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Global governance and global rules for development in the post-2015 era

image of Global governance and global rules for development in the post-2015 era
The present Note examines how global cooperation through its various institutions and rules could be reformed and strengthened to better manage the increasing interdependence among countries and reduce inequalities within and among countries, part of which originate from inadequate global governance. It further considers how international cooperation could be transformed to better serve the fulfilment of internationally recognised economic, social and environmental standards in the post 2015 era, while preserving sufficient policy space for governments to achieve their own national objectives. The Note also identifies main principles to guide this reform process. Finally, it suggests a greater role for the UN in setting up the reform agenda of global governance and rules as proposed here to facilitate the achievement of sustainable development world wide.

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Global governance and global rules for development in the post-2015 era

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are an expression of the broader United Nations development agenda agreed to at several United Nations conferences and summits convened over many decades (United Nations, 2007). These goals, as well as the broader United Nations development agenda, underscore a global consensus, a shared vision of inclusive development, based on the three pillars of sustainable development: economic, social and environmental. They have also been instrumental in drawing attention to development as a global priority and have become reference points for development policy debates and practices worldwide. Yet, the MDGs address issues of global governance in an incomplete and limited way. Goal 8, the global partnership for development, is often recognized as the least satisfactory of the MDGs. In fact, the Committee for Development Policy (CDP) had already noted that the “MDG narrative … leaves out much of the important economic policy agenda of developing countries in international negotiations. Issues of asymmetric power and lack of voice in international rules related to trade, investments and finance as well as policy space and control over national economic policies are barely reflected in the MDGs. While they do include a specific goal on the building of a global partnership for development (Goal 8), its wording is weak and lacks quantitative targets in several aspects” (United Nations, 2012a, p. 13).

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