30 June 2020
Canadian Civil Society Report: Look Between the Goals
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The British Columbia Council for International Cooperation released a report on mechanisms for accelerating SDG implementation.

The 2020 edition of the yearly report includes a chapter on Canada’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in the context of the 2030 Agenda.

The report also reflects on Canada’s progress on interlinkages within the 2030 Agenda, and issues recommendations for policymakers and practitioners.

The British Columbia Council for International Cooperation (BCCIC) has released a report on mechanisms for accelerating SDG implementation. The publication aims to inform discussions during the 2020 session of the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), and provides recommendations to government authorities in Canada.

The report titled, ‘Reading Between the Lines: Accelerated Implementation for Agenda 2030,’ was released on 9 June 2020. The 2020 edition of the yearly report includes a chapter on Canada’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in the context of the 2030 Agenda. The report also reflects on Canada’s progress on interlinkages within the 2030 Agenda, describing how policymakers and practitioners have utilized interlinkages in various sectors. The authors call to “look between the Goals” for interactions and fulcrums of change.

More than half the Goals related directly to provincial jurisdiction, making it urgent to coordinate the SDGs sub-nationally.

Unlike the previous yearly reports from BCCIC, which functioned as a scorecard for Canada’s performance on the SDGs, the 2020 edition examines underlying principles of Canada’s SDG performance, said Zosa Gruber, BCCIC.

The report’s key recommendations include:

  • Identify SDG indicator data needs and sources across the country;
  • Map organizations across sectors working on the SDGs in Canada’s 2030 strategy, and formalize a multi-stakeholder body with a specific mechanism of accountability to the federal government;
  • Create a mechanism for working collaboratively with the provinces, territories, and municipalities to implement the 2030 Agenda to ensure policy coherence; “more than half of the goals relate directly to Provincial/Territorial jurisdiction” making it urgent for the federal government to coordinate SDG implementation sub-nationally;
  • Include spillover analysis in Canada’s voluntary national review (VNR) and follow-up and review processes to accurately reflect whether meeting one target is detracting from the achievement of another target elsewhere;
  • Mandate consistent data reporting for spillover analysis, and work with the territories, provinces, and federal ministries to conduct a spillover analysis of Canada’s largest resource industries (oil and gas, fisheries, forestry and mining), which have the greatest spillover impacts within Canada and abroad;
  • Translate the “leave no one behind” actions proposed in Canada’s interim SDG strategy into concrete commitments, actions, partnerships, and initiatives;
  • Promote human rights-based analysis (HRBA) tools to identify and prioritize those “furthest behind”;
  • Refine the Canadian Indicator Framework by adding transformative change indicators, indicators that speak to SDG interlinkages, and indicators/ targets that speak to the needs of those furthest behind; 
  • Ensure that those at risk of being left behind play an active role in sub-national, national, and VNR reporting on 2030 Agenda progress and participate in Canadian delegations at the HLPF;
  • Ensure that COVID-19 recovery proceeds through an SDG-sensitive process that locks into place the gains made during the crisis (e.g., on reducing carbon and unsustainable consumption and production); and
  • Continue to take a leadership role in protecting health, environmental, and food systems weakened by COVID-19. 

The BCCIC report was produced with the support of Global Affairs Canada and Employment and Social Development Canada. [Publication landing page] [BCCIC press release] [Publication: Reading Between the Lines: Accelerated Implementation for Agenda 2030]


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