Global Development’s Winning Goals

The world’s governments meet at the UN General Assembly on September 25 to discuss how to accelerate progress on the Millennium Development Goals, and also to agree on a new set of Sustainable Development Goals. In doing so, they should heed several important lessons from the MDGs' success.

NEW YORK – The world’s governments meet at a special session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 25 to discuss how to accelerate progress on the Millennium Development Goals, and also to agree on a timetable for a new set of Sustainable Development Goals. The MDGs, adopted in 2000, will conclude in 2015, to be followed by the SDGs, most likely for the 2015-2030 period.

The MDGs focus on ending extreme poverty, hunger, and preventable disease. They have been the most important global development goals in the UN’s history. The SDGs will continue the fight against extreme poverty, but also add the challenges of ensuring more equitable economic growth and environmental sustainability, especially the key goal of curbing the dangers of human-induced climate change.

Setting international development goals has made a huge difference in people’s lives, particularly in the poorest places on the planet. Sub-Saharan Africa has benefited enormously from the MDGs, and we can learn from that success in designing the SDGs.

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