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How we support the Sustainable Development Goals

SPI offers a practical way for policymakers to track and report on progress towards the SDGs in a consistent manner, particularly for governments conducting their Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs). And the SPI framework has been successfully adapted in countries, cities and communities of every size thanks to its ability to incorporate locally-relevant data into each index. This flexibility means the index can be used to localize implementation of the SDGs at a more granular level, where change can happen quickest but formal SDG indicators often unavailable or unreliable.

 

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are an ambitious commitment by the world’s leaders to improve the wellbeing of all people and ensure environmental sustainability by 2030. The Social Progress Index (SPI) captures outcomes related to all 17 SDGs in a simple but rigorous framework, making the implementation of the SDGs a tangible reality for social innovators all over the world.

  • Goal 6 – Water and Sanitation: Alarmed by the low levels of social progress in an important region for their supply chain, Coca-Cola and Natura partnered with Ipsos to create a community-level Index in the Amazon region of Carauari, Brazil. This Index has been the foundation for a new development program – a collaboration between citizens, government, business and civil society. Guided by the social progress data, this program has improved water and sanitation infrastructure, providing households with consistent sources of clean water for the first time. They also constructed new river piers to improve transportation during seasonal flooding and increase connectivity with neighboring communities. 

    Goal 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities: With over one-half of the global population living in urban settlements, cities are key pathways to development and to achieving the SDGs. Making cities safe and sustainable means ensuring access to safe and affordable housing, investing in public transport, creating green public spaces, and improving urban planning and management in a way that is both participatory and inclusive. For these reasons, the Social Progress Index has been used to inform and drive policy in cities like Bogotá, Medellín and Manizales in Colombia, Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, London in England, Kopavogur in Iceland, and Madrid in Spain, among others.

    For more, check:

  • Goal 3 – Good Health and Well-Being: In Paraguay, the national government has incorporated the Social Progress Index into its National Development Plan 2030 as a tool to guide public and private investments and to track progress. The insights revealed by the Social Progress Index are already leading to concrete actions: the government doubled budget allocation for nutrition programs and has set a target to reduce child malnutrition to 2% or less by 2018. 

    Goal 9 – Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure: In Costa Rica, a Social Progress Index for the country’s 81 cantons has been adopted as the basis of the new national social innovation strategy Costa Rica Propone, which is led by the Vice President of the Republic and the Presidential Council for Innovation and Human Talent. This Index is part of a national collaborative process to determine the best tools to measure and report on SDG implementation at the local level.

    For more, check:

     

  • Goal 8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth: In Costa Rica, the Social Progress Index in Tourism Destinations has given the government new insights about the impact of tourism on local communities and led to a review of the National Tourism Strategy. For this innovative approach to understanding the interplay between social and economic progress in the tourism sector, the government of Costa Rica received an Award for Innovation in Public Policy & Governance at the UN World Tourism Organization Awards.

    Goal 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities: With over one-half of the global population living in urban settlements, cities are key pathways to development and to achieving the SDGs. Making cities safe and sustainable means ensuring access to safe and affordable housing, investing in public transport, creating green public spaces, and improving urban planning and management in a way that is both participatory and inclusive. For these reasons, the Social Progress Index has been used to inform and drive policy in cities like Bogotá, Medellín and Manizales in Colombia, Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, London in England, Kopavogur in Iceland, and Madrid in Spain, among others.

    For more, check:

TED talk “The global goals we've made progress on -and the ones we haven't”

Watch the 2018 TED talk The global goals we've made progress on -- and the ones we haven't” by the Social Progress Imperative CEO Michael Green

"We are living in a world that is tantalizingly close to ensuring that no one need die of hunger or malaria or diarrhea," says economist Michael Green. To help spur progress, back in 2015 the United Nations drew up a set of 17 goals around important factors like health, education and equality. In this data-packed talk, Green shares his analysis on the steps each country has (or hasn't) made toward these Sustainable Development Goals -- and offers new ideas on what needs to change so we can achieve them."

 

 

     

     

     

    With barely a third of the SDG indicators currently measured in a rigorous manner for a majority of countries, the Social Progress Index addresses a core measurement challenge. The index uses 51 indicators drawn from official UN data but also from globally respected research institutions and polling organizations to provide a comprehensive estimate of SDG performance even where the formal indicators do not exist.

    Unlike the SDGs, which provide a siloed view of progress, the Social Progress Index aggregates data across 12 core areas to create a single social progress score, providing a quick but thorough snapshot of overall progress toward the goals. And its focus on measuring outcomes not inputs appropriately prioritizes the progress a community has made towards the goal, rather than effort expended.

    To promote the adoption and use of the Social Progress Index tool for SDG monitoring, the Social Progress Imperative created an informal group of UN Member States. This group is comprised of countries that are already using or considering using the Social Progress Index as an SDG monitoring and reporting tool, including Paraguay and Costa Rica.

     

    Read the Methodology note on 2030 SPI projections used in the TED talk “Progress Against the Sustainable Development Goals” *

    Read about the Social Progress Imperative’s involvement at the High-Level Political Forum and T20 summit.

    Contact Frank Murillo at fmurillo [at] socialprogress.org to learn more about these applications and opportunities. And see the resources below for more information on how the Social Progress Index is being used to advance SDG monitoring and implementation efforts.

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