The social, economic and environmental crises are clearly interrelated. The United Nations inaugurated Seventeen (17) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015. The SDGs can be grouped into three namely Economic Development Goals including economic growth, full and productive employment, infrastructure for industrialization and innovation, and sustainableconsumption and production patterns. Secondly, Social Inclusion goals: end poverty, end hunger, ensure healthy lives, ensure inclusive and equitable quality education, achieve gender equality, Reduce inequality among countries, make cities and human settlements inclusive. Finally, Environmental Sustainability goals: ensure availability and sustainable management of water, ensure access to energy, combat climate change and its impacts, sustainable use the oceans, sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems
Whilst SDGs continue the focus on eradicating poverty, they also include universal goals of addressing unsustainable patterns of consumption and production, and protecting environmental resources.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals pledge to reduce inequality and provides a vision of a shared future that economically, socially and ecologically sustainable. The Agenda set to address inclusive growth that comprises both outcomes and processes, involving participation and benefit sharing by ensuringInclusive economic and political institutions including the large majority of the population in the political and economic community. This address will tackle structural policies promoting employment and productivity increases; coherent labor market policies needed for increasing inclusiveness; and deepening the financial sector through policies that give better access to the poor for financial services would increase inclusiveness.
Sustainable development must strike a balance between the economic, social and environmental objectives of society. It has to maximize well-being in the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. It has to address not only the three inter-related components of economic, social and environmental but also the necessary pre-condition for success namely greater policy and institutional, improved data, monitoring and governance accountability at all levels, increased financial resources to implement the necessary SDGs’ policies and multistakeholder approach to means of implementation of the SDGs.
This programme seeks to reconcile economic growth with social inclusion, equality and quality of life for present and future generations. Its primary goal is to integrate social and economic development with environmental sustainability and security putting inclusion and equality at the centre and inviting all partners and actors to work together to achieve the profound change we desire for all peoples.
The programme four objectives namely giving a voice to the citizens, serve as agent of accountability, advocate service delivery, and provide and monitor progress through data collection and reporting thereby creating shared prosperity and inclusive growth, tackle inequality and ensure natural resources and environment sustainability. It will build partnership that create and sustain healthy ecosystems, strong localized economies and vibrant, self-reliant communities in order to achieve a world that is just, equitable, secure and inclusive.
This programme conducts in-depth practical action policy research, assessment surveys and monitoring; facilitate multistakeholder and experts policy dialogue; interrogate through case studies, focus groups and peer to peer processes; share analyzed information data; evidence-based policy advocacy; build partnerships and collaborations; and produce/publish knowledge on the following:
1. Advancing economic inclusion, equal opportunities and tackling inequality
a. Economic and fiscal policy framework that promotes employment creation, gender equality, productive investment and sustainable inclusive growth
b. Production and industrial policy measures on productive jobs and incomes
c. Economic policy foundations that support and improve livelihoods; revenues and services management; and build capacity for accountable and fair service delivery
d. Capital flows and distribution of income; equitable access to capital and benefits of entrepreneurship; and vulnerable groups especially youth and women participation economy
e. Fiscal policiesthat look intoprogressive taxation systems, expanding the tax base, and improving the effectiveness of public expenditure
f. International tax cooperation and reductions of top-heavy wealth concentration
g. Social protection for social equity and the distribution of wealth
h. Fostering transparency of public institutions especially in stemming corruption and illicit capital flight, tackling distorted markets, private sector integrity, fostering accountability through participation, monitoring the delivery and quality of social services, and improving access to information using ICT and e-governance for strengthening the participation of disadvantaged groups
i. Removal of barriers preventing equal access to critical public services and employment and livelihood opportunities especially inequality in access to credit, employment facilitation services, and small and medium enterprise development services
2. Adaptability to Climate change and sustainable natural resources management:
- Look at policies that change unsustainable and promoting sustainable patterns of consumption and production
- Protecting and managing the natural resource base of economic and social development for sustainable development and achieving a just balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations.
- Survey, syntheses and systemize international and national policies and laws related to climate change and social inequalities, and the vulnerability and adaptation capacity of populations in different environments
3. Addressing Social inclusion
- Focus on production, protection, distribution and reproduction to ensure equality of both opportunity and outcome, equity in the distribution of benefits and costs, social inclusion and non-discrimination that would allow full enjoyment of rights
- Open space to diverse range of voices and involve various aspects of life by all members of society based on equality of rights and opportunities that give disadvantaged individuals/groups a voice and strengthening their capacity
- Production of goods and services by organizations that put social and environmental objectives before profit, involve cooperative relations and democratic management espouse values of solidarity, thus promoting greater cohesion and inclusion
Shift from narrow approach to social protection to more comprehensive social policies in health, education and social protection