We will spare no effort to free our fellow men, women and children from the abject and dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty, to which more than a billion of them are currently subjected. We are committed to making the right to development a reality for everyone and to freeing the entire human race from want.
The Millennium Declaration, September 2000.
The Millennium Declaration adopted by Heads of State at the UN General Assembly in September of 2000 set the stage for the Millennium Development Goals. These were eight goals and 48 targets the world would aim to achieve by 2015 to reduce poverty, child and maternal mortality, increase coverage of basic education and more. With 2015 now here, the world has taken stock of what worked, what didn’t work and what is required to make the next 15 years better for everyone. As expressed in the outcome document of the Rio+20 Conference, The Future We Want, the successor goals to the original 8 MDGs should be:
… action- oriented, concise and easy to communicate, limited in number, aspirational, global in nature and universally applicable to all countries, while taking into account different national realities, capacities and levels of development and respecting national policies and priorities. We also recognize that the goals should address and be focused on priority areas for the achievement of sustainable development, being guided by the present outcome document. Governments should drive implementation with the active involvement of all relevant stakeholders, as appropriate.
The process so far has resulted in an outcome document developed through the UN Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals and contains 17 goals each with a set of suggested targets. This document and others produced through parallel processes related to the roadmap towards a new agenda make up the UN Secretary General’s synthesis report which together with the OWG’s outcome document contribute to the intergovernmental negotiations in 2015.
More information on the process, the goals and the targets.