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The 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals

Impact Investing and the Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, the United Nations adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Global leaders and policymakers have developed the 17 SDGs with 169 targets to address global challenges such as poverty, gender equality, and climate change.

These goals recognise that all social and environmental issues are interconnected and affect everyone, globally. For this reason, the SDGs framework does not distinguish between ‘developed’ and ‘developing’ countries, but instead proposes goals that apply to every country.

According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), around $5-7 trillion USD is needed to achieve the SDGs by 2030. This means financial resources are needed at scale from both public and private actors.

The SDGs have targets such as reducing poverty, increasing gender equality, providing access to clean and affordable energy, and creating more sustainable cities. Simultaneously, impact investors are looking to identify and invest in enterprises tackling these same targets.

The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) has showcased a series of case studies highlighting how impact investors can align with the SDGs in order to drive results. See them here.

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