In the UK the Office of National Statistics takes a snapshot of how we are doing as a nation, communities and individuals and how sustainable that is for the future in the Life in the UK reports, across the 10 domains and 41 measures of national wellbeing.
The ONS are seeking views on what the UK report on these global goals by 27th May.
- SDGs are universal – they apply to all countries and aim to ‘leave no one behind’.
- Emphasis is on implementation, rather than just measuring; SDGs have been described by Ban Ki Moon as a ‘to-do list for the planet’
ONS are responsible for reporting UK progress towards the goals. They are currently running a consultation (with UK Stakeholders for Sustainable Development) where you can inform decisions about which global targets and indicators are relevant for the UK, and what potential new, UK-focussed indicators there could be.
There is no target or indicator about personal wellbeing. Should we be taking account of how people assess the quality of their own lives? Should there be indicators of this included as part of the UK’s monitoring of specific goals (like health and wellbeing?)
The connection between wellbeing, sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals was considered in the this year’s World Happiness Report:
Measuring self-reported happiness and achieving well-being should be on every nation’s agenda as they begin to pursue the Sustainable Development Goals….Indeed the Goals themselves embody the very idea that human well-being should be nurtured through a holistic approach that combines economic, social and environmental objectives. Rather than taking a narrow approach focused solely on economic growth, we should promote societies that are prosperous, just, and environmentally sustainable. Jeffrey Sachs, director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University.