U.N. Should Cut 169 SDG Targets Down To 19 For More Sustainable Development Results

Project Syndicate: Unsustainable Development Goals
Bjørn Lomborg, adjunct professor at the Copenhagen Business School and founder and director of the Copenhagen Consensus Center

“…It is a rather unlikely prospect, but instead of signing the Agenda for Sustainable Development as is, leaders should forego the photo opportunity and spend their time in New York cutting it down to just 19 key development targets. That is the number of targets that a panel of Nobel laureates identified in a project for my think tank, the Copenhagen Consensus Center. … Channeling the entire development budget to the 19 targets that the panel identified would do four times more good than if we spread it across the U.N.’s 169 targets, with a large share of those benefits going to the world’s worst-off people. In lofty language, the U.N. claims that the Agenda for Sustainable Development’s 169 targets are ‘integrated and indivisible.’ This is nonsense. Cutting them back is what should happen…” (9/15).