Background The outcome document of the 2010 MDG Summit requested the Secretary-General to initiate thinking on the global development agenda beyond 2015. The outcome document of the 2012 Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development initiated an inclusive process to develop a set of sustainable development goals. There is broad agreement that the two processes should be closely linked and should ultimately converge in one global development agenda beyond 2015 with sustainable development at its core. The process of arriving at this new framework is Member State-led with broad participation from external stakeholders such as civil society organizations, the private sector and businesses, academia and scientists.
The United Nations has played a facilitating role in this global conversation and has the responsibility of supporting Member States by providing evidence-based inputs, analytical thinking and field experience. The Secretary-General will continue to provide overall leadership to the process with the support of the Deputy-Secretary General and the Secretary-General’s Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning.
Work Streams Open Working Group A 30-member Open Working Group of the General Assembly is mandated by the Rio+20 Outcome document to prepare a proposal on SDGs for consideration by the Assembly at its 68th session (Sept. 2013 – Sept. 2014). The Open Working Group was established on 22 of January 2013 by decision of the General Assembly.
The Member States have decided to use an innovative, constituency-based system of representation that is new to limited membership bodies of the General Assembly. This means that each seat in the Group is shared by 1-4 Member States. These country teams will decide themselves how they will be represented in the OWG meetings.
The Rio+20 outcome document states that, at the outset, the OWG will decide on its methods of work, including developing modalities to ensure the full involvement of relevant stakeholders and expertise from civil society, the scientific community and the United Nations system in its work. High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda In July 2012 the UN Secretary-General launched his High-level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. Co-chaired by the Presidents of Indonesia and Liberia and the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Panel assembles representatives from civil society, private sector, academia and local and national governments.
In May 2013 the Panel will publish its report with its vision and recommendations on a global development agenda beyond 2015. UN System Task Team on the Post-2015 UN Development Agenda Established by the UN Secretary-General in January 2012, the UN System Task Team on the Post-2015 UN Development Agendaassembles more than 60 UN agencies and international organizations.
Co-chaired by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs and the United Nations Development Programme the Task Team supports the process by providing analytical thinking and substantial inputs. The Task Team published its first report titled Realizing the Future We Want for All in June 2012.
The report outlined the vision of the United Nations system on the global development agenda beyond 2015. Moreover, the Task Team is currently engaged in three work streams. Two working groups to provide analytical inputs on the global partnership for development and on monitoring and indicators were established to further thinking on these important issues.
An inter-agency technical support team (TST) has been established to support the Open Working Group, under the umbrella of the UN System Task Team. The TST is co-chaired by DESA and UNDP, and it consists of over 40 UN entities. The TST will provide technical support, including analytical inputs, background material and expert panellists. An information platform will share UN system knowledge with the OWG.
National, global and thematic consultations: in order to facilitate an inclusive global conversation, the United Nations Development Group has initiated consultations at the national and global level as well as a set of eleven thematic consultations. National consultations are taking place in more than 60 developing and developed countries and take various forms and shapes. They include online and offline outreach tailored to national circumstances and needs, and they are closely linked to national development priorities. In order to facilitate a global conversation where each citizen can make their voice be heard, the initiative My World was established. Without having to sign up, users can select their six priorities out of a list of 16 different themes. Results of the survey will be submitted to the Secretary-General’s High-level Panel.
A set of eleven multi-stakeholder thematic consultations are convened on the following themes: education; inequalities; health; governance; conflict and fragility; growth and employment; environmental sustainability; hunger, nutrition and food security; population dynamics; energy; and water. Each thematic consultation is led by two or more UN agencies who work closely together with representatives from civil society, the private sector and academia as well as with co-hosting governments. The consultations aim to explore the role such themes could play in a new framework, different ways in which they can be best addressed, and the interlinkages between them.
Regional consultations: the Regional Economic Commissions are engaged in regional consultations which will culminate in a report on regional perspective on the post-2015 development agenda.
Sustainable Development Solutions Network: (SDSN), led by Jeffrey Sachs, is a global, independent network of research centres, universities and technical institutions that works with stakeholders including business, civil society, UN agencies and other international organizations. As a first step, the network will establish 10 global expert groups to support global problem solving in ten critical areas of sustainable development. SDSN also provides technical support to the High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. UN Global Compact: The UN Global Compact has been actively involved in ensuring that the views and contributions of businesses and the private sector feed into the post-2015 process.
Coordination In order to ensure coherence across the different work streams an informal senior coordination group of four Assistant Secretaries-General (ASGs)has been put in place, which includes the ASG for Economic Development at DESA, the ASG for Development Policy at UNDP, the ASG for Policy and Programme at UN Women and the Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning. A One Secretariat was established to facilitate the coordination and coherence across work streams, while each of the work streams remains substantively independent.
A report just released by the United Nations recognises the urgent need to make peace a priority on development agenda.
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