve the SDG 1.2 if either pro-poor or high growth rates prevail, but cautions that the continuation of current trends will lead to most countries failing to reach the target.

·         Note by the UN Secretary-General: Monitoring commitments and actions in the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development. This note highlights the main findings of the first Report of the Inter-agency Task Force, as prepared for the inaugural session of the ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development follow-up under the theme “Financing for sustainable development: Follow-up to the Addis Ababa Action Agenda.” A tentative program of the first FFD forum to be held 18-20 April 2016 is available here. Informal consultations to discuss the FFD Forum were held 23 March 2016; a note on the consultations from the co-facilitators is here.

·         Debapriya Bhattacharya (Southern Voice), Refaya Rashmin and Ashraful Haque Mahfuze (Centre for Policy Dialogue): Strengthening Accountability in Development Cooperation: Role of GPEDC Monitoring Indicators in the context of Agenda 2030 and AAAA. This paper aims to locate possible integration of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC) Monitoring Framework in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA) with a view to strengthen accountability in development cooperation.

·         Molly Elgin-Cossart and Rahul Chandran (Center for American Progress): Designing Better Accountability Mechanisms for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This paper examines five existing accountability mechanisms—the Annual Ministerial Review (AMR); the Development Cooperation Forum (DCF); the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Article IV consultations; OECD peer reviews; and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM)—to identify two primary pathways for developing accountability mechanisms to influence SDG implementation: the power of inspiration and evidence-based learning. A summary of the report is available here, an overview blog by the authors is here, and a press release is here.

·         OECD: DACnews March 2016. This monthly newsletter from the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee covers the 2016 DAC High Level Meeting, a workshop organized by the Development Co-operation Directorate, aid innovations, and an article on the revised ODA peace and security directives by Peter Moors, Director-General of Development Co-operation, Belgium, among other features.

·         Mila R. Ivanova and Frances Joanne Mountford (ShareAction): Transforming Our World Through Investment: An introductory study of institutional investors’ role in supporting the SDGs. This report examines how institutional investors are beginning to interact with the SDGs, and paints a picture of their current and future plans for engagement. The authors identify barriers faced and provide recommendations for overcoming them. Backing the report is a survey conducted with investors from around the world with a total of $5.9 trillion in assets under management. A press release on ShareAction’s website is here, and a related blog by Charlie Crossley is available here.

·         Asia-Europe Environment Forum (ENVforum): Two case studies on SDG Implementation in Viet Nam and SDG Implementation in Poland. These studies focus on national level challenges related to the implementation of SDGs in three thematic areas: 1) poverty and inequality, 2) sustainable agriculture, and 3) energy and climate change. Both case studies offer policy recommendations on the implementation of SDGs in the aforementioned thematic areas by assessing each country’s existing institutional arrangements and key sustainable development policies. The publications aim to support countries in implementing the 2030 Agenda by offering a selection of thematic case studies based on practical experience and strategic guidance for national level implementation of SDGs.

·         POST 2015: Prescriptions for Effective Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in Japan. This report issues a non-exhaustive list of ‘prescriptions’ for Japan’s implementation of the SDGs  (which it clusters into nine thematic areas) so that the country can deliver domestic progress whilst contributing to the Goals’ achievement at a global scale. It notes that a translation exercise is necessary to identify gaps, and that Japan already has many SDG-relevant policies already in place.

·         Implementation of the Global 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in and by Germany. In this position paper, German civil society organizations adopt a joint position that calls on the German government to draw up a comprehensive and binding plan to implement the 2030 Agenda. Recommendations are made around each of the 17 Goals.

·         UNDESA: SD in Action Newsletter, March 2016. This month’s newsletter features articles on the 2016 HLPF, the launch of the Partnerships for SDGs online platform, a SIDS newsletter, and the Technology Facilitation Mechanism, among other stories.

·         UNEP: Options for Decoupling Economic Growth from Water Use and Water Pollution (2016). This report produced by the International Resource Panel provides an independent assessment of technological and policy-relevant tools and approaches that can be used to achieve the decoupling of water resources from economic development while considering environmental and welfare impacts over the full life cycle. A summary for policymakers is also available, teasing out key messages and highlighting major findings.



·         International Day of Forests 2016. March 21st marked the UN Forum on Forests’ celebration of the day, under the theme “forests and water.” An event program and further information is available above.

·         World Water Day 2016. World Water Day was March 22nd, under the theme “Better water, better jobs.” Further information is available above, and a write-up by IISD with links to press releases is available here.

·         P3a Conference 2016. This conference held 22-24 March 2016 in Aruba was the result of collaboration between the United Nations and the Government of Aruba. The meeting was to strengthen international cooperation and mobilize efforts to achieve the SDGs, particularly through the lens of public-private partnerships and the SIDS Global Business Network.

·         60th Commission on the Status of Women. The sixtieth session of the Commission on the Status of Women took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 14 to 24 March 2016. Further information is available above.



  • Heather Grady (Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors) in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. “Finding New Ways to Give.”


This update is compiled by WRI, a member of IRF — a collaboration of 10 international research institutions providing critical thinking, integrated analysis and awareness raising on the sustainable development agenda. Suggested items for inclusion are welcome - please e-mail Adam Fishman (afishman@wri.org) with suggestions, questions or comments. To subscribe to this weekly digest, along with other WRI newsletters, please visit this sign-up page on WRI’s website.