United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development


Statement by the Under-Secretary for Global Development Cooperation, Denmark Mr. Morten Jespersen on behalf of Denmark
Intergovernmental negotiations on the
post-2015 development agenda
23-27 March 2015
Statement on indicators for goals and targets
24 March 2015
New York
Tuesday, 24 March 2015
Check against delivery
E-mail: nycmis@um.dk
Co-facilitators and Mr. Chair of the UN Statistical Commission,
Denmark aligns itself with statement made by the EU Commission on behalf of the European Union, and would like to add a few remarks in national capacity.
Thank you for the update regarding the development of indicators for the future goals and targets in the post-2015 agenda. We welcome the efforts to develop global indicators and look forward to the further work to develop a robust framework of global indicators. The global indicators will play a crucial role in meeting the goals and targets in the post-2015 agenda. They will underpin the monitoring and continuously tell us, whether we are on track as well as indicate potential gaps. Furthermore, they will form a key tool for global accountability.
Let me highlight a few key considerations regarding technical expertise, characteristics of the indicators and data collection.
First, we believe the development of indicators should be based on technical expertise. [Any politicization, including political negotiations, should be avoided.] Therefore, we highly welcome the lead taken by UN Statistical Commission and the support provided by the UN system, including in particular the UN Task Team. We encourage also drawing on the valuable expertise of a broader set of UN and other actors, including the national statistical offices, the scientific community, civil society and other non-state actors. The non-state actors can provide valuable expertise regarding data and monitoring, which should be taken into account.
Secondly, it is important that the global indicators address the breadth and richness of the targets in a balanced way. The indicators should preserve the level
of ambition and the transformation sought in the goals and targets, and they should provide a measure of the overall progress for the entire set of targets. Furthermore, they should ensure that the integrated nature of goals and targets is well captured, and the balanced integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development. It goes without saying that indicators should be made up of both quantitative and qualitative indicators, be gender and age sensitive, and based on disaggregated data.
We should strive to have a manageable set of global indicators to be used across countries – well knowing that these will be supplemented by additional relevant regional and national indicators. We expect that this can be accommodated by identifying indicators, which respond simultaneously to various targets across different goals, thereby reducing the number of indicators and contributing to a more integrated agenda.
Third, data collection will comprise a challenge. It is key that as much data as possible can be collected worldwide for the chosen indicators. Building on existing international indicators can make more efficient use of resources. It is important that our efforts do not restrict the selection of indicators over time as progressive improvement of data and measurement is envisaged. We should make full use of new technologies and methods beyond March 2016, such as provided through geodata information technologies and Big Data.
Lastly, we would encourage the UN Statistical Commission as part of their work on the indicator framework to also provide guidance on the development of national and regional indicators and for the data collection at the national level.
We look forward to carefully consider the results of the technical assessment as presented in the paper shared by the co-facilitators. We stand ready to engage constructively based on clear criteria and shared understanding that we need to preserve the ambition, political balance and breadth of the OWG proposal, including maintaining the balance among the three dimensions and the related inter-linkages across all goals and targets.
Thank you.