August 2013

Moving Targets

Can the Sustainable Development Goals Deliver after 2015?

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have been shaping the global development agenda for over a decade. With the target date of 2015 fast approaching, determining a new development agenda has become an urgent priority for the international community. Following an agreement by Member States at the Rio+20 summit in 2012, a process has been launched to develop a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a successor framework to come into effect after the MDGs expire. The new goals are to address the multiple crises facing humanity through a more inclusive process, aiming for equal treatment of the economic, social and environmental dimensions in the implementation.

This issue of Dimensions contributes to the debate on the SDGs and, as always, offers a platform for discussion and opinions. We welcome your thoughts and comments in letters to the editor () and hope you enjoy the read!


Dimensions-House of Cards-Cover




Missing the Bigger Picture

Thumb 1 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Duraiappah.jpg

Anantha K. Duraiappah | Read more



Thumb 2 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Hamid.jpg

Zakri Abdul Hamid | Read more


Sustainable Development Goals for Beginners

Thumb 3 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-SDGs-for-Beginners.jpg

A brief overview of the road to the new Sustainable Development Goals. |Read more

Feature Article

Universal Sustainability Goals as Part of a Post-2015 Agenda

Thumb 4 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Martens.jpg

More than ever, individuals and societies across oceans and continents are intricately connected and interdependent. The SDGs must acknowledge this reality, and include universal goals for sustainability to complement national targets.

Jens Martens | Read more


Change Making

Thumb 5 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Interview-Bokova.jpg

UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova about education, transformation and UNESCO’s role in our sustainable future

Irina Bokova | Read more

Feature Article

Into the Danger Zone: Using Integrated Risk Governance Research for Sustainability

Thumb 6 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Ye-Shi.jpg

With extreme disaster events becoming increasingly common, the architects of sustainable development should look to integrated risk governance research for help in management and mitigation.

Qian Ye and Peijun Shi | Read more


IHDP Voices

7b - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Voices.jpg

The SDGs encompass a broad swath of science and society. To bring insights from some of these areas, we’ve asked our Scientific Committee members for their views.

Balgis Osman-Elasha, Germán Palacio and John S. Dryzek | Read more

Contest Winner

A Chance to Change the Ending We Know

Thumb 8 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-O-Brien.jpg

To be successful, the SDGs must be a springboard for turning knowledge into action.

Meghan O’Brien | Read more


Environmental Targets

Thumb 10 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Interview-Steiner.jpg

UNEP’s Executive Director Achim Steiner explains how innovative new partnerships between actors across the social, economic and environmental spheres will be key to building the global consensus needed for a successful Post-2015 Development Agenda.

Achim Steiner | Read more

Photo Series

More Than Just Enough

Cover 2.jpg

Science has long recognized that well-being and development are not merely about having just enough to get by. Similarly, the environment does not merely provide sustenance, but to the whole of human well-being. |Read more

Feature Article

Not Another Wish List

Thumb 12 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Neskakis-Hardt-Duraiappah.jpg

Rather than concoct new wish lists of development goals, countries would be better served to agree first on the elements of inclusive and sustainable growth, and commit to national efforts based on these.

Leisl J. Neskakis, Dorothea Hardt and Anantha K. Duraiappah | Read more

Feature Article

Of Tsunamis, Sea Change and (Political) Mires

Thumb 13 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Tkacik.jpg

The socio-economic paradigm shift, so often invoked by the intergovernmental political establishment as being essential to preclude an impending environmental catastrophe, will not happen through traditional means.

John Tkacik |Read more

Facts and Figures

Did you know that?

Thumb 16 - IHDP-Dimensions-Aug-2013-Did-you-know.jpg

Quick facts about sustainable development. |Read more