Table of Contents

  • The 2015 edition of Better Policies for Development comes at a critical time. In 2015 – the target year of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) – the international community is forging a new global framework for sustainable development. The post-2015 development agenda offers an unprecedented opportunity to make extreme poverty history; to place the world on a sustainable development path; and to ensure well-being and prosperity for all while protecting the planet.

  • The implementation of the Post-2015 Development Agenda demands policy coherence at multiple levels. This edition of Better Policies for Development puts the spotlight on the Post-2015 Development Agenda and shows that countries need to be able to work across policy domains to respond to the more complex and interrelated challenges addressed by the SDGs. As UN Members have identified an integrated set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the importance of policy coherence for the collective achievement of these goals cannot be emphasised enough. A key lesson from the MDGs was that sustained change cannot be achieved through one-dimensional or single sector goals. A coherent strategy must ensure that the implementation of one goal reinforces (or at least does not undermine) the achievement of other goals.

  • The scope of the policy coherence agenda has expanded in many ways and concerns all countries regardless of their level of income and development. This chapter considers the ways in which the concept has evolved in light of the post-2015 Development Agenda by tapping into the collective knowledge pool of a number of distinguished thinkers, including Catherine Mann, OECD Chief Economist; Amina Mohammed, UN Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning; Erik Solheim, Chair of OECD’s Development Assistant Committee (DAC); Jiang Ye of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies; former DAC Chairs James Michel and J. Brian Atwood; and Richard Carey, former Director of OECD’s Development Co-operation Directorate.

  • The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) go beyond the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in fundamental ways: they apply to all countries – including OECD members – not only to developing countries, and affect practically all aspects of public policy. Updated tools and approaches to policy coherence will be required to take into account complex cross-sectoral inter-linkages (e.g. water-energy-food nexus); as well as the role of key actors; the enabling conditions; and the effects of policies in achieving the SDGs. The implementation of the post-2015 Development Agenda call for whole-of-government approaches and strengthened institutional coordination and coherence at all levels of policy-making to ensure more integrated policy frameworks for sustainable development. Policy coherence is fundamental to foster synergies between economic, social and environmental policies; deal with trade-offs; and consider trans-boundary and inter-generational impacts on sustainable development. This chapter illustrates how a new analytical framework for Policy Coherence for Sustainable Development (PCSD) can help inform coherent policy-making in the context of the new global development agenda.

  • Attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will require building synergies across economic, social and environmental policies, as well as pursuing multiple policy objectives in a coherent manner. Green growth, which pursues environmental goals simultaneously with growth and development, will be a fundamental component of national strategies to achieve the SDGs. This chapter considers relevant lessons learned from the challenges facing countries in the transition to green growth. It first provides a general overview of the core actions and policies involved in aligning economic and environmental objectives and implementing green growth policy frameworks, then considers two priority areas in further detail: (1) aligning policies for the transition to a low carbon economy; and (2) aligning social and labour policies in pursuit of green growth.

  • This chapter aims to guide national efforts to monitor the coherence of their domestic policies and to assess their overall contribution to sustainable development outcomes. It recognises that ensuring progress in policy coherence for sustainable development (PCSD) in the post-2015 framework will require going beyond institutional mechanisms and also take into account policy interactions, contextual factors, and effects on human wellbeing – including over time. The initial focus is on the three priority areas in the OECD Strategy on Development: global food security; illicit financial flows; and green growth. For each of these areas, this guidance highlights existing OECD indicators, policy instruments and dialogue platforms, as identified in an Organisation-wide mapping exercise to inform the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

  • The new agenda offers opportunities for countries to adjust their domestic policies, institutions and mechanisms to promote policy coherence for sustainable development in a post-2015 context. This chapter provides an overview of recent or ongoing national efforts to this end. Some countries showcase the institutional mechanisms they have in place (or are developing) in order to implement the new agenda, while others highlight specific sectors in which coherent policy making has contributed to improved development outcomes. Recognising that policy coherence for development has its origin in civil society, this chapter also includes important contributions from civil society organisations (CSOs) in different countries.