SDGs and data for change

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Sustainable Development Goals

“In September 2015, the global community adopted a set of goals to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda. Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years.”

The 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development and their 169 targets and 230 indicators are an agreed blueprint for a sustainable future.

To find out more about the SDGs, visit the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals website.

Image of UN Sustainable Development Goals

Data for change

Indicators to monitor the SDGs have been agreed. But much of the data needed to track progress on these indicators is not currently being collected. In particular, data that can be disaggregated to show the situation of individuals and particular groups in the population remains limited.

Of the 230 indicators agreed by the United Nations Statistical Commission as a practical starting point, 53 make specific reference to women, girls, gender, and/or disaggregation by sex (23% of indicators). Of these 53 gender-related indicators, 68% currently have either limited data or no agreed methodology. So there is much work to be done.

The Statistical Commission has also agreed the principle that ‘Sustainable Development Goal indicators should be disaggregated, where relevant, by income, sex, age, race, ethnicity, migratory status, disability’. This adds around another 20 additional indicators that can be disaggregated by gender.

Collecting data about individuals is essential to getting the data to support targeting of policy and programing towards achieving the global commitment to ‘leave no one behind’. SDG targets can only be considered achieved if they have been met “for all peoples and for all segments of society”.

Agenda 2030 also calls for ‘reaching the furthest behind first’.

As an individual, gender-sensitive measure of multidimensional deprivation, the IDM has a role to play in meeting the data for SDGs challenge.

Of the 53 gender-related indicators, IDM collects data for 25%.

The IDM can provide disaggregated data for some at-risk gender-related indicators. It can also generate data for indicators that do not currently specifically require disaggregated data. The IDM offers a relevant complementary tool, to support better targeting of policies and programs.

In 2015 global leaders agreed that no one should be left behind in building a sustainable future. Measures such as the IDM that reflect more fully the experience of people living in poverty can help track progress – or lack thereof – as we head towards 2030.

Learn more about the IDM

Find out about the measure, methodology and team behind the IDM.

Learn more