Goal 16: Peace, justice and strong institutions

We cannot hope for sustainable development without peace, stability, human rights and effective governance, based on the rule of law. Yet our world is increasingly divided. Some regions enjoy peace, security and prosperity, while others fall into seemingly endless cycles of conflict and violence. This is not inevitable and must be addressed.

Armed violence and insecurity have a destructive impact on a country’s development, affecting economic growth, and often resulting in grievances that last for generations. Sexual violence, crime, exploitation and torture are also prevalent where there is conflict, or no rule of law, and countries must take measures to protect those who are most at risk

The SDGs aim to significantly reduce all forms of violence, and work with governments and communities to end conflict and insecurity. Promoting the rule of law and human rights are key to this process, as is reducing the flow of illicit arms and strengthening the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance.


Facts and figures

68.5 million

By the end of 2017, 68.5 million people had been forcibly displaced as a result of persecution, conflict, violence or human rights violations.

10 million

There are at least 10 million stateless people who have been denied nationality and its related rights.

US$1.26 trillion

Corruption, bribery, theft and tax evasion cost developing countries US$1.26 trillion per year.

49

49 countries lack laws protecting women from domestic violence.

46

In 46 countries, women now hold more than 30 percent of seats in at least one chamber of national parliament.

1 billion

1 billion people are legally ‘invisible’ because they cannot prove who they are. This includes an estimated 625 million children under 14 whose births were never registered.

  • Significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere

  • End abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against and torture of children

  • Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all

  • By 2030, significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen the recovery and return of stolen assets and combat all forms of organized crime

  • Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms

  • Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels

  • Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels

  • Broaden and strengthen the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance

  • By 2030, provide legal identity for all, including birth registration

  • Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements

  • Strengthen relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime

  • Promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies for sustainable development
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Goals in action
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No development without safety for all

How the SDGs address violence against women.

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Iraqi students design activities for people from various backgrounds to exchange ideas about peace.

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