Towards integration at last? The Sustainable development goals as a network of targets

Le Blanc, D. ; Department of Economic and Social Affairs (Mar-15)

In 2014, UN Member States proposed a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which; will succeed the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as reference goals for the interna-; tional development community for the period 2015-2030. Te proposed goals and targets can; be seen as a network, in which links among goals exist through targets that refer to multiple; goals. Using network analysis techniques, we show that some thematic areas covered by the; SDGs are well connected among one another. Other parts of the network have weaker connec-; tions with the rest of the system. Te SDGs as a whole are a more integrated system than the; MDGs were, which may facilitate policy integration across sectors. However, many of the links; among goals that have been documented in biophysical, economic and social dimensions are; not explicitly reflected in the SDGs. Beyond the added visibility that the SDGs provide to links; among thematic areas, attempts at policy integration across various areas will have to be based; on studies of the biophysical, social and economic systems.

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