UN Photo_UNHCR_Glenna Gordon

How to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?

How to use the SDGs in your peacebuilding work

For peacebuilders worldwide, SDGs are a great tool to use, because peace and “Leaving No One Behind” are at the core of the entire 2030 Agenda. There is one specific ‘peace goal’: SDG 16. This goal promotes just, peaceful and inclusive societies. It also provides advocacy, planning and programming entry points for peacebuilding organisations. However peace cannot be reduced to SDG 16 alone. Other goals, such as goal 5 which refers to gender equality or goal 13 on climate change, must be addressed simultaneously. To capture this holistic and integrated approach to sustainable peace we speak about SDG16 + as the goal(s) to achieve. 

The SDG agenda provides civil society organisations (CSOs) with:

  • an opportunity to start inclusive conversations on national development and planning, particularly on peace, justice and inclusion. It is also a tool to influence plans of governments, the United Nations or other actors.
  • a space for starting productive discussions and cooperations on contested security, political and peace issues with national governments and sub-national actors.
  • a process to have nation-wide consultations to create awareness and buy-in of people and key actors on a joint peace agenda.
  • an opportunity to mobilise people and organisations to engage on peace issues. 
  • a process through which they can assist governments in their reporting (like in the Voluntary National Reviews) and engagements on SDG 16+ related processes (such as the annual High Level Political Forum) and in the process hold governments to account to the goals and targets they signed up to. 

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