2 January 2018
Why does the Secretary-General insist on placing Partnerships at the Heart of the Post-2015 Development Agenda?
Zondervan, Ruben and Jonathan Volt. 2018. Why does the Secretary-General insist on placing Partnerships at the Heart of the Post-2015 Development Agenda? Global Goals Yearbook. Münster: Macondo Publishing / United Nations Publications. 18-22.
Although PPPs might have the potential to leverage funding for development, their track record is mixed at best. PPPs have not yet proven to be consistent with inclusive governance. The idea of PPPs has been “en vogue” in the international governance of sustainable development and increasingly mentioned in UN reports. The concept of a “global partnership” only appeared in one of the original eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and is mentioned again in one of the seventeen newly proposed post-2015 SDGs.
Essential values in the 2030 Agenda, such as equity and inclusion, must permeate the whole process and not just the Goals. Thus, PPPs must reflect these values and be inclusive, fair, and transparent. Finally, we need clarity on the concept of partnerships so there can be some agreement on what elements should be included and excluded, what should be the purpose of PPPs, and in what ways we can ensure accountability and transparency from new partnerships. Without a clear and unequivocal understanding of these concepts, it is unlikely that partnerships – in the way they are being uncritically hailed by the UNSG – will benefit the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals therein.