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Sustainability Science Special Feature
Synergies and trade‑offs between sustainable development goals and targets: innovative approaches and new perspectives
Fabrice Renaud1,* ・ Xin Zhou3 ・ Lee Bosher4 ・ Brian Barrett2 ・ Suiliang Huang5
1 University of Glasgow, Dumfries, UK
2 University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
3 Institute for Global Environmental Strategies, Hayama, Japan
4 Loughbourough University, Loughbourough, UK
5 Nankai University, Tianjin, China
The sustainable development goals (SDGs) adopted by the United Nations on 25 September 2015 are currently driving most development policies globally. With 17 goals, 169 targets, and 232 indicators to monitor and track progress, countries may lose sight of the synergies and trade-offs between goals and between targets, a fact that has been acknowledged from the beginning. To address this concern, approaches are being developed to identify and quantify these synergies and trade-offs. Most of these approaches address the national scale, as it is at this level that the SDGs are to be reported, but synergies and trade-offs are also relevant at the global and sub-national scales where, arguably, less research is underway.
Understanding the synergies and trade-offs between goals and targets is extremely important to (1) minimize trade-offs and maximize synergies, (2) avoid wasting resources, and (3) ensure equitable partnerships and ultimately, equitable development internationally, at the national scale and within countries. Research in this field is rapidly increasing and this is an opportune time to take stock of recent advances.
The proposed special feature will give an opportunity to assess recent progress made in understanding synergies and trade-offs between goals and between targets. The special feature aims to include:
Understanding SDG Synergies and Trade-offs for Sustainable, Resilient and Inclusive Development
IGES International Forum for Sustainable Asia and the Pacific (ISAP) 2020
Thematic Track Session 4, 10 November 2020, PACIFICO Yokohama, Japan
Understanding the synergies and trade-offs between the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is important to ensure policy coherence across sectors and to balance the three dimensions of sustainable development. The COVID-19 pandemic and the evolving global crisis has affected the livelihoods and daily lives of billions of people around the world jeopardising decades of progress in many social and economic areas. There are now urgent calls for a transformative change for building a more sustainable, resilient and inclusive society. The SDGs remain more relevant than they were before COVID-19 in guiding the development towards long-term resilience and sustainability. It is even more important than ever to understand the synergies and trade-offs between SDGs to support the required transformative change. But how do synergies and trade-offs operate and impact on achieving SDGs in 2030? How can existing frameworks, models and tools for the analysis of synergies and trade-offs be improved by incorporating the knowledge from the COVID-19 crisis? How can we use the knowledge and analysis of synergies and trade-offs to support practical policymaking?
The session addressed these three questions. Experts from Europe and Asia provided their knowledge and insights on these issues, and more importantly, they provided solutions or make suggestions to utilise the knowledge of synergies and trade-offs between SDGs to support the desired transformative change towards the world we aspire to.
|Location: Online||Language: English/Japanese|
Go to the ISAP Thematic Session page
Project partners from the University of Glasgow (UK), Loughborough University (UK), Nankai University (China), and the Institute of Global Environmental Strategies (Japan) undertook 10 days of field work in northern Hebei province and Inner Mongolia, China in October, 2019. The project team travelled over 1800 km and were accompanied by a local governmental expert on the Luanhe river basin.
The route taken by the project team, starting in Beijing, travelling in across the midstream, upstream and downstream of the Luanhe river basin, and finishing in Tianjin.
Source: Luanhe Living Lab (https://luanhelivinglab.home.blog/)
The local expert describing the Luanhe River Basin, Pan Jiakou Reservoir
The ancient Great Wall section in Pan Jiakou Reservoir
Source of the Luanhe River
Junction gate for transferring water from the Luanhe River, Da Heiting Reservoir
Hydro-power generation with a total installed capacity of 21MW, Da Heiting Water Conservancy Project
Estuary of the Luanhe River in Laoting
Wetland in the upstream, Bashang, Fengning Autonomous County
Water conservation through afforestation, Fengning Autonomous County
Water from the Luanhe River for irrigation, Taiping Village, Longhua County
Eco-tourism in the resort area of the Litter Luanhe River, Weichang County
Huangtai Lake Park, an artificial water conservancy area in Qianan City
The Green Gallery Project along the Luanhe River section in Luanzhou City