What is meant by follow-up and review?

Evaluating progress

Follow-up and review is the process of evaluating progress, seeking to improve accountability, identify challenges, exchange knowledge and learn about best practices, and to support cooperation and mobilize resources.

To ensure progress towards the 2030 Agenda, countries commit to engage in systematic follow-up and review of their implementation, at subnational, national, regional and global levels. These processes “will be voluntary and country-led, will take into account different national realities, capacities and levels of development and will respect policy space and priorities. As national ownership is key to achieving sustainable development, the outcome from national level processes will be the foundation for reviews at the regional and global levels” (§ 74 of the 2030 Agenda).

At the global level

At the global level, follow-up and review will take place every year in the High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF).

Each year, the HLPF reviews progress towards the 2030 Agenda through the lens of a specific theme, including an in-depth review of a subset of Goals. The HLPF also has a strong focus on the means of implementation and global partnerships. The global review will be based on the annual Sustainable Development Goals Report, which is “primarily based on national official data sources” (§ 74 of the 2030 Agenda).

SDG 6 will be subject to in-depth review in the 2018 HLPF, together with SDGs 7, 11, 12, 15 and 17 under the theme «transformation toward sustainable and resilient societies».

Countries gathering to evaluate progress towards the 2030 Agenda at the global level, HLPF in July 2016 in New York (Photo credit: Freya Morales UNDP, Creative Commons Attribution)

Countries gathering to evaluate progress towards the 2030 Agenda at the global level, HLPF in July 2016 in New York (Photo credit: Freya Morales UNDP, Creative Commons Attribution)

At the regional level

Regional follow-up and review processes focus on peer learning and the sharing of best practices, as well as discussions about shared opportunities and challenges. The processes, taking place in existing regional fora, draw on national reviews and contribute to the process at the global level.

The focus of national processes is often on accountability: to evaluate if policies are working, progress is happening and commitments are being met (Photo credit: UNDP, Creative Commons Attribution)

The focus of national processes is often on accountability: to evaluate if policies are working, progress is happening and commitments are being met (Photo credit: UNDP, Creative Commons Attribution)

Operating at the national, regional and global levels, it will promote accountability to our citizens, support effective international cooperation in achieving this Agenda and foster exchanges of best practices and mutual learning. It will mobilize support to overcome shared challenges and identify new and emerging issues.
— 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

at the national level

At the national level, an example of a follow-up and review process is the joint sector review. The focus of national processes is often on accountability: to evaluate if policies are working, progress is happening and commitments are being met. Inclusiveness of all relevant stakeholders, including indigenous people, civil society and the private sector, is essential to ensure an effective and transparent process.

The HLPF includes voluntary national reviews, where each year a subset of countries presents an in-depth review of how they are progressing towards the 2030 Agenda; the ambition is that each county presents twice during the entire 2030 period. At the 2016 HLPF, 22 countries participated and presented on what mechanisms, strategies and policies they are putting in place to implement the 2030 Agenda, including the processes used to define these strategies.

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FAQDaniella Bostrom2030 Agenda