Measuring distance to the SDG targets – Korea

Based on 126 available indicators allowing a coverage of 101 of the 169 SDG targets, Korea has currently achieved 18 of the 2030 targets, and many of the remaining distances to targets are small (Figure 2.37). For example, Korea has already achieved the targets on connection to public sewage treatment (target 6.3) and on enhancing scientific research (target 9.5) and has among the highest recycling rates among OECD countries (targets 11.6 and 12.5). However, some challenges remain; Korea is still very far (i.e. more than 3 standardised distances away) from meeting some 7% of the targets. For instance, Korea has the highest share of population with large household expenditures on health among OECD countries, a small proportion of seats held by women in the parliament and high rates of tobacco consumption (targets 3.8, 5.5 and 3.a).

Figure 2.37. Korea’s distance from achieving 101 SDG targets
Figure 2.37. Korea’s distance from achieving 101 SDG targets

Note: The chart shows current level of achievement on each available target. The longer the bar, the shorter the distance still to be travelled to reach 2030 target (dotted circle). Targets are clustered by goal, and goals are clustered by the “5Ps” of the 2030 Agenda (outer circle).

Source: See www.oecd.org/sdd/OECD-Measuring-Distance-to-SDGs-Targets-Metadata.pdf for detailed metadata.

 StatLink http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/888933963557

The Measuring Distance to the SDG Targets Study is intended as an analytical tool to assist countries in identifying strengths and weaknesses across the goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda, and as such differs in nature from Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) or other reporting processes. To ensure international comparability, indicators used in the Study are based on the UN Global List of Indicators on SDGs and are sourced from the UN SDG Database and OECD databases. VNRs typically use national indicators that reflect national circumstances and can be more up-to-date.

Figure 2.38, Panel A shows that Korea is on average closest to reaching goals on Economy and Implementation (goals 8 and 17). On the other hand, Korea is furthest from the goals on Gender Equality and Reducing Inequality (goals 5 and 10). Relative to the OECD average, Korea outperforms on goals such as Education, Economy, Infrastructure and Implementation (goals 4, 8, 9 and 17). Conversely, Korea is relatively further away on goals such as Climate, Energy Reducing Inequality and Cities (goals 13, 7, 10 and 11). However, considerable effort by the international statistical community will be key to fill the data gaps and allow a more accurate assessment (see Figure 2.38, Panel B). For example, if missing data were available on Sustainable Production, Oceans and Reducing Inequality (goals 12, 14 and 10), Korea’s performance on Planet and Prosperity could change from current assessments.

Figure 2.38. Korea’s distance from targets and data coverage, by goal
Figure 2.38. Korea’s distance from targets and data coverage, by goal

Note: Panel A shows the average distance the country needs to travel to reach each SDG. Distances are measured in standardised units (see Chapter 3 for details) with 0 indicating that the level for 2030 has already been attained: and 3 is the distance most OECD countries have already travelled. Bars show the average country performance against all targets under the relevant Goal for which data are available, and diamonds show the OECD average. Whiskers show uncertainties due to missing data, ranging from assuming that missing indicators are all 3 standardised distances from the 2030 target level to assuming that they are already at the target level. Panel B shows the share of targets covered by at least one indicator out of the 169 targets of the 2030 Agenda, according to the 17 goals and 5Ps.

Source: See www.oecd.org/sdd/OECD-Measuring-Distance-to-SDGs-Targets-Metadata.pdf for detailed metadata.

 StatLink http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/888933963576

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