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The Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change call for deep transformations that require complementary actions by governments, civil society, science, and business. IIASA contributed to a new study outlining six major transformations that will be required to achieve these ambitious goals.
The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) focus on time-bound targets for prosperity, people, planet, peace, and partnership—collectively known as the five Ps. By adopting the 2030 Agenda with its 17 SDGs and the Paris Climate Agreement, UN member states effectively created a framework for national action and global cooperation on sustainable development, while the Paris Agreement committed signatory countries to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by the middle of the century. SDG 13 on climate change specifically links to the Paris Agreement noting that the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change "is the primary international, intergovernmental forum for negotiating the global response to climate change." Despite the interconnectivity and clear aims of these global goals, stakeholders seem to lack a shared understanding of how the 17 SDGs can be operationalized.
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Building on previous work by The World in 2050—a global research initiative established by IIASA—the authors of the study published in the journal Nature Sustainability propose six transformations to organize SDG interventions through a semi-modular action agenda that can be designed by discrete, yet interacting, parts of government. According to the paper, the proposed framework may be operationalized within the structures of governments while still respecting the strong interdependencies across the 17 SDGs. The authors also outline an action agenda for science to provide the knowledge required for designing, implementing, and monitoring the SDG Transformations.
"The 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement have given the world an aspirational narrative and an actionable agenda to achieve a just, safe, and sustainable future for all within planetary boundaries. The six...
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