Our Perspective

      • Sustainable Development Goals and the post-2015 agenda: Why does participation matter? | Veerle Vandeweerd

        18 Mar 2013

        Elected women representatives in India use locally available resources to draw social maps and other micro planning tools. (Photo: Sephi Bergerson / UNDP India)

        The MDGs have been a powerful tool in influencing the policy agenda with a strong human development focus. During the next 1000 days until the MDGs deadline, we will focus on helping countries to accelerate MDGs progress. In order to help countries identify bottlenecks and accelerate results, UNDP introduced the MDG Acceleration Framework (MAF) in 2010. The MAF has been applied in 46 countries with considerable success. As we approach the MDGs deadline, the UN embarks on the most comprehensive global consultation ever undertaken. The post-2015 process is a truly global conversation, involving and engaging both developed and developing countries, civil society, youth, the private sector, parliamentarians, the poor and the marginalized. The next development framework should build on lessons learned through the MDGs so as to make sure that the forthcoming Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are adequately appropriated by national institutions and the civil society. The ongoing consultations have been raising a number of important aspirations for the SDGs. Firstly, there is a clear message calling for the full incorporation of the three strands of sustainability – the social, the economic, and the environmental. Secondly, there is a strong call for moving beyond GDP as for adequately measuring human wellbeingRead More

      • ‘Post-2015’: Failing to address disaster risk is not an option | Jo Scheuer

        13 Mar 2013

        Haitians employed by UNDP-coordinated initiatives clear debris in post-quake reconstruction. The risk of disasters like the Haiti quake should be taken into consideration when development goals are created and implemented. (Photo: UNDP Haiti)

        This week in Helsinki, the global community continues to consult on how it will follow up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), set to expire in 2015. As we look to the future, one thing is clear: We can no longer afford to ignore disaster risk or the relationship between disasters and development. Disasters set back development achievements. This is obvious when a hurricane washes away a school. However, development decisions can also affect disasters – for example, when houses are built to a standard that doesn’t resist earthquakes. Sometimes the relationship is more nuanced; even an earthquake-resistant highway isn’t much good if it encourages poor people to move into a flood plain. Disasters must be part of the new development framework because it is the poor and marginalized who are most vulnerable to catastrophe. The 2010 floods in Pakistan and earthquake in Haiti, and the 2011 flooding in Thailand are recent clear examples of how, long after the debris is cleared, disasters still affect every single one of the MDGs. The poor are deprived of crops, homes, schools and health centers, and the struggle to escape poverty is reversed, sometimes by decades.   The total global cost of disasters in 2011Read More

      • Public service for a new age | Olav Kjørven

        12 Mar 2013

        An example of effective public service, a joint UNDP-GEF programme in Mongolia provides rangers with motorcycles to monitor and collect information on wild habitats. (Photo: Eskender Debebe/UNDP)

        Separated in 1965 from the Federation of Malaysia, with no natural resources other than its people, Singapore set out as a new nation-state a half-century ago. With early support from the UN Development Programme (UNDP), it built an increasingly prosperous society on the basis of farsighted economic policies, stable and capable institutions, and a public service globally renowned for its excellence. Today, the city-state of Singapore ranks among the world’s wealthiest nations, with one of the most disciplined and efficient public sectors in the world. While every nation must walk its own path, Singapore’s experience offers a number of lessons. This week it hosted the first Public Service Dialogue organized by UNDP’s new Global Centre for Public Service Excellence, which will function as a convener and connector of “thinker-practioners” around the globe who aspire to advance public service for sustainable human development. In setting up this global square for advancing public service, Singapore is signaling both its readiness to share its unique experience as well as its openness to learn from others as the practice of public service – and governance more broadly speaking—faces new challenges and opportunities. The Arab Spring highlighted the inadequacies of administrations out of touch with theirRead More

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