Written by Dorothee Gueneheux, CIVICUS on the Sustainable Development 2015 website.
“Even in the context of shrinking flows of official development assistance (ODA), the new development agenda, which is to replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) starting from September 2015, has been creating a big buzz over the past 5 years and especially at the international level. Consultations, reports and meetings have been numerous within the so-called ‘planet New York’. But why is it important to follow this myriad of discussions?
It’s simple: we need civil society and citizens’ voices to be heard at the global level by governments in the meeting rooms at the United Nations in New York.
The MDGs have had an impact on what the world has decided are development priorities, both at the national level by governments and by international donors through their ODA (of course, the global picture is uneven, as they haven’t been applied or used consistently everywhere and by all donors). At least, the MDGs are very often used as a reference against which to compare new data as for examples for the reduction of poverty or of the maternal mortality. These development priorities have been reflected in national and donors’ plans and budgeting, and even criticised for leaving out many other issues. We can expect the new international development framework to have the same impact on efforts to end poverty and achieve sustainable growth. The MDGs and post-MDGs implementation has been- and will be- the responsibility of national governments primarily.
Therefore, national level civil society organisations need to hold their governments accountable on this implementation, and also on the positions of their representatives’ during international negotiations at the UN in New York.”
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