The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the next steps that humanity has set for itself towards ensuring a healthy, fulfilling life for all, on a healthy planet. Following an open consultation process led by the United Nations, governments around the world have committed themselves to achieving these goals before 2030. For the first time, they are not alone: civil society and the private sector are called to play a major role.
Calling for ending poverty, gender equality, safeguarding our environment and climate, strong institutions, education for all, or sustainable consumption and production, these new global goals will require all of us to take action for a better world. The important role of the private sector has evolved since the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which the SDGs replace. Through their global reach it has become apparent that businesses can have a lasting impact on many people’s lives and make a real difference towards building a fairer and more sustainable world.
Unlocking private sector potential to advance human development
In this view, a specific target within the SDGs directly speaks to the role to play by companies. Within goal #12, aiming for “sustainable consumption and production patterns”, target #6 calls for advancing sustainability reporting worldwide and supporting responsible business practices. By measuring and disclosing their social and environmental impacts, companies can work towards sustainable social and economic development. Sustainability reporting, as an enabler, is a key tool that can advance the private sector contribution to global development.
Tracking progress on Target 12.6
With the SDG Target 12.6 tracker, governments and other interested stakeholders can visualize the state of sustainability reporting in their own countries and others. How many companies report on social and environmental issues in my country? In which sectors? What policies are in place in the world to encourage companies to report and facilitate sustainability reporting?