Africa-Focused Portal Highlights SDG Successes, Opportunities
Photo by Lynn Wagner
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SDSN and the SDG Center for Africa have released an online Africa SDG Index and Dashboards to track 51 African countries’ progress towards the SDGs.

The SDG index, ranging from 0 (weak) to 100 (strong), determines that only seven African countries have scores over 60, while 16 countries score below 50.

6 July 2018: The Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the SDG Center for Africa (SDGC/A) released an online Africa SDG Index and Dashboards. The portal tracks 51 African countries’ progress towards the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and displays the data in either an index or a dashboard format.

The index provides an aggregate measure of a country’s progress across all 17 SDGs. Progress towards an indicator is standardized on a scale of 0 (poor progress) and 100 (strong progress), relative to the objective of that indicator. For example, SDG indicator 4.1.1 measures proficiency in school subjects. The closer a country’s students are to achieving proficiency in these subjects, the closer their index ranking is to 100. Each standardized indicator score is then aggregated to determine a single value between 0 (poor) and 100 (strong) to a country.

Only seven countries in Africa have scores over 60 out of 100: Egypt, Ghana, Cabo Verde, Algeria, Mauritius, Tunisia and Morocco.

Of the 51 Africa countries that had substantial data to develop an index score, only seven countries had scores over 60; Egypt (60.70), Ghana (62.45), Cabo Verde (63.36), Algeria (63.95), Mauritius (64.04), Tunisia (65.88) and Morocco, who had the highest score with 66.08. Conversely, 16 countries had scores below 50, with the two lowest scores recorded for Somalia (36.15) and the Central African Republic (35.70).

Aside from displaying data in an index format, users can also view countries’ progress towards each SDG in an interactive dashboard. In the dashboard, users can view countries index scores on an SDG-by-SDG basis, or view a countries’ overall progress towards the SDGs in a trend-based dashboard.

The trend-based dashboard presents countries’ progress by using red, orange, yellow or green arrows to represent decreasing, stagnating, moderately increasing or on track trends, respectively. For countries with no available data on an SDG, white is used. Users can decide to view all 52 countries data, or filter searches based on five geographic areas: North Africa, East Africa, Central Africa, Southern Africa and or West Africa.

According to the portal, progress towards the SDGs varies widely by country and region. In North Africa, four out of five countries with data are on track to achieving SDG 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure) and half of the countries in Eastern Africa are on track to achieving SDG 15 (life on land). In Central, Southern and Western Africa, 30 of 35 countries with data are on track to meeting SDG 13 (climate action). Although progress towards the SDGs is being made throughout Africa, no country is on track to meet SDGs 2 (zero hunger), 3 (good health and wellbeing), 4 (quality education), 11 (sustainable cities and communities) or 14 (life below water).

The Africa SDG Index and Dashboard is built on the Global SDG Index and Dashboard, which SDSN launched in 2016. The release of the Africa focused platform was accompanied by a publication of the same name, which further details findings and the methods used to develop index rankings. [2018 SDG Knowledge Hub story on 2018 SDG Index]

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