Indigenous Peoples and the 2030 Agenda

After three years of intergovernmental negotiations and one of the most consultative processes in the history of the United Nations, UN Member States adopted and launched the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development on 25 September 2015.

This new Agenda for “people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership”, with its 17 Goals and 169 targets, is vitally important as it will strongly influence the direction of global and national policies relating to sustainable development for the next 15 years. The 2030 Agenda is unequivocally anchored in human rights. It aims to combat inequalities and discrimination and “leave no one behind”, and contains a strong commitment to the disaggregation of data.

The Agenda promises to leave no one behind and reach the furthest behind first. As indigenous peoples across the world still lag behind on most social, economic and political indicators, they should be at the heart of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. As a result of indigenous peoples’ strong engagement in the process towards the 2030, the Agenda refers to indigenous peoples 6 times, three times in the political declaration; two in the targets under Goal 2 on Zero Hunger (target 2.3) and Goal 4 on education (target 4.5) – and one in the section on follow up and review that calls for indigenous peoples’ participation.

Apart from the direct references, many of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and associated targets are relevant for indigenous peoples. Moreover, the global indicator framework that will measure progress of implementation of the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) includes two indicators that refers directly to indigenous peoples (Indicator 2.3.2 and 4.5.1) and several other indicators that are relevant for indigenous peoples, particularly indicator 1.4.2 and 5.a.1 on land rights.

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