5 July 2023
World Bank Atlas Highlights Role of Data in SDG Implementation
story highlights

The publication offers data insights on SDG progress at the midpoint in their implementation, including achievements and setbacks.

It uses immersive, interactive storytelling and data visualizations to provide decision makers, the development community, and other stakeholders with a visual online resource that highlights the role of data in SDG implementation.

The World Bank launched an online publication that presents interactive storytelling and data visualizations about the 17 SDGs. Drawing from the World Bank’s World Development Indicators database, the Atlas of Sustainable Development Goals 2023 “highlights trends for selected targets within each goal and introduces concepts about how some SDGs are measured.”

The publication offers data insights on SDG progress at the midpoint in their implementation, including achievements and setbacks. It uses immersive, interactive storytelling and data visualizations to provide decision makers, the development community, and other stakeholders with a visual online resource that highlights the role of data in SDG implementation.

The Atlas explores relevant targets for each SDG, spotlights trends, including climate change and COVID-19 impacts, and emphasizes how the Goals are interconnected. It allows readers to customize each chapter to track the development of specific countries.

To provide examples, a World Bank data blog highlights three data stories from the 2023 Atlas. One example relates to countries’ recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, outlined in the chapter dedicated to SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth). To see whether recovery will be equitable, the story explains, the Atlas analyzes the latest trends based on the shared prosperity premium. The shared prosperity premium is the gap between income growth for the bottom 40% of households compared to the growth of all households. The premium is positive for countries where incomes for the bottom 40% increases faster than the overall average, it notes. Where income growth is slower for the bottom 40%, the premium is negative.

Based on an interactive chart, the data story highlights that in 40% of countries with data, the bottom 40% of income grew slower from 2012-2017. It acknowledges that while more data are needed to determine how the pandemic affected these trends. It further notes that “much work is needed to ensure that the gains in the aftermath of COVID-19 – and other crises like inflation and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – benefit everyone.”

Launched on 21 June, the Atlas is in its fourth edition. Previous Atlases were released in 2020, 2018, and 2017. The 2023 Atlas was produced with financial support from the World Bank Group’s Partnership Fund for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG Fund) and the KDI School of Public Policy and Management. [Publication: Atlas of Sustainable Development Goals 2023]

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