Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted by all member states of the United-Nations in 2015, describe a universal agenda that applies to and must be implemented by all countries. Sound metrics and data are critical for turning the SDGs into practical tools for problem solving.
The Sustainable Development Report (formerly the SDG Index & Dashboards) is the first worldwide study to assess where each country stands with regard to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Unlike its predecessor the Millennium Development Goals, the SDGs set standards not only for emerging and developing countries, but also for the industrialized nations. Governments and civil society alike can utilize the Sustainable Development Report to identify priorities for action, understand key implementation challenges, track progress, ensure accountability, and identify gaps that must be closed in order to achieve the SDGs by 2030.
About the Authors
Prof. Jeffrey Sachs
Director, SDSN; Project Director of the SDG Index
Jeffrey D. Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, senior UN advisor, bestselling author, and syndicated columnist whose monthly newspaper columns appear in more than 100 countries. He is the co-recipient of the 2015 Blue Planet Prize, the leading global prize for environmental leadership, and many other international awards and honors. He has twice been named among Time magazine’s 100 most influential world leaders. He was called by the New York Times, “probably the most important economist in the world,” and by Time magazine, “the world’s best known economist.” A survey by The Economist in 2011 ranked Professor Sachs as amongst the world’s three most influential living economists of the first decade of the 21st century.
Professor Sachs serves as the Director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University. He is University Professor at Columbia University, the university’s highest academic rank. During 2002 to 2016 he served as the Director of the Earth Institute. Sachs is Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on the Sustainable Development Goals, and previously advised UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on both the Sustainable Development Goals and Millennium Development Goals and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the Millennium Development Goals.
Dr. Christian Kroll
Senior Expert, Bertelsmann Stiftung; Scientific Co-Director of the SDG Index
Dr. Christian Kroll is Scientific Co-Director of the SDG Index, and Senior Expert for Sustainable Development at Bertelsmann Stiftung. He gained a PhD from the London School of Economics with a thesis entitled “Towards a Sociology of Happiness” and authored articles in scientific journals spanning several disciplines, as well as numerous policy-oriented reports. His publication “Sustainable Development Goals: Are the rich countries ready” with a foreword by Kofi Annan featured the prototype SDG Index (for OECD countries). Christian is a Guest Lecturer at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin where he developed the country’s first university course on the SDGs. Previously, he taught at the LSE and held academic positions at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government as well as Jacobs University. His research was featured by national and international media such as the Harvard Business Review, Washington Post, Le Monde, Die Zeit, ARD, Spiegel Online and others. Christian was honored as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.
Dr. Guido Schmidt-Traub
Executive Director of SDSN; Scientific Co-Director of the SDG Index
Dr. Guido Schmidt-Traub is Scientific Co-Director of the SDG Index, and Executive Director of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He serves on the Governing Council of Future Earth and other advisory bodies. Previously, Guido was CEO of Paris-based CDC Climat Asset Management; climate change advisor to the Africa Progress Panel secretariat; and Director and Partner at South Pole Carbon Asset Management in Zurich. He managed the MDG Support Team at UNDP (2006-2008) and served as Policy Advisor and then as Associate Director of the UN Millennium Project in New York, which was tasked with developing an action plan to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and advised countries around the world on their implementation. Guido holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Wageningen University & Research, an M.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University (Rhodes Scholar), and a Masters in physical chemistry from the Free University Berlin.
Manager, SDG Index, Paris
Guillaume Lafortune is the SDG Index Manager of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He has served as an economist at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) working on public governance reforms and statistics. He was one of the lead advisors for the production of the 2015 and 2017 flagship statistical report Government at a Glance. He also contributed to analytical work related to public sector efficiency, open government data and citizens’ satisfaction with public services. Earlier, Guillaume worked as an economist at the Ministry of Economic Development in the Government of Quebec (Canada). Guillaume holds a M.Sc in public administration from the National School of Public Administration (ENAP) in Montreal and a B.Sc in international economics from the University of Montreal.
Grayson Fuller joined the Paris Secretariat as the SDG Index Analyst. His role consists of managing the data, coding, and statistical analyses for the SDG Index and Dashboards report. He additionally carries out research related to sustainable development. Grayson received his Masters degree in Economic Development at Sciences Po Paris. He holds a Bachelors in Latin American Studies from Harvard University, where he graduated cum laude. Grayson has lived in several Latin American countries and speaks English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, and Russian. He enjoys playing violin and hails from Atlanta, GA.
Finn Woelm is a data scientist and analyst at the SDG Index. He focuses on statistical analyses, data visualization, and web development. Prior to joining the SDSN, Finn co-founded a startup and worked for a number of organizations, including the International Panel on Social Progress. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado, USA. Finn is passionate about open source, collaborative governance, and the environment.