the UNDP

In a February 2016 meeting that marked the 50th anniversary of the United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) founding, representatives from more than 120 countries, including Ministers and Heads of Government from over 80 U.N. Member States, gathered in New York’s General Assembly to navigate the trajectory of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). According to the UNDP, the meeting had a clear agenda: to transform ideas into “actions and results.”

The Ministerial Meeting itinerary included several thematic subgroup debates that focused on implementation questions, derived from topics that included eradicating poverty—leaving no one behind, protecting the planet and sustainable development, preventing violent conflict and building peaceful societies, managing risk and building resistance and financing the SDGs.

Opening the meeting with a speech, Helen Clark, Administrator of the UNDP, said that the fundamental purpose in which it was created, remains the same and is “more relevant than ever—that is, to support countries to eradicate poverty in a way which simultaneously reduces inequality and exclusion, while protecting the planet on which we all depend.”

She added that the Agenda 2030 will require increased preemption, receptiveness and improvement on the part of the development program, and that global cooperation was pivotal to poverty eradication and lasting development.

Clark emphasized the need for global consensus and said that meeting discussions “strongly suggest that there is a shared understanding of the road ahead for development and for UNDP as a trusted and strategic partner.”

Ministers and UN partners unveiled strategies to assist the UNDP in its effort to support countries’ SDG goals. Clark suggested that analyses and proposals materialized from discussions at the meeting will be used as a benchmark for the framework of future UNDP work as a global partner.

Heidi Grossman

Photo: Flickr