Free Book Maps Pathway to Action for the SDGs
The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), based in Japan, has published a comprehensive guide to how countries (and how the world) can move from the newly-minted words of the SDGs to full-fledged action to achieve them.
Written for people with a serious level of interest, Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals: From Agenda to Action is also an excellent and concise learning reference for anyone seeking to get the “big picture” on why the SDGs exist, how they evolved, and how governments need to adjust course in order to tackle them. It is available as a free PDF download.
The authors review the world’s 40 years of efforts (starting with a landmark 1972 UN meeting in Stockholm) to tackle large scale problems such as the provision of clean water and energy development, or the earlier Millennium Development Goals, finding mixed success. They warn that unless countries develop new implementation skills, patterns, and governance processes, patterns of waiting until crises become acute will repeat themselves. Richer countries need to step up to the plate, both in implementation terms themselves, and in terms of providing funds and support for less wealthy countries to develop the needed competencies in their governments, civil societies and other sectors.
The authors also stress the inter-connected nature of SDGs, noting that some of the goals are prerequisites for achieving other goals. “National policymakers should consider governance arrangements that can support cross-agency decision making and budgeting to capitalise on cross-goal synergies. International organisations and research institutions would do well to work together to build tools illustrating opportunities for synergies across SDGs as well as between SDGs,” write authors Eric Zusman, Magnus Bengtsson and Simon Hoiberg Olsen.
Many of the key ideas and frameworks that have influenced the emergence of the SDGs are also summarized in this book, including the concept of “Planetary Boundaries” for global ecosystems; the “Doughnut Economics” idea that shows how a socially fair world can be combined one that is ecologically safe; the growing interplay between formal government and non-governmental, civil-society led implementation; the critical role of education, and much more.
Recommended for professional training courses, university courses, or anyone seeking to deepen their knowledge about the SDGs and how to smooth their path from idea to reality.
Goal 1/Goal 2/Goal 3/Goal 4/Goal 5/Goal 6/Goal 7/Goal 8/ Goal 9/Goal 10/Goal 11/Goal 12/Goal 13/Goal 14/Goal 15/Goal 16/Goal 17/Book