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Case Studies

On this page you find the case studies from our P4R magazines, enhanced with links. Clicking on a headline will reveal further information. Please use the download button to download the PDF.

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Afghanistan: SDG review in a fragile context (2020)

The Government of Afghanistan has been actively working on the SDGs since 2016. It presented its first VNR at the HLPF in New York in July 2017. The Ministry of Economy (MoEc) is the government’s lead agency on SDGs. Two experts from the Ministry, Mirwais Baheej, Director General of Planning and Consolidation, and M. Nabi Sroosh, Director General of Policy & Results-Based Monitoring share some of their insights and provide recommendations for others.

Brazil: The evolving role of supreme audit institutions in SDG reviews (2020)

Brazil’s supreme audit institution (SAI), the Tribunal de Contas da União (TCU), has taken a very active role in the 2030 Agenda process. As the leader of the Technical Commission for the Environment (COMTEMA) of the Organisation of Latin American and Caribbean SAIs (OLACEFS), the TCU has led several international projects to assess government preparedness and implementation of the SDGs. Carlos Lustosa da Costa, Director of the Environmental Audit Area at the TCU, speaks about the approach, practical experiences and lessons learned.

Cameroon: Civil society spotlight report (2020)

Inspired by an example from Kenya, the Cameroon Civil Society Forum on the SDGs was set up in 2018 with the aim of pooling and strengthening civil-society contributions to achieving the SDGs. A key objective and the first main task of the forum was to develop a spotlight or shadow report to complement Cameroon’s 2019 VNR. In developing the report, the forum engaged in an intense and constructive dialogue with the government. Joseph Enyegue Oye, Country Director of Sightsavers Cameroon and Chairperson of the forum, explains how the forum came about and how its members developed the report.

Colombia: Follow-up and lessons learned from repeated VNRs (2020)

Colombia has already presented two VNRs, one at the HLPF in 2016 and the second in 2018. In the first VNR, the National Planning Department (DNP) reported on institutional preparations for the 2030 Agenda and provided an analysis of the national context for each SDG. The second VNR focused on presenting lessons learned from developing the national SDG implementation strategy and on showcasing the contributions of non-governmental stakeholders. Adriana Castro González, former SDG Coordinator at DNP, explains these processes and shares some of her insights.

Colombia: From Big Data to Smart Data to Advance SDG Statistics (2018)

Colombia’s national statistical office – DANE – began working with big data in the context of a broader institutional strategy that was launched in early 2015. The SDGs added to the momentum, as many indicators required new sets and combinations of data that were not readily available at the time. Sandra Moreno, Angela López and Angélica Palma share some of their insights from DANE’s endeavour to constantly think and act ‘outside the box’.

Costa Rica: A National Pact to Advance the SDGs (2018)

In 2016, Costa Rica became the first country to formalise a collective commitment to the SDGs. a national pact was signed by the executive, legislative and judicial powers of the republic, civil society and faith-based organisations, public universities, local governments and the private sector. Together, they committed to realising long-term structural changes towards socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable development that is guided by a multi-stakeholder governance structure.

Mexico: Engaging Subnational Levels in the SDG Process (2018)

The fifth largest country in the Americas has been successful in creating considerable momentum for SDG implementation and review at the subnational levels. Experience shows that success is as much about structures as it is about communication and motivation.

Oaxaca, Mexico: SDG review at state level (2020)

The 2030 Agenda has brought winds of change to the State of Oaxaca. Multi-stakeholder participation in the public policy process and integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development are new experiences for all involved, and they are beginning to transform the relationship between citizens and the state government. Yolanda Martínez López, Secretary of Wellbeing in Oaxaca, explains how the process has been unfolding and what role the voluntary sub-national review has played in it.

Mongolia: Enhancing policy coherence (2020)

Enhancing policy coherence is one of the main challenges in implementing the 2030 Agenda. To address this issue, Mongolia’s NDA led a systematic review of existing policies to assess their alignment with the SDGs. This helped detect inconsistencies between different policies and establish the need for coordination. Doljinsuren Jambal, former Director of Development Policy and Planning at the NDA and current Development Coordination Officer at United Nations Mongolia, describes the process and shares lessons learned.

Namibia: Aligning the 2030 Agenda with the National Development Plan (2018)

The Namibian government has been an early mover in implementing the 2030 agenda. Its commitment is reflected in the efforts the country has undertaken to ensure integration of the SDGs into national development planning. Daniel Bagwitz of giz shares some of his observations on Namibia’s VNR process from the perspective of an external advisor.

Netherlands: A Structured Approach to Involving Multiple Stakeholders in SDG Reporting (2018)

The Netherlands has integrated SDG review into the policy cycle through regular measuring, consulting and reporting on progress. Strong partnerships with relevant stakeholders have made this process a truly collaborative effort.

Nigeria: Engaging the Private Sector in the Voluntary a National Review (2018)

‘Eradication of poverty and promoting prosperity in a changing world’ is the main slogan of Nigeria’s 2017 VNR. Private businesses are a key driver of economic development and can bring financial leverage to the 2030 agenda process. This is why the Nigerian private sector advisory group (PSAG) plays a crucial role in national SDG implementation and review. The group is guided by an interministerial SDG committee.

Palestinian Territories: Involving Stakeholders to Overcome Data Gaps (2018)

The 2030 agenda encourages governments to involve civil society and the private sector in the SDG review. In the Palestinian Territories, these stakeholder groups not only contributed contentwise to the VNR but also provided data for the SDG indicators. The key to success was to start early, design a well-structured process and take time to build partnerships with a broad range of actors.

Senegal: Developing a Localised SDG Information System (2018)

Senegal’s first VNR submitted to the HLPF in 2018 provides details of progress in national SDG implementation. At the same time, the report repeatedly states that the national statistical system does not yet allow differentiated assessments of development for specific population segments, vulnerable groups, decentralised administrative units, etc., due to a lack of disaggregated data. A pilot initiative in the Diourbel Region aims to help solve this problem by using a bottom-up approach.

South Africa: Promoting Constructive Science-Policy Dialogue for the SDG Review (2018)

South Africa is going to present its first VNR to the international community in 2019. Preparations are well on their way, and the scientific community is readying itself to play its part in the process. The University of Pretoria hosts the South African SDG hub, a platform to help policy-makers and researchers engage in constructive dialogue on the SDGs. Prof. Willem Fourie, coordinator of the hub, explains the approach in a personal interview.

The Philippines: Using citizen-generated data for SDG review and follow-up (2020)

With the country’s two VNR processes (2016 and 2019) and consultations on localising the SDG targets, the interaction between the government and CSOs in the Philippines has intensified. In response to interest expressed by both sides, a project launched in 2019 assessed how citizen-generated data (CGD) might be used for official reporting. Patricia Anne R. San Buenaventura, Chief Statistical Specialist, explains the key steps, challenges and results of the project by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) and the Partnership in Statistics for Development in the 21st Century (PARIS21), and describes the PSA’s efforts to institutionalise the use of CGD in the Philippines.

Togo: Mobilising Civil Society for the SDG Review (2018)

The involvement of stakeholders in the SDG review is not just a task for the government. Civil society organisations in Togo have also been taking things into their own hands, spending time, effort and their own resources to enable broad participation and leave no one behind. The result is a win-win situation for both sides, the impact of which goes beyond a civil society footprint on a government document. Passion, ownership and perseverance are among the success factors of the Togolese civil society forum.

UN ESCAP: Role and experiences of a UN regional commission in supporting VNR processes (2020)

The Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is the largest inter- governmental platform in the region, with 53 member states and 9 associate members, ranging from Turkey to the Pacific Islands. ESCAP’s strategic focus is to foster implementation of the 2030 Agenda, including VNR processes. It does so by performing its key functions of (i) supporting intergovernmental processes, (ii) providing advisory services and capacity building and (iii) making knowledge products available. A fourth initiative, the twinning programme, was added in 2019 to promote peer learning on VNRs. Dr Katinka Weinberger, Chief of ESCAP’s Environment and Development Policy Section, explains how the different programmes work.

Bristol, United Kingdom: Voluntary Local Review – Connecting the SDGs with local realities (2020)

Bristol was the first city in the UK to produce a Voluntary Local Review (VLR), the equivalent of a VNR at city level. The report was presented at the HLPF in New York in July 2019. Allan MacLeod, Bristol SDG Research and Engagement Associate, shares some of his observations and experiences from the SDG review at local level.

Viet Nam: Developing and harmonising indicator systems (2020)

In an effort to bring the long-term development strategy into line with the 2030 Agenda, Viet Nam elaborated the SDG National Action Plan, translating the 169 global targets into 115 national targets. To monitor and evaluate implementation, Viet Nam issued a set of sustainable development statistical indicators. Nguyễn Đình Khuyến, Deputy Director of the Methodology Standards and IT Department of the General Statistics Office (GSO), explains how this set was developed and harmonised with other indicator systems in the country.