Heads of state and government from around the world signed the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in September 2015. At the heart of the agenda are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs for short).
These include ending hunger and extreme poverty in all its forms, establishing gender equality and making clean water accessible to everyone around the globe by 2030. Meanwhile, some of the other goals – driving down CO2 emissions and reducing food loss – clearly spell out what it means to change consumption patterns. The SDGs also encompass global commons, such as protecting the oceans. The 2030 Agenda explicitly calls on the international community to focus on the weakest and most vulnerable and leave no one behind.
The SDGs represent an important watershed because they (1) overcome the juxtaposition of “environment and development” and (2) place all countries worldwide under the same obligation – despite all the differences arising from the past and present, economic power, technologies, politics and potential. Each of the 17 goals are broken down into a different number of targets (169 in total) and contain indicators to make their implementation measurable. The preamble lists five principles which should drive implementation: people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership.
In 2015 the heads of state and government explicitly agreed to adapt the goals at national level and implement them. However, no government can cope with the implementation process alone: stakeholders from civil society, business and academia are also called upon to play their part.
By supporting and/or sponsoring SDG-linked activities, events, projects and project ideas by the above-mentioned stakeholders, the German Action Days, the Sustainability Culture Fund and the SDG education competition contribute towards achieving the ambitious, universal and transformative goals of the 2030 Agenda.
Further information about the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs (German):
- Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development
- Background information about the 17 sustainability goals (for children in school year 4 and above), 79 KB, PDF
- Project #17 Goals of the UN
General information and downloadable communications materials in English: