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In September 2015 the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were formally adopted by the UN General Assembly with the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development. During the coming 15 years, 17 SDGs, linked to 169 targets, are to form an action plan to free humankind from poverty and return the planet to the path towards sustainability. These goals, which are one and indivisible, reflect the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic, social and ecological dimensions.

These goals form a unique fusion of the two global agendas of sustainable development and development cooperation. This agenda focuses on 'universality', which means that the implementation must not only take place in the Global South, but the entire planet.

To monitor the progress towards the realization of the goals and targets of the UN, a body of 242 global indicators  to measure the 169 targets was presented by UNSTAT in March 2016. A central point of attention is that several indicators must be separated according to relevant categories such as gender, age, geographical situation etc. Broad methodological convergence has been reached for certain indicators, while for others further research must be conducted. It is therefore a list which will certainly evolve in the future. It is also important to remember that these indicators are solely a global impetus, as the member states are urged to further refine the indicators at a national level to ensure accurate measurements.

The SDGs can be subdivided in five main themes: humankind, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership.

  1. 1. No poverty

    End poverty in all its forms everywhere
  2. 2. Zero hunger

    End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
  3. 3. Good health and well-being

    Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
  4. 4. Quality education

    Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning
  5. 5. Gender equality

    Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
  6. 6. Clean water and sanitation

    Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
  7. 7. Affordable and clean energy

    Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
  8. 8. Decent work and economic growth

    Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work...
  9. 9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure

    Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation
  10. 10. Reduced inequalities

    Reduce inequality within and among countries
  11. 11. Sustainable cities and communities

    Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
  12. 12. Responsible consumption and production

    Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
  13. 13. Climate action

    Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
  14. 14. Life below water

    Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development
  15. 15. Life on land

    Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat...
  16. 16. Peace, justice and strong institutions

    Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and...
  17. 17. Partnerships for the goals

    Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development
  18. Search for SDGs initiatives