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In September 2015, world leaders attended a special summit at the United Nations in New York to adopt Agenda 2030, including the Sustainable Development Goals (or SDGs). The 17 goals succeed the Millennium Development Goals, forged in 2000. They provide a holistic framework, applicable to all countries, aiming to eradicate poverty and deprivation, but also to grow our economies, to protect our environment, and to promote peace and good governance.

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The goals were developed over more than 3 years of intergovernmental negotiations. The SDSN contributed to the intergovernmental negotiation leading to the SDGs through flagship reports (The Action Agenda and Indicators and a Monitoring Framework for the SDGs), briefs and evidence papers, and expert sessions and side events.

Although the SDGs have been agreed, work continues focusing on defining the indicators and monitoring framework, as well as the political processes of follow-up and review. SDSN is participates in these discussions through expert analysis and events.