Angel Gurría
OECD Secretary-General

With the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, all nations committed to a set of universal, integrated and transformational goals and targets, the Sustainable Development Goals. The 17 goals and 169 targets provide a shared vision and collective responsibility for the world we all aspire to by 2030.

>Governments also committed to “pursue policy coherence and an enabling environment for sustainable development at all levels and by all actors”. SDG target 17.14 to “enhance policy coherence for sustainable development” recognises the potential for synergies and trade-offs among SDGs and targets, between different sectoral policies, and between diverse actions at the local, regional, national and international levels. Policy coherence is vital to take into account the effects of policies on the sustainable development and well-being of people living in other countries, and of future generations. This will mean a new way of doing things – through whole-of-government, whole-of-society approaches – but an essential one to achieve real transformation in the years to come.

There is no one-size-fits-all formula for enhancing policy coherence. There are different approaches, visions, models and tools available to each country, and each approach must be considered depending on national circumstances and priorities.

Translating the new vision of the SDGs into action is a major challenge. The first year of implementation has nevertheless shown that countries are advancing in aligning their national strategies, adapting institutional frameworks and shifting policies to achieve the SDGs. Last year, the OECD reaffirmed its commitment to supporting countries in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The OECD’s Action Plan on the Sustainable Development Goals sets out concrete ways in which we will do this.

This year, Ministers will gather at the High-Level Political Forum of the United Nations to take stock of progress, with a particular focus on eradicating poverty and enhancing prosperity in a changing world. Against this backdrop, Policy Coherence for Sustainable Development 2017 seeks to inform policy making by showing how a policy coherence lens can support implementation efforts, drawing on OECD evidence and analysis. It identifies challenges and good institutional practices for enhancing policy coherence in SDG implementation, drawing on the experience of the early implementers of the SDGs and applying eight key elements from the OECD’s Framework for Policy Coherence for Sustainable Development. It also introduces the “Coherence Monitor” to track progress on policy coherence.

The OECD stands ready to support countries to develop and implement approaches to strengthen policy coherence and, in turn, deliver the vision set out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.


Angel Gurría,

OECD Secretary-General