Sustainable Development Goals Perspectives

Elsevier, 23rd July 2020

The new 2030 sustainable development agenda is likely to dominate policy and academic debates at both national and international levels over next 15 years and beyond. It is, therefore, a crucial time to critically reflect how the SDGs are likely to shape - and be shaped by - the wider research community. Each peer-reviewed paper will address the common question of: “how is the SDG agenda influencing scholarly debates in different research areas, and vice-versa?”. We foresee these papers and the special issue providing disciplinary and trans-disciplinary perspectives, and provoking discussion and debate to inform the policy-science interface around the SDGs and the broader 2030 sustainable development agenda.

Elsevier, World Development, Volume 118, June 2019
Globally, industrial agriculture threatens critical ecosystem processes on which crop production depends, while 815 million people are undernourished and many more suffer from malnutrition. The second Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 2), Zero Hunger, seeks to simultaneously address global environmental sustainability and food security challenges. We conducted an integrated literature review organized around three disciplinary perspectives central to realizing SDG 2: ecology and agricultural sciences, nutrition and public health, and political economy and policy science.
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 118, June 2019
Understanding the politics of education reform is crucial to assess the challenges facing the SDG of quality education. This article surveys the small academic literature on the politics of reform as well as a wide range of empirical research on reform experiences across the world, with an emphasis on recent reforms in Latin America. We focus on teacher policy reforms, which play a central role in raising learning in primary and secondary schools, but pose three special challenges.
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 113, January 2019
SDG 8 calls for promoting 'sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all’. Even as it highlights the importance of labour rights for all, it also makes visible some significant tensions. We note, for example, that despite many critiques of narrow economic measures of growth, the focus here remains on GDP and per capita growth. This is problematic, we argue, because the GDP productive boundary excludes much of social reproductive work.
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 120, August 2019
The number of countries with a national development plan has more than doubled, from about 62 in 2006 to 134 in 2018. More than 80 per cent of the global population now lives in a country with a national development plan of one form or another. This is a stunning recovery of a practice that had been discredited in the 1980s and 1990s as a relic of directed economies and state-led development. Several factors have fostered this re-emergence but from about 2015 the momentum for producing plans has accelerated, driven in part by a need to plan for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 112, December 2018
Human mobility and inequality have determined one another throughout modern history, from the effects of labour migration to processes of urbanisation. The Sustainable Development Goals now offer an opportunity to re-examine this complex relationship in a globalized world. Drawing on major research evidence and key debates, this review article proposes a framework of mobility equity as part of SDG 10, which foresees the reduction of inequalities within and among countries by 2030.
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 126, February 2020
With the increasing importance of ‘emerging powers’ in the global economy, questions are raised about the role of developing countries in shaping global norms. The assumption in much of the literature has been to see global norms as originating in the ‘North’ (or the ‘West’). Recent research has begun to challenge this view. This paper contributes to this debate in studying the agency of the South in the adoption of sustainable development as the consensus framework for international development (SDGs).
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 118, June 2019
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is ambitious and inclusive, but how well are these global aspirations likely to result in implementable policy change for water and sanitation? This article assesses governance challenges at the local level associated with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6, which pledges to ensure sustainable water and sanitation for all. The majority of developing countries manage services at the subnational level, making the quality of local governance the key ingredient for improvements in the sector.
Elsevier, Health Policy, Volume 124, June 2020
In 2016, the World Health Organization declared that ‘Health is one of the most effective markers of any city's successful sustainable development’ (World Health Organisation, 2016). With estimates that around 6.7 billion people will live in cities by 2050, 21st century city planning decisions will play a critical role in achieving the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They will determine the city structure and access to health-enhancing (or health-damaging) urban environments, and ultimately lifestyle choices that impact both individual and planetary health.
Elsevier, Health Policy, Volume 124, June 2020
Purpose and setting: Infrastructure is a global multi-trillion dollar market presenting many opportunities and risks for sustainable development. This article aims to foster better conceptualisation of the connections and tensions between infrastructure policy and public health in the light of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially ‘good health and wellbeing’ (number 3) and ‘industry, innovation and infrastructure’ (number 9), based on findings from interviews with a purposive sample of senior practicing Australian infrastructure policy makers.

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