The Sustainable Development Goals: What Local Governments Need to Know


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The Sustainable Development Goals: What Local Governments Need to Know

April 13, 2018

On 25 September 2015, the Member States of the United Nations agreed on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the Post-2015 Development Agenda. The SDGs are a cause for celebration by local and regional governments the world over. Even before the confirmation of the final 17 goals, the inclusive nature of the Post-2015 process itself represented a major victory for all stakeholders. The UN carried out the largest consultation in its history on the Post-2015 Agenda. Throughout the process, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), facilitating the Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments, advocated for a stand-alone goal on sustainable urbanization and called for all goals and targets to take into account the different contexts, opportunities and challenges at sub-national level.

The inclusion of Goal 11 to “Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” is, in large part, the fruit of the hard-fought campaign by local governments, their associations and the urban community. SDG11 marks a major step forward in the recognition of the transformative power of urbanization for development, and of the role of city leaders in driving global change from the bottom up. However, the role of local administrations in the achievement of the Agenda goes far beyond Goal 11. All of the SDGs have targets that are directly or indirectly related to the daily work of local and regional governments.

Local governments should not be seen as mere implementers of the agenda. Local governments are policy makers, catalysts of change and the level of government best-placed to link the global goals with local communities. UCLG’s members are committed to actively contributing to a new global partnership between international institutions, national governments, civil society, the private sector and, of course, local and regional governments.

The publication “The Sustainable Development Goals: What Local Governments Need to Know” explains how each of the 17 SDGs relates to the daily work of local and regional governments. It also lists the most relevant targets of each goal to local governments and highlights the relationship between the goals and other international agendas.

The Ukrainian translation of the UCLG brochure «The Sustainable Development Goals: What Local governments need to know» was performed within the implementation of UNDP/GEF project "Integrating Rio Conventions Provisions into Ukraine’s National Policy Framework”.