UNDP Around the world

Sustainable development

UNDP helps countries to simultaneously reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development that leads to transformational change, bringing about real improvements in people’s lives.

We promote an integrated approach to achieve sustainable development that tackles the connected issues of multidimensional poverty, inequality and exclusion, and sustainability, while enhancing knowledge, skills and production technologies to reduce risks and sustain development gains.

We help countries build their capacity to integrate environmental considerations into development plans and strategies, including through managing and sustainably using natural resources; ensuring that natural wealth is used to improve people’s lives; promoting economic recovery and livelihoods, and better targeting policies and social protection for those in need.

Our goal

Our goal is to strengthen capabilities and opportunities to reduce poverty and marginalization – focusing on the most vulnerable and excluded population groups – in ways that are sustainable from economic, social and environmental standpoints.

Thanks to an innovative public lighting project, these students in Fezna, Morocco feel safe on their way back from school. UNDP supported the installation of advanced solar power systems in isolated desert towns as part of the country’s new ‘sustainable oases’ programme.

At UNDP, we encourage a shift to sustainability, where economic growth benefits poor and marginalized groups, and avoids irreversible environmental damage. Over the past four years, we mobilized nearly US$2 billion in funding for sustainable development.

Our stories

  • United for a clean city
    Aug 14, 2017

    Gregoria Cruz does not pick up waste, she recycles it. Today, many women like Gregoria have abandoned the landfills in Arequipa - Peru's second largest city - to demonstrate that recycling and waste disposal also offer opportunities for sustainable development.

  • 10 things we should all know about indigenous people
    Aug 9, 2017

    This year marks the 10th anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a good time for all of us to consider why it’s important to protect indigenous peoples’ rights.

  • Feeding a family, nourishing a community
    Jul 19, 2017

    Santa Catarina Ixtahuacan in Guatemala is highly affected by chronic malnutrition. To fight food insecurity due to population growth and climate change, UNDP has enabled the development of vegetable gardens, and works with farmers to help adapt their methods.

  • Fishing for prosperity
    Jul 14, 2017

    The island of Idjwi is a heaven of peace at the east of DRC, its isolation preventing it from being involved in the region's conflicts. Yet this small territory is also the most populated, which entails a number of economic and environmental challenges.

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Programmes and initiatives

  • Ebola crisis in West Africa

    If the outbreak is not contained soon, most of the economic and social gains achieved since peace was restored in Liberia and Sierra Leone and Guinea’s democratic transition began could be reversed.more 

  • Responding to the crisis in Gaza

    By the end of August, more than 475,000 people had been displaced from their homes, unable to return to their destroyed neighbourhoods. The situation in Gaza is unusual as restrictions imposed on the territory’s borders have made it difficult for residents to flee to neighbouring countries.more 

  • Responding to the crisis in Syria

    Four years into the conflict in Syria, close to 60 percent of the population is either internally displaced or has fled the country. The fighting has now drastically rolled back the region’s human development achievements —perhaps by decades.more 

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