‘No one size fits all approach for localisation of SDGs’: India at UN
SDG localization is an imperative for 2030 Agenda to succeed, said the Indian Permanent Representative to the UN
Stating that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach for localization of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), said India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, T S Tirumurti at the High Level Political Forum (HLPF) Side-Event: “How can localization of SDGs contribute to Leaving no one behind”?
“There is no “one size fits all” approach for localization, but we can certainly share experience and learn from each other. I am convinced that due to the localization efforts we are undertaking, our path to implement the 2030 Agenda will be relatively smooth even in the face of the pandemic,” he stated.
Noting that for the 2030 Agenda to succeed in big countries like India with a population of 1.3 billion, SDG localization is an imperative, Tirumurti said breaking down goals and implementation to sub-national and local levels is the only way to succeed in achieving SDG targets.
Localization also allows developing local solutions to local challenges by empowering provincial and local levels of government, he added.
Tirumurti informed the UN that the overall coordination for implementation of SDGs in India is handled by the National Institution for Transforming India or NITI Aayog.
Noting that the NITI Aayog has assisted in developing SDG vision documents at sub-national and local levels, the Indian Envoy to UN said, the fact that our Government has given a pride of place to digital governance, especially to make them people-centric, has paved the way for citizen-friendly localization.
He mentioned that Institutional structures at the State and local levels, such as nodal SDG department, dedicated SDG teams, and district-level structures, help dissolve a silo-based functioning.
Arguing that the crucial aspect of SDG localization is the fine-tuning of the monitoring and data system, Tirumurti held that the first major breakthrough was the development of the State Integrated Framework (SIF).
Several States have taken it further down to the district level by developing the District Integrated Framework and now involve technical partners and other stakeholders in this framework, he highlighted.
The ‘SDG India Index’, spearheaded by NITI Aayog since 2018, plays a pivotal role in SDG localization by measuring performance by using globally-accepted methodology and ranking them accordingly, the Indian diplomat said.
Highlighting that the SDG India Index is being brought out annually since 2018, he said the 2021 edition of the Index covers all 17 Goals, 70 targets, and 115 indicators.
Tirumurti explained that the utility of the Index extends beyond progress monitoring - it has implemented cooperative and competitive federalism in the true spirit of democracy and good governance.
He reckoned that the SDG localization process is not limited only to government interventions, but also includes civil society organizations.
In spite of the pandemic, we have seen remarkable progress in some crucial goals, for example in Goal 3 (Good Health and Well-Being), Goal 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), Goal 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy), Goal 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities) and Goal 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production), the Indian envoy to UN recalled.