The ‘Principles paper for HLPF review’ was prepared by Action for Sustainable Development, Forus, the TAP Network and Together 2030, a group of networks and initiatives that comprise thousands of members from civil society organizations across the world.
The principles include: giving more time to VNR presentations; focusing on leaving no one behind; and providing more opportunities for meaningful follow-up, learning and review.
17 May 2019: A coalition of stakeholders developed a set of principles for the upcoming intergovernmental review of the UN High-level Political Forum (HLPF). In a paper explaining the principles, the stakeholders call for the HLPF to continue to have “a central role in overseeing a network of follow-up and review processes of the 2030 Agenda at the global level.”
The HLPF was established in 2013 through UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution 67/290 on the format and organizational aspects of the HLPF. To clarify the HLPF’s follow-up and review function, in 2016 the UNGA adopted resolution 70/299, which sets out specific themes for the Forum’s sessions in 2017, 2018 and 2019, as well as the set of SDGs to be reviewed in depth in those years. By that resolution, the UNGA that during its 74th session (2019-2020) it will review progress on the two resolutions’ implementation, “to benefit from lessons learned in the first cycle” of the HLPF.
The ‘Principles paper for HLPF review’ was prepared by Action for Sustainable Development, Forus, the Transparency, Accountability and Participation (TAP) Network and Together 2030. Collectively these networks and initiatives comprise thousands of members from civil society organizations across the world.
The principles are, namely:
- Increasing the ambition of the HLPF;
- Giving more time to Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) presentations;
- Focusing on leaving no one behind;
- Better aligning and integrating the 2030 Agenda with other frameworks, particularly environmental and human rights;
- Providing more opportunities for meaningful follow-up, learning and review; and
- Ensuring the meaningful participation of Major Groups and other stakeholders in the HLPF.
Among other recommendations, the paper suggests that the HLPF review be based on the principles and structure of the Open Working Group on the SDGs, which it says was a “successful and collaborative, Member-State-led, multi-stakeholder process.” The Open Working Group developed the SDGs that were later adopted by the UNGA.
The paper further calls for a dedicated HLPF platform for civil society to publish and showcase SDG “Spotlight Reports” and for including such reports in the official HLPF deliberations, or as “official inputs at the very least.” On giving more time to VNRs and making them more effective, the paper says all ideas must be explored, including to have each VNR accompanied by a corresponding side event to allow for more dialogue on the review presentations.
On leaving no one behind, the paper suggests “safeguarding” a space for left behind groups in Goal-specific discussions, and providing resources to facilitate travel for marginalized people to attend the HLPF. The paper also proposes to review SDG 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions) annually, similarly to SDG 17 (partnerships for the Goals), given its cross-cutting nature underpinning the whole 2030 Agenda. [Publication: Principles Paper for HLPF Review] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on Expert Group Meeting Preparing for HLPF Review]