The SDGs need a new measure of GDP

08 Dec 2015 by Degol Hailu, Senior Advisor for Sustainable Development, Bureau for Policy and Programme Support, UNDP

GDP per capita growth can go up while household income decreases. Inequality is an outcome of such divergence. Photo : UNDP in Zimbabwe
One of the proposed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is achieving economic growth. The target of goal 8 is to achieve “at least 7 per cent gross domestic product (GDP) growth per annum in the least developed countries”. Achieving 7 per cent growth is in the high range. In a rush to meet such a target, social and environmental outcomes may be compromised. … Read more

Avoid stigma when measuring SDG achievements

10 Sep 2015 by By Degol Hailu, Senior Advisor, UNDP

The methodology used to measure MDG progress underestimated the relative good performance made by the least developed countries, particularly Sub-Saharan African countries. Photo: UNDP Burkina Faso
At the upcoming United Nations Summit, member states will reach an agreement on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Development practitioners will then engage in monitoring the achievements of the goals and targets. As was the case with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), country, regional and global level progress reports are likely to proliferate. Just to recall, MDG monitoring reports were not free from criticism … Read more

The Addis Ababa Action Agenda: A step forward on financing for development?

21 Jul 2015 by Gail Hurley, Policy Specialist on Development Finance

HaitiThe need to build capacities in risk preparedness and to ensure that the international community is able to respond to shocks with timely and adequate financial support is acknowledged in the Addis Abeba Action Agenda. Photo: UNDP in Haiti
The Addis Ababa Action Agenda lays out the steps the international community promises to take to fund the world’s new sustainable development agenda – to be agreed in New York in September. This new document must also chart a path for how we can address the challenges which have emerged – or become more pronounced – since the 2002 Monterrey Consensus, such as climate change, accelerated environmental degradation and inequality. So did we get our ‘Monterrey Plus’ in Addis Ababa? In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues. … Read more

Through better giving, improving lives

16 Jul 2015 by Douglas Broderick, Resident Coordinator of the United Nations in Indonesia and the UNDP Resident Representative

panasonic lantern in Sumba, IndonesiaApproximately 28 million people live below the poverty line in Indonesia. Photo: Panasonic
As the fasting month of Ramadhan – a time of introspection and good works – comes to a close, it seems appropriate to reflect on the ways we can better strive to help those who need it most. Engaging with givers is vital to development success, and only through better cooperation between stakeholders both public and private can we ensure that no one is left behind. … Read more

Co-financing for health and development – an affordable innovation

13 Jul 2015 by Douglas Webb, Mandeep Dhaliwal, and Pedro Conceicao

school children in EthiopiaUNDP has piloted a co-financing methodology in the area of HIV, health and social protection in four sub-Saharan African countries: Ethiopia, Malawi, South Africa and Tanzania. Photo: UNDP in Ethiopia
The implementation of the post-2015 development agenda will call on countries to be more resourceful than ever, including improving efficiencies and leveraging increased domestic resources in innovative and cost-effective ways. How can innovative financing find critical synergies between the Sustainable Development Goals while saving money? In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues … Read more

The macroeconomics of development financing

09 Jul 2015 by Degol Hailu, Senior Advisor, UNDP

Mean years of schooling in countries employing relaxed macroeconomic policies are 1.5 years higher than those which adopted more restrictive policies.
During the summit on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa, the world community will agree to strengthen domestic resource mobilization capacity, increase the availability of external funds, reduce the cost of sending remittances and tackle illicit financial flows. However, all of these measures could be futile if countries adopt macroeconomic policies that are not developmental. In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues … Read more

Sustainable agriculture key to green growth and reducing poverty

02 Jul 2015 by Magdy Martínez-Solimán, Director, Bureau for Policy and Programme Support

palm oil in IndonesiaIndonesia’s palm oil smallholders, who produce about 40% of the country’s palm oil, are plagued by bad production techniques. Photo: UNDP in Indonesia
The production of agricultural commodities, such as palm oil, beef, soy, coffee, and cocoa, plays a pivotal role in global efforts to improve livelihoods across the globe. Sadly, agriculture is also the main driver of deforestation today, and is threatening to devastate the very environment upon which we depend to survive. In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues … Read more

Next time could be different – Towards risk-informed development finance

25 Jun 2015 by Pedro Conceicao, Director of Strategic Policy, and Alex Warren, independent consultant

State-contingent financing can help countries manage risk and deal with shocks more effectively. Photo: UNDP in Sierra Leone
History provides a stark reminder that sovereign debt crises have been and are a regular feature of international development and finance. But is this the inevitable reality of international finance? Or can we think of new forms of risk-informed development finance? In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues … Read more

Costing crises and pricing risk: delivering on ‘sustainability’

15 Jun 2015 by Jan Kellett, Advisor Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction

Ebola worker in Sierra LeoneThe cost to the Ebola-affected countries has been pitched at US$1.6 billion, equivalent to 12% of their combined GDP. Photo: UNDP in Sierra Leone
Earthquakes. Cyclones. Drought. Conflict. The Ebola outbreak. Oil price collapses. Shocks and stresses of different kinds strain countries, communities and families and set back development, sometimes for decades. In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues. … Read more

South-South cooperation -- how can we maximize its impact on sustainable development?

11 Jun 2015 by Grace Wang, UNDP's lead adviser on South-South and Triangular Cooperation

fishermen in CubaRisk Reduction Management Centers, a successful initiative in hurricane-prone Cuba, are being scaled up across partnering Caribbean states. Photo: Carolina Azevedo/ UNDP
South-South Cooperation is gaining new momentum as global political and economic realities change rapidly. It is also adding critical value to development. So how can we ensure that the larger potential of SSC is reflected in ongoing discussions on financing for development, while recognizing its differences from more traditional forms of ‘North-South’ development cooperation? In this blog series, our experts share their thoughts on key financing for development issues. … Read more