The 2030 Agenda needs to be translated and adapted to each national context and environment. It is the responsibility of each national government to create an enabling legal and institutional environment that at the same time reflects the principles of the 2030 Agenda (Leave-No-One-Behind (LNOB), universality, integrated approach, shared responsibility, and accountability). It creates the preconditions for reaching a national consensus/ownership on the SDGs. 

There is no single institutional model that will provide a solution to the many implementation challenges of the SDGs and each country will have to create its own tailor-made model, based on existing structures and on its social and cultural history.  
The regular monitoring of the progress made in implementing the 2030 Agenda should be an integral part of the revised/adjusted policy and institutional framework. Policy decisions must be translated into the legal (laws, decrees, directives) and institutional (responsibilities and roles) framework for the country. With regard to the SDG monitoring, the reform of the framework should particularly address the following aspects: 

  • The respective roles and responsibilities of the various stakeholders involved (including the private sector and the civil society), with a specific mention to role of the National statistical Office (statistical law),
  • The rules regarding the collaboration and the coordination among the stakeholders (focal points, participation in and contribution to Committees and sub-committees),
  • The directives regarding data exchange/transfer and sharing as well as data validation,
  • The decisions regarding reporting cycle and release of statistics (levels and calendar). 

National Sustainable Development Indicator Framework and Information System – including National Development/Sustainability Plans with corresponding indicators and datasets, sustainable development indicators, baselines and robust datasets. Platforms, portals and scorecards are useful tools to begin and/or deepen national discussions around the SDGs and what it means in a given national context. The data mapping (see Core process “data production and dissemination) should cover official statistical sources but as well as probable alternative data sources. Work programmes should provide a long term vision for data and statistics, including the heavy statistical operations, such as censuses and bigger surveys, as well as the use of administrative data and other alternative data sources. 

Objective/ Outcome

Core strategies/ policies/institutions/ laws for monitoring SDGs are implemented 

  • Achievement of the SDGs are a central objective in the national development policy and in all related sector policies: in sectors (Agriculture, Health, Education, Social affairs, etc.).and on crosscutting issues like gender, LNOB (horizontal coherence) as well as across all levels of government (local development, decentralisation and government reform policies) (vertical coherence)  
  • An SDG implementation plan (from global to national) including a monitoring mechanism is available 
  • operational working mechanisms to ensure an efficient and sustainable implementation of a SDG national monitoring system, involving all data producers and users is in place 

Contents / Outputs

  • A National SDGs monitoring system is set up as an integral part of national policies (global and sector) 
  • NSO established as focal point for the building and the regular monitoring of the national SDGs monitoring system, 
  • SDG focal points designated in every government agency and given mandate to contribute to the process, 
  • Partners in the private sector and civil society clearly identified; the operational mechanisms for their participation and contribution to the design and follow-up of the system discussed, agreed upon and established,
  • Choice of the indicators is done in a transparent and participatory way (translation of the global SDG indicator framework to national framework), 
  • Technical committees and sub-committees set-up according to the needs for data mapping, gathering and validation, 
  • Work programmes, deliverables  and calendars agreed upon, 
  • Processes and mandates set-up for documentation, reporting, monitoring and evaluation.
  • Principles of the 2030 Agenda (LNOB, universality, integrated approach, shared responsibility, accountability) are reflected in national plans/ policies/ laws
  • Frameworks and processes are guided by the principle of shared responsibility (participation of the private sector and the civil society), 
  • National SDG priorities are defined (goals and targets) and aligned to the National Development/Sustainability Plan  
  • Roles and responsibilities are clarified within the data ecosystem  (e.g. lead agency, reporting structures)  
  • Coordination mechanisms are defined vis-à-vis the private sector and the civil society, 
  • Statistics legislation is available that sets clear standards of who collects what kind of data according to which standards. 
  • A legal basis is set for collecting and analysing digital data that includes legislation on data protection (GDPR)/consumer protection; online rules to regulate which data can be collected and stored by the state or citizens (data protection) 
  • Policy coherence is formalised 

Possible Activities

  1. Technical and strategic advisory services
    -for national/sub-national implementation of the 2030 Agenda
    -for national development planning
    -for sustainability strategies and structures (sustainability councils)
    -for regional organisations
    -on Financing for Sustainable Development (FfSD)
    -for statistical authorities
  2. Placement of integrated experts (CIM)
  3. Organisation of exchange programs (e.g. Study visits)
  4. Facilitation/moderation of dialogue and negotiation processes
  5. Capacity development for NGOs on participation/participatory mechanisms
  6. Exchange and knowledge platforms (MAPs, P4R, sector project on effectiveness)
  7. Evaluation of capacity development
  8. Advice on data protection/security (Responsible Data Guidelines)

Good Practices (Examples)

Technical and strategic advisory services
Mexico: Supporting the Office of the President of Mexico in implementing the 2030 Agenda (PN: 2016.2234.9; May 2017 – April 2019)
The Office of the President is being advised on establishing a sustainability architecture, developing a strategy and strengthening the participation of non-governmental actors. Federalism for sustainable development in Mexico is also being strengthened.

Indonesia: Increasing domestic revenues for sustainable development (PN: 2016.2253.9; January 2018 – December 2020)
Conditions for financing national implementation of the Agenda 2030 are being improved in the area of fiscal policy and tax administration.

Namibia: SDG Initiative Namibia (PN: 2016.2237.2; February 2017 – June 2020)
An enabling environment is being created for national implementation of the 2030 Agenda in Namibia.

Lessons learned from macroeconomic advisory services
(NEDA Sector Network) Namibia: SDG Initiative Namibia (PN: 2016.2237.2; February 2017 – June 2020)

Training modules from the Rioplus sector project 
Global: Environmental policy and promoting strategies for sustainable development (Rioplus) (PN: 2018.2038.0; November 2018 – October 2021)
Development of training modules

Facilitation/moderation of dialogue and negotiation processes 
AU: DATA-CIPATION – Using citizen participation and innovative approaches to data for Africa’s development (PN: 2017.2158.8; July 2018 – March 2019) The AU’s capacities for civic engagement and innovative data use are being improved.

Mexico: Supporting the Office of the President of Mexico in implementing the 2030 Agenda (PN: 2016.2234.9; May 2017 – April 2019)

ECLAC: Support for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (PN: 2016.2141.6; July 2016 – June 2018) Together with ECLAC, countries in Latin America and the Caribbean are being supported in integrating the 2030 Agenda into their national planning and monitoring mechanisms (environmental indicators).

Exchange and knowledge platforms 
Partners for Review (PN: 2019.6255.4; July 2016 –March 2022)
National review processes for the 2030 Agenda are being strengthened for selected countries.

Links with other elements of the process landscape

Links with other Steering processes: The policy and institutional framework should consider the budget implication of the national dialogue and of the mobilisation of all the stakeholders. Quality standards should be followed for all the mechanisms established for consultation and dialogue

Links with Core processes: The policy and institutional framework is critical for all the stages of the implementation of the SDG monitoring system

Links with Supporting processes: The country priorities as well as the dialogue mechanisms must be largely advertised on the basis of a thorough communication strategy. Partners need to be empowered through capacity building.

Quality standards and references

National actors involved

Government (high-level), Partners from the private sector and the Civil society at national and local levels. Examples include:

  • Lobbying institutions (industry associations, chambers of commerce, private enterprises);
  • Interest groups (NGOs);
  • The academic and research community, political analysts (think tanks);
  • National coordination body, line ministries (e.g. Federal Chancellery, Office of the President, national planning ministries;
  • Parliament,
  • National agencies as e.g. Central Bank, Supreme Audit Institution,
  • UNDP
  • UN SDG custodian agencies