2014 is a decisive year for the elaboration of new global development and sustainability goals that will replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2015. Numerous global problems and crises of the last decades remain unsolved and new problems continue to emerge. Countries in both the Global North and Global South face common challenges, such as growing social inequity, continued and increasing environmental degradation, growing resource consumption and the aftermath of the financial, economic and food crises, as well as the intensifying of climate change.
The development of new goals provides an opportunity to address these issues. With their focus on poverty eradication and human development, the MDGs have achieved a great amount. Nonetheless, they have had their shortcomings, for example in the fields of justice, peace, good governance, and respect for human rights. They neglect to link social development processes with ecological, social, and economic sustainability, and omit to question the concept of growth in light of evident planetary boundaries.
The Rio+20 conference in 2012 set out the right course by promoting the development of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for all nations. A United Nations (UN) Intergovernmental Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (OWG) was tasked with preparing a proposal for a new set of global goals that integrate the development and sustainability agendas. This and further proposals will form the basis of a new global framework agreement to be negotiated and passed by September 2015.
The “Eight Key Issues for a Post-2015 Global Development and Sustainability Agenda” highlight core goals and content for a new global agenda. The position paper is the joint product of various German civil society actors working in the fields of environment, development, human rights, peace and anti-corruption.