Strengthening the Demographic Evidence Base for the Post-2015 Development Agenda

A Concise Report

In September 2015, the General Assembly adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which includes 17 ambitious goals to ensure a sustainable future for humanity. The Sustainable Development Goals, together with 169 targets that further specify the achievements expected, will guide the actions of Governments and the development community through 2030. Monitoring progress towards the achievement of the goals and targets will be crucial to guiding action. Reliable and timely demographic information is essential for effective monitoring. The present report reviews the current status of demographic evidence and its capacity to support monitoring of the Sustainable Development Goals. It focuses on the core systems generating demographic data and describes how the “data revolution” has already improved their performance and the potential for accelerating such improvements. In addition, the report underscores that open access to anonymized micro data and routine use of Geo-referencing in data collection are necessary to expand the use of demographic data. Geo-referencing makes possible the integration of diverse data sets and facilitates disaggregation and the incorporation of big data in analyses and modelling. It also highlights the role of institutions producing consistent and comparable sets of demographic indicators essential for monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals globally.