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E c o n o m i c &
United Nations
Indicators of
Sustainable Development:
Guidelines and Methodologies
October 2007
Third Edition
Published by the United Nations
ISBN 978-92-1-104577-2
Sales No: E.08.II.A.2
07-53189—December 2007—2,300
Indicators of Sustainable Development:
Guidelines and Methodologies
Third Edition
United Nations
New York, 2007
DESA
Te Department of Economic and Social Afairs of the United Nations Secretariat
is a vital interface between global policies in the economic, social and environmental
spheres and national action. Te Department works in three main interlinked
areas: (i) it compiles, generates and analyses a wide range of economic, social and
environmental data and information on which States Members of the United Nations
draw to review common problems and to take stock of policy options; (ii) it facilitates
the negotiations of Member States in many intergovernmental bodies on joint course of
action to address ongoing or emerging global challenges; and (iii) it advises interested
Governments on the ways and means of translating policy frameworks developed in
United Nations conferences and summits into programmes at the country level and,
through technical assistance, helps build national capacities.
Note
Te designations employed and the presentation of the material in this
publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on
the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal
status of any country or territory or of its authorities, or concerning the
delimitations of its frontiers.
Te term “country” as used in the text of the present report also refers, as
appropriate, to territories or areas.
Te designations of country groups in the text and the tables are intended
solely for statistical or analytical convenience and do not necessarily express
a judgement about the stage reached by a particular country or area in the
development process.
Mention of the names of frms and commercial products does not imply
the endorsement of the United Nations.
Symbols of United Nations documents are composed of capital letters
combined with fgures.
United Nations publication
Sales No. E.08.II.A.2
ISBN 978-92-1-104577-2
Copyright © United Nations, 2007
All rights reserved
Printed by the United Nations, New York
iii
Contents
Foreword 1
I. Introduction 3
II. CSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 5
A. History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
B. LatestreviewoftheCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment . . . . . . . 6
III. OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 9
A. Generaldescription. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
B. Addressingthematiclinkages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
C. RelationshipbetweenMDGIndicatorsand
CSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
D. CSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment,
Agenda21andtheJohannesburgPlanofImplementation . . . . . . . . . .27
IV. ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 29
A. Indicatorselection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29
B. AdaptingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopmentfornationalsets . . . 32
C. Indicatorsastoolsformeasuringsustainabledevelopment
processesatthenationallevel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
V. A wordonindicatorframeworks 39
A. Drivingforce-state-responseframeworks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
B. Issue-ortheme-basedframeworks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
C. Capitalframeworks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
D. Accountingframeworks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41
E. Aggregatedindicators . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
F. Otherindicatorapproaches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
VI. DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 47
A. Poverty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
B. Governance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50
C. Health. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
D. Education . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
E. Demographics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
F. Naturalhazards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
G. Atmosphere..........................................60
iv índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
H. Land...............................................62
I. Oceans,seasandcoasts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66
J. Freshwater . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69
K. Biodiversity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72
L. Economicdevelopment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
M. Globaleconomicpartnership. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82
N. Consumptionandproductionpatterns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85
Appendix1. Agenda21–TableofContents 91
Appendix2. JohannesburgPlanofImplementation 93
1
Foreword
Tis publication presents the third set of Indicators of Sustainable Development
and provides suggestions on how to adapt them to national conditions and pri-
orities. It benefts from the active participation of and excellent collaboration
with, a wide range of governments, international organizations, academic insti-
tutions, non-governmental organizations and individual experts. Te indica-
tors are a follow-up to the two earlier sets prepared under the work programme
on indicators of sustainable development approved by the Commission on
Sustainable Development in 1995. Tese earlier sets were published in 1996
and 2001.
We hope that countries will fnd the publication useful whenever they are
reviewing their existing indicators or developing new indicators to measure
progress towards nationally defned goals for sustainable development. Te
indicators of sustainable development presented here refect the valuable expe-
riences of countries and international organizations over the past ffteen years
since the adoption of Agenda 21 in Rio de Janeiro. With this publication, we
also hope to further the momentum at the national and international level to
develop and apply sustainable development indicators. Tis will help the
understanding of the various dimensions of sustainable development and their
complex interactions and the facilitation of policy decisions aimed at achiev-
ing sustainable development goals.
On behalf of the United Nations, I would like to thank all countries,
organizations, agencies and individuals that have contributed their time and
efort to make this publication possible.
JoAnneDiSano
Director
DivisionforSustainableDevelopment
3
I. Introduction
Indicators perform many functions. Tey can lead to better decisions and more
efective actions by simplifying, clarifying and making aggregated information
available to policy makers. Tey can help incorporate physical and social sci-
ence knowledge into decision-making, and they can help measure and calibrate
progress toward sustainable development goals. Tey can provide an early warn-
ing to prevent economic, social and environmental setbacks. Tey are also useful
tools to communicate ideas, thoughts and values.
Te United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in
1992 recognized the important role that indicators could play in helping coun-
tries make informed decisions concerning sustainable development. At the
international level, the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD)
approved its Work Programme on Indicators of Sustainable Development in
1995. Te frst two sets of CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development (hence-
forth CSD indicators) were developed between 1994 and 2001. Tey have been
extensively tested, applied and used in many countries as the basis for the devel-
opment of national indicators of sustainable development.
Te new revised edition of the CSD indicators has been developed in
response to decisions by the CSD and the World Summit on Sustainable
Development in 2002, which encouraged further work on indicators at the
country level in line with national conditions and priorities and invited the
international community to support eforts of developing countries in this
regard. Since the publication of the previous set, knowledge of and experience
with sustainable development indicators of countries and organizations has
increased signifcantly, as has the emphasis on measuring progress on achiev-
ing sustainable development, including the Millennium Development Goals
(MDGs), at the national and the international levels. By incorporating these
developments, the revision of the CSD indicators gives vital support to coun-
tries in their eforts to develop and implement national indicators for sustain-
able development.
Tis publication presents the revised, third edition of the CSD indicators.
It also provides a synopsis of their foundation. Te presentation of the indicator
4 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
set explicitly addresses their relation to Agenda 21 and the Johannesburg Plan of
Implementation, the outcomes of the major international conferences on sus-
tainable development in 1992 and 2002, as well as their relation to the MDG
Indicators. Te publication also provides guidance on applying and adapting the
CSD indicators for the development of national indicator sets. Te role of indi-
cator frameworks is briefy discussed, and a succinct description of all indicators
is included. Detailed methodology sheets for each indicator are included in an
accompanying CD-ROM. Tese methodology sheets are also available on the
indicators section of the webpage of the United Nations Division for Sustainable
Development (http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/) and will be regularly updated.
II. CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development
A. History
Chapter 40 of Agenda 21
1
, the action plan adopted in 1992 at the United
Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, calls
on countries, as well as international, governmental and non-governmental
organizations, to develop indicators of sustainable development that can pro-
vide a solid basis for decision-making at all levels. Agenda 21 also calls for the
harmonization of eforts to develop such indicators.
Tis mandate was refected in the decision of the CSD in 1995 to adopt an
indicators work programme that involved several stages: consensus-building on a
core list of indicators of sustainable development; development of the related
methodology sheets; policy discussions within a CSD publication and widespread
dissemination of this work; testing; and evaluation and revision of the indicators.
Te frst draft set of indicators of sustainable development was developed
for discussion jointly by the Division for Sustainable Development (DSD) and
the Statistics Division, both within the United Nations Department of Eco-
nomic and Social Afairs. Tis draft then became the focus of a broad consensus-
building process that included a number of organizations within the United
Nations System and other international organizations, both intergovernmental
and non-governmental, and coordinated by the DSD. Te result was a set of
134 indicators. During 1995 and 1996, the same organizations that had partici-
pated in the consultations drafted methodology sheets for each of the indicators,
and these, along with the indicators, were contained in a publication known as
the ‘blue book’
2
and widely disseminated.
From 1996 to 1999, 22 countries from across the world voluntarily
pilot-tested the indicator set. In order to facilitate this process, the DSD
developed guidelines for the implementation of the CSD indicators, initi-
1
Agenda 21, Programme of Action for Sustainable Development, adopted at the United
Nations Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1992
2
United Nations, Indicators of Sustainable Development Framework and Methodolo-
gies, United Nations Sales Publication No E96IIA16 (New York, August 1996)
5
6 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
ated a series of regional briefng and training workshops, and encouraged
the organization of national workshops and twinning arrangements between
testing countries.
From 1999 to 2000, the results of the national testing were evaluated, and
the indicator set was revised. Overall, countries considered the testing process to
be successful, although they indicated that they had faced signifcant institu-
tional challenges especially in the areas of human resources and policy coordina-
tion. Integrating indicator initiatives with national development policies and
transforming them into permanent work programmes ranked high among the
recommendations to ensure success. Most countries also found that the initial
CSD indicator set was too large to be easily managed. Consequently, the revised
set of CSD indicators was reduced to 58 indicators, embedded in a policy-
oriented framework of themes and sub-themes. Tese indicators were presented
to the CSD in 2001, and subsequently published as part of the second edition
of the ‘blue book’.
3
Overall, the focus of the CSD and its secretariat on indicators provided a
very useful and timely forum for the discussion of national-level indicators with
the involvement of governments, international organizations, and various stake-
holders at a time when thoughts on the potential role of indicators in achieving
sustainable development goals were at an early stage and thus still evolving.
Terefore, the proactive role of the CSD proved to be instrumental in advancing
work in this area.
B. Latest review of the CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development
In 2005, the DSD started a process to review the CSD Indicators of Sustain-
able Development. Tis process, which is in line with the decision made by the
CSD in 2001 to keep the indicators under review, was largely carried out for
two reasons. In the fve years that had passed since the last revision, perspectives
on indicators had evolved and experience in applying indicators of sustainable
development at the country level had grown considerably. A large number of
countries had developed their own national indicator sets, often based on the
CSD indicators. In addition, since the adoption of the United Nations Millen-
nium Declaration in 2000, much attention had been given, within the UN Sys-
3
United Nations, Indicators of Sustainable Development: Guidelines and Methodologies,
Second Edition, UN Sales Publication No E01IIA6 (New York, September 2001)
CSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 7
tem and by member States, to the development and use of indicators to measure
progress on achieving the MDGs.
4
Te review began with research and analysis of national and global trends
in applying indicators and with a renewal of the dialogue with international
experts. Te DSD also proceeded to assess the coherence between CSD and
MDG indicators. Tis was followed by two expert group meetings and supple-
mented by ongoing communications. Te original partners, including experts
from those organizations that had prepared methodology sheets, as well as
experts from a number of member States that were developing and using the
indicators were invited. Tereby, the review benefted from the vast expertise of
a wide-range of international agencies as well as from the rich experience gained
by individual countries.
Te frst expert group meeting carried out a preliminary review of indicator
frameworks and options for a way forward for the CSD indicators. It agreed on
an interim revised list of indicators and proposed changes to the framework. At
its second meeting in October 2006, the expert group completed the review and
fnalized the revised list of CSD indicators.
Countries are now invited to consider these revised CSD indicators when
reviewing existing or developing new national indicators of sustainable develop-
ment. Collaborating agencies have agreed to incorporate these indicators in rel-
evant capacity-building activities and inter-agency cooperation is to ensure
coherence of CSD indicators with other indicator sets such as the MDG Indica-
tors, the 2010 Biodiversity Indicators Partnership, the Hyogo Framework for
Action on Disaster Reduction, the Global Forest Resource Assessment, and Sus-
tainable Tourism Indicators. Te experiences gained by countries in applying
and adapting the new indicator set will be taken into account in the continuous
review of the CSD indicators. As relevant progress is made, methodologies of
indicators will be regularly updated on the website of the DSD.
4
The Millennium Development Goals were derived from the United Nations Millennium
Declaration, adopted by 189 nations in 2000 Most of the goals and targets were set to
be achieved by 2015 on the basis of the global situation during the 1990s The baseline
for the assessment of progress is therefore 1990 for most of the MDG targets
III. Overview of the revised CSD Indicators
of Sustainable Development
A. General description
Te newly revised CSD indicators contain a core set of 50 indicators. Tese
core indicators are part of a larger set of 96 indicators of sustainable develop-
ment. Te introduction of a core set helps to keep the indicator set manageable,
whereas the larger set allows the inclusion of additional indicators that enable
countries to do a more comprehensive and diferentiated assessment of sustain-
able development. Core indicators fulfll three criteria. First, they cover issues
that are relevant for sustainable development in most countries. Second, they
provide critical information not available from other core indicators. Tird, they
can be calculated by most countries with data that is either readily available or
could be made available within reasonable time and costs. Conversely, indicators
that are not part of the core are either relevant only for a smaller set of countries,
provide complementary information to core indicators or are not easily available
for most countries.
Te indicator set retains the thematic/sub-thematic framework that was
adopted in 2001. In doing so, it remains consistent with the practice of most
countries applying national sustainable development indicator sets and it is
directly relevant to the monitoring of national sustainable development strate-
gies. At the same time, it is noted that there is important work going on else-
where on alternative frameworks, and these will continue to be considered in
future revisions of the CSD indicators (see chapter V, page 39).
CSD indicator themes
• Poverty
• Governance
• Health
• Education
• Demographics
• Natural hazards
• Atmosphere
• Land
• Oceans, seas and coasts
• Freshwater
• Biodiversity
• Economic
development
• Global economic
partnership
• Consumption and
production patterns
9
10 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Te division of indicators along the lines of four ‘pillars’ (social, economic,
environmental and institutional) is no longer explicit in the newly revised set.
Tis change emphasizes the multi-dimensional nature of sustainable develop-
ment and refects the importance of integrating its pillars. Consequently, new
cross-cutting themes such as poverty and natural hazards were introduced and
existing cross-cutting themes such as consumption and production patterns are
better represented.
Since poverty covers a broad range of related issues, it was conceptually
limiting to keep it as a sub-theme under equity. Consequently, it is now a sepa-
rate theme that includes sub-themes related to income, sanitation, drinking
water, energy access and living conditions.
Natural hazards were a sub-theme of the now dissolved theme ‘institutional
capacity’, which did not refect the cross-cutting nature of the topic. Other new
themes include global economic partnership and governance. Global economic
partnership includes a number of new indicators that capture key issues such as
trade and development fnancing. Te indicators for the theme ‘governance’ are
largely undeveloped; only crime related indicators are currently included. Sig-
nifcant methodological work is needed to develop good, measurable and inter-
nationally accepted indicators on other aspects of governance.
Table 1:
CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development
Theme Sub-theme Coreindicator Otherindicator
Poverty Income poverty Proportion of
population living
below national poverty
line
Proportion of
population below
$1 a day
Income inequality Ratio of share in
national income of
highest to lowest
quintile

Sanitation Proportion of
population using an
improved sanitation
facility

Drinking water Proportion of
population using an
improved water source
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 11
Theme Sub-theme Coreindicator Otherindicator
Poverty
(continued)
Access to energy Share of households
without electricity or
other modern energy
services
Percentage of
population using
solid fuels for
cooking
Living conditions Proportion of urban
population living in
slums

Governance Corruption Percentage of
population having paid
bribes

Crime Number of intentional
homicides per 100,000
population

Health Mortality Under-fve
mortality rate

Life expectancy
at birth
Healthy life
expectancy at birth
Health care
delivery
Percent of population
with access to primary
health care facilities
Contraceptive
prevalence rate
Immunization against
infectious childhood
diseases
Nutritional status Nutritional status of
children
Health status and
risks
Morbidity of major
diseases such as
HIV/AIDS, malaria,
tuberculosis
Prevalence of
tobacco use
Suicide rate
Education Education level Gross intake ratio to
last grade of primary
education
Life long learning
Net enrolment rate in
primary education
Adult secondary
(tertiary) schooling
attainment level

Literacy Adult literacy rate
Demographics Population Population
growth rate
Total fertility rate
Dependency ratio
Tourism Ratio of local
residents to
tourists in major
tourist regions and
destinations
12 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Theme Sub-theme Coreindicator Otherindicator
Natural
hazards
Vulnerability to
natural hazards
Percentage of
population living in
hazard prone areas
Disaster
preparedness and
response
Human and
economic loss due to
natural disasters
Atmosphere Climate change Carbon dioxide
emissions
Emissions of
greenhouse gases
Ozone layer
depletion
Consumption of ozone
depleting substances

Air quality Ambient concentration
of air pollutants in
urban areas

Land Land use and status Land use change
Land degradation
Desertifcation Land afected by
desertifcation
Agriculture Arable and permanent
cropland area
Fertilizer use
efciency
Use of agricultural
pesticides
Area under organic
farming
Forests Proportion of land area
covered by forests
Percent of forest
trees damaged by
defoliation
Area of forest under
sustainable forest
management
Oceans,
seas
and
coasts
Coastal zone Percentage of total
population living in
coastal areas
Bathing water
quality
Fisheries Proportion of fsh
stocks within safe
biological limits
Marine environment Proportion of marine
area protected
Marine trophic index
Area of coral reef
ecosystems and
percentage live
cover
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 13
Theme Sub-theme Coreindicator Otherindicator
Freshwater Water quantity Proportion of total
water resources used

Water use intensity by
economic activity

Water quality Presence of faecal
coliforms in freshwater
Biochemical oxygen
demand in water
bodies
Wastewater
treatment
Biodiversity Ecosystem Proportion of terrestrial
area protected, total
and by ecological
region
Management
efectiveness of
protected areas
Area of selected key
ecosystems
Fragmentation of
habitats
Species Change in threat status
of species
Abundance of
selected key species
Abundance of
invasive alien species
Economic
development
Macroeconomic
performance
Gross domestic
product (GDP) per
capita
Gross saving
Investment share in
GDP
Adjusted net savings
as percentage
of gross national
income (GNI)
Infation rate
Sustainable
public fnance
Debt to GNI ratio
Employment Employment-
population ratio
Vulnerable
employment
Labor productivity and
unit labor costs
Share of women in
wage employment in
the non-agricultural
sector
Information and
communication
technologies
Internet users
per 100 population
Fixed telephone
lines per 100
population
Mobile cellular
telephone
subscribers
per 100 population
14 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Theme Sub-theme Coreindicator Otherindicator
Economic
development
(continued)
Research and
development
Gross domestic
expenditure on R&D
as a percent of GDP
Tourism Tourism contribution
to GDP

Global
economic
partnership
Trade Current account defcit
as percentage of GDP
Share of imports
from developing
countries and from
LDCs
Average tarif
barriers imposed
on exports from
developing countries
and LDCs
External fnancing Net Ofcial
Development
Assistance (ODA)
given or received as a
percentage of GNI
Foreign direct
investment (FDI)
net infows and
net outfows as
percentage of GDP
Remittances as
percentage of GNI
Consumption
and production
patterns
Material consumption Material intensity of
the economy
Domestic material
consumption
Energy use Annual energy
consumption, total and
by main user category
Share of renewable
energy sources in
total energy use
Intensity of energy use,
total and by economic
activity

Waste generation
and management
Generation of
hazardous waste
Generation of waste
Waste treatment and
disposal
Management of
radioactive waste
Transportation Modal split
of passenger
transportation
Modal split of
freight transport
Energy intensity of
transport
B. Addressing thematic linkages
Sustainable development indicators attempt to measure sustainable develop-
ment in its entirety, taking into account the multi-dimensional and integrated
nature of sustainable development. Whereas single-valued indices are integra-
tive but mask diferences in progress across and within dimensions, indicator
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 15
sets such as the CSD indicators track progress but may require some additional
information to make their integrative nature more explicit.
As noted, ceasing to categorize indicators into the pillars of sustainable
development already strengthens the emphasis on the multi-dimensional char-
acter of sustainable development as does rethinking themes and sub-themes. To
illustrate how the CSD indicators address inter-thematic linkages, Table 2
presents an overview of their potential to measure progress towards sustainable
development across various themes.
Te themes to which the indicators primarily apply are shaded in Table 2.
Note that an indicator may apply to more than one theme, as for example with
“proportion of population with access to safe drinking water,” which has pri-
mary links to poverty and health. Light grey shading indicates a clear but possi-
bly secondary link. In the drinking water example, the indicator is also useful for
measuring the impact of regulating and governing water utilities and, therefore,
the governance theme is shaded light grey. Moreover, as domestic fresh water is
the major source of drinking water for most countries, the indicator provides
information on availability and use of water resources and for the availability of
infrastructure in utilities. Consequently, the theme of economic development is
also shaded in light grey.
Table 2:
CSD indicators and thematic linkages
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16 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
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Proportion of population
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Proportion of urban population
living in slums
Percentage of population
having paid bribes
Number of intentional homicides
per 100,000 population
Mortality rate under 5 years old
Life expectancy at Birth
Healthy life years expectancy
Percent of population with access
to primary health care facilities
Immunization against infectious
childhood diseases
Contraceptive prevalence rate
Nutritional status of children
Prevalence of tobacco use
Suicide rate
Morbidity of major diseases such
as HIV/AIDS, malaria, tubercolosis
Gross intake into last year
of primary education, by sex
Net enrolment rate in primary
education
Adult secondary (tertiary)
schooling attainment level, by sex
Life long learning
Adult literacy rate, by sex
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 17
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Population growth rate
Total fertility rate
Dependency ratio
Ratio of local residents to
tourists in major tourist regions
Percentage of population living
in hazard prone areas
Human and economic loss due
to natural disasters
Emissions of greenhouse gases
Carbon dioxide emissions
Consumption of ozone
depleting substances
Ambient concentration of
air pollutants in urban areas
Land use change
Land degradation
Land afected by desertifcation
Arable and permanent
cropland area
Fertilizer use efciency
Use of agricultural pesticides
Area under organic farming
Proportion of land area
covered by forests
Percent of forests damaged
by defoliation
Area under sustainable forest
management
Percentage of total population
living in coastal areas
Bathing water quality
Proportion of fsh stocks within
safe biological limits
13 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
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Proportion of marine area
protected
Marine trophic index
Area of coral reef ecosystems
and percentage live cover
Proportion of total
water resources used
Water use intensity by
economic activity
Biochemical oxygen demand
in water bodies
Presence of faecal coliform
in freshwater
Wastewater treatment
Proportion of terrestrial area
protected, total and by
ecological region
Management efectiveness
of protected areas
Area of selected key ecosystems
Fragmentation of habitat
Abundance of selected key
species
Change in threat status of species
Abundance of invasive alien
species
Gross domestic product (GDP)
per capita
Investment share in GDP
Gross savings
Adjusted net savings
Infation
Debt to GNI ratio
Labor productivity and
unit labor costs
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 19
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Employment-population ratio,
by sex
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Share of women in wage
employment in the non-
agricultural sector
Number of internet users
per 100 population
Fixed telephone lines
per 100 population
Mobile cellular telephone
subscribers per 100 population
Gross domestic expenditure
on R&D as a percent of GDP
Tourism contribution to GDP
Current account defcit as
percentage of GDP
Share of imports from developing
countries and from LDCs
Average tarif barriers imposed
on exports from developing
countries and LDCs
Net Ofcial Development
Assistance (ODA) given or
received as a percentage of GNI
FDI infows and outfows as
percentage of GNI
Remittances as percentage of GNI
Material intensity of the economy
Domestic material consumption
Annual energy consumption per
capita, total and by main user
category
Share of renewable energy
sources in total energy use
20 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
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Intensity of energy use, total and
by sector
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Generation of hazardous waste
Management of radioactive waste
Waste treatment and disposal
Modal split of passenger
transportation
Modal split of freight transport
Energy intensity of transport
Table 2 only reveals direct relationships between indicators and themes.
To illustrate this point, consider the indicator on educational attainment. As
educational attainment is a measure of human capital, which in turn is a major
element of economic growth, the theme of economic development is shaded
in light gray. At the same time, economic growth is a major determinant of
consumption patterns in the areas of energy, waste, transport or material con-
sumption. Terefore, educational attainment would be a valid indirect meas-
ure for elements of consumption and production. However, given that this
link is indirect, the consumption theme is not shaded. Education certainly has
important direct linkages to consumption patterns, as evidenced for example
in the declaration of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable
Development.
5
However, the CSD indicator on education does not directly
serve as a measure for the impact of education on sustainable consumption
patterns.
5
For details, see UNESCO website at http://portal.unesco.org/education/en/ev.php-URL_
ID=27234&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 21
C. Relationship between MDG Indicators and
CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development
Te Millennium Development Goals Indicators currently consist of 48 indi-
cators linked to the eight goals derived from the United Nations Millennium
Declaration. However, the revised MDG monitoring framework presented by
the Secretary-General of the United Nations in 2007 contains 58 indicators, as
four new targets have been included to refect commitments made at the 2005
World Summit.
6
Like the CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development, the
MDG Indicators were developed through a collaborative process involving vari-
ous Departments within the United Nations Secretariat, a number of specialized
agencies from within the United Nations system as well as external international
organizations, various government agencies and national statisticians. Also like
the CSD indicators, the MDG Indicators are driven by policy relevance, rooted
in major inter-governmental development summits and frequently applied
at the national level. Because of these similarities, there may have been some
confusion on the part of policy-makers and practitioners on the relationship
between the two sets and on the need of having two indicator sets.
Millennium Development Goals
1 Eradicate extreme poverty
2 Achieve universal primary education
3 Promote gender equality and empower women
4 Reduce child mortality
5 Improve maternal health
6 Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
7 Ensure environmental sustainability
8 Develop a global partnership
In fact, while many of the indicators overlap, the overall purpose of the two
sets is diferent: the CSD indicators are intended solely to provide a reference, or
sample set, for use by countries to track progress toward nationally-defned
goals, in particular, and sustainable development, in general. Te MDG Indica-
6
For the revised MDG monitoring framework, see United Nations, Report of the Secretary-
General on the work of the Organization, (New York, 2006) For information on the MDG
Indicators, see the ofcial United Nations website at http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/
Default.aspx
22 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
tors, on the other hand, were developed for the global monitoring of progress
toward meeting internationally established goals.
In addition, the CSD indicators cover a broad range of issues intrinsic to all
pillars of sustainable development—economic development, social develop-
ment and environmental protection. Te MDG Indicators, on the other hand,
are specifc to the eight MDGs. As the MDGs constitute an important subset of
the sustainable development agenda, the MDG indicator necessarily have a
more limited coverage, with a strong focus on issues related to the poverty-
health nexus. Sustainable development issues that are not covered by the MDG
Indicators include demographics, natural hazards, governance and macroeco-
nomics. Te area of consumption and production patterns, one of the three
overarching objectives and essential requirements of sustainable development, is
covered by one single MDG indicator (energy intensity), which incidentally will
be dropped from the MDG Indicators framework this year.
Te focus of the MDG Indicators on global monitoring also imposes some
selection criteria that are less relevant for nationally oriented sets. For example,
since the MDG Indicators need to allow for meaningful regional and global
aggregation, they require data that are available and internationally comparable.
Moreover, the use of single-value indicators predominates since this allows for
easier presentation across time and countries or country groups. National-ori-
ented sets, such as the CSD indicators, may easily include multiple dimensions,
such as population groups, gender and sectoral breakdowns. Te CSD indica-
tors can also include indicators which lack accepted adjustment methods for
cross-country comparisons or indicators for which countries have no time-series
data dating back to the 1990s.
Te review of the CSD indicators has identifed a number of inconsisten-
cies between previous defnitions of CSD and MDG indicators, which have
been corrected in this new edition. Te concurrent review of the MDG Indica-
tors lead to the inclusion of selected CSD indicators into the revised MDG
framework, especially in the areas of natural resources, biodiversity and
employment.
Table 3 shows the similarities between CSD and MDG Indicators. Te
MDG indicator numbers are those assigned on the ofcial list of MDG Indi-
cators, which has been efective since September 2003. Indicators formally
recommended for inclusion to the MDG indicators in 2007 are listed as
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 23
‘New’, as the numbering of indicators in the revised MDG monitoring frame-
work has not been completed. Indicators that are contained in the original list
of MDG Indicators, but are no longer part of the revised framework are
marked as ‘dropped’ in parenthesis to their original number. Indicators that
are not ofcial MDG Indicators, but contained in the ofcial MDG database
are marked as ‘Additional’. Indicators that are similar to CSD indicators but
not identical are marked with an asterisk. In most cases, diferences relate to
the fact the CSD indicators have a diferent coverage in terms of countries or
defnition covered. For example, the CSD indicator on ODA refers to all
countries that provide or receive development assistance, whereas the MDG
framework contains specifc indicators for donors on the OECD/DAC list,
and recipients from least developed countries, landlocked developing coun-
tries and small island developing States.
7
Te CSD indicator on childhood
nutrition refers to underweight, stunting and overweight, whereas the corre-
sponding MDG indicator covers underweight only.
Table 3:
CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development,
MDG Indicators, Agenda 21 and JPOI
CSDIndicatorof
SustainableDevelopment
MDG
Indicator
Agenda21
chapter
JPOI
chapter
Proportion of population living below
national poverty line
Additional 3 (34 a) II (7a)
Proportion of population
below $ 1 a day
# 1 3 (34 a) II (7a)
Ratio of share in national income
of highest to lowest quintile
3 V (47)
Proportion of population using
an improved sanitation facility
# 30 6 (612 e) II (8); IV (25)
Proportion of population using
improved water source
# 31 6 (612 e) II (8); IV (25)
Share of households without electricity
or other modern energy services
7 (740) II (9 a)
Percentage of population using
solid fuels for cooking
# 29
(dropped)
6 (641 b); 11
(1121 b)
VI (56 d)
7
It should be noted, though, that data for receipts of ODA in all developing countries are
provided on the MDG database
24 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
CSDIndicatorof
SustainableDevelopment
MDG
Indicator
Agenda21
chapter
JPOI
chapter
Proportion of urban population
living in slums
# 32 * 7 (78) II (11 a)
Percentage of population
having paid bribes
2 (232) I (4)
Number of intentional homicides
per 100,000 population
I (4)
Under-fve mortality rate # 13 6 (624) VI (54 f )
Life expectancy at birth 6
Healthy life expectancy at birth 6
Percent of population with access
to primary health care facilities
6 (64) VI (54 b)
Immunization against infectious
childhood diseases
# 15 * 6
(612; 627)
VI (54 f )
Contraceptive prevalence rate # 19 c 5 (550);
6 (612)
VI (54 j)
Nutritional status of children # 4 c 6 (627) VI (54 n)
Prevalence of tobacco use 6 VI (54 o)
Suicide rate 6 VI (54 o)
Morbidity of major diseases such
as HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis
# 18 *; #21 *;
# 23 *
6 (612) VI (55)
Gross intake into last year of
primary education
Additional 36 (364) II (7 g)
X (116)
Net enrolment rate in primary
education
# 6 36 (364) II (7 g)
X (116)
Adult secondary (tertiary)
schooling attainment level
36 II (7 g)
X (120)
Life long learning 36 X (123)
Adult literacy rate # 8 * 36 (364) X (123)
Population growth rate 5 (517)
Total fertility rate New * 5 (517)
Dependency ratio 5 (517)
Ratio of local residents to tourists in
major tourist regions and destinations
7 (720) IV (43)
Percentage of population
living in hazard prone areas
7 (758) IV (37)
Human and economic loss
due to natural disasters
7 (758) IV (37)
Emissions of greenhouse gases 9 (911, 914
917, 920)
IV (38)
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 25
CSDIndicatorof
SustainableDevelopment
MDG
Indicator
Agenda21
chapter
JPOI
chapter
Carbon dioxide emissions # 28 a * 9 (911) IV (38)
Consumption of ozone
depleting substances
# 28 b 9 (923) IV (39)
Ambient concentration of
air pollutants in urban areas
9 (911, 914
917)
IV (39);
VI (56)
Land use change 10 (105)
Land degradation 14 (1445) IV (41)
Land afected by desertifcation 12 IV (41)
Arable and permanent cropland area 14 IV (40)
Fertilizer use efciency 14 (1485) IV (40)
Use of agricultural pesticides 14 (1475) IV (40)
Area under organic farming 14 IV (40)
Proportion of land area
covered by forests
# 25 11 (1112) IV (45)
Percent of forest trees
damaged by defoliation
11 IV (45)
Area of forest under
sustainable forest management
11 (1112) IV (45)
Percentage of total population
living in coastal areas
17 IV (32)
Bathing water quality 17 IV( 33)
Proportion of fsh stocks
within safe biological limits
New 17 (1746,
1775)
IV (31)
Proportion of marine
area protected
# 26 * 15 (155 g),
17
IV (32 a)
Marine trophic index 17 (1746,
1775)
IV (32 a)
Area of coral reef ecosystems
and percentage live cover
15 (155 g),
17
IV (32 d)
Proportion of total water resources used New 18 IV( 25 e, 26)
Water use intensity by economic activity 18 IV( 26)
Biochemical oxygen demand
in water bodies
18 (1839) IV( 25 d)
Presence of faecal coliforms in
freshwater
18 (1839 c) IV( 25 d)
Wastewater treatment 18 (1839) IV( 25 d)
Proportion of terrestrial area protected,
total and by ecological region
# 26 * 15 (155g) IV (44)
26 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
CSDIndicatorof
SustainableDevelopment
MDG
Indicator
Agenda21
chapter
JPOI
chapter
Management efectiveness
of protected areas
15 (155g) IV (44)
Area of selected key ecosystems 15 (155g) IV (44)
Fragmentation of habitats 15 IV (44)
Abundance of selected key species 15 (155g) IV (44)
Change in threat status of species New * 15 (155h) IV (44)
Abundance of invasive alien species 15 IV (44)
GDP per capita 2 (234) X (83)
Investment share in GDP 2 (234) X (83)
Savings rate 2 (234) X (83)
Adjusted net savings
as percentage of GNI
2 (234) X (83)
Infation rate 2 (234) X (83)
Debt to GNI ratio 2 (234),
33 (3314 e)
X (83, 89)
Employment-population ratio New 7, 14, 24 II (10 b)
Vulnerable employment New* 7, 14, 24 II (10 b)
Labor productivity and unit labor costs New * 14 II (10 a)
Share of women in wage employment
in the non-agricultural sector
# 11 24 II (7 d)
Number of internet users
per 100 population
# 48 40 V (52)
Fixed telephone lines
per 100 population
# 47 a 40 V (52)
Mobile cellular telephone
subscribers per 100 population
# 47 b 40 V (52)
Gross domestic expenditure
on R&D as a percent of GDP
35 X (113)
Tourism contribution to GDP 11(1121), 13
(1315)
IV (43)
Current account defcit
as percentage of GDP
2 (29, 234) X (83, 92)
Share of imports from developing
countries and from LDCs
2 (29) V (47), X (92)
Average tarif barriers imposed
on exports from developing
countries and LDCs
# 39 * 2 (29) V (47), X (92,
93)
Net Ofcial Development
Assistance (ODA) given or
received as a percentage of GNI
# 33 *; # 36 *;
# 37 *
33 (313) X (85)
OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 27
CSDIndicatorof
SustainableDevelopment
MDG
Indicator
Agenda21
chapter
JPOI
chapter
Foreign direct investment (FDI)
net infows and net outfows as
percentage of GDP
33 (3315) X (84)
Remittances as percentage of GNI 33 X (83)
Material intensity of the economy 4 (418) III (15)
Domestic material consumption 4 III (15)
Annual energy consumption,
total and by main user category
4 III (20)
Share of renewable energy
sources in total energy use
4 III (20 c, d, e)
Intensity of energy use, total
and by economic activity
# 27 *
(dropped)
4 (418) III (20 h)
Generation of waste 21 (218) III (22)
Generation of hazardous waste 20 (2011) III (23)
Waste treatment and disposal 21 (2117) III (22)
Management of radioactive waste 22 (223) III (35)
Modal split of passenger transportation 4 III (21)
Modal split of freight transport 4 III (21)
Energy intensity of transport 4 III (21)
D. CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development, Agenda 21 and the
Johannesburg Plan of Implementation
Te CSD indicators are deeply rooted in Agenda 21 where their development
is mandated. Even though later editions of the CSD indicators do not follow
the structure of Agenda 21 as the frst edition did, the indicators are still very
closely related to it. Table 3 references all the chapters of Agenda 21 as they
relate to each CSD indicator. If a CSD indicator specifcally addresses objec-
tives or activities described in Agenda 21, the paragraph is additionally listed in
brackets. Table 3 also correlates the CSD indicators to the Johannesburg Plan
of Implementation (JPOI), adopted in 2002 at the World Summit of Sustain-
able Development in Johannesburg. Due to the integrative nature of sustainable
development, both major conference outcome documents list certain objectives
and activities in multiple places (see appendices 1 and 2 for a comprehensive list
of their chapters). For simplicity reasons, Table 3 only lists key references. It is
not meant to be a complete reference.
23 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Since almost all CSD indicators directly or indirectly correlate to
Agenda 21 and the JPOI, using the CSD indicators as basis for national indi-
cators of sustainable development can assist countries in monitoring national
implementation of their international commitments too. In this regard, the
CSD indicators are useful for measuring the outcome of policies towards
achieving sustainable development goals. However, they are not suited for
measuring the implementation of specifc actions contained in these major
agreements on sustainable development.
IV. Applying CSD Indicators of
Sustainable Development
Tis chapter ofers some guidance on how the CSD indicators can be uti-
lized by countries for the development or revision of national indicator sets.
As deviations from the previous set of CSD indicators are modest, countries
with national indicator sets in place may wish to consider the new set during
a regular review of their indicators rather than on an ad-hoc basis. Te chapter
starts with an overview of selection criteria that should be taken into account. It
then presents a simple tool that can help countries to adapt CSD indicators to
national conditions. Finally, the chapter ofers an example of the application of
CSD indicators to national development strategies.
A. Indicator selection
Te selection of indicators is to a large extent determined by the purpose of the
indicator set. From their inception, the overarching purpose of the CSD indica-
tors has been to inform policy at the national level. In addition to using indica-
tors to assess overall progress towards sustainable development, many countries
successfully use them to measure success within the framework of their national
sustainable development strategy (NSDS).
Aside from their purpose, there are other important criteria for selecting
indicators for sustainable development. From the beginning, the CSD indicator
guidelines and methodologies have recommended that indicators for sustainable
development are:
8
primarily national in scope;
relevant to assessing sustainable development progress;
limited in number, but remaining open-ended
and adaptable to future needs;
broad in coverage of Agenda 21 and all aspects
of sustainable development;
8
United Nations, Indicators of Sustainable Development: Guidelines and Methodologies,
Second Edition, UN Sales Publication No E01IIA6 (New York, September 2001)
1.
2.
3.
4.
29
30 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
understandable, clear and unambiguous;
conceptually sound;
representative of an international consensus to the extent possible;
within the capabilities of national governments to develop; and
dependent on cost efective data of known quality.
Te frst criterion emphasizes the importance of using the indicators for
national level assessment. Criteria two through four, taken together, pose a chal-
lenge. Te indicators should be both limited and sufciently comprehensive to
capture the multidimensional nature of sustainable development. If too many
indicators are used, the results become unwieldly and difcult to interpret. As
discussed earlier, the CSD indicator set began with 134 indicators, but testing
by countries led to a drastic reduction. Te introduction of smaller core sets
within the larger set makes sustainable development indicators more managea-
ble. Size will also be infuenced by purpose: in general, as the purpose of the
indicators narrows, their number decreases.
Indicators need to be clear and unambiguous. Clarity of purpose and audi-
ence will instruct indicator clarity. Ambiguity is relative to context. For example,
in a country with low food security, an increase in arable and permanent crop-
land may be seen as positive, whereas in a country with agricultural overproduc-
tion due to subsidization it could be negative. Te existence of voluntary targets
for indicators at the national level, for example within the context of an NSDS
or other strategy processes, will help to avoid such ambiguity. In many cases,
linkages among thematic issues easily lead to potential conficts. For example,
high GDP growth is generally considered a positive sign of economic develop-
ment, but it is often associated with higher energy consumption, exploitation of
natural resources and negative impacts on environmental resources. In many
cases, it has also positive impacts on poverty alleviation. Tese potential conficts
should not be seen as sign of ambiguity. Rather, such cases reinforce the need to
interpret results in a balanced and integrated manner.
Indicators should always be conceptually sound. However, especially in
new areas of interest, the demand for an indicator may precede its develop-
ment. In such cases, it may be advisable to bookmark the indicator with a
generic description and increase eforts to develop its conceptual underpin-
nings. In the meantime, a proxy indicator may be used as long as there is suf-
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 31
cient evidence that it is able to capture relevant phenomena that do not skew
the results.
Te CSD indicators were developed through a collaborative approach that
involved Member States, United Nations system organizations, other intergov-
ernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations. Terefore, they
are based on a broad and informal consensus among international organiza-
tions. A major advantage for countries in adopting CSD indicators appropriate
to their national conditions is the opportunity to learn from the expertise, expe-
rience and perspective of a broad range of actors. For indicators that are used to
measure international commitments such as the MDGs, international compa-
rability is essential. In the years since the CSD pioneered the work on sustainable
development indicators, many countries have applied the CSD indicators and
adapted them to their specifc needs. To assist in this process, the methodology
sheets of the CSD indicators available on the accompanying CD and on the
DSD homepage contain in many cases alternative indicators that may be more
applicable to a particular national context.
National capability may refer to the institutional capacity not only to mon-
itor and collect data but also to interpret and synthesize it into information use-
ful for decision-making. Over the past decade, the increased emphasis on infor-
mation-based decision making has led to improved eforts to build capacity in
this regard especially in developing countries.
9
Te continuation and accelera-
tion of these eforts will further enhance the applicability of indicators of sus-
tainable development.
Despite major advances over the last decade, data availability and reliabil-
ity continue to be a problem in many countries. To increase cost efectiveness,
the CSD indicators often require data that are routinely collected either by
national statistical services or through international processes, for example
through the routine work of United Nations specialized agencies or in the
MDG context. Many indicators rely on data contained in national accounts,
and progress made in the adoption of the system of national accounts (SNA)
will also improve data availability. Implementation of the system of environ-
mental-economic accounting (SEEA) will not only further increase availabil-
ity of data and indicators, but also massively improve the possibility for further
9
For a very useful and free-of-charge tool to manage development data that has been
developed in cooperation with the United Nations system, see http://www.devinfo.org
32 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
integrated analysis of the indicators, which is necessary for developing appro-
priate policy interventions.
B. Adapting CSD Indicators of
Sustainable Development for national sets
Te CSD indicators meet the criteria described. Nonetheless, countries may
wish to tailor the indicators to respond to national needs and circumstances.
Tis section presents a tool that could be useful for such adaptation. It is a
simple matrix, with data availability and relevance as the two dimensions in
which countries can place the CSD indicators in order to check their suitability
and their need for adjustment. It should be stressed that other indicator sets
that could be used as a basis for national sustainable development indicators
should be adapted as well. Terefore, this tool could, for example, also be useful
if MDG indicators, sustainable development indicators used by other coun-
tries, or national indicator sets used for other purposes are used as additional
reference.
As discussed in the previous section, data availability is a critical issue. In
general, data required for the CSD indicators are available at the national level
from a variety of institutions that collect and manage the data, but there may be
some gaps. National statistical ofces are the major data source in most coun-
tries. In general, this holds for national and satellite account data, census data as
well as data derived from major surveys. Other ministries and government agen-
cies are also major data sources, especially for data from surveys or administra-
tive records. Regional and international organization also collect and manage
data from various national sources, and could be consulted directly in cases
where the data are not readily available at the national level. National reports to
intergovernmental processes, including multilateral environmental agreements,
are often another data source, in some cases only weakly linked to regular
national statistical procedures. Te methodology sheets of the CSD indicators
on the accompanying CD contain generic information on both national and
international data sources that should facilitate the assessment of CSD indica-
tors with regard to availability at the national level.
In adapting CSD indicators to national sets, it may be useful to classify
each indicator in one of four categories of data availability: fully available; poten-
tially available; related data available; and not available.
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 33
Te frst category is obviously the preferred one. Te second one, indicators
with potentially available data, contains those cases where data could be made
available within a reasonable timeframe and with reasonable costs. Existing
regular surveys can often be extended to include a few additional questions.
Moreover, this category would encompass indicators for which there are plans to
increase capacity for data collection, storage and management. Te third cate-
gory contains those indicators where important data are missing, but there are
data that could be used to compute related indicators. For example, in the
absence of data on the use of vehicles (such as kilometres traveled), administra-
tive data on car registrations could be used to construct an indicator (e.g., regis-
tered cars by 100,000 inhabitants). Investment in data collection, including
capacity-building, will result in more data being available. Tis cost will need to
be weighed against the potential loss in planning and decision-making capacity
brought about by using a related, but less accurate indicator.
Relevance is the second dimension of the adaptation matrix. Again, the
introduction of four diferent categories in which CSD indicators can be placed
could be useful: relevant; related indicator relevant; relevant but missing;
irrelevant.
Most indicators should be relevant and fall into the frst category. Te sec-
ond category covers indicators that are not themselves directly relevant for the
purpose, but are closely related to relevant indicators. It may also contain
national indicators that address the same issue as CSD indicators but measure it
diferently. For example, the CSD indicators contain a number of indicators
measuring objective dimensions of the health status (disease prevalence, nutri-
tional status, immunization), but some countries use instead a subjective indica-
tor on people’s satisfaction with the health status, based on survey data. Tere
may also be CSD indicators where the underlying issue is closely related, but not
identical to a national issue. For example, countries whose strategies include
regional trade integration may want to monitor the share of trade with regional
partners rather than share of trade with developing countries.
Te third category encompasses relevant issues that are not covered by the
CSD indicators either because they are relevant and available to a few countries
only or because of the desire to keep the CSD set relatively small. Examples
include food safety, participation in public decision-making processes or linguis-
tic diversity. Indicators for these issues would have to be taken from other avail-
34 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
able indicator sets. Alternatively, underlying issues rather than concrete indica-
tors may be inserted. In general, though, this third category is expected to have
few entries.
Te last category—irrelevant indicator—would contain indicators cover-
ing issues that are not meaningful in context, for example the indicator of coastal
population would be irrelevant for landlocked countries.
Figure 1 shows how the two dimensions, data availability and relevance, can
be combined in a simple matrix in which the CSD indicators can be placed.
Figure 1:
Matrix for adapting CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development
Relevance
D
a
t
a

a
v
a
i
l
a
b
i
l
i
t
y
Relevant
Related
indicator
relevant
Relevant
but missing Irrelevant
Available
Potentially
available

Related data
available

Not available
Legend
To be used To be
identifed
To be
modifed
To be
removed
Te black boxes contain those CSD indicators that can be incorporated
without any changes to national indicators. Te dark grey boxes are for those
CSD indicators that have to be modifed for a given country, either because
there exist related and more relevant or specifc indicators or because data for the
original indicator cannot be made available. Te light grey boxes contain those
indicators important for a country but not included in the CSD set. Te task of
identifying appropriate indicators could then include assessing the availability of
data. As indicated above, the number of indicators in those boxes should be
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 35
quite small. Te remaining blank boxes would include any CSD indicators that
a country does not consider useful.
Adapting the CSD indicators to national conditions may also require
adapting the framework. Te thematic framework of the CSD indicators is very
fexible in this regard. Sub-themes, or even themes, can easily be merged or split
as needed. Aligning the indicator framework with the framework chosen for a
national sustainable development strategy is also feasible in most cases.
C. Indicators as tools for measuring sustainable development
processes at the national level
National strategies are important mechanisms to translate national goals of
sustainable development into concrete policies and actions. Teir central role
has already been recognized by virtually all countries in Agenda 21 and coun-
tries agreed on time-bound targets to develop and implement national sustain-
able development strategies (NSDS) at the Special Session of the UN General
Assembly on the review of Agenda 21 in 1997
10
and in the Johannesburg Plan
of Implementation.
11,12
An NSDS can be defned as “a coordinated, participatory and iterative
process of thoughts and actions to achieve economic, environmental and social
objectives in a balanced and integrative manner.”
13
Whereas no ‘blueprint’ for a
strategy is feasible or desirable, there is agreement on the fve principles that dis-
tinguish an NSDS: (1) country ownership and commitment; (2) integrated eco-
nomic, social and environmental policy across sectors, territories and genera-
tions; (3) broad participation and efective partnerships; (4) development of the
necessary capacity and enabling environment; and (5) focus on outcomes and
means of implementation.
Because NSDS are defned by their process and principles, the actual name
of the strategy is not important. It may be a national development strategy, a
10
Programme of Action for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21, paragraph 24
11
JPOI, Chapter XI, para 162 (b)
12
Updated information on progress made in fulflling the commitment to make progress
in the formulation, elaboration and implementation of such strategies by 2005 can be
found at http://wwwunorg/esa/sustdev/natlinfo/nsds/nsdsMaphtm
13
UN DESA (2002), Guidance in Preparing a National Sustainable Development Strategy:
Managing Sustainable Development in a new Millennium, DESA/DSD/PC2/BP13
36 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
poverty reduction strategy, a MDG-based strategy or any similar comprehensive
and multi-sectoral strategy, as long as it conforms to the criteria of an NSDS.
Te Johannesburg Plan of Implementation explicitly recognizes this; countries
in general are encouraged not to run parallel strategy processes: it is wasteful of
resources and confusing in outcome.
Indicators, in general, play a major role in various stages of an NSDS:
Assessment, monitoring, reporting and evaluation. Moreover, taking indicators
into account during the formulation stage also helps ensuring that the NSDS is
concrete and measurable. Te CSD indicators, in particular, are valuable tools
in all these stages of an NSDS.
Given their broad coverage of sustainable development issues, their national
orientation, and detailed methodological description, CSD indicators can easily
be adapted to national conditions, and as such, become valuable tools for assess-
ing national sustainable development goals.
Monitoring is necessary for the efective implementation of a strategy, and
it helps prevent the strategy from becoming a mere list of intentions. Monitor-
ing facilitates the adjustment of policy interventions to changing conditions
during implementation. It promotes a culture of learning, providing a basis for
improved strategies in subsequent iterations, and it enhances the performance of
key actors in implementation by allowing for better accountability. Moreover,
together with appropriate reporting procedures, monitoring promotes public
interest and information on sustainable development.
One can distinguish three broad areas of an NSDS that require monitor-
ing: (1) actions and activities included in the NSDS; (2) impact of the NSDS;
and (3) overall progress towards sustainable development. Indicators for moni-
toring task (1) are outside the scope of this publication. Tey could be seen as
management indicators and will typically closely follow the formulation of the
strategy and action plans. Ensuring accountability of actors and stakeholders is
a main purpose of actively using such indicators. Indicators for monitoring tasks
(2) and (3) are closely related, because the objective of the NSDS is to make
development more sustainable. Tey difer especially with regard to coverage. As
an NSDS typically identifes priorities and targets, not all issues relevant for sus-
tainable development will be included in a focused strategy. Monitoring of issues
outside the strategy, however, is still warranted as it can assist the adjustment of
an NSDS during the implementation cycle.
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 37
Te CSD indicators, adapted to national situations, can play a mayor role
in monitoring tasks (1) and (2). However, in adapting the indicators for moni-
toring the impact of the strategy, additional selection criteria should be consid-
ered. Indicators should also be responsive to policies and actions included in the
strategy. In many cases, a further breakdown of CSD indicators by target group
increases the responsiveness. Moreover, monitoring indicators should be timely.
Terefore, indicators relying on large surveys and censuses that are conducted
infrequently and that require long processing times require special attention in
this regard. In these cases, simple surveys, concentrating on main target groups
only, may ofer timely indicators for monitoring the strategy impact.
Appropriate reporting mechanisms for disseminating monitoring results
are critical for generating feedback from stakeholders that leads to improved
strategies and their implementation. In this regard, it is important that reporting
is adapted to the varying needs of the diferent target audiences, including the
public-at-large, stakeholder organizations, parliaments, political decision-mak-
ers, and, in many developing countries, external donors. Diferent but coherent
reporting formats may be used to address these audiences efectively.
Monitoring results can be integrated into broader NSDS progress reports.
Main fndings are usually contained in executive summaries intended to address
policy-makers. Most reports go beyond the values of the chosen indicators and
include analytical information, often of direct policy relevance. Extent, methods
and format of the analysis difer according to the audience. It may be advisable
to include a basic analysis in the standard NSDS reports, but to conduct more
detailed analysis with less frequency. Short brochures using indicators to dem-
onstrate strategy implementation are an efective and user-friendly means of
addressing the public-at-large. Simple symbols, such as arrows or trafc-lights,
indicating progress or regress by indicator can be used to communicate progress
on sustainable development in a country. In many countries, the internet can be
an efective means of reporting on updated indicator values. For many develop-
ing countries, the existence of multiple project-specifc reporting requirements
attached to diferent externally funded development projects often poses addi-
tional organizational and institutional challenges.
Evaluation is a critical part of an NSDS as it assesses whether the strategy
was efective in meeting its goals and targets; whether it was implemented ef-
ciently; and whether it is likely to have long-lasting impact. Unlike monitoring,
33 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
which is a continuous efort, evaluation is conducted only periodically. Major
revisions or expiration of the NSDS will typically involve an evaluation, but
intermediate evaluations are also advisable, depending on the timeframe of the
NSDS, changes in external conditions, uncertainty over linkages between poli-
cies and sustainable development outcomes and resources available. As an NSDS
often includes a list of activities or projects whose funding requires specifc eval-
uations, it is important that overall evaluation of the strategy makes full use of
these project-specifc evaluations. However, these do not substitute for an overall
strategy evaluation, as only the latter can incorporate policy linkages and address
the question whether priority areas are set appropriately.
Te indicators used for monitoring the NSDS evidently play an important
role in the evaluation, as they allow establishing whether the strategy has achieved
its targets. However, in order to answer the question of efectiveness, evaluation
also has to validate, and often to quantify, the assumed linkages between NSDS
actions and development outcomes and impacts. Given the complexity and the
continuing limits of understanding sustainable development, this particular
challenge is unlikely to provide defnite answers.
For assessing the efectiveness of the NSDS, the evaluation has, in princi-
ple, to include an assessment of alternative policy interventions. Terefore,
multiple methods such as comparisons with non-target groups, cross-country
comparisons, or econometric modeling are likely to be employed.
V. A word on indicator frameworks
Indicators of sustainable development at the national level are often developed
through dynamic interactive processes and dialogues among a wide range of
stakeholders, including government representatives, technical experts and civil
society representatives. Te process allows participants to defne sustainability
from their own perspectives, taking locally relevant aspects as well as their own
value systems into account.
Conceptual frameworks for indicators help to focus and clarify what to
measure, what to expect from measurement and what kinds of indicators to use.
Diversity of core values, indicator processes and sustainable development theo-
ries have resulted in the development and application of diferent frameworks.
Te main diferences among them are the ways in which they conceptualize the
key dimensions of sustainable development, the inter-linkages among these
dimensions, the way they group the issues to be measured, and the concepts by
which they justify the selection and aggregation of indicators.
A. Driving force-state-response frameworks
Te initial set of 134 CSD indicators, published in 1996, was organized in a
driving force, state and response (DSR) framework, a variation of the pressure-
state-response framework. Each indicator in the DSR framework is classifed as
a driving force, state, or response. Driving force indicators describe processes
or activities that have a positive or a negative impact on sustainable develop-
ment (for example pollution or school enrolment). State indicators describe the
current situation (for example nutritional status of children or land covered by
forests), whereas response indicators refect societal actions aimed at moving
towards sustainable development. Te frst CSD indicators were additionally
grouped according to the dimensions of sustainable development—social, eco-
nomic, environmental as well as institutional, and matched to the relevant chap-
ters of Agenda 21.
Whereas variations of the pressure-state-response framework continue to
be used in more environmentally oriented indicator sets, the revision of the
CSD indicators in 2001 discontinued the DSR framework mainly because it
39
40 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
was not suited to addressing the complex interlinkages among issues; the classi-
fcation of indictors into driving force, state or response was often ambiguous;
there were uncertainties over causal linkages; and it did not adequately high-
light the relationship between the indicators and policy issues. Consequently,
the second CSD indicators, which were still organized along the four dimen-
sions of sustainable development, were embedded in a more fexible theme/
sub-theme framework.
B. Issue- or theme-based frameworks
Issue- or theme-based frameworks are the most widely used type of frameworks,
especially in ofcial national indicator sets. In these frameworks, indicators are
grouped into various diferent issues relating to sustainable development. Te
issues or themes are typically determined on the basis of policy relevance. Most
countries in all regions of the world that have developed national sustainable
development indicators have based them on a thematic framework. Tis is
also true of regional strategies and indicator programmes, such as the indica-
tors used in the Baltic 21 Action Programme, the Mediterranean Sustainable
Development Strategy and the Sustainable Development Indicators for the
European Union.
A main reason for the prominence of thematic frameworks is their ability
to link indicators to policy processes and targets. Tis provides a clear and direct
message to decision-makers and facilitates both communicating with and rais-
ing the awareness of the public. A thematic framework for indicators is also well
suited to monitor progress in attaining the objectives and goals stipulated in
national sustainable development strategies. It is fexible enough to adjust to
new priorities and policy targets over time.
C. Capital frameworks
Tere are other approaches to measuring sustainable development. Among
them, the capital approach has found a lot of attention. It attempts to calculate
national wealth as a function of the sum of and interaction among diferent
kinds of capital, including not only fnancial capital and produced capital goods,
but also natural, human, social and institutional capital. Tis requires that all
forms of capital be expressed in common terms, usually in monetary terms.
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 41
Te frameworks for sustainable development indicators based on this
approach vary, but, in general, they all try to identify frst what development is,
and, second, how development can be made sustainable. Tis draws attention
“to what resources we have at our disposal today, and towards the issue whether
we manage these in ways that make it possible to maintain and further develop
the resource base over time.”
14
Explicit in the capital approach is the notion of substitutability between
diferent types of capital, which is indeed a complex issue. Tere are clear exam-
ples of substitutability—machines for human labor, renewable for non-renewa-
ble sources of energy, synthetics for some natural resources. And future techno-
logical innovation and human ingenuity may greatly expand the scope. However,
there may also be assets that are fundamental and for which no substitution is
possible. Tis could include, for example, a reasonably stable climate or biologi-
cal diversity.
Tere remain many challenges to using a capital framework. Among them
are disagreement about how to express all forms of capital in monetary terms;
problems of data availability; questions about substitution; and the integration
of intra-generational equity concerns within and across countries. Nonetheless,
the concept of using capital as a way to track sustainable development could be
a powerful tool for decision-making, and work in this area should be
encouraged.
D. Accounting frameworks
Indicator systems based on accounting frameworks draw all indicators from a
single database allowing for sectoral aggregation and using consistent classifca-
tions and defnitions. Te most prominent example in this regard is the System
of Integrated Environmental and Economic Accounting (SEEA) pioneered by
the United Nations Statistical Commission with the International Monetary
Fund, the World Bank, the European Commission and OECD. Te SEEA
extends national accounting to environmental aspects through a satellite system
of accounts. It is, thus, clearly linked to the standard system of national accounts
14
Knut H Alfsen, and Thorvald Moe, “An International Framework for Constructing Na-
tional Indicators for Policies to Enhance Sustainable Development Background paper
prepared for the UN Expert Group meeting on Indicators of Sustainable Development,
13-15 December 2005, p 7
42 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
(SNA). Te SEEA includes accounts expressed in monetary terms as well as
accounts in physical terms. It allows for the construction of a common database
from which some of the most common sustainable development indicators in
the economic and environmental spheres can be derived in a consistent manner.
Several countries are using the SEEA, and it is in the process of being proposed
as an international statistical standard.
15
Integrated national account frameworks such as the SEEA were not set up
specifcally to address sustainable development and therefore do not, at least not
yet, take into account two of the four pillars of sustainable development—the
social and institutional pillars Nevertheless, some of these concerns are being
addressed through eforts both to expand the system by incorporating human
capital and to explore the possibility of linking the frameworks with social
accounting matrices (SAM) which have been developed in consistency with the
national accounts.
16
Implementation of the SEEA would improve systems of sustainable devel-
opment indicators embedded in capital frameworks as well as those based on
thematic frameworks. In case of capital frameworks, the SEEA facilitates mov-
ing from modeled and estimated data towards directly obtained capital meas-
ures. For thematic frameworks, the SEEA is especially useful if the indicators are
used for monitoring and evaluation of development strategies. By basing indica-
tors in a consistent database allowing for meaningful sectoral and spatial disag-
gregation, progress towards specifc targets included in a strategy as well as cross-
sectoral impacts can be consistently assessed.
In this new edition, the CSD indicators further strengthen the relationship
with the SEEA by increasingly adopting defnitions and classifcations contained
in the SEEA and in many cases by introducing sectoral breakdowns based on
standard classifcations.
15
See United Nations et al (2003), SEEA Handbook, for the details on the SEEA and United
Nations Statistical Commission (2006), report E/2006/24 and especially document E/
CN3/2006/9 for procedural aspects
16
Laszlo Pinter, Peter Hardi and Peter Bartelmus, “Indicators of Sustainable Development:
Proposals for a Way Forward Discussion Paper prepared under a consultant agreement
on behalf of the UN Division for Sustainable Development Expert Group Meeting on
Indicators of Sustainable Development, 13-15 December 2005 (New York) Document
No UNDSD/EGM/ISD/2005/CRP2
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 43
E. Aggregated indicators
Tere have been several eforts to develop aggregated indicators to capture ele-
ments of sustainable development. Most aggregate indicators are primarily used
for raising public awareness and receive notable attention in the media. Rather
than ofering a comprehensive view of sustainable development, many of these
indicators are specifcally focussed on the environmental dimension of sustain-
able development and resource management.
Examples of such indicators include the Ecological Footprint, the Environ-
mental Sustainability Index (ESI) and the Environmental Performance Index
(EPI). Te Ecological Footprint, originally developed by Wackernagel and Rees
(1996)
17
, translates human resource consumption and waste generation in a
country or any other entity into a measure of biological productive land and
water and relates it to a measure of biological capacity. Both ESI and EPI have
been developed by the Center for Environmental Law and Policy at Yale Univer-
sity and the Center of International Earth Science Information Network
(CIESIN) at Columbia University in collaboration with the World Economic
Forum and others. Te ESI, integrates 76 data sets—tracking natural resource
endowments, past and present pollution levels, environmental management
eforts and the capacity of a society to improve its environmental perform-
ance—into 21 indicators and fnally into a single index.
18
Te EPI aggregates
16 indicators related to resource depletion, pollution, environmental impact
and energy efciency into an index aimed at measuring policy impact.
19
More comprehensive aggregated indicators on sustainable development
include the Adjusted Net Saving and the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI).
Adjusted Net Saving was developed by the World Bank. It is calculated by sub-
tracting monetary values for resource depletion and damage caused by air pollu-
tion from traditional net savings derived from national accounts, and adding
expenditures on education.
20
Tis indicator is also included in the set of CSD
indicators in the economic development theme. Te GPI, developed and main-
17
Wackernagel, M and W Rees (1996), Our Ecological Footprint: Reducing Human
Impact on the Earth, New Society Publishers, Gabriola Island See also http://www
footprintnetworkorg
18
See http://www.yale.edu/esi/ for details
19
See http://www.yale.edu/epi/ for details
20
Methodologies, publication an data on this indicator are available on the website of the
World Bank, see http://go.worldbank.org/3AWKN2ZOY0
44 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
tained by Redefning Progress, modifes GDP by adding economic contribu-
tions of household and volunteer work, but subtracting factors such as crime,
pollution, and family breakdown in order to arrive at a measure of well-being.
21

It is related to the Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare (ISEW) developed by
Daly and Cobb (1989).
22
All these indicators face signifcant challenges to aggregation related to data
availability, methodologies, selection of variables and, in case of indexes, weigh-
ing of the variables. Nonetheless, this ongoing work represents important
attempts to aggregate a broad range of variables in order to convey a message
that is easy for both decision-makers and civil society to understand.
F. Other indicator approaches
Tere are other approaches to using indicators for sustainable development
outside of formal frameworks. For example, there is a trend to construct issue-
specifc sets of sustainable development indicators. At the national level, these
are most likely to be used by ministries or NGOs to track policy implemen-
tation and to inform the public. At the international level, prominent exam-
ples include biodiversity indicators developed to measure progress towards the
internationally agreed target of signifcantly reducing the loss of biodiversity by
2010
23
, the energy indicators of sustainable development
24
, or the sustainable
tourism indicators
25
.
Tere is also increasing use of headline indicators by both countries and
organizations. Tese tend to be small core sets of indicators closely linked to
policy priorities that provide quick and visible signals to policy-makers and to
the general public. Headline indicators usually co-exist with larger sets of indica-
tors for more comprehensive policy-making and monitoring. A potential prob-
21
See http://www.redefningprogress.org/newprograms/sustIndi/gpi/index.shtml
22
Daly, H and JB Cobb (1989), For the common good: Redirecting the economy toward
the community, the environment and a sustainable future, Beacon Press, Boston
23
See Convention on Biological Diversity (2002) and World Summit of Sustainable De-
velopment (2002) for the exact text Work on the indicators is coordinated by the 2010
Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (wwwtwentytennet)
24
See IAEA et al (2005), Energy Indicators for Sustainable Development: Guidelines and
Methodologies
25
See United Nations World Tourism Organization (2004), Indicators of Sustainable Devel-
opment for Tourism Destinations: A Guidebook
ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 45
lem with headline indicators in that they could be used for politics, rather than
policy; that is, their choice could refect current political priorities rather than
signifcant issues infuencing future sustainability. Used correctly, however,
headline indicators are excellent means of attracting media attention, raising
public awareness and supplementing pedagogical materials for primary and sec-
ondary education.
VI. Description of CSD Indicators
of Sustainable Development
Tis chapter contains a short description of all CSD indicators. Detailed infor-
mation is available in the methodology sheets contained in the accompanying
CD-Rom as well as on the internet at http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/natlinfo/
indicators/isd.htm
A. Poverty
PROPORTION OF POPULATION LIVING BELOW NATIONAL
POVERTY LINE
Sub-theme:  Income poverty Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te proportion of the population with a standard of liv-
ing below the poverty line as defned by the national government. National
estimates are based on population-weighted subgroup estimates derived from
household surveys.
Description:  Te indicator (also known as national poverty rate) is a stand-
ard measure of poverty, especially income poverty. It provides information on
progress towards poverty alleviation, a central objective and requirement of
sustainable development. Te national poverty rate is one of the core meas-
ures of living standards and it draws attention exclusively towards the poor.
PROPORTION OF POPULATION BELOW $ 1 PER DAY
Sub-theme:  Income poverty
Brief defnition:  Te proportion of the population having per capita con-
sumption of less than $1.08 a day, measured at 1993 international prices.
Description:  Te population below $1 a day provides a uniform meas-
ure of absolute poverty for the developing world, using data from nationally
representative household surveys. Progress against absolute poverty is now a
widely accepted yardstick for assessing the overall performance of developing
economies.
47
43 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
RATIO OF shARE IN NATIONAL INcOME OF hIGhEsT TO
LOWEsT qUINTILE
Sub-theme:  Income inequality
Brief defnition:  Te ratio of the share in national income (or consump-
tion) accruing to the highest 20 percent of the population to the share accru-
ing to the lowest 20 percent.
Description:  Te indicator shows the extent of inequality in income dis-
tribution within a country. Inequality in outcomes such as income or con-
sumption and inequality in opportunities hinder human development and
are detrimental to long-term economic growth. Poor people generally have
less voice, less income, and less access to services than wealthier people. When
societies become more equitable in ways that lead to greater opportunities
for all, the poor stand to beneft from a “double dividend.” Empirical studies
suggest that the impact of growth on poverty reduction is greater when initial
income inequality is lower.
PROPORTION OF POPULATION UsING AN IMPROVED
sANITATION FAcILITY
Sub-theme:  Sanitation  Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Proportion of population with access to a private sani-
tary facility for human excreta disposal in the dwelling or immediate vicinity.
Improved sanitary facilities range from simple but protected pit latrines to
fush toilets with sewerage.
Description:  Te provision of adequate sanitation is necessary for poverty
alleviation and to protect human health and the environment. Te indicator
monitors progress in the accessibility of the population to sanitation facilities,
a basic and essential social service. Accessibility to adequate excreta disposal
facilities is fundamental to decrease the faecal risk and frequency of associated
diseases. When broken down by geographic (such as rural/urban zones) or
social or economic criteria, it also provides tangible evidence of inequities.
PROPORTION OF POPULATION UsING AN IMPROVED WATER sOURcE
Sub-theme:  Drinking water Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Proportion of population with access to an improved
drinking water source in a dwelling or located within a convenient distance
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 49
from the user’s dwelling. Improved drinking water sources include bottled
water; rainwater; protected boreholes springs and wells; public stand-pipes
and piped connections to houses.
Description:  Te provision of adequate sanitation is necessary for poverty
alleviation and to protect human health and the environment. Te indicator
monitors progress in the accessibility of the population to improved water
sources. Accessibility to improved water sources is fundamental to decrease
the faecal risk and frequency of associated diseases. It is also a universal human
development indicator. When broken down by geographic (such as rural/
urban zones) or social or economic criteria, it also provides tangible evidence
of inequities.
shARE OF hOUsEhOLDs WIThOUT ELEcTRIcITY OR OThER MODERN
ENERGY sERVIcEs
Sub-theme:  Access to energy Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Share of households without access to electricity, and
share of households using ‘traditional’ non-commercial energy options, such
as fuelwood, crop wastes and dung, as primary fuel for cooking and heating.
Description:  Te indicator monitors progress in accessibility and aford-
ability of modern energy services including electricity. Electricity and other
modern energy services are an essential component of providing basic social
services. Lack of access to modern energy services contributes to poverty
and deprivation and limits economic development. Furthermore, adequate,
afordable and reliable energy services are necessary to guarantee sustainable
economic and human development.
PERcENTAGE OF POPULATION UsING sOLID FUELs FOR cOOKING
Sub-theme:  Access to energy
Brief  defnition:  Percentage of population using solid fuels as source for
cooking. Solid fuels include biomass fuels, such as wood, charcoal, crops or
other agricultural waste, dung, shrubs and straw, and coal.
Description:  Te indicator covers multiple sustainable development
issues. Most importantly, the use of solid fuels in households is a proxy
for indoor air pollution, which is associated with increased mortality from
50 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
pneumonia and other acute lower respiratory infections among children as
well as increased mortality from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and
lung cancer (where coal is used) among adults. High demand for biomass
fuels to meet household energy needs can contribute to deforestation and
subsequent land degradation. Te indicator also measures access to modern
energy services, central to poverty alleviation and sustainable development
in general.
PROPORTION OF URBAN POPULATION LIVING IN sLUMs
Sub-theme:  Living conditions Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te proportion of urban population lacking at least one
of the following fve housing conditions: Access to improved water; access
to improved sanitation facilities; sufcient, not overcrowded, living area;
structural quality/durability of dwellings; security of tenure.
Description:  Tis is a key indicator measuring the adequacy of shelter. Over-
crowding, inadequate housing, lack of water and sanitation are manifestations
of poverty. Tey deprive residents from their human rights, are associated with
certain categories of health risks and are often detriments to future develop-
ment. An increase of this indicator is sign of deteriorating living conditions in
urban areas. Disaggregating the indicator by type of housing conditions gives
further information on the severity of inadequate living conditions.
B. Governance
PERcENTAGE OF POPULATION hAVING PAID BRIBEs
Sub-theme:  Corruption Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Percentage of population having been asked or having
complied to expectation by government ofcials to pay a bribe for his or her
services.
Description:  Te indicator measures prevalence of corruption among gov-
ernment ofcials through crime surveys. A decline of this indicator is a sign
of progress on the corruption component of good governance. Good govern-
ance is essential for sustainable development.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 51
NUMBER OF REcORDED INTENTIONAL hOMIcIDEs PER 100,000
POPULATION
Sub-theme:  Crime Core indicator
Brief Defnition:  Number of intentional homicides recorded in criminal
(police) statistics. Countries with sufciently reliable crime statistics may
wish to expand the indicator by including violent crimes, such as assault, rape
and/or robbery.
Description:  Te indicator measures the development of intentional homi-
cides over time. Intentional homicides, as well as violent crimes, have a very
signifcant negative impact on sustainable development. Te phenomenon of
crime compromises human dignity, creates a climate of fear and erodes the
quality of life. Te indicator can also be used as a measure for the adherence
to the rule of law, a component of good governance.
C. Health
UNDER-FIVE MORTALITY RATE
Sub-theme:  Mortality Core indicator
Brief  defnition:   Under-fve mortality rate refers to the probability of
dying before age 5. It is expressed as deaths per 1,000 live births.
Description:   Tis indicator measures the risk of dying in infancy and early
childhood. In high-mortality settings, a large fraction of all deaths occurs at
ages under 5 years. Under-fve mortality levels are infuenced by the avail-
ability, accessibility and quality of health services; education, particularly of
mothers; access to safe water and sanitation; poverty and nutrition, among
other factors.
LIFE ExPEcTANcY AT BIRTh
Sub-theme:  Mortality Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te average number of years that a newborn could expect
to live, if he or she were to pass through life subject to the age-specifc death
rates of a given period.
Description:  Te indicator measures how many years on average a new-
born is expected to live, given current age-specifc mortality risks. Life
52 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
expectancy at birth is an indicator of mortality conditions and, by proxy, of
health conditions.
hEALThY LIFE ExPEcTANcY AT BIRTh
Sub-theme:  Mortality
Brief  defnition:  Te average equivalent number of years of full health
that a newborn could expect to live, if he or she were to pass through life
subject to the age-specifc death rates and ill-health rates of a given period.
Description:  Healthy life expectancy (HALE) provides a summary of
overall health conditions for a population, which are in turn an integral part
of development. HALE captures both fatal and non-fatal health outcomes
and provides a more complete picture of the impact of morbidity and mortal-
ity on populations, than life expectancy alone.
PERcENT OF POPULATION WITh AccEss TO PRIMARY hEALTh
cARE FAcILITIEs
Sub-theme:  Health care delivery Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Proportion of population with access to primary health
care facilities. Primary health care is defned as essential health care made
accessible at a cost the country and community can aford, with methods that
are practical, scientifcally sound and socially acceptable.
Description:  Te indicator monitors progress in the access of the popula-
tion to primary health care. Accessibility of health services, going beyond
just physical access, and including economic, social and cultural accessibility
and acceptability, is of fundamental signifcance to refect on health system
progress, equity and sustainable development.
IMMUNIzATION AGAINsT INFEcTIOUs chILDhOOD DIsEAsEs
Sub-theme:  Health care delivery Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te percent of the eligible population that have been
immunized according to national immunization policies. Te defnition
includes three components: (i) the proportion of children immunized
against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, measles, poliomyelitis, tuberculosis
and hepatitis B before their frst birthday; (ii) the proportion of children
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 53
immunized against yellow fever in afected countries of Africa; and (iii) the
proportion of women of child-bearing age immunized against tetanus.
Description:  Tis indicator monitors the implementation of immuniza-
tion programs. Good management of immunization programmes is essential
to the reduction of morbidity and mortality from major childhood infectious
diseases, and is integral to the achievement of sustainable development.
cONTRAcEPTIVE PREVALENcE RATE
Sub-theme:  Health care delivery
Brief  defnition:  Tis indicator is generally defned as the percentage of
women of reproductive age (15-49 yrs) using any method of contraception
at a given point in time. It is usually calculated for women married or in
union of reproductive age, but sometimes for other base population, such as
all women of reproductive age at risk of pregnancy.
Description:  Te measure indicates the extent of couples conscious
eforts and capabilities to control their fertility. Contraceptive prevalence
is also an indicator of access to reproductive health services, an important
element of primary health care. Reproductive health programmes, which
include family planning, are among the factors that promote changes in
demographic behaviour and trends, which in turn afect sustainability and
development. Te health benefts of contraceptive use include the ability
to prevent unwanted pregnancies, thereby reducing the resort to induced
abortion as well as potential complications of pregnancy and the risks of
maternal mortality.
NUTRITIONAL sTATUs OF chILDREN
Sub-theme:  Nutritional status Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Percentage of underweight (weight-for-age below -2
standard deviation (SD) of the WHO Child Growth Standards median)
among children under fve years of age; percentage of stunting (height-for-age
below -2 SD of the WHO Child Growth Standards median) among children
under fve years of age; and percentage of overweight (weight-for-height above
+2 SD of the WHO Child Growth Standards median) among children under
fve years of age.
54 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Description:  Te purpose of this indicator is to measure long term nutri-
tional imbalance and malnutrition resulting in undernutrition (assessed by
underweight and stunting) and overweight. Anthropometric measurements
to assess growth and development, particularly in young children, are the
most widely used indicators of nutritional status in a community.
MORBIDITY OF MAjOR DIsEAsEs sUch As hIV/AIDs, MALARIA,
TUBERcULOsIs
Sub-theme:  Health status and risks Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Prevalence and/or incidence of major diseases such as
HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis. Te indicator is measured separately for
relevant major diseases, typically in cases per 100,000 people.
Description:  Te indicator measures the morbidity caused by major diseases.
Te goals of sustainable development can only be achieved in the absence of a
high prevalence of debilitating diseases. HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and
other diseases are major impediments to sustainable development, especially
in many developing countries. Te indicator also provides information on the
success of measures to fght major diseases. For that purpose, especially over a
longer horizon, measuring death rates of major diseases is also important.
PREVALENcE OF TOBAccO UsE
Sub-theme:  Health status and risks
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the percentage of the popula-
tion aged 15 years or older that daily smokes any tobacco product. It is calcu-
lated from the responses to individual or household surveys that are nationally
representative.
Description:  Prevalence of current daily tobacco smoking among adults is
a measure useful to determine of the economic and future health burden of
tobacco use, and provides a primary basis for evaluating the efectiveness of
tobacco control programmes over time. Tobacco is an undisputable health
threat causing 5.4 million deaths in 2005, and representing the second risk
factor for mortality worldwide. Tobacco consumption is costly and con-
tributes to poverty and associated health inequalities at the individual and
national levels. Studies have shown that prevalence is higher among the poor
illustrating a negative association between prevalence and household income
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 55
and/or wealth. Te cost of treatment of tobacco-caused diseases is high and
falls heavily on the fnances of poor households and countries. Premature
deaths from tobacco-related diseases also lead to productivity losses.
sUIcIDE RATE
Sub-theme:  Health status and risks
Brief defnition:  Te number of deaths from suicide and intentional self-
harm per 100 000 people.
Description:  Te indicator is an important proxy for the prevalence of
mental health disorders in a country, as mental health disorders, especially
depression and substance abuse, are associated with 90% of all suicides. Men-
tal health disorders are a major impediment to the well-being of populations
in developed and developing countries. People with these disorders are often
subjected to social isolation, poor quality of life and increased mortality. Tese
disorders are the cause of staggering economic and social costs.
D. Education
GROss INTAKE RATE INTO LAsT YEAR OF PRIMARY EDUcATION
Sub-theme:  Education level Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Total number of new entrants in the last grade of primary
education, regardless of age, expressed as a percentage of the population of the
theoretical entrance age to the last grade of primary education. Te indicator
is also called Primary Completion Rate.
Description:  Te indicator measures whether or not the entire eligible
school age population has access to school and whether or not they complete
the full primary cycle. Universal primary education is an important goal of
the international sustainable development agenda. Education is a process by
which human beings and societies reach their fullest potential. It is critical for
promoting sustainable development and improving the capacity of people to
address environment and development issues.
56 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
NET ENROLMENT RATE IN PRIMARY EDUcATION
Sub-theme:  Education level Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indictor is the ratio of the number of children of of-
cial school age (as defned by the national education system) who are enrolled
in primary school to the total population of children of ofcial school age.
Description:  Te indicator shows the proportion of children of primary
school age who are enrolled in primary school. Net enrolment refers only
to children of ofcial primary school age, and excludes children of other age
groups enrolled in primary school age as well as children of primary school
age enrolled in other levels of education. Universal primary education is an
important goal of the international sustainable development agenda
ADULT sEcONDARY (TERTIARY) schOOLING ATTAINMENT LEVEL
Sub-theme:  Education level Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Adult Secondary Schooling Attainment Level is defned as
the proportion of the population of working age (25-64 years) which has com-
pleted at least (upper) secondary education. Adult Tertiary Schooling Attain-
ment Level is defned as the proportion of the population of working age (25-
64 years) which has completed at least the frst stage tertiary education.
Description:  Tese indicators provide measures of the quality of the
human capital stock within the adult population of approximately working
age. For instance, those who have completed upper secondary education can
be expected either to have an adequate set of skills relevant to the labour mar-
ket or to have demonstrated the ability to acquire such skills.
LIFE LONG LEARNING
Sub-theme:  Education level
Brief defnition:  Percentage of the population aged 25 to 64 in education
or training.
Description:  Te indicator measures the extent to which working-age
population is engaged in learning activities. Life-long learning is essential to
sustainable development. As society shifts towards sustainable production
and consumption patterns, workers and citizens who are willing to develop
and adopt new technologies and organisation techniques as workers, as well
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 57
as new attitudes and behaviour as citizens and consumers will be needed. Te
scale and quality of human resources are major determinants of both the crea-
tion of new knowledge and its dissemination.
ADULT LITERAcY RATEs
Sub-theme:  Literacy Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te proportion of the adult population aged 15 years and
over that is literate.
Description:  Tis indicator provides a measure of the stock of literate per-
sons within the adult population who are capable of using written words in
daily life and to continue to learn. It refects the accumulated accomplish-
ment of education in spreading literacy. Any shortfall in literacy would pro-
vide indications of eforts required in the future to extend literacy to the
remaining adult illiterate population.
E. Demographics
POPULATION GROWTh RATE
Sub-theme:  Population change Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te average annual rate of change of population size dur-
ing a specifed period. It is often reported separately for urban and rural areas.
Description:  Te population growth rate measures how fast the size of
population is changing. If reported separately for urban and rural area, it
provides a measure of urbanization. Te high growth of urban populations,
caused by rates of natural increase (excess of births over deaths) in urban
areas, migration from rural to urban areas and the transformation of rural set-
tlements into urban places, is of concern in many countries. In settings where
the conditions for sustainable agricultural and rural development are not in
place, high rates of rural population growth could negatively afect the use of
land, water, air, energy and other resources.
TOTAL FERTILITY RATE
Sub-theme:  Population change
Brief defnition:  Te average number of children (live births) a cohort of
women would have at the end of their reproductive period if they were sub-
53 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
ject to the age-specifc fertility rates of a given period. Its calculation assumes
that there is no mortality. Te total fertility rate is expressed as children per
woman, and can be disaggregated into various age-specifc fertility rates.
Description:  Fertility is one of the variables that directly afect population
change. In many countries, lower fertility has improved the ability of families
and governments to make a better use of scarce resources, combat poverty,
protect and repair the environment, and set the conditions for sustainable
development. On the other hand, countries experiencing below-replacement
fertility levels (below 2.1 children per woman) could face rapid population
ageing and, eventually, decreasing population size. Adolescent fertility (births
to women under 20 years of age) constitutes a matter of concern for many gov-
ernments, specially in regions still experiencing relatively high fertility. Early
childbearing entails a much greater risk of maternal death, while the children
born to young mothers tend to have higher levels of morbidity and mortality.
DEPENDENcY RATIO
Sub-theme:  Population change Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te dependency ratio relates the number of children (0-
14 years old) and older persons (65 years or over) to the working-age popula-
tion (15-64 years old).
Description:  Dependency ratios indicate the potential efects of changes in
population age structures for social and economic development, in particular
regarding social support needs. A high dependency ratio indicates that the
economically active population and the overall economy may face a greater
burden in supporting the young and/or older economically dependent popu-
lations. It is also normally disaggregated into children dependency ratio and
old-age dependency ratio.
RATIO OF LOcAL REsIDENTs TO TOURIsTs IN MAjOR TOURIsT
REGIONs AND DEsTINATIONs
Sub-theme:  Population change
Brief  defnition:  Te number of visitors (tourists and same day visitors)
divided by the number of local residents in tourist regions and destinations. It
can be reported separately for the whole year and for peak seasons or days.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 59
Description:  Te ratio can indicate total and seasonal pressure on the
environmental and social resources of host regions and populations. While
tourism represents a key source of income and employment in most tourist
receiving regions and destinations, it also exerts considerable pressure on the
environmental and socio-cultural resources of host populations, especially in
peak periods. Negative environmental and social impacts of tourism can be
prevented and mitigated with appropriate planning, management and moni-
toring of tourism activities, following integrated approaches and sustainabil-
ity principles.
F. Natural hazards
PERcENTAGE OF POPULATION LIVING IN hAzARD PRONE AREAs
Sub-theme:  Vulnerability to natural hazards Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te percentage of national population living in areas
subject to signifcant risk of prominent hazards: cyclones, drought, foods,
earthquakes, volcanoes and landslides. Te indicator may be calculated sepa-
rately for each relevant prominent hazard. Te risk of death in a disaster caused
by natural hazards is a function of physical exposure to a hazardous event and
vulnerability to the hazard. Te indicator measures the risk at sub-national
scale by using historical and other data on hazards and on vulnerability. Te
sub-national risk levels are then aggregated to arrive at national values.
Description:  Tis indicator contributes to a better understanding of the
level of vulnerability to natural hazards in a given country, thus encourag-
ing long-term, sustainable risk reduction programs to prevent disasters. High
vulnerability means higher exposure to natural catastrophes in the absence
of disaster reduction measures. Disasters caused by vulnerability to natural
hazards have a strong negative impact on the development process in both
industrialized and developing countries.
hUMAN AND EcONOMIc LOss DUE TO DIsAsTERs
Sub-theme:  Disaster preparedness and response
Brief defnition:  Te number of persons deceased, missing, and/or injured
as a direct result of a disaster involving natural hazards; and the amount of
economic and infrastructure losses incurred as a direct result of the natural
60 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
disaster. Te indicator may be expressed as percentage of total population (for
human loss) and of GDP (for economic loss).
Description:  Te indicator provides estimates of the human and economic
impact of disasters. Disasters involving natural hazards can have devastating
short and long-term impacts on the society and the economy of any country,
adversely afecting progress towards sustainable development.
G. Atmosphere
cARBON DIOxIDE EMIssIONs
Sub-theme:  Climate change Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Anthropogenic emissions, less removal by sinks, of car-
bon dioxide (CO
2
). In addition to total emissions, sectoral CO
2
emissions
can be considered. Te typical sectors for which CO
2
emissions/removals are
estimated are energy, industrial processes, agriculture, waste, and the sector of
land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF).
Description:  Tis indicator measures the emissions of carbon dioxide, which
is known to be the most important, in terms of impact on global warming,
anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG). A doubling of the CO
2
concentration
in the atmosphere is believed to cause an increase in the global mean tempera-
ture of 1.5 to 4.5°C, which is expected to have a very negative impact on eco-
nomic, social and environmental conditions in most countries of the world.
EMIssIONs OF GREENhOUsE GAsEs
Sub-theme:  Climate change
Brief  defnition:  Anthropogenic emissions, less removal by sinks, of the
main greenhouse gases (GHGs) carbon dioxide (CO
2
), methane (CH
4
),
nitrous oxide (N
2
O), hydrofuorocarbons (HFCs), perfuorocarbons (PFCs),
sulphur hexafuoride (SF
6
). Emissions of CH
4
, N
2
O, HFCs, PFCs and SF
6

can be converted to CO
2
equivalents using the so-called global warming
potentials (GWPs) provided in assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change.
Description:  Tis indicator measures the emissions of the six main GHGs
which have a direct impact on climate change, less the removal of the main
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 61
GHG CO
2
through sequestration as a result of land-use change and forestry
activities. An increase of greenhouse gas concentration in the atmosphere con-
tributes to global warming, which is a major global challenge to sustainable
development. For countries that have committed to reduce or stabilize their
GHG emissions under the Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change, the indicator also provides information on
the fulflment of this global commitment.
cONsUMPTION OF OzONE DEPLETING sUBsTANcEs
Sub-theme:  Ozone Layer Depletion Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Tis indicator shows the consumption trends for ozone
depleting substances (ODSs) controlled under the Montreal Protocol on
Substance that Deplete the Ozone Layer, thereby allowing inference of the
amounts of ODSs being eliminated as a result of the protocol.
Description:  Tis indicator depicts the progress towards the phase out of
ODSs by the countries which have ratifed the Montreal Protocol on Sub-
stances that Deplete the Ozone Layer and its Amendments. Te phase-out
of ODSs, and their substitution by less harmful substances or new processes,
will lead to the recovery of the ozone layer, whose depletion has adverse efects
on human health, animals, plants, micro-organisms, marine life, materials,
biogeochemical cycles, and air quality.
AMBIENT cONcENTRATION OF AIR POLLUTANTs IN URBAN AREAs
Sub-theme:  Air quality Core indicator
Brief defnition:   Ambient air pollution concentrations of ozone, particu-
late matter (PM
10,
and PM
2,5
, if those are not available: SPM, black smoke),
sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, lead. Additional air pollutants are carbon
monoxide, nitrogen monoxide and volatile organic compounds including
benzene (VOCs). Te priority is collection of the indicator in large cities.
Description:   Te indicator provides a measure of the state of the environ-
ment in terms of air quality and is an indirect measure of population exposure
to air pollution of health concern in urban areas. Improving air quality is a
signifcant aspect of promoting sustainable human settlements.
62 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
H. Land
LAND UsE chANGE
Sub-theme:  Land use and status
Brief defnition:  Te indicator measures changes of the distribution of land
uses within a country over time. Broad land use categories are: Arable land,
permanent cropland, permanent pasture, forests and woodland, built-up
areas, other. Finer classifcations may be chosen, if available and appropriate.
Description:  Te indicator provides information on changes in the pro-
ductive or protective uses of the land resource to facilitate sustainable land
use planning and policy development. Such information is useful in identify-
ing opportunities to protect land uses or promote future allocation aimed at
providing the greatest sustainable benefts for people. Economically, changes
in land use will, for example, result in changes in possible agricultural pro-
duction and infuence employment opportunities. From an environmental
point of view, unsustainable land use is an important factor in land degrada-
tion, may pose a threat to ecosystems, and lead to natural habitat loss and
landscape changes.
LAND DEGRADATION
Sub-theme:  Land use and status
Brief  defnition:  Te share of land which due to natural processes or
human activity is no longer able to sustain properly an economic function
and/or the original ecological function. Degraded land includes land afected
by soil erosion, deterioration of the physical, chemical and biological or eco-
nomic properties of soil and/or long-term loss of natural vegetation.
Description:  Te indicator measures the extent of land degradation, which
is an impediment to sustainable development in general, and to sustainable
agriculture in particular. In many developing countries it is a major cause
of poverty and further environmental damage due to overuse of national
resources. Te indicator can also be seen as an overall measure of the reduc-
tion in quality of land resources.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 63
LAND AREA AFFEcTED BY DEsERTIFIcATION
Sub-theme:  Desertifcation
Brief  defnition:  Te proportion of land in drylands that is afected by
desertifcation. Desertifcation is defned as land degradation in arid, semi-
arid, and dry sub-humid areas resulting from various factors, including cli-
matic variations and human activities.
Description:  Te indicator describes the extent and severity of desertifca-
tion at the national level. For dryland areas, desertifcation is a central prob-
lem in sustainable development. While many dryland ecosystems have gener-
ally low levels of absolute productivity, maintenance of that productivity is
critical to the present and future livelihood of many hundreds of millions of
people. Combating desertifcation is, therefore, a central sustainable develop-
ment goal for large areas of the world.
ARABLE AND PERMANENT cROP LAND AREA
Sub-theme:  Agriculture Core indicator
Brief  Defnition:  Arable and permanent crop land is the total of “arable
land” and “land under permanent crops”. Arable land is the land under tem-
porary crops, temporary meadows for mowing or pasture, land under market
and kitchen gardens and land temporarily fallow (for less than fve years); and
land under permanent crops is the land cultivated with crops that occupy the
land for long periods and need not be replanted after each harvest.
Description:  Tis indicator shows the amount of land available for agri-
cultural production and, interalia, the cropland area available for food pro-
duction. In many developing countries, rising food and fbre demand and a
decline in farm sizes forces small farmers to extend cultivation to new areas,
which are fragile and not suitable for cultivation. Crop intensifcation, which
has contributed signifcantly to agricultural growth in recent years, can ease
the pressure on cultivating new lands but farm practices adopted for raising
yields can also, in some situations, damage the environment. Tis indicator is
of value to land planning decision making.
64 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
FERTILIzER UsE EFFIcIENcY
Sub-theme:  Agriculture
Brief defnition:  Te indicator measures the extent of fertilizer use recov-
ery in agriculture per crop unit. Data on the quantities of fertilizers used
are converted into the three basic nutrient components and aggregated. Te
three components are nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P
2
0
5
), and potassium
(K
2
0). Nutrient components of crops and their by-products are based on
their standardized chemical composition.
Description:  Tis indicator shows the potential environmental pressure
from inappropriate fertilizer application. Intensive fertilizer application is
linked to nutrient losses that may lead to eutrophication of water bodies,
soil acidifcation, and potential contamination of water supply with nitrates.
In many countries, intensifcation of agricultural production is a response to
increases in food demand and in the scarcity of agricultural land. It is neces-
sary that this intensifcation keeps negative impacts to the resource base and
the wider environment within bounds so that the sustainability of the system
is not threatened.
UsE OF AGRIcULTURAL PEsTIcIDEs
Sub-theme:  Agriculture
Brief defnition:  Use of pesticides in metric tons of active ingredients per
unit of agricultural land area.
Description:  Tis indicator measures the use of pesticides in agriculture,
which is linked to the intensifcation of agriculture. Whereas pesticides may
increase agricultural production, they pose challenges to health and environ-
ment. Pesticides tend to accumulate in the soil and in biota, and residues may
reach surface and groundwater through leaching. Humans can be exposed to
pesticides through food.
AREA UNDER ORGANIc FARMING
Sub-theme:  Agriculture
Brief defnition:  Ratio of total utilized agricultural area occupied by organic
farming to total utilized agricultural area. Organic farming involves holistic
production management systems, for crops and livestock, emphasizing the
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 65
use of management practices in preference to the use of of-farm inputs. Te
indicator may be extended to cover organic forestry and aquaculture.
Description:  Tis indicator shows the importance of organic farming.
Organic farming contributes to reducing environmental loading on soil and
water resources and pressure on biodiversity. Te reduction of use of pesti-
cides, herbicides and other chemicals, combined with enhanced management
of natural resources, not only improves the health of ecosystems but also fos-
ters the health of animals and people and increases income generation and
communities’ self-reliance.
PROPORTION OF LAND AREA cOVERED BY FOREsTs
Sub-theme:  Forests Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator measures the share of forest area in total land
area. When possible the area of primary forest should also be reported on. Te
forestarea is defned as “land spanning more than 0.5 hectares with trees higher
than 5 metres and a canopy cover of more than 10 percent, or trees able to reach
these thresholds in situ. Te indicator may further distinguish between primary
and other forests. Te primary forest area is defned as “Naturally regenerating
forest of native species, where there are no clearly visible indications of human
activities and the ecological processes are not signifcantly disturbed”.
Description:   Te indicator allows for monitoring changes in the area cov-
ered by forests over time. A continuing and fast decreasing forest area in a
country might be an alarm signal of unsustainable practices in the forestry and
agricultural sector. Forests provide many signifcant resources and functions
including wood products and non-wood products, recreational opportuni-
ties, habitat for wildlife, conservation of biological diversity, water and soil,
and play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle. Tey support employment
and traditional uses. Primary forests are usually associated with high levels of
biological diversity, particularly in tropical regions. Te area of primary forest
is an important indicator of the status of the forest ecosystem as a whole.
FOREsT TREEs DAMAGED BY DEFOLIATION
Sub-theme:  Forests
Brief defnition:  Tis indicator is defned as the percentage of trees on for-
est and other wooded land in the defoliation classes moderate, severe and
66 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
dead. Defoliation is needle or leaf loss in the assessable crown as compared
with a reference tree.
Description:   Te purpose of the indicator is to provide information on
the state of forest defoliation. Te extent of defoliation provides an indication
of the health of forests. Defoliation is infuenced by a combination of climatic
factors (especially drought), soil conditions, atmospheric pollution and forest
pathogens. Te indicator, thus, provides information on the impact of poli-
cies which reduce the occurrence of such infuencing factors, in particular air
pollution.
AREA OF FOREsT UNDER sUsTAINABLE FOREsT MANAGEMENT
Sub-theme:  Forests
Brief defnition:  Tis indicator will measure the forest area that is under
sustainable forest management. It can be based on a variety of information,
including data on forest health, the extent to which forests fulfll targets
related to their environmental, economic and social functions and on forest
management practices.
Description:  Te indicator will provide information on forest management
practices. Sustainable forest management for a variety of uses is essential to
achieving sustainable development. It is a critical means to eradicate poverty,
to signifcantly halt deforestation and to halt degradation of natural resources
and the loss of biodiversity.
I. Oceans, seas and coasts
PERcENTAGE OF TOTAL POPULATION LIVING IN cOAsTAL AREAs
Sub-theme:  Coastal zone Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Percentage of total population living within a 100 kilo-
metres from the coast and 50 meters above sea level. Other combinations of
distance-to-coast and elevation may be used as defnition of coastal zones.
Another approach is to measure the population living in river delta areas,
which are important areas at the land-ocean interface.
Description:  Tis indicator measures the concentration of population in
coastal areas, typically due to the economic benefts that accrue from access
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 67
to ocean navigation, coastal fsheries, tourism and recreation. Te indica-
tor quantifes an important driver of coastal ecosystem pressure, and it also
quantifes an important component of vulnerability to sea-level rise and other
coastal hazards. Among the most important pressures are habitat conversion,
land cover change, pollutant loads, and introduction of invasive species. A
high population concentration in the low-elevation coastal zone (defned as
less than 10 meters elevation) increases a country’s vulnerability to sea-level
rise and other coastal hazards such as storm surges.
BAThING WATER qUALITY
Sub-theme:  Coastal zone
Brief defnition:  Te indicator describes the changes over time in the qual-
ity of designated bathing waters (inland and marine) in terms of compliance
with standards for microbiological parameters (total coliforms and faecal
coliforms) and physicochemical parameters (mineral oils, surface-active sub-
stances and phenols).
Description:  Te indicator provides important information on the envi-
ronmental status of coastal waters. Violation of bathing quality standards
poses health risks for the population as well economic risks to the tourism
sector. Te indicator also provides information on the efectiveness of envi-
ronmental regulation, especially with regard to wastewater and marine pollu-
tion caused by ships.
PROPORTION OF FIsh sTOcKs WIThIN ThEIR sAFE BIOLOGIcAL LIMITs
Sub-theme:  Fisheries Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Percentage of fsh stocks exploited within their level
of maximum biological productivity, i.e., stocks that are either “Underex-
ploited”, “Moderately exploited” or “Fully exploited” according to formal
stock assessments based on a FAO procedure. Stocks that are “Overex-
ploited”, “Depleted” and “Recovering” are outside their maximum biological
productivity.
Description:  Te indicator provides information on the state of exploi-
tation of fshery resources at the global, regional and national levels. It
measures the level of sustainable production from capture fsheries, an
important element of food security. It is based on formal stock assessments,
63 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
derived from national and, for shared fsh stocks, regional catch and efort
statistics.
PROPORTION OF MARINE AREA PROTEcTED
Sub-theme:  Marine environment Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the share of national marine
area (territorial water plus exclusive economic zones) that has been reserved
by law or other efective means to protect part or all of the enclosed environ-
ment. Te indicator may be disaggregated by management category of the
protected areas. It could be calculated separately for diferent marine ecologi-
cal regions, if appropriate classifcation systems are available.
Description:  Te indicator represents the extent to which marine areas
important for conserving biodiversity, cultural heritage, scientifc research
(including baseline monitoring), recreation, natural resource maintenance,
and other values, are protected from incompatible uses. Protected marine
areas are essential for maintaining marine ecosystem diversity, in conjunction
with management of human impacts on the environment.
MARINE TROPhIc INDEx
Sub-theme:  Marine environment
Brief defnition:  Te marine trophic index measures the change in mean
trophic level of fsheries landings by region and globally. Trophic level is
defned as the position of an organism in the food chain, and ranges from a
value of 1 for primary producers up to a level of 5 for marine mammals and
humans.
Description:  In addition to being an indicator of the sustainability of fsh-
eries, the marine trophic index provides a measure of ecosystem integrity.
Declining trophic levels result in shortened food chains, leaving ecosystems
less able to cope with natural or human-induced change. Te long term sus-
tainability of fsheries is, in turn, directly linked to human livelihoods and
well-being. Excessive fshing is the most widespread and dominant human
impact on ocean ecosystems and is a major impact on marine biodiversity.
Te lowered biomasses and fragmented habitats resulting from the impacts
of fshing are predicted to lead to local extinctions especially among large,
long-lived, slow growing species.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 69
AREA OF cORAL REEF EcOsYsTEMs AND PERcENTAGE LIVE cOVER
Sub-theme:  Marine environment
Brief defnition:  Te indicator measures trends in the extant area of coral
reefs (a ‘key ecosystem’ for many countries), and the percentage live cover of
those reefs. Key ecosystems are those ecosystems for which it is most impor-
tant to measure changes in extent, or those ecosystems for which it is possible
to measure changes in extent.
Description:  Te indicator illustrates the efectiveness of national meas-
ures designed to conserve marine biological diversity and ensure its use is
sustainable. In many countries, coral reefs contain rare or locally endemic or
threatened species, are of particularly high species richness, represent rare or
unusual habitat, are severely reduced in area relative to their potential original
extent, are under a high degree of threat, and/or are of high actual or potential
economic importance.
J. Freshwater
PROPORTION OF TOTAL WATER REsOURcEs UsED
Sub-theme:  Water quantity Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Total annual volume of groundwater and surface water
withdrawn from its sources for human use (in the agricultural, domestic and
industrial sectors), expressed as a percentage of the total volume of water
available annually through the hydrological cycle (total renewable water
resources). Te terms water resources and water use are understood as fresh-
water resources and freshwater use.
Description:  Te indicator shows the degree to which total renewable
water resources are being exploited to meet the country’s water demands and
is thus a measure of water scarcity. Scarce water could have negative efects on
sustainability constraining economic and regional development, and leading
to loss of biodiversity. It is an important measure of a country’s vulnerability
to water shortages.
70 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
WATER UsE INTENsITY BY EcONOMIc AcTIVITY
Sub-theme:  Water quantity Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is defned as cubic metres of water used
per unit of value added (in US $) by economic activity. Water used by an
economic activity consists of the sum of (i) water directly abstracted from the
environment either permanently or temporarily for own use and (ii) water
received from other industries including reused water. Value added (gross)
by economic activity is defned as in the National Accounts as the value of
output less the value of intermediate consumption.
Description:  Tis indicator measures the intensity of water use in terms
of volumes of water per unit of value added. It is an indicator of pressure of
the economy on the water resources. Over time, it shows whether a coun-
try has decoupled decouple water use from economic growth. Te indicator
also provides information on progress in implementation of integrated water
resources management plans.
PREsENcE OF FAEcAL cOLIFORMs IN FREshWATER
Sub-theme:  Water qualitity Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te proportion of freshwater resources destined for pota-
ble supply containing concentrations of faecal coliforms which exceed the
levels recommended in the World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines
for Drinking-water Quality.
Description:  Te indicator assesses the microbial quality of water available
to communities for basic needs. It identifes communities where contami-
nation of water with human and animal excreta at source or in the supply
poses a threat to health. Diarrhoeal diseases, largely the consequence of faecal
contamination of drinking-water supplies, are the major cause for morbidity
and mortality in many developing countries, especially among children. Fre-
quent diarrhoeal episodes, even without fatal consequences, disrupt children’s
development and education, which, in the longer term, can have serious con-
sequences for sustainable development.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 71
BIOLOGIcAL OxYGEN DEMAND (BOD) IN WATER BODIEs
Sub-theme:  Water quality
Brief defnition:  BOD measures the amount of oxygen required or con-
sumed for the microbiological decomposition (oxidation) of organic material
in water.
Description:  Te purpose of this indicator is to assess the quality of water
available to consumers in localities or communities for basic and commercial
needs. It is also one of a group of indicators of ecosystem health. Te pres-
ence of high BOD may indicate faecal contamination or increases in particu-
late and dissolved organic carbon from non-human and animal sources that
can restrict water use and development, necessitate expensive treatment and
impair ecosystem health. Human ill health due to water quality problems
can reduce work capability and afect children’s growth and education. High
levels of oxygen consumption pose a threat to a variety of aquatic organisms,
including fsh.
WAsTEWATER TREATMENT
Sub-theme:  Water quality
Brief  defnition:  Proportion of wastewater that is treated, in order to
reduce pollutants before being discharged to the environment, by level of
treatment (primary, secondary or tertiary).
Description:  Tis indicator assesses the potential level of pollution from
domestic and industrial/commercial point sources entering the aquatic
environment, and monitors progress towards reducing this potential within
the framework of integrated water resources management. It helps to iden-
tify communities where wastewater treatment action is required to protect
the ecosystem. Untreated or insufciently treated wastewater can result in
increased nutrient levels, high levels of organic matter and hazardous sub-
stances, posing threats to aquatic ecosystems and human health.
72 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
K. Biodiversity
PROPORTION OF TERREsTRIAL AREA PROTEcTED, TOTAL AND BY
EcOLOGIcAL REGION
Sub-theme:  Ecosystem Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the share of terrestrial area that
has been reserved by law or other efective means to protect part or all of the
enclosed environment. It can be calculated separately for diferent terrestrial
ecological regions. Te indicator may also be disaggregated by management
category of the protected areas.
Description:  Te indicator represents the extent to which areas important
for conserving biodiversity, cultural heritage, scientifc research (including
baseline monitoring), recreation, natural resource maintenance, and other
values, are protected from incompatible uses. It shows how much of each
major ecosystem is dedicated to maintaining its diversity and integrity. Pro-
tected areas are essential for maintaining ecosystem diversity in countries and
ecological regions, in conjunction with management of human impacts on
the environment.
MANAGENT EFFEcTIVENEss OF PROTEcTED AREAs
Sub-theme:  Ecosystem
Brief defnition:  Tis indicator will measure the efectiveness with which
protected areas are being managed based on information about the context,
planning and design, resource inputs, management processes, delivery of
goods and services, and conservation outcomes of protected areas.
Description:  Management efectiveness of protected areas is an impor-
tant indicator of how well protected areas are conserving biodiversity. Tis
is critical as most nations use protected areas as a cornerstone of biodiversity
conservation. However, to determine whether this is a successful strategy it
is necessary to know not only about the area and systems they cover, but also
whether these are efectively managed.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 73
AREA OF sELEcTED KEY EcOsYsTEMs
Sub-theme:  Ecosystem
Brief defnition:  Tis indicator measures the extant area of identifed key
ecosystems. Ecosystem refers to the plants, animals, micro-organisms and
physical environment of any given place, and the complex relationships link-
ing them into a functional system. Key ecosystems can be defned as either
those ecosystems for which it is most important to measure changes in extent,
or those ecosystems for which it is possible for measure changes in extent.
Description:  Te indicator assesses the relative efectiveness of measures for
conserving biodiversity at ecosystem level. It is a tool to estimate the need for
specifc conservation measures to maintain the biological diversity in a coun-
try or region. Key ecosystem require attention and specifc policy measures as
they contain rare or locally endemic or threatened species, are of particularly
high species richness, represent rare or unusual habitat, are severely reduced
in area relative to their potential original extent, are under a high degree of
threat, and/or are of high actual or potential economic importance.
FRAGMENTATION OF hABITAT
Sub-theme:  Ecosystem
Brief  defnition:  Tis indicator measures the fragmentation of identifed
key habitats. For forests and other terrestrial habitat types the patch size dis-
tribution of habitats may be derived from vegetation information systems.
For river fragmentation, defned as the interruption of a river’s natural fow by
dams, inter-basin transfers or water withdrawal, fragmentation can be assessed
based on number, placement and amount of water stored behind dams.
Description:  Te fragmentation of habitats caused by human activities has
signifcant, largely negative implications for their native biodiversity, through
the efects of area reduction, edge exposure and isolation, as well as through
interruption of ecosystem processes and associated ecosystem degradation.
Te indicator has the potential to illustrate the efectiveness of national meas-
ures designed to conserve biological diversity.
74 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
chANGE IN ThREAT sTATUs OF sPEcIEs
Sub-theme:  Species Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Tis indicator is an index based on the number of spe-
cies in each category of the IUCN Red List (Least Concern, Near Treat-
ened, Vulnerable, Endangered, Critically Endangered, Extinct in the Wild,
Extinct), and the number of species changing categories between assessments
as a result of genuine improvement or deterioration in status. Te indicator
is an adaptation of the IUCN Red List Index, the best known and most
accepted methodology for assessing trends in the status of threatened species
at a global level.
Description:  Te indicator allows monitoring the extinction risk of species
over time. Extinct and endangered species constitute a major loss of biodiver-
sity, which plays a critical role in overall sustainable development. Te indi-
cator also illustrates the efectiveness of local, national, regional and global
measures to protect endangered species.
ABUNDANcE OF KEY sPEcIEs
Sub-theme:  Species
Brief  defnition:  Tis indicator uses estimates of population trends in
selected species to represent changes in biodiversity, and the relative efective-
ness of measures to maintain it. Te indicator can be applied to individual
species groups (e.g. birds, butterfies), or can be aggregated to incorporate a
number of taxa (e.g. in a fashion similar to the Living Planet Index), accord-
ing to data availability and indicator applicability.
Description:  Te indicator allows monitoring the abundance of species
over time. Te indicator illustrates the efectiveness of national measures
designed to limit the loss in biodiversity.
ABUNDANcE OF INVAsIVE ALIEN sPEcIEs
Sub-theme:  Species
Brief defnition:  Te indicator measures the number of invasive alien spe-
cies in a given country or region. An invasive alien species is a species intro-
duced outside its normal distribution whose establishment and spread modi-
fes ecosystems, habitats, or species.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 75
Description:  Te indicator measures an important threat to biodiversity.
Invasive alien species (IAS) may threaten native species as direct predators or
competitors, as vectors of disease, by modifying the habitat, or altering native
species dynamics. IAS have been a major cause of extinctions, especially on
islands and in freshwater habitats. Species introductions caused by humans
may be intentional (e.g. species released for hunting or biological control),
but more commonly are unintentional (e.g. introduced with traded goods
such as lumber, in the ballast water of ships, or for the pet trade).
L. Economic development
GROss DOMEsTIc PRODUcT PER cAPITA
Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Levels of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita are
obtained by dividing annual or period GDP at current market prices by
population. A variation of the indicator could be the growth of real GDP
per capita which is derived by computing the annual or period growth rate
of GDP in constant basic producers’ or purchasers’ prices divided by corre-
sponding population. GDP is the sum of value-added of all production units
including all taxes and subsidies on products which are not included in the
valuation of output.
Description:  Te indicator is a basic economic growth indicator and meas-
ures the level and extent of total economic output. It refects changes in total
production of goods and services. It is a powerful summary indicator of eco-
nomic development, even though it does not account for social and environ-
mental cost of production and consumption.
INVEsTMENT shARE IN GROss DOMEsTIc PRODUcT
Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Tis indicator refers to the share of investment in total
production. It is obtained by calculating gross capital formation as percentage
of gross domestic product. Gross capital formation (investment) is defned
as the total value of gross fxed capital formation plus changes in inventories
and acquisitions less disposal of valuables. Gross fxed capital formation is the
total value of produced assets used in the production process for more than
one year.
76 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Description:  Te investment ratio gives an indication of the relative impor-
tance of investment as opposed to, for example, consumption. Acquisitions
of capital goods provide important information on future economic perform-
ance of a society by widening and deepening the capital stock. Te indicator
measures, thus, an important element of the sustainable development proc-
ess, especially in developing countries with low amounts productive capital.
GROss sAVINGs
Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is defned in national accounts as gross
disposable income (i.e. gross national income plus the balance of current
transfers with the rest of the world). If available, the alternative net savings,
i.e. gross savings less capital depreciation, may provide superior information.
Both gross and net savings may be expressed as rates, i.e. as gross (net) savings
divided by gross (net) disposable income.
Description:  Te indicator measures the part of income available for
investment or, possibly, capital transfers to the rest of the world. It provides
important information on domestic means of implementation for sustain-
able development. If calculated as net savings, it is an important indicator for
future net wealth.
ADjUsTED NET sAVINGs As PERcENTAGE OF GNI
Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance
Brief defnition:  Adjusted net savings is defned as net savings (i.e. gross
national income less capital depreciation plus the balance of current transfers
with the rest of the world), plus expenditures for education, less depletion of
a variety of natural resources (oil, minerals, forests) and less pollution dam-
age (damage from urban air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions). Te
indicator is then computed by dividing adjusted net savings by gross national
income.
Description:  Te indicator modifes traditional net savings in order to
derive an aggregate savings concept more commensurate to sustainable devel-
opment. A negative adjusted net savings rate can be interpreted as a reduction
in total wealth of the economy, thus implying unsustainability. Education
expenditures are added as they can be seen as investments in human capital.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 77
Depletion of natural resource is deducted to refect the decline in asset values
associated with their extraction and harvest. Pollution damages are deducted
as they reduce human and real capital.
INFLATION RATE
Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the cost of living as measured
by the annual percentage increase of the consumer price index. Consumer
price indices are based on a representative basket of goods and services pur-
chased by consumers in an economy. Composition and relative weights of the
basket are reviewed periodically.
Description:  Te indicator measures infation, which if too high hampers
economic growth. High and unanticipated infation increases uncertainty
and leads to inter-and intra-temporal misallocation of resources as long as
prices are not fully fexible. Infation, especially if unanticipated, has often
unwanted distributional efects, as it reduces real income of fxed income
earners and shifts wealth away from creditors to debtors. Very high and accel-
erating infation rates may be caused by excessive fnancing of public debts
through seignorage and can be sign of unsustainable public fnances.
DEBT TO GROss NATIONAL INcOME RATIO
Sub-theme:  Sustainable public fnance Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator can be defned as the total amount of out-
standing debt issued by the general government divided by gross national
income. Total debt consists of external debt (debt held by non-residents) and
internal debt (held by residents). For countries where external debt is a major
concern, the indicator can alternatively or additionally be defned as total
external debt (private and public) divided by GNI.
Description:  With regard to public debt, the indicator is a standard meas-
ure of public fnance. Debt constitutes a burden for future generations as it
reduces the amount available for their consumption and investments. High
and increasing debt ratios can be seen as an indication of unsustainable pub-
lic fnances. With regard to external debt, this is one of the indicators that
measures the burden of servicing the external debt of a country in relation to
its total income (GNI). While external borrowing is a method of supplement-
73 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
ing savings and fnancing the investment gap in a country, an unsustainable
external debt burden will choke development.
EMPLOYMENT-TO-POPULATION RATIO
Sub-theme:  Employment Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te employment-to-population ratio is defned as the
proportion of a country’s working-age population that is employed. It is typi-
cally disaggregated by sex and by age group.
Description:  Te employment-to-population ratio provides information
on the ability of an economy to create employment. Employment, as opposed
to unemployment, is viewed as the desired portion of the economically active
population (labour force). Employment-to-population ratios are of particular
interest when broken down by sex, as they can provide information on gender
diferences in labour market activity in a given country. For policy purposes,
employment-to-population ratios of youth and old are particular relevant.
VULNERABLE EMPLOYMENT
Sub-theme:  Employment
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the share of own-account work-
ers and contributing family members in total employed people. Te indicator
is based on the broader indicator ‘status in employment’ which distinguishes
between three categories of the total employed. Tese are: age and sala-
ried workers (also known as employees); self-employed workers (employers,
own-account workers and members of producers’ cooperatives); contributing
family workers (also known as unpaid family workers). Te indicator may be
broken down by sex.
Description:  Tis indicator provides information how many persons
are vulnerable to economic risk because of weak institutional employment
arrangements. Own-account workers and contributing family members are
regarded as especially vulnerable as they have by defnition no formal work
arrangements and are therefore more likely to have a low degree of job security
and to lack access to social security. Te indicator provides information on
the informalization of labor markets, which may be associated with increas-
ing and persistent poverty. High values of the indicator may also indicate a
large agricultural sector in terms of employment, often associated with low
labour productivity and economic growth rates.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 79
LABOUR PRODUcTIVITY AND UNIT LABOUR cOsT
Sub-theme:  Employment Core indicator
Brief  defnition:   Labour productivity is defned as output (in constant
prices) per unit of labour. Te indicator can be reported for the total economy
as well as for diferent sectors. Both hours worked and number of persons
employed can be used as unit of labour. Unit labour cost is defned as labour
compensation per unit of gross value added produced. Total labour compen-
sation includes gross wages and salaries of employees and other costs of labour
that are paid by employers, including employers’ contributions to social secu-
rity and pension schemes.
Description:  Positive changes in labour productivity measure the part of
economic growth due to more efective work by those who are employed.
Driving forces behind labour productivity include the accumulation of
machinery and equipment, improvements in organization as well as physi-
cal and institutional infrastructures, improved health and skills of workers
(“human capital”) and the generation of new technologies. Unit labor cost
represents a direct link between productivity and the cost of labour used in
generating output. A rise in a country’s unit labour cost represents an increased
reward for labour’s contribution to output. However, a rise in labour cost that
is higher than the rise in labour productivity, especially in tradable goods
producing sectors, may indicate a decrease in international competitiveness,
if other costs are not adjusted in compensation.
shARE OF WOMEN IN WAGE EMPLOYMENT IN ThE
NON-AGRIcULTURAL sEcTOR
Sub-theme:  Employment Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is the share of female workers in wage
employment in the non-agricultural sector expressed as a percentage of total
wage employment in that same sector. Te non-agricultural sector includes
industry and services.
Description:  Te indicator shows the extent to which women have
access to paid employment, which will afect their integration into the
monetary economy. It also indicates the degree to which labour markets
are open to women in industry and services sectors which afects not only
equal employment opportunities for women but also economic efciency
30 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
through fexibility of the labour market and the economy’s capacity to
adapt to changes over time. Promoting gender equality and the empower-
ment of women thus eliminating all forms of gender-based discrimination
in labour markets is essential to defeating poverty and fostering sustainable
development.
NUMBER OF INTERNET UsERs PER POPULATION
Sub-theme:  Information and communication technologies Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is computed by frst dividing the number
of Internet users by total population, and then multiplying by 100. Inter-
net users are those who use the Internet from any location. Te Internet is
defned as a world-wide public computer network that provides access to
a number of communication services including the World Wide Web and
carries email, news, entertainment and data fles. Internet access may be via
a computer, Internet-enabled mobile phone, digital TV, games machine etc.
Location of use can refer to any location, including work.
Description:  Te number of Internet users is a measure of Internet access and
use. As an information distribution system, the Internet and its usage provide
opportunities for bringing education and information within the reach of all. It
can signifcantly shorten time lags as well as open up a new range of informa-
tion resources. It also provides signifcant, new economic opportunities as well
as possibilities for more environment-friendly options for the marketplace.
FIxED TELEPhONE LINEs PER 100 POPULATION
Sub-theme:  Information and communication technologies
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is derived by dividing the number of fxed
telephone lines by total population and multiplying by 100.
Description:  Tis indicator is one of the broadest and most common
measurements of the degree of telecommunication development in a coun-
try. Telecommunication is critical to support sustainable development and is
closely linked to social, economic, and institutional development. It provides
those in rural and remote areas with closer contact to the outside world. It
is also a critical factor for many economic activities and improves exchange
of information among citizens. Modern communications are considered to
be relatively benign to the environment, as they are potential substitutes for
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 31
transport and induce relatively low levels of environmental pollution. Te
indicator is also used as a general infrastructure indicator.
MOBILE cELLULAR TELEPhONE sUBscRIBERs PER 100 POPULATION
Sub-theme:  Information and communication technologies
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is derived by dividing the number of mobile
cellular subscribers by total population and multiplying by 100.
Description:  Tis indicator is one of the broadest and most common
measurements of the degree of telecommunication development in a coun-
try. Telecommunication is critical to support sustainable development and is
closely linked to social, economic, and institutional development. In many
developing countries, mobile telephony has overtaken fxed telephony in its
importance as means of communication.
GROss DOMEsTIc ExPENDITURE ON REsEARch AND DEVELOPMENT
As A PERcENT OF GROss DOMEsTIc PRODUcT
Sub-theme:  Research and development
Brief  defnition:  Gross domestic expenditure on scientifc research and
experimental development (R&D) expressed as a percentage of Gross Domes-
tic Product (GDP). Gross domestic expenditure on R&D (GERD) activities
are defned as the total intramural expenditure on research and development
performed on the national territory during a given period. Tis includes both
current costs and capital expenditures.
Description:  Tis ratio provides an indication of the level of fnancial
resources devoted to R&D in terms of their share of the GDP. R&D is essen-
tial for expanding the knowledge basis and developing new and improved
products in the economy. It is a critical component of future economic growth.
Moreover, R&D on issues relevant for sustainable development increases the
scientifc basis for informed decision-making in this area.
TOURIsM cONTRIBUTION TO GDP
Sub-theme:  Tourism Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the sum of the value added
(at basic prices) generated by all industries in response to internal tourism
32 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
consumption and the amount of net taxes on products and imports included
within the value of this expenditure. It is based on tourism satellite account
(TSA), a satellite account to standard national accounts that serves as the
international standard on tourism statistics.
Description:  GDP generated by visitor consumption is the most com-
prehensive aggregate illustrating the economic relevance of tourism. Tere
is increasing consensus on the importance of tourism as a strategic sector in
the national economy insofar as it provides an essential contribution to the
economic well-being of the resident population, contributes to the economic
objectives of governments and shows its possible role as a relevant player in
moving towards a more innovative economy.
M. Global economic partnership
cURRENT AccOUNT DEFIcIT As PERcENTAGE OF GDP
Sub-theme:  Trade Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is the balance of the current account
divided by gross domestic product. Te current account is part of the balance
of payments and contains fnancial transactions of economic value between
residents and non-residents of an economy. In the 5
th
edition of the balance of
payment manual, the current account components are the balance of trade in
goods and services, balance of income (compensation of employees working
abroad and income from foreign investments) and current transfers (workers
remittances and government transfers).
Description:  Current account balance is part of the measure of an econo-
my’s savings. Along with net capital transfers and acquisition/disposal of non-
produced, non-fnancial assets, the current account balance represents the net
foreign investment or net lending/borrowing position of a country vis-à-vis
the rest of the world. Persistent current account defcits or surpluses indi-
cate a macroeconomic instability that is not conducive to sustained economic
growth and, therefore, to sustained means of implementation of sustainable
development goals. A current account defcit has to be fnanced through an
increase in fnancial and non-fnancial liabilities vis-à-vis the rest of the world
or a decrease in reserve assets. Repayment of these liabilities decreases the
resources future generations have available for consumption and investment.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 33
shARE OF IMPORTs FROM DEVELOPING cOUNTRIEs AND LDcs
Sub-theme:  Trade
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the share of merchandise
imports from least-developed countries (LDCs) and from other developing
countries in total imports into the reporting countries in a given year.
Description:  Trade can play a major role in achieving sustainable develop-
ment. Exports from developing countries and from LDCs constitute a major
source of external fnancing for sustainable development of those countries.
For developed country importers, the indicator is one measure of the relative
importance of North-South trade, whereas for developing country importers
it is a measure of South-South trade. Te indicator also provides information
on the implementation of international commitments to increase the trade
opportunities of developing countries.
AVERAGE TARIFF BARRIERs IMPOsED ON ExPORTs FROM
DEVELOPING cOUNTRIEs AND LDcs
Sub-theme:  Trade
Brief defnition:  Te indicator can be defned as the simple average tarif
imposed by country on exports from least-developed countries (LDCs) and
from other developing countries to the country. Te indicator can be dis-
aggregated by product groups. Te simple average tarif is the unweighted
average of the efectively applied rates at the most detailed tarif line level.
Trade-weighted averages may also be used to compute this indicator.
Description:  Trade can play a major role in achieving sustainable devel-
opment. Tarif barriers imposed on exports from developing countries and
LDCs may hinder the sustainable development in those countries. Especially
if compared with tarifs imposed on exports from developed countries, the
indicator provides information on whether the tarif structure of a country
is commensurate with fair trade principles. As the basket of exported goods
for many developing countries and especially LDCs is relatively small, the
indicator may be further broken down into product groups.
34 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
NET OFFIcIAL DEVELOPMENT AssIsTANcE GIVEN OR REcEIVED As
PERcENTAGE OF GROss NATIONAL INcOME
Sub-theme:  External fnancing Core indicator
Brief  defnition:  Tis indicator is defned as the total ODA given or
received as a share of GNI of the source or recipient country, respectively,
net of repayment of principal. When ODA fows by donor countries are
measured, ODA comprises bilateral disbursements of concessional funds to
developing countries and multilateral institutions. When ODA receipts by
developing countries are measured, ODA comprises disbursement of conces-
sional fnance from both bilateral and multilateral sources. ODA consists of
grants and concessional loans.
Description:  Te indicator is a measure of the size of fows that are both
concessional, and aimed mainly at promoting development and welfare of
developing countries. ODA remains an important source of external means
of implementation for sustainable development in many developing coun-
tries. For donor countries, the indicator provides information on the adher-
ence to the internationally agreed target of ODA to be at least 0.7 % of
GNI. For developing countries, the indicator provides information on the
contribution of foreign countries to sustainable development as well as on
their dependency on foreign aid.
FOREIGN DIREcT INVEsTMENT (FDI) NET INFLOWs AND NET
OUTFLOWs As PERcENTAGE OF GDP
Sub-theme:  External fnancing
Brief  defnition:  Tis indicator is defned as the share of foreign direct
investment (FDI) net infows and of FDI net outfows in GDP. FDI is invest-
ment made to acquire a lasting interest in or efective control over an enter-
prise operating outside of the economy of the investor. FDInetinfows and
net outfows include reinvested earnings and intra-company loans, and are
net of repatriation of capital and repayment of loans.
Description:  Te indicator shows the provision of external fnancing
resources in the form of direct investments at home from foreign investors
and abroad from domestic investors. For many developing countries, FDI
infows are a major and relatively stable source of external fnancing and
thereby provide important means of implementation of sustainable develop-
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 35
ment goals. In many cases, FDI also contributes to the transfer of technol-
ogy and management skills. Conversely, FDI outfows have the potential to
improve sustainable development in receiving countries. Sustained increases
in FDI infows are often a sign of an improved general investment climate.
REMITTANcEs As PERcENTAGE OF GNI
Sub-theme:  External fnancing
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as total current private transfers
received by residents in a country plus compensation of employees earned
by nonresident workers and migrants’ transfers divided by Gross National
Income (GNI).
Description:  Tis indicator shows the extent of fnancial beneft for a
country from temporary and permanent movements of its residents who
are able to work abroad. For many countries, remittances are a major and
stable source of external fnancing and thereby provide important means of
implementation of sustainable development goals. As a result of increased
globalization the importance of remittances has been rapidly increasing in
the last decade.
N. Consumption and production patterns
MATERIAL INTENsITY OF ThE EcONOMY
Sub-theme:  Material consumption Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the ratio of Domestic Material
Consumption (DMC) to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at constant prices.
DMC is defned as the total amount of materials (measured by weight)
directly used in the economy (used domestic extraction plus imports), minus
the materials that are exported.
Description:  Te indicator provides a basis for policies to decouple the
growth of the economy from the use of natural resources in order to reduce
environment degradation resulting from primary production, material
processing, manufacturing and waste disposal. Reducing the material inten-
sity of production and consumption of goods and services is essential to envi-
ronmental protection and resource conservation. Reductions in intensity of
36 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
material use can be achieved by more efcient use of natural resources in
production and consumption, by recycling used and waste material, and by
shifts in consumption patterns to less material intensive goods and services.
DOMEsTIc MATERIAL cONsUMPTION
Sub-theme:  Material consumption
Brief Defnition:  Domestic Material Consumption (DMC) is defned as
the weight of the total amount of materials directly used in the economy (used
domestic extraction plus imports), minus the materials that are exported.
Materials may be broken down by type of material (minerals, biomass, fossil
fuels).
Description:  DMC is a useful indicator, as it provides an assessment of
the absolute level of use of resources. Primary production of raw materials,
processing of the materials into products, and ultimate disposal of the waste
material has major environmental impacts. Te indicator provides a basis for
policies to increase the efcient use of raw materials in order to conserve natu-
ral resources and reduce environment degradation resulting from primary
extraction, material processing, manufacturing and waste disposal.
ANNUAL ENERGY cONsUMPTION, TOTAL AND BY MAIN UsER
cATEGORY
Sub-theme:  Energy Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as the total energy consumption
(total primary energy supply or total fnal consumption) in the economy (in
tonnes of oil equivalents). It can be broken down by main user category.
Description:  Tis indicator measures the level of energy use and refects
the energy-use patterns in the economy overall and in diferent sectors.
Energy is a key factor in economic development and in providing vital
services that improve quality of life. Although energy is a key requirement
for economic progress, its production, use and by-products have resulted
in major pressures on the environment, both by depleting resources and by
creating pollution.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 37
shARE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY sOURcEs IN TOTAL ENERGY UsE
Sub-theme:  Energy
Brief  defnition:  Te share of renewable sources in total primary energy
supply or total energy consumption. Renewable energy sources are divided
into non-combustible (geothermal, hydro, solar, wind, tide and wave) and
combustible renewables and waste (biomass, animal products, municipal
waste and industrial waste). Non-renewables are fossil fuels (coal, crude oil,
petroleum products, gas) and nuclear.
Description:  Te promotion of energy, and in particular of electricity from
renewable sources of energy, is a high priority of sustainable development
for several reasons. Energy from renewables can increase energy security and
lead to diversifcation of energy supply. It reduces environmental degradation
caused by non-renewable energy sources, contributes to the mitigation of
climate change and reduces the depletion of natural resources.
INTENsITY OF ENERGY UsE, TOTAL AND BY EcONOMIc AcTIVITY
Sub-theme:  Energy
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator is defned as energy use (of the economy
in total and of the main sectors) divided by gross domestic product (or value
added in case of a sector).
Description:  Declining trends in overall energy use relative to GDP (or
value added) indicate that the economy is able to improve its energy ef-
ciency and, hence, to decouple economic growth from energy consumption.
Improving energy efciency has benefcial efects on energy security and
reduces pressures from economic activities on the environment.
GENERATION OF hAzARDOUs WAsTEs
Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te total amount of hazardous wastes generated per year
through industrial or other waste generating activities, according to the def-
nition of hazardous waste as referred to in the Basel Convention and other
related conventions.
Description:  Te indicator provides a measure of the extent and type of
industrialization in a country and the nature of industrial activities including
33 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
technologies and processes generating hazardous wastes. Te generation of
hazardous wastes has a direct impact on health and the environment. Nor-
mally, long-term exposure is required before harmful efects are seen. Reduced
generation of hazardous wastes may indicate reduced industrial activities in
a country, introduction of cleaner production in the industrial processes,
changing patterns in consumers’ habits, or changes in national hazardous
waste legislation.
GENERATION OF WAsTE
Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management
Brief  defnition:  Te amount of all waste, both hazardous and non-
hazardous, generated by selected main groups of industries or sectors of the
economy, expressed per capita and per unit of value added (in US $) by eco-
nomic activity (at constant prices).
Description:  Te main purpose is to show the trend in the generation of
waste produced by diferent human activities. Waste represents a consider-
able loss of resources both in the form of materials and energy. Te treat-
ment and disposal of the generated waste may cause environmental pollution
and expose humans to harmful substances and bacteria, and therefore impact
on human health. Waste generated per unit of value-added shows if there is
decoupling of waste generation from economic growth.
WAsTE TREATMENT AND DIsPOsAL
Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management
Brief defnition:  Percentage of waste which is recycled; composted; incin-
erated; and landflled on a controlled site.
Description:  Te indicator measures the proportion of waste generated
which is recycled, composted, incinerated, or landflled on a controlled site.
It gives an indication of the environmental impact of waste management in
the country. Te proper treatment and disposal of waste is important from
an environmental and social viewpoint but can be an economic burden on
industries, municipalities and households. Te amount of waste recycled and
composted reduces the demand for raw materials, leading to a reduction in
resource extraction. Tere may also be a beneft of increased income genera-
tion for the urban poor through recycling schemes.
DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 39
MANAGEMENT OF RADIOAcTIVE WAsTE
Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management
Brief defnition:  Progress in the management of radioactive waste is meas-
ured against key milestones related to both the processing of waste into forms
suitable for either safe storage or for placement into a designated endpoint
(the “form factor”) and to the placement of waste into an endpoint facility
(“endpoint factor”). Radioactive waste from various sources, such as nuclear
power generation and other nuclear fuel cycle related activities, radioisotope
production and use for applications in medicine, agriculture, industry and
research, is considered.
Description:  Te purpose of the indicator is to represent the progress in
managing the various radioactive wastes that arise from the nuclear fuel cycle
and/or from nuclear applications. It provides a measure of both the current
status of radioactive waste management at any time and the progress made
over time towards the overall sustainability of radioactive waste management.
Radioactive waste, if not properly managed, can have a direct impact on
health and the environment through exposure to ionizing radiation.
MODAL sPLIT OF PAssENGER TRANsPORT
Sub-theme:  Transport Core indicator
Brief defnition:  Te indicator measures the share of each mode (passenger
cars, buses and coaches, and trains) in total inland passenger transport, meas-
ured in passenger-km.
Description:  Te indicator provides information on the relative impor-
tance of diferent modes for passenger transport. Te use of cars for passenger
transportation is generally less energy efcient and has greater environmental
and social impacts, such as pollution, global warming as well as a higher acci-
dent rate, than mass transit.
MODAL sPLIT OF FREIGhT TRANsPORT
Sub-theme:  Transport
Brief  defnition:  Te indicator measures the share of each mode (road,
rail and inland waterways) in total inland freight transport, measured in
tonne-km.
90 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
Description:  Te indicator provides information on the relative impor-
tance of diferent modes for freight transport. Road transport is less energy-
efcient and produces more emissions per tonne-kilometer than either
rail or inland waterways transport. Terefore, the use of road for freight
transport has greater environmental and social impacts, such as pollution,
global warming, as well as a higher accident rate, than either rail or inland
waterways transport.
ENERGY INTENsITY OF TRANsPORT
Sub-theme:  Transport
Brief defnition:  Te indicator is defned as fuel used per unit of freight-
kilometer (km) hauled and per unit of passenger-km traveled by mode.
Description:  Te indicator measures how much energy is used for moving
both goods and people. Transport serves economic and social development
through the distribution of goods and services and through personal mobil-
ity. At the same time, transport is a major user of energy, mostly in the form
of oil products, which makes transport the most important driver behind
growth in global oil demand. Energy use for transport therefore contributes
to the depletion of natural resources, to air pollution and to climate change.
Reducing energy intensity in transport can reduce the environmental impacts
of this sector while maintaining its economic and social benefts.
91
Appendix 1. Agenda 21 — Table of Contents
chapter
Paragraphs
1. Preamble
1.1–1.6
sEcTION I. sOcIAL AND EcONOMIc DIMENsIONs
2. Internationalcooperationtoacceleratesustainabledevelop-
mentindevelopingcountriesandrelateddomesticpolicies
2.1–2.43
3. Combatingpoverty
3.1–3.12
4. Changingconsumptionpatterns
4.1–4.27
5. Demographicdynamicsandsustainability
5.1–5.66
6. Protectingandpromotinghumanhealthconditions
6.1–6.46
7. Promotingsustainablehumansettlementdevelopment
7.1–7.80
8. Integratingenvironmentanddevelopmentindecision-making
8.1–8.54
sEcTION II.
cONsERVATION AND MANAGEMENT OF REsOURcEs FOR DEVELOPMENT
9. Protectionoftheatmosphere
9.1–9.35
10. Integratedapproachtotheplanningandmanagement
oflandresources
10.1–10.18
11. Combatingdeforestation
11.1–11.40
12. Managingfragileecosystems:combatingdesertifcation
anddrought
12.1–12.63
13. Managingfragileecosystems:sustainablemountain
development
13.1–13.24
14. Promotingsustainableagricultureandruraldevelopment
14.1–14.104
15. Conservationofbiologicaldiversity
15.1–15.11
16. Environmentallysoundmanagementofbiotechnology
16.1–16.46
17. Protectionoftheoceans,allkindsofseas,includingenclosed
andsemi-enclosedseas,andcoastalareasandtheprotection,
rationaluseanddevelopmentoftheirlivingresources
17.1–17.136
18. Protectionofthequalityandsupplyoffreshwaterresources:
applicationofintegratedapproachestothedevelopment,
managementanduseofwaterresources
18.1–18.90
19. Environmentallysoundmanagementoftoxicchemicals,
includingpreventionofillegalinternationaltrafcintoxic
anddangerousproducts
19.1–19.76
92 índicalors of Suslainable Developnenl: Cuidelines and íelhodologies — Third Edilion
20. Environmentallysoundmanagementofhazardouswastes,
includingpreventionofillegalinternationaltrafcin
hazardouswastes
20.1–20.46
21. Environmentallysoundmanagementofsolidwastesand
sewage-relatedissues
21.1–21.49
22. Safeandenvironmentallysoundmanagementofradioactive
wastes
22.1–22.9
sEcTION III. sTRENGThENING ThE ROLE OF MAjOR GROUPs
23. Preamble
23.1–23.4
24. Globalactionforwomentowardssustainableandequitable
development
24.1–24.12
25. Childrenandyouthinsustainabledevelopment
25.1–25.17
26. Recognizingandstrengtheningtheroleofindigenouspeople
andtheircommunities
26.1–26.9
27. Strengtheningtheroleofnon-governmentalorganizations:
partnersforsustainabledevelopment
27.1–27.13
28. Localauthorities’initiativesinsupportofAgenda21
28.1–28.7
29. Strengtheningtheroleofworkersandtheirtradeunions
29.1–29.14
30. Strengtheningtheroleofbusinessandindustry
30.1–30.30
31. Scientifcandtechnologicalcommunity
31.1–31.12
32. Strengtheningtheroleoffarmers
32.1–32.14
sEcTION IV. MEANs OF IMPLEMENTATION
33. Financialresourcesandmechanisms
33.1–33.21
34. Transferofenvironmentallysoundtechnology,cooperation
andcapacity-building
34.1–34.29
35. Scienceforsustainabledevelopment
35.1–35.25
36. Promotingeducation,publicawarenessandtraining
36.1–36.27
37. Nationalmechanismsandinternationalcooperationfor
capacity-buildingindevelopingcountries
37.1–37.13
38. Internationalinstitutionalarrangements
38.1–38.45
39. Internationallegalinstrumentsandmechanisms
39.1–39.10
40. Informationfordecision-making
40.1–40.30
93
Appendix 2. Johannesburg Plan of Implementation
Table of contents
chapter Title Paragraphs
I. Introduction 1-6
II. Povertyeradication 7-13
III.
Changingunsustainablepatternsofconsumptionand
production
14-23
IV.
Protectionandmanagingthenaturalresourcebaseof
economicandsocialdevelopment
24-46
V. Sustainabledevelopmentinaglobalizingworld 47-52
VI. Healthandsustainabledevelopment 53-57
VII. SustainabledevelopmentofsmallislanddevelopingStates 58-61
VIII. SustainabledevelopmentforAfrica 62-71
Ix. Otherregionalinitiatives 72-80

A.SustainabledevelopmentinLatinAmericaandthe
Caribbean
73-74
B.SustainabledevelopmentinAsiaandthePacifc 75-76
C.SustainabledevelopmentintheWestAsiaregion 77-78

D. SustainabledevelopmentintheEconomicCommission
forEuroperegion
79-80
x. Meansofimplementation 81-136
xI. Institutionalframeworkforsustainabledevelopment 137-170
A. Objectives 139

B. Strengtheningtheinstitutionalframeworkforsustain-
abledevelopmentattheinternationallevel
140-142
C. RoleoftheGeneralAssembly 143
D. RoleoftheEconomicandSocialCouncil 144

E. RoleandfunctionoftheCommissiononSustainable
Development
145-150
F. Roleofinternationalinstitutions 151-157

G. Strengtheninginstitutionalarrangementsforsustain-
abledevelopmentattheregionallevel
158-161

H. Strengtheninginstitutionalframeworksforsustain-
abledevelopmentatthenationallevel
162-167
I. Participationofmajorgroups 168-170
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United Nations
Indicators of
Sustainable Development:
Guidelines and Methodologies
October 2007
Third Edition
Published by the United Nations
ISBN 978-92-1-104577-2
Sales No: E.08.II.A.2
07-53189—December 2007—2,300

Indicators of Sustainable Development:
Guidelines and Methodologies Third Edition

United Nations New York, 2007

DESA
The Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat is a vital interface between global policies in the economic, social and environmental spheres and national action. The Department works in three main interlinked areas: (i) it compiles, generates and analyses a wide range of economic, social and environmental data and information on which States Members of the United Nations draw to review common problems and to take stock of policy options; (ii) it facilitates the negotiations of Member States in many intergovernmental bodies on joint course of action to address ongoing or emerging global challenges; and (iii) it advises interested Governments on the ways and means of translating policy frameworks developed in United Nations conferences and summits into programmes at the country level and, through technical assistance, helps build national capacities.

Note
The designations employed and the presentation of the material in this publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country or territory or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitations of its frontiers. The term “country” as used in the text of the present report also refers, as appropriate, to territories or areas. The designations of country groups in the text and the tables are intended solely for statistical or analytical convenience and do not necessarily express a judgement about the stage reached by a particular country or area in the development process. Mention of the names of firms and commercial products does not imply the endorsement of the United Nations. Symbols of United Nations documents are composed of capital letters combined with figures.

United Nations publication Sales No. E.08.II.A.2 ISBN 978-92-1-104577-2 Copyright © United Nations, 2007 All rights reserved Printed by the United Nations, New York

. . . . . . . 55 E. . . . Governance . . . 39 B. . . 47 B. . . . . . . . Overview of the revised CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development 9 A. . . Description of CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development 47 A. . . . . . II. . . . 21 D. . . . . . . . . . . . Aggregated indicators . . . . . . . . . A word on indicator frameworks 39 A. . 32 C. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 F. Health . . . . . . . . . . 41 E. . Indicator selection . . . . . . . . . Other indicator approaches . . . . . . Applying CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development 29 A. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Education . . . . . . . . . . . Demographics . . . . . . . . . 51 D. Driving force-state-response frameworks . . . . . . . . . Addressing thematic linkages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Latest review of the CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development . . . . . . . . 29 B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 IV. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Capital frameworks. . . . . 59 G. . . . . . . . . . . Accounting frameworks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Poverty . . . . . . . . . 44 VI. 57 F. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . History . . . . . . . . Adapting CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development for national sets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Atmosphere . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iii Contents Foreword I. . . . . . . Natural hazards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Introduction CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development 1 3 5 A. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Issue- or theme-based frameworks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Indicators as tools for measuring sustainable development processes at the national level. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . General description . . . . . . . . . 50 C. . . . . . Relationship between MDG Indicators and CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 V. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Agenda 21 and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 III. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 D. . . . . . . . . 14 C. . . . 40 C. . . . 60 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 B. . . .

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H. Land . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62 I. Oceans, seas and coasts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 J. Freshwater . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 K. Biodiversity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 L. Economic development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 M. Global economic partnership. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82 N. Consumption and production patterns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85

Appendix 1. Agenda 21–Table of Contents Appendix 2. Johannesburg Plan of Implementation

91 93

 

Foreword

This publication presents the third set of Indicators of Sustainable Development and provides suggestions on how to adapt them to national conditions and priorities. It benefits from the active participation of and excellent collaboration with, a wide range of governments, international organizations, academic institutions, non-governmental organizations and individual experts. The indicators are a follow-up to the two earlier sets prepared under the work programme on indicators of sustainable development approved by the Commission on Sustainable Development in 1995. These earlier sets were published in 1996 and 2001. We hope that countries will find the publication useful whenever they are reviewing their existing indicators or developing new indicators to measure progress towards nationally defined goals for sustainable development. The indicators of sustainable development presented here reflect the valuable experiences of countries and international organizations over the past fifteen years since the adoption of Agenda 21 in Rio de Janeiro. With this publication, we also hope to further the momentum at the national and international level to develop and apply sustainable development indicators. This will help the understanding of the various dimensions of sustainable development and their complex interactions and the facilitation of policy decisions aimed at achieving sustainable development goals. On behalf of the United Nations, I would like to thank all countries, organizations, agencies and individuals that have contributed their time and effort to make this publication possible.

JoAnne DiSano Director Division for Sustainable Development

They can lead to better decisions and more effective actions by simplifying. at the national and the international levels. This publication presents the revised. The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in 1992 recognized the important role that indicators could play in helping countries make informed decisions concerning sustainable development. They can help incorporate physical and social science knowledge into decision-making. knowledge of and experience with sustainable development indicators of countries and organizations has increased significantly. the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) approved its Work Programme on Indicators of Sustainable Development in 1995. The presentation of the indicator . The first two sets of CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development (henceforth CSD indicators) were developed between 1994 and 2001. which encouraged further work on indicators at the country level in line with national conditions and priorities and invited the international community to support efforts of developing countries in this regard. the revision of the CSD indicators gives vital support to countries in their efforts to develop and implement national indicators for sustainable development. Since the publication of the previous set. It also provides a synopsis of their foundation.  I. Introduction Indicators perform many functions. and they can help measure and calibrate progress toward sustainable development goals. The new revised edition of the CSD indicators has been developed in response to decisions by the CSD and the World Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002. At the international level. By incorporating these developments. applied and used in many countries as the basis for the development of national indicators of sustainable development. as has the emphasis on measuring progress on achieving sustainable development. third edition of the CSD indicators. thoughts and values. They have been extensively tested. They are also useful tools to communicate ideas. including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). social and environmental setbacks. clarifying and making aggregated information available to policy makers. They can provide an early warning to prevent economic.

Detailed methodology sheets for each indicator are included in an accompanying CD-ROM. the outcomes of the major international conferences on sustainable development in 1992 and 2002.org/esa/sustdev/) and will be regularly updated.un. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition set explicitly addresses their relation to Agenda 21 and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation. The role of indicator frameworks is briefly discussed. . The publication also provides guidance on applying and adapting the CSD indicators for the development of national indicator sets. and a succinct description of all indicators is included. as well as their relation to the MDG Indicators. These methodology sheets are also available on the indicators section of the webpage of the United Nations Division for Sustainable Development (http://www.

were contained in a publication known as the ‘blue book’ 2 and widely disseminated. and coordinated by the DSD. 1992 United Nations. II. the DSD developed guidelines for the implementation of the CSD indicators. August 1996) . both intergovernmental and non-governmental. testing. United Nations Sales Publication No E 96 II A 16 (New York. adopted at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development. In order to facilitate this process. governmental and non-governmental organizations. This mandate was reflected in the decision of the CSD in 1995 to adopt an indicators work programme that involved several stages: consensus-building on a core list of indicators of sustainable development. The first draft set of indicators of sustainable development was developed for discussion jointly by the Division for Sustainable Development (DSD) and the Statistics Division. to develop indicators of sustainable development that can provide a solid basis for decision-making at all levels. both within the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. History Chapter 40 of Agenda 211. development of the related methodology sheets. as well as international. and these. along with the indicators. Programme of Action for Sustainable Development. This draft then became the focus of a broad consensusbuilding process that included a number of organizations within the United Nations System and other international organizations. Brazil. 22 countries from across the world voluntarily pilot-tested the indicator set. Indicators of Sustainable Development Framework and Methodologies. During 1995 and 1996. initi1 2 Agenda 21. From 1996 to 1999. Rio de Janeiro. the action plan adopted in 1992 at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro. calls on countries. The result was a set of 134 indicators. the same organizations that had participated in the consultations drafted methodology sheets for each of the indicators. policy discussions within a CSD publication and widespread dissemination of this work. CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development A. Agenda 21 also calls for the harmonization of efforts to develop such indicators. and evaluation and revision of the indicators.

which is in line with the decision made by the CSD in 2001 to keep the indicators under review.3 Overall. This process. since the adoption of the United Nations Millennium Declaration in 2000. within the UN Sys3 United Nations. These indicators were presented to the CSD in 2001. Latest review of the CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development In 2005. and various stakeholders at a time when thoughts on the potential role of indicators in achieving sustainable development goals were at an early stage and thus still evolving. Overall. countries considered the testing process to be successful. UN Sales Publication No E 01 II A 6 (New York. Integrating indicator initiatives with national development policies and transforming them into permanent work programmes ranked high among the recommendations to ensure success. Indicators of Sustainable Development: Guidelines and Methodologies. often based on the CSD indicators. Consequently. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition ated a series of regional briefing and training workshops. and subsequently published as part of the second edition of the ‘blue book’. Second Edition. A large number of countries had developed their own national indicator sets. In the five years that had passed since the last revision. embedded in a policyoriented framework of themes and sub-themes. B. In addition. international organizations. although they indicated that they had faced significant institutional challenges especially in the areas of human resources and policy coordination. perspectives on indicators had evolved and experience in applying indicators of sustainable development at the country level had grown considerably. Most countries also found that the initial CSD indicator set was too large to be easily managed. the revised set of CSD indicators was reduced to 58 indicators. Therefore. the DSD started a process to review the CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development. the focus of the CSD and its secretariat on indicators provided a very useful and timely forum for the discussion of national-level indicators with the involvement of governments. the proactive role of the CSD proved to be instrumental in advancing work in this area. the results of the national testing were evaluated. was largely carried out for two reasons. September 2001) . and encouraged the organization of national workshops and twinning arrangements between testing countries. and the indicator set was revised. much attention had been given. From 1999 to 2000.

At its second meeting in October 2006. including experts from those organizations that had prepared methodology sheets. The DSD also proceeded to assess the coherence between CSD and MDG indicators. Countries are now invited to consider these revised CSD indicators when reviewing existing or developing new national indicators of sustainable development. the Global Forest Resource Assessment. the Hyogo Framework for Action on Disaster Reduction. It agreed on an interim revised list of indicators and proposed changes to the framework. the expert group completed the review and finalized the revised list of CSD indicators. and Sustainable Tourism Indicators. The first expert group meeting carried out a preliminary review of indicator frameworks and options for a way forward for the CSD indicators.CSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  tem and by member States. As relevant progress is made. the review benefited from the vast expertise of a wide-range of international agencies as well as from the rich experience gained by individual countries. as well as experts from a number of member States that were developing and using the indicators were invited.4 The review began with research and analysis of national and global trends in applying indicators and with a renewal of the dialogue with international experts. The original partners. the 2010 Biodiversity Indicators Partnership. Collaborating agencies have agreed to incorporate these indicators in relevant capacity-building activities and inter-agency cooperation is to ensure coherence of CSD indicators with other indicator sets such as the MDG Indicators. methodologies of indicators will be regularly updated on the website of the DSD. 4 The Millennium Development Goals were derived from the United Nations Millennium Declaration. Thereby. This was followed by two expert group meetings and supplemented by ongoing communications. The experiences gained by countries in applying and adapting the new indicator set will be taken into account in the continuous review of the CSD indicators. to the development and use of indicators to measure progress on achieving the MDGs. adopted by 189 nations in 2000 Most of the goals and targets were set to be achieved by 2015 on the basis of the global situation during the 1990s The baseline for the assessment of progress is therefore 1990 for most of the MDG targets .

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Second. seas and coasts Freshwater Biodiversity • Economic development • Global economic partnership • Consumption and production patterns . and these will continue to be considered in future revisions of the CSD indicators (see chapter V. it remains consistent with the practice of most countries applying national sustainable development indicator sets and it is directly relevant to the monitoring of national sustainable development strategies. First. General description The newly revised CSD indicators contain a core set of 50 indicators. whereas the larger set allows the inclusion of additional indicators that enable countries to do a more comprehensive and differentiated assessment of sustainable development. CSD indicator themes • • • • • Poverty Governance Health Education Demographics • • • • • • Natural hazards Atmosphere Land Oceans. they cover issues that are relevant for sustainable development in most countries. provide complementary information to core indicators or are not easily available for most countries. Overview of the revised CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development A. page 39). The indicator set retains the thematic/sub-thematic framework that was adopted in 2001. indicators that are not part of the core are either relevant only for a smaller set of countries. III. Conversely. The introduction of a core set helps to keep the indicator set manageable. These core indicators are part of a larger set of 96 indicators of sustainable development. they provide critical information not available from other core indicators. they can be calculated by most countries with data that is either readily available or could be made available within reasonable time and costs. At the same time. Core indicators fulfill three criteria. Third. it is noted that there is important work going on elsewhere on alternative frameworks. In doing so.

energy access and living conditions. Table 1: CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development Theme Sub-theme Core indicator Other indicator Poverty Income poverty Proportion of population living below national poverty line Ratio of share in national income of highest to lowest quintile Proportion of population using an improved sanitation facility Proportion of population using an improved water source Proportion of population below $1 a day Income inequality Sanitation Drinking water . which did not reflect the cross-cutting nature of the topic. This change emphasizes the multi-dimensional nature of sustainable development and reflects the importance of integrating its pillars.0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition The division of indicators along the lines of four ‘pillars’ (social. it is now a separate theme that includes sub-themes related to income. Consequently. Global economic partnership includes a number of new indicators that capture key issues such as trade and development financing. Natural hazards were a sub-theme of the now dissolved theme ‘institutional capacity’. Consequently. drinking water. Since poverty covers a broad range of related issues. new cross-cutting themes such as poverty and natural hazards were introduced and existing cross-cutting themes such as consumption and production patterns are better represented. Other new themes include global economic partnership and governance. environmental and institutional) is no longer explicit in the newly revised set. it was conceptually limiting to keep it as a sub-theme under equity. measurable and internationally accepted indicators on other aspects of governance. only crime related indicators are currently included. Significant methodological work is needed to develop good. economic. sanitation. The indicators for the theme ‘governance’ are largely undeveloped.

tuberculosis Prevalence of tobacco use Suicide rate Education Education level Gross intake ratio to last grade of primary education Net enrolment rate in primary education Adult secondary (tertiary) schooling attainment level Literacy Demographics Population Adult literacy rate Population growth rate Dependency ratio Tourism Ratio of local residents to tourists in major tourist regions and destinations Total fertility rate Life long learning . malaria.000 population Under-five mortality rate Life expectancy at birth Percentage of population using solid fuels for cooking Living conditions Governance Corruption Crime Health Mortality Healthy life expectancy at birth Contraceptive prevalence rate Health care delivery Percent of population with access to primary health care facilities Immunization against infectious childhood diseases Nutritional status Health status and risks Nutritional status of children Morbidity of major diseases such as HIV/AIDS.OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Theme Sub-theme Core indicator Other indicator Poverty (continued) Access to energy Share of households without electricity or other modern energy services Proportion of urban population living in slums Percentage of population having paid bribes Number of intentional homicides per 100.

2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Theme Sub-theme Core indicator Other indicator Natural hazards Vulnerability to natural hazards Disaster preparedness and response Percentage of population living in hazard prone areas Human and economic loss due to natural disasters Carbon dioxide emissions Consumption of ozone depleting substances Ambient concentration of air pollutants in urban areas Land use change Land degradation Emissions of greenhouse gases Atmosphere Climate change Ozone layer depletion Air quality Land Land use and status Desertification Agriculture Arable and permanent cropland area Land affected by desertification Fertilizer use efficiency Use of agricultural pesticides Area under organic farming Forests Proportion of land area covered by forests Percent of forest trees damaged by defoliation Area of forest under sustainable forest management Oceans. seas and coasts Coastal zone Percentage of total population living in coastal areas Proportion of fish stocks within safe biological limits Proportion of marine area protected Bathing water quality Fisheries Marine environment Marine trophic index Area of coral reef ecosystems and percentage live cover .

total and by ecological region Management effectiveness of protected areas Area of selected key ecosystems Fragmentation of habitats Species Change in threat status of species Abundance of selected key species Abundance of invasive alien species Economic development Macroeconomic performance Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita Investment share in GDP Gross saving Adjusted net savings as percentage of gross national income (GNI) Inflation rate Sustainable public finance Employment Debt to GNI ratio Employmentpopulation ratio Labor productivity and unit labor costs Share of women in wage employment in the non-agricultural sector Vulnerable employment Information and communication technologies Internet users per 100 population Fixed telephone lines per 100 population Mobile cellular telephone subscribers per 100 population .OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Theme Sub-theme Core indicator Other indicator Freshwater Water quantity Proportion of total water resources used Water use intensity by economic activity Water quality Presence of faecal coliforms in freshwater Biochemical oxygen demand in water bodies Wastewater treatment Biodiversity Ecosystem Proportion of terrestrial area protected.

total and by main user category Intensity of energy use. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Theme Sub-theme Core indicator Other indicator Economic development (continued) Research and development Tourism Tourism contribution to GDP Current account deficit as percentage of GDP Gross domestic expenditure on R&D as a percent of GDP Global economic partnership Trade Share of imports from developing countries and from LDCs Average tariff barriers imposed on exports from developing countries and LDCs External financing Net Official Development Assistance (ODA) given or received as a percentage of GNI Foreign direct investment (FDI) net inflows and net outflows as percentage of GDP Remittances as percentage of GNI Consumption and production patterns Material consumption Energy use Material intensity of the economy Annual energy consumption. indicator . total and by economic activity Domestic material consumption Share of renewable energy sources in total energy use Waste generation and management Generation of hazardous waste Waste treatment and disposal Generation of waste Management of radioactive waste Modal split of freight transport Energy intensity of transport Transportation Modal split of passenger transportation B. Whereas single-valued indices are integrative but mask differences in progress across and within dimensions. Addressing thematic linkages Sustainable development indicators attempt to measure sustainable development in its entirety. taking into account the multi-dimensional and integrated nature of sustainable development.

Patterns Oceans. ceasing to categorize indicators into the pillars of sustainable development already strengthens the emphasis on the multi-dimensional character of sustainable development as does rethinking themes and sub-themes. In the drinking water example. Table 2: CSD indicators and thematic linkages Global economic partnership Percent of population living below national poverty line Proportion of population below international poverty line Ratio of share in national income of highest to lowest quintile Proportion of population using improved sanitation facilities Cons. Light grey shading indicates a clear but possibly secondary link. Table 2 presents an overview of their potential to measure progress towards sustainable development across various themes. the indicator provides information on availability and use of water resources and for the availability of infrastructure in utilities. as domestic fresh water is the major source of drinking water for most countries. As noted. The themes to which the indicators primarily apply are shaded in Table 2. Seas and Coasts Economic Development Natural hazards Demographics Atmosphere Governance Fresh Water Biodiversity Education Poverty Health Land . the governance theme is shaded light grey.” which has primary links to poverty and health. the indicator is also useful for measuring the impact of regulating and governing water utilities and. Moreover. and Product. therefore.OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  sets such as the CSD indicators track progress but may require some additional information to make their integrative nature more explicit. as for example with “proportion of population with access to safe drinking water. the theme of economic development is also shaded in light grey. Note that an indicator may apply to more than one theme. To illustrate how the CSD indicators address inter-thematic linkages. Consequently.

tubercolosis Gross intake into last year of primary education. by sex Life long learning Adult literacy rate. and Product. Seas and Coasts Economic Development Natural hazards Demographics Atmosphere Governance Fresh Water Biodiversity Education Poverty Health Land .000 population Mortality rate under 5 years old Life expectancy at Birth Healthy life years expectancy Percent of population with access to primary health care facilities Immunization against infectious childhood diseases Contraceptive prevalence rate Nutritional status of children Prevalence of tobacco use Suicide rate Morbidity of major diseases such as HIV/AIDS. malaria. by sex Cons. by sex Net enrolment rate in primary education Adult secondary (tertiary) schooling attainment level. Patterns Oceans. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Global economic partnership Proportion of population using an improved water source Share of households without electricity or other modern energy services Percentage of population using solid fuels for cooking Proportion of urban population living in slums Percentage of population having paid bribes Number of intentional homicides per 100.

Seas and Coasts Economic Development Natural hazards Demographics Atmosphere Governance Fresh Water Biodiversity Education Poverty Health Land .OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Global economic partnership Population growth rate Total fertility rate Dependency ratio Ratio of local residents to tourists in major tourist regions Percentage of population living in hazard prone areas Human and economic loss due to natural disasters Emissions of greenhouse gases Carbon dioxide emissions Consumption of ozone depleting substances Ambient concentration of air pollutants in urban areas Land use change Land degradation Land affected by desertification Arable and permanent cropland area Fertilizer use efficiency Use of agricultural pesticides Area under organic farming Proportion of land area covered by forests Percent of forests damaged by defoliation Area under sustainable forest management Percentage of total population living in coastal areas Bathing water quality Proportion of fish stocks within safe biological limits Cons. Patterns Oceans. and Product.

and Product. Patterns Oceans.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Global economic partnership Proportion of marine area protected Marine trophic index Area of coral reef ecosystems and percentage live cover Proportion of total water resources used Water use intensity by economic activity Biochemical oxygen demand in water bodies Presence of faecal coliform in freshwater Wastewater treatment Proportion of terrestrial area protected. Seas and Coasts Economic Development Natural hazards Demographics Atmosphere Governance Fresh Water Biodiversity Education Poverty Health Land . total and by ecological region Management effectiveness of protected areas Area of selected key ecosystems Fragmentation of habitat Abundance of selected key species Change in threat status of species Abundance of invasive alien species Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita Investment share in GDP Gross savings Adjusted net savings Inflation Debt to GNI ratio Labor productivity and unit labor costs Cons.

OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Global economic partnership Employment-population ratio. Seas and Coasts Economic Development Natural hazards Demographics Atmosphere Governance Fresh Water Biodiversity Education Poverty Health Land . by sex Vulnerable employment Share of women in wage employment in the nonagricultural sector Number of internet users per 100 population Fixed telephone lines per 100 population Mobile cellular telephone subscribers per 100 population Gross domestic expenditure on R&D as a percent of GDP Tourism contribution to GDP Current account deficit as percentage of GDP Share of imports from developing countries and from LDCs Average tariff barriers imposed on exports from developing countries and LDCs Net Official Development Assistance (ODA) given or received as a percentage of GNI FDI inflows and outflows as percentage of GNI Remittances as percentage of GNI Material intensity of the economy Domestic material consumption Annual energy consumption per capita. total and by main user category Share of renewable energy sources in total energy use Cons. Patterns Oceans. and Product.

Education certainly has important direct linkages to consumption patterns.5 However. and Product. Therefore. given that this link is indirect.html Cons. waste. However. At the same time.unesco. the CSD indicator on education does not directly serve as a measure for the impact of education on sustainable consumption patterns. see UNESCO website at http://portal. 5 For details. economic growth is a major determinant of consumption patterns in the areas of energy. as evidenced for example in the declaration of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. consider the indicator on educational attainment. total and by sector Generation of waste Generation of hazardous waste Management of radioactive waste Waste treatment and disposal Modal split of passenger transportation Modal split of freight transport Energy intensity of transport Table 2 only reveals direct relationships between indicators and themes. educational attainment would be a valid indirect measure for elements of consumption and production.php-URL_ ID=27234&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.org/education/en/ev. the theme of economic development is shaded in light gray. Seas and Coasts Economic Development Natural hazards Demographics Atmosphere Governance Fresh Water Biodiversity Education Poverty Health Land . transport or material consumption. To illustrate this point. Patterns Oceans.20 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Global economic partnership Intensity of energy use. As educational attainment is a measure of human capital. the consumption theme is not shaded. which in turn is a major element of economic growth.

in particular. and sustainable development. Also like the CSD indicators. the revised MDG monitoring framework presented by the Secretary-General of the United Nations in 2007 contains 58 indicators. the MDG Indicators are driven by policy relevance. there may have been some confusion on the part of policy-makers and practitioners on the relationship between the two sets and on the need of having two indicator sets. Millennium Development Goals 1 Eradicate extreme poverty 2 Achieve universal primary education 3 Promote gender equality and empower women 4 Reduce child mortality 5 Improve maternal health 6 Combat HIV/AIDS. The MDG Indica6 For the revised MDG monitoring framework.6 Like the CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development. rooted in major inter-governmental development summits and frequently applied at the national level. However. see United Nations. a number of specialized agencies from within the United Nations system as well as external international organizations.aspx . (New York. Because of these similarities. the overall purpose of the two sets is different: the CSD indicators are intended solely to provide a reference. while many of the indicators overlap. see the official United Nations website at http://mdgs. as four new targets have been included to reflect commitments made at the 2005 World Summit. various government agencies and national statisticians.un. Report of the SecretaryGeneral on the work of the Organization. Relationship between MDG Indicators and CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development The Millennium Development Goals Indicators currently consist of 48 indicators linked to the eight goals derived from the United Nations Millennium Declaration. or sample set. 2006) For information on the MDG Indicators.org/unsd/mdg/ Default. in general. malaria and other diseases 7 Ensure environmental sustainability 8 Develop a global partnership In fact. the MDG Indicators were developed through a collaborative process involving various Departments within the United Nations Secretariat. for use by countries to track progress toward nationally-defined goals.OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 2 C.

such as the CSD indicators. The focus of the MDG Indicators on global monitoring also imposes some selection criteria that are less relevant for nationally oriented sets. on the other hand. which incidentally will be dropped from the MDG Indicators framework this year. In addition. The area of consumption and production patterns. since the MDG Indicators need to allow for meaningful regional and global aggregation. on the other hand. The review of the CSD indicators has identified a number of inconsistencies between previous definitions of CSD and MDG indicators. is covered by one single MDG indicator (energy intensity).22 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition tors. Moreover. Indicators formally recommended for inclusion to the MDG indicators in 2007 are listed as . such as population groups. The concurrent review of the MDG Indicators lead to the inclusion of selected CSD indicators into the revised MDG framework. they require data that are available and internationally comparable. National-oriented sets. gender and sectoral breakdowns. which has been effective since September 2003. the use of single-value indicators predominates since this allows for easier presentation across time and countries or country groups. the CSD indicators cover a broad range of issues intrinsic to all pillars of sustainable development—economic development. which have been corrected in this new edition. Sustainable development issues that are not covered by the MDG Indicators include demographics. Table 3 shows the similarities between CSD and MDG Indicators. For example. The MDG indicator numbers are those assigned on the official list of MDG Indicators. the MDG indicator necessarily have a more limited coverage. may easily include multiple dimensions. The CSD indicators can also include indicators which lack accepted adjustment methods for cross-country comparisons or indicators for which countries have no time-series data dating back to the 1990s. one of the three overarching objectives and essential requirements of sustainable development. As the MDGs constitute an important subset of the sustainable development agenda. The MDG Indicators. governance and macroeconomics. were developed for the global monitoring of progress toward meeting internationally established goals. biodiversity and employment. natural hazards. especially in the areas of natural resources. social development and environmental protection. are specific to the eight MDGs. with a strong focus on issues related to the povertyhealth nexus.

Table 3: CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development. IV (25) II (9 a) VI (56 d) # 30 # 31 6 (6 12 e) 6 (6 12 e) 7 (7 40) # 29 (dropped) 6 (6 41 b). though. MDG Indicators.7 The CSD indicator on childhood nutrition refers to underweight. 11 (11 21 b) 7 It should be noted. that data for receipts of ODA in all developing countries are provided on the MDG database . In most cases. as the numbering of indicators in the revised MDG monitoring framework has not been completed. whereas the corresponding MDG indicator covers underweight only. stunting and overweight. whereas the MDG framework contains specific indicators for donors on the OECD/DAC list. IV (25) II (8).OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 2 ‘New’. Indicators that are similar to CSD indicators but not identical are marked with an asterisk. Indicators that are not official MDG Indicators. but are no longer part of the revised framework are marked as ‘dropped’ in parenthesis to their original number. For example. the CSD indicator on ODA refers to all countries that provide or receive development assistance. Agenda 21 and JPOI CSD Indicator of Sustainable Development MDG Indicator Agenda 21 chapter JPOI chapter Proportion of population living below national poverty line Proportion of population below $ 1 a day Ratio of share in national income of highest to lowest quintile Proportion of population using an improved sanitation facility Proportion of population using improved water source Share of households without electricity or other modern energy services Percentage of population using solid fuels for cooking Additional #1 3 (3 4 a) 3 (3 4 a) 3 II (7a) II (7a) V (47) II (8). landlocked developing countries and small island developing States. but contained in the official MDG database are marked as ‘Additional’. Indicators that are contained in the original list of MDG Indicators. differences relate to the fact the CSD indicators have a different coverage in terms of countries or definition covered. and recipients from least developed countries.

9 14 9 17.000 population Under-five mortality rate Life expectancy at birth Healthy life expectancy at birth Percent of population with access to primary health care facilities Immunization against infectious childhood diseases Contraceptive prevalence rate Nutritional status of children Prevalence of tobacco use Suicide rate Morbidity of major diseases such as HIV/AIDS. 6 (6 12) 6 (6 27) 6 6 # 18 *. 6 27) 5 (5 50).2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition CSD Indicator of Sustainable Development MDG Indicator Agenda 21 chapter JPOI chapter Proportion of urban population living in slums Percentage of population having paid bribes Number of intentional homicides per 100. 9 20) IV (43) IV (37) IV (37) IV (38) . malaria. tuberculosis Gross intake into last year of primary education Net enrolment rate in primary education Adult secondary (tertiary) schooling attainment level Life long learning Adult literacy rate Population growth rate Total fertility rate Dependency ratio Ratio of local residents to tourists in major tourist regions and destinations Percentage of population living in hazard prone areas Human and economic loss due to natural disasters Emissions of greenhouse gases # 32 * 7 (7 8) 2 (2 32) II (11 a) I (4) I (4) # 13 6 (6 24) 6 6 6 (6 4) VI (54 f ) VI (54 b) VI (54 f ) VI (54 j) VI (54 n) VI (54 o) VI (54 o) VI (55) II (7 g) X (116) II (7 g) X (116) II (7 g) X (120) X (123) X (123) # 15 * # 19 c #4c 6 (6 12. # 23 * Additional #6 6 (6 12) 36 (36 4) 36 (36 4) 36 36 #8* 36 (36 4) 5 (5 17) New * 5 (5 17) 5 (5 17) 7 (7 20) 7 (7 58) 7 (7 58) 9 (9 11. #21 *.

17 75) 15 (15 5 g). 17 17 (17 46.OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 2 CSD Indicator of Sustainable Development MDG Indicator Agenda 21 chapter JPOI chapter Carbon dioxide emissions Consumption of ozone depleting substances Ambient concentration of air pollutants in urban areas Land use change Land degradation Land affected by desertification Arable and permanent cropland area Fertilizer use efficiency Use of agricultural pesticides Area under organic farming Proportion of land area covered by forests Percent of forest trees damaged by defoliation Area of forest under sustainable forest management Percentage of total population living in coastal areas Bathing water quality Proportion of fish stocks within safe biological limits Proportion of marine area protected Marine trophic index Area of coral reef ecosystems and percentage live cover Proportion of total water resources used Water use intensity by economic activity Biochemical oxygen demand in water bodies Presence of faecal coliforms in freshwater Wastewater treatment Proportion of terrestrial area protected. 26) IV( 26) IV( 25 d) IV( 25 d) IV( 25 d) IV (44) # 25 11 (11 12) 11 11 (11 12) 17 17 New # 26 * 17 (17 46. total and by ecological region # 28 a * # 28 b 9 (9 11) 9 (9 23) 9 (9 11. VI (56) IV (41) IV (41) IV (40) IV (40) IV (40) IV (40) IV (45) IV (45) IV (45) IV (32) IV( 33) IV (31) IV (32 a) IV (32 a) IV (32 d) IV( 25 e. 9 14 9 17) 10 (10 5) 14 (14 45) 12 14 14 (14 85) 14 (14 75) 14 IV (38) IV (39) IV (39). 17 75) 15 (15 5 g). 17 New 18 18 18 (18 39) 18 (18 39 c) 18 (18 39) # 26 * 15 (15 5 g) .

X (92) V (47). # 37 * 33 (3 13) . 14. 13 (13 15) 2 (2 9. 89) II (10 b) II (10 b) II (10 a) II (7 d) V (52) V (52) V (52) X (113) IV (43) X (83.2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition CSD Indicator of Sustainable Development MDG Indicator Agenda 21 chapter JPOI chapter Management effectiveness of protected areas Area of selected key ecosystems Fragmentation of habitats Abundance of selected key species Change in threat status of species Abundance of invasive alien species GDP per capita Investment share in GDP Savings rate Adjusted net savings as percentage of GNI Inflation rate Debt to GNI ratio Employment-population ratio Vulnerable employment Labor productivity and unit labor costs Share of women in wage employment in the non-agricultural sector Number of internet users per 100 population Fixed telephone lines per 100 population Mobile cellular telephone subscribers per 100 population Gross domestic expenditure on R&D as a percent of GDP Tourism contribution to GDP Current account deficit as percentage of GDP Share of imports from developing countries and from LDCs Average tariff barriers imposed on exports from developing countries and LDCs Net Official Development Assistance (ODA) given or received as a percentage of GNI 15 (15 5 g) 15 (15 5 g) 15 15 (15 5 g) New * 15 (15 5 h) 15 2 (2 34) 2 (2 34) 2 (2 34) 2 (2 34) 2 (2 34) 2 (2 34). 33 (33 14 e) New New* New * # 11 # 48 # 47 a # 47 b 7. 2 34) 2 (2 9) # 39 * 2 (2 9) IV (44) IV (44) IV (44) IV (44) IV (44) IV (44) X (83) X (83) X (83) X (83) X (83) X (83. # 36 *. 14. 93) X (85) # 33 *. 24 7. X (92. 92) V (47). 24 14 24 40 40 40 35 11(11 21).

d. the paragraph is additionally listed in brackets. adopted in 2002 at the World Summit of Sustainable Development in Johannesburg.OverviewoftherevisedCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 2 CSD Indicator of Sustainable Development MDG Indicator Agenda 21 chapter JPOI chapter Foreign direct investment (FDI) net inflows and net outflows as percentage of GDP Remittances as percentage of GNI Material intensity of the economy Domestic material consumption Annual energy consumption. Table 3 also correlates the CSD indicators to the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (JPOI). total and by economic activity Generation of waste Generation of hazardous waste Waste treatment and disposal Management of radioactive waste Modal split of passenger transportation Modal split of freight transport Energy intensity of transport 33 (33 15) X (84) 33 4 (4 18) 4 4 4 # 27 * (dropped) 4 (4 18) 21 (21 8) 20 (20 11) 21 (21 17) 22 (22 3) 4 4 4 X (83) III (15) III (15) III (20) III (20 c. . the indicators are still very closely related to it. Agenda 21 and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation The CSD indicators are deeply rooted in Agenda 21 where their development is mandated. Table 3 only lists key references. total and by main user category Share of renewable energy sources in total energy use Intensity of energy use. If a CSD indicator specifically addresses objectives or activities described in Agenda 21. For simplicity reasons. both major conference outcome documents list certain objectives and activities in multiple places (see appendices 1 and 2 for a comprehensive list of their chapters). CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development. Table 3 references all the chapters of Agenda 21 as they relate to each CSD indicator. Even though later editions of the CSD indicators do not follow the structure of Agenda 21 as the first edition did. It is not meant to be a complete reference. e) III (20 h) III (22) III (23) III (22) III (35) III (21) III (21) III (21) D. Due to the integrative nature of sustainable development.

. the CSD indicators are useful for measuring the outcome of policies towards achieving sustainable development goals. In this regard. However. using the CSD indicators as basis for national indicators of sustainable development can assist countries in monitoring national implementation of their international commitments too. they are not suited for measuring the implementation of specific actions contained in these major agreements on sustainable development.28 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Since almost all CSD indicators directly or indirectly correlate to Agenda 21 and the JPOI.

many countries successfully use them to measure success within the framework of their national sustainable development strategy (NSDS). 3. the CSD indicator guidelines and methodologies have recommended that indicators for sustainable development are: 8 1. From their inception. Applying CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development This chapter offers some guidance on how the CSD indicators can be utilized by countries for the development or revision of national indicator sets. Indicator selection The selection of indicators is to a large extent determined by the purpose of the indicator set. 8 United Nations. the chapter offers an example of the application of CSD indicators to national development strategies. 4. September 2001) . The chapter starts with an overview of selection criteria that should be taken into account. It then presents a simple tool that can help countries to adapt CSD indicators to national conditions. In addition to using indicators to assess overall progress towards sustainable development. the overarching purpose of the CSD indicators has been to inform policy at the national level. relevant to assessing sustainable development progress. Indicators of Sustainable Development: Guidelines and Methodologies. Finally.2 IV. As deviations from the previous set of CSD indicators are modest. UN Sales Publication No E 01 II A 6 (New York. Aside from their purpose. countries with national indicator sets in place may wish to consider the new set during a regular review of their indicators rather than on an ad-hoc basis. but remaining open-ended and adaptable to future needs. From the beginning. Second Edition. A. limited in number. primarily national in scope. there are other important criteria for selecting indicators for sustainable development. 2. broad in coverage of Agenda 21 and all aspects of sustainable development.

8. the results become unwieldly and difficult to interpret. However. especially in new areas of interest. within the capabilities of national governments to develop. pose a challenge. but it is often associated with higher energy consumption. Criteria two through four. exploitation of natural resources and negative impacts on environmental resources. for example within the context of an NSDS or other strategy processes. Ambiguity is relative to context. In many cases. their number decreases. high GDP growth is generally considered a positive sign of economic development. In many cases. In such cases. a proxy indicator may be used as long as there is suffi- . the demand for an indicator may precede its development. Clarity of purpose and audience will instruct indicator clarity. Rather. but testing by countries led to a drastic reduction. in a country with low food security. The first criterion emphasizes the importance of using the indicators for national level assessment. the CSD indicator set began with 134 indicators. 9. Indicators should always be conceptually sound. understandable. whereas in a country with agricultural overproduction due to subsidization it could be negative. as the purpose of the indicators narrows. As discussed earlier. For example. such cases reinforce the need to interpret results in a balanced and integrated manner. will help to avoid such ambiguity. In the meantime. These potential conflicts should not be seen as sign of ambiguity. representative of an international consensus to the extent possible. linkages among thematic issues easily lead to potential conflicts. The introduction of smaller core sets within the larger set makes sustainable development indicators more manageable. The existence of voluntary targets for indicators at the national level. Size will also be influenced by purpose: in general. an increase in arable and permanent cropland may be seen as positive. conceptually sound. For example. taken together. clear and unambiguous. Indicators need to be clear and unambiguous. If too many indicators are used. it has also positive impacts on poverty alleviation.0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition 5. and dependent on cost effective data of known quality. 6. 7. The indicators should be both limited and sufficiently comprehensive to capture the multidimensional nature of sustainable development. it may be advisable to bookmark the indicator with a generic description and increase efforts to develop its conceptual underpinnings.

devinfo. For indicators that are used to measure international commitments such as the MDGs. In the years since the CSD pioneered the work on sustainable development indicators. Over the past decade. the increased emphasis on information-based decision making has led to improved efforts to build capacity in this regard especially in developing countries. and progress made in the adoption of the system of national accounts (SNA) will also improve data availability. The CSD indicators were developed through a collaborative approach that involved Member States. To increase cost effectiveness. the methodology sheets of the CSD indicators available on the accompanying CD and on the DSD homepage contain in many cases alternative indicators that may be more applicable to a particular national context. National capability may refer to the institutional capacity not only to monitor and collect data but also to interpret and synthesize it into information useful for decision-making. United Nations system organizations. To assist in this process. A major advantage for countries in adopting CSD indicators appropriate to their national conditions is the opportunity to learn from the expertise. Implementation of the system of environmental-economic accounting (SEEA) will not only further increase availability of data and indicators. many countries have applied the CSD indicators and adapted them to their specific needs. international comparability is essential. experience and perspective of a broad range of actors. Many indicators rely on data contained in national accounts. data availability and reliability continue to be a problem in many countries. other intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations. they are based on a broad and informal consensus among international organizations.ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  cient evidence that it is able to capture relevant phenomena that do not skew the results. the CSD indicators often require data that are routinely collected either by national statistical services or through international processes. but also massively improve the possibility for further 9 For a very useful and free-of-charge tool to manage development data that has been developed in cooperation with the United Nations system.org . Despite major advances over the last decade. Therefore. for example through the routine work of United Nations specialized agencies or in the MDG context.9 The continuation and acceleration of these efforts will further enhance the applicability of indicators of sustainable development. see http://www.

for example. sustainable development indicators used by other countries. which is necessary for developing appropriate policy interventions. but there may be some gaps. B. this tool could. Regional and international organization also collect and manage data from various national sources. and could be consulted directly in cases where the data are not readily available at the national level. It should be stressed that other indicator sets that could be used as a basis for national sustainable development indicators should be adapted as well. this holds for national and satellite account data. Nonetheless. In general. In adapting CSD indicators to national sets. potentially available. Therefore. countries may wish to tailor the indicators to respond to national needs and circumstances. data availability is a critical issue. National reports to intergovernmental processes. in some cases only weakly linked to regular national statistical procedures. especially for data from surveys or administrative records. As discussed in the previous section. Adapting CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development for national sets The CSD indicators meet the criteria described. or national indicator sets used for other purposes are used as additional reference. with data availability and relevance as the two dimensions in which countries can place the CSD indicators in order to check their suitability and their need for adjustment. The methodology sheets of the CSD indicators on the accompanying CD contain generic information on both national and international data sources that should facilitate the assessment of CSD indicators with regard to availability at the national level. including multilateral environmental agreements. National statistical offices are the major data source in most countries. census data as well as data derived from major surveys. are often another data source. In general. This section presents a tool that could be useful for such adaptation. data required for the CSD indicators are available at the national level from a variety of institutions that collect and manage the data. and not available.2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition integrated analysis of the indicators. related data available. It is a simple matrix. Other ministries and government agencies are also major data sources. it may be useful to classify each indicator in one of four categories of data availability: fully available. also be useful if MDG indicators. .

The third category contains those indicators where important data are missing. Most indicators should be relevant and fall into the first category. The third category encompasses relevant issues that are not covered by the CSD indicators either because they are relevant and available to a few countries only or because of the desire to keep the CSD set relatively small. It may also contain national indicators that address the same issue as CSD indicators but measure it differently. contains those cases where data could be made available within a reasonable timeframe and with reasonable costs. the introduction of four different categories in which CSD indicators can be placed could be useful: relevant. relevant but missing. but less accurate indicator. but there are data that could be used to compute related indicators. For example. but not identical to a national issue.g. Investment in data collection. Indicators for these issues would have to be taken from other avail- . but are closely related to relevant indicators. but some countries use instead a subjective indicator on people’s satisfaction with the health status. this category would encompass indicators for which there are plans to increase capacity for data collection. Moreover. Examples include food safety. The second category covers indicators that are not themselves directly relevant for the purpose. administrative data on car registrations could be used to construct an indicator (e. registered cars by 100. irrelevant. There may also be CSD indicators where the underlying issue is closely related. immunization). storage and management. This cost will need to be weighed against the potential loss in planning and decision-making capacity brought about by using a related.000 inhabitants). based on survey data. Existing regular surveys can often be extended to include a few additional questions. Again. For example.ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  The first category is obviously the preferred one. in the absence of data on the use of vehicles (such as kilometres traveled). The second one. Relevance is the second dimension of the adaptation matrix. participation in public decision-making processes or linguistic diversity.. the CSD indicators contain a number of indicators measuring objective dimensions of the health status (disease prevalence. indicators with potentially available data. countries whose strategies include regional trade integration may want to monitor the share of trade with regional partners rather than share of trade with developing countries. including capacity-building. For example. will result in more data being available. related indicator relevant. nutritional status.



IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition

able indicator sets. Alternatively, underlying issues rather than concrete indicators may be inserted. In general, though, this third category is expected to have few entries. The last category—irrelevant indicator—would contain indicators covering issues that are not meaningful in context, for example the indicator of coastal population would be irrelevant for landlocked countries. Figure 1 shows how the two dimensions, data availability and relevance, can be combined in a simple matrix in which the CSD indicators can be placed.
Figure 1: Matrix for adapting CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development
Relevance Related indicator relevant

Relevant Data availability Available Potentially available Related data available Not available

Relevant but missing

Irrelevant

Legend

To be used To be modified

To be identified To be removed

The black boxes contain those CSD indicators that can be incorporated without any changes to national indicators. The dark grey boxes are for those CSD indicators that have to be modified for a given country, either because there exist related and more relevant or specific indicators or because data for the original indicator cannot be made available. The light grey boxes contain those indicators important for a country but not included in the CSD set. The task of identifying appropriate indicators could then include assessing the availability of data. As indicated above, the number of indicators in those boxes should be

ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 

quite small. The remaining blank boxes would include any CSD indicators that a country does not consider useful. Adapting the CSD indicators to national conditions may also require adapting the framework. The thematic framework of the CSD indicators is very flexible in this regard. Sub-themes, or even themes, can easily be merged or split as needed. Aligning the indicator framework with the framework chosen for a national sustainable development strategy is also feasible in most cases. C. Indicators as tools for measuring sustainable development processes at the national level National strategies are important mechanisms to translate national goals of sustainable development into concrete policies and actions. Their central role has already been recognized by virtually all countries in Agenda 21 and countries agreed on time-bound targets to develop and implement national sustainable development strategies (NSDS) at the Special Session of the UN General Assembly on the review of Agenda 21 in 199710 and in the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation.11,12 An NSDS can be defined as “a coordinated, participatory and iterative process of thoughts and actions to achieve economic, environmental and social objectives in a balanced and integrative manner.”13 Whereas no ‘blueprint’ for a strategy is feasible or desirable, there is agreement on the five principles that distinguish an NSDS: (1) country ownership and commitment; (2) integrated economic, social and environmental policy across sectors, territories and generations; (3) broad participation and effective partnerships; (4) development of the necessary capacity and enabling environment; and (5) focus on outcomes and means of implementation. Because NSDS are defined by their process and principles, the actual name of the strategy is not important. It may be a national development strategy, a
10 11 12

Programme of Action for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21, paragraph 24 JPOI, Chapter XI, para 162 (b) Updated information on progress made in fulfilling the commitment to make progress in the formulation, elaboration and implementation of such strategies by 2005 can be found at http://www un org/esa/sustdev/natlinfo/nsds/nsdsMap htm UN DESA (2002), Guidance in Preparing a National Sustainable Development Strategy: Managing Sustainable Development in a new Millennium, DESA/DSD/PC2/BP13

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IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition

poverty reduction strategy, a MDG-based strategy or any similar comprehensive and multi-sectoral strategy, as long as it conforms to the criteria of an NSDS. The Johannesburg Plan of Implementation explicitly recognizes this; countries in general are encouraged not to run parallel strategy processes: it is wasteful of resources and confusing in outcome. Indicators, in general, play a major role in various stages of an NSDS: Assessment, monitoring, reporting and evaluation. Moreover, taking indicators into account during the formulation stage also helps ensuring that the NSDS is concrete and measurable. The CSD indicators, in particular, are valuable tools in all these stages of an NSDS. Given their broad coverage of sustainable development issues, their national orientation, and detailed methodological description, CSD indicators can easily be adapted to national conditions, and as such, become valuable tools for assessing national sustainable development goals. Monitoring is necessary for the effective implementation of a strategy, and it helps prevent the strategy from becoming a mere list of intentions. Monitoring facilitates the adjustment of policy interventions to changing conditions during implementation. It promotes a culture of learning, providing a basis for improved strategies in subsequent iterations, and it enhances the performance of key actors in implementation by allowing for better accountability. Moreover, together with appropriate reporting procedures, monitoring promotes public interest and information on sustainable development. One can distinguish three broad areas of an NSDS that require monitoring: (1) actions and activities included in the NSDS; (2) impact of the NSDS; and (3) overall progress towards sustainable development. Indicators for monitoring task (1) are outside the scope of this publication. They could be seen as management indicators and will typically closely follow the formulation of the strategy and action plans. Ensuring accountability of actors and stakeholders is a main purpose of actively using such indicators. Indicators for monitoring tasks (2) and (3) are closely related, because the objective of the NSDS is to make development more sustainable. They differ especially with regard to coverage. As an NSDS typically identifies priorities and targets, not all issues relevant for sustainable development will be included in a focused strategy. Monitoring of issues outside the strategy, however, is still warranted as it can assist the adjustment of an NSDS during the implementation cycle.

indicating progress or regress by indicator can be used to communicate progress on sustainable development in a country. Different but coherent reporting formats may be used to address these audiences effectively. simple surveys. such as arrows or traffic-lights. . Monitoring results can be integrated into broader NSDS progress reports. Extent. Appropriate reporting mechanisms for disseminating monitoring results are critical for generating feedback from stakeholders that leads to improved strategies and their implementation. For many developing countries. In this regard. Simple symbols. including the public-at-large. stakeholder organizations. Main findings are usually contained in executive summaries intended to address policy-makers. in adapting the indicators for monitoring the impact of the strategy. Indicators should also be responsive to policies and actions included in the strategy. external donors. concentrating on main target groups only. Evaluation is a critical part of an NSDS as it assesses whether the strategy was effective in meeting its goals and targets. However. can play a mayor role in monitoring tasks (1) and (2).ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  The CSD indicators. it is important that reporting is adapted to the varying needs of the different target audiences. Therefore. may offer timely indicators for monitoring the strategy impact. additional selection criteria should be considered. but to conduct more detailed analysis with less frequency. monitoring indicators should be timely. methods and format of the analysis differ according to the audience. parliaments. and. a further breakdown of CSD indicators by target group increases the responsiveness. often of direct policy relevance. in many developing countries. It may be advisable to include a basic analysis in the standard NSDS reports. Short brochures using indicators to demonstrate strategy implementation are an effective and user-friendly means of addressing the public-at-large. In these cases. In many cases. Most reports go beyond the values of the chosen indicators and include analytical information. In many countries. Unlike monitoring. political decision-makers. the existence of multiple project-specific reporting requirements attached to different externally funded development projects often poses additional organizational and institutional challenges. and whether it is likely to have long-lasting impact. the internet can be an effective means of reporting on updated indicator values. Moreover. whether it was implemented efficiently. indicators relying on large surveys and censuses that are conducted infrequently and that require long processing times require special attention in this regard. adapted to national situations.

However. Given the complexity and the continuing limits of understanding sustainable development. changes in external conditions. in principle. Major revisions or expiration of the NSDS will typically involve an evaluation. and often to quantify. As an NSDS often includes a list of activities or projects whose funding requires specific evaluations. these do not substitute for an overall strategy evaluation. The indicators used for monitoring the NSDS evidently play an important role in the evaluation. evaluation is conducted only periodically. in order to answer the question of effectiveness. Therefore. this particular challenge is unlikely to provide definite answers. the evaluation has. as only the latter can incorporate policy linkages and address the question whether priority areas are set appropriately. the assumed linkages between NSDS actions and development outcomes and impacts. as they allow establishing whether the strategy has achieved its targets. it is important that overall evaluation of the strategy makes full use of these project-specific evaluations. but intermediate evaluations are also advisable. uncertainty over linkages between policies and sustainable development outcomes and resources available. depending on the timeframe of the NSDS.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition which is a continuous effort. However. or econometric modeling are likely to be employed. evaluation also has to validate. multiple methods such as comparisons with non-target groups. cross-country comparisons. . to include an assessment of alternative policy interventions. For assessing the effectiveness of the NSDS.

state. Driving force indicators describe processes or activities that have a positive or a negative impact on sustainable development (for example pollution or school enrolment). published in 1996. the revision of the CSD indicators in 2001 discontinued the DSR framework mainly because it . A word on indicator frameworks Indicators of sustainable development at the national level are often developed through dynamic interactive processes and dialogues among a wide range of stakeholders. Driving force-state-response frameworks The initial set of 134 CSD indicators. was organized in a driving force. what to expect from measurement and what kinds of indicators to use. environmental as well as institutional. The first CSD indicators were additionally grouped according to the dimensions of sustainable development—social. The main differences among them are the ways in which they conceptualize the key dimensions of sustainable development. including government representatives. Conceptual frameworks for indicators help to focus and clarify what to measure. Diversity of core values. a variation of the pressurestate-response framework. Whereas variations of the pressure-state-response framework continue to be used in more environmentally oriented indicator sets. indicator processes and sustainable development theories have resulted in the development and application of different frameworks. taking locally relevant aspects as well as their own value systems into account. The process allows participants to define sustainability from their own perspectives. whereas response indicators reflect societal actions aimed at moving towards sustainable development. technical experts and civil society representatives. Each indicator in the DSR framework is classified as a driving force. the way they group the issues to be measured. the inter-linkages among these dimensions. and the concepts by which they justify the selection and aggregation of indicators. A. state and response (DSR) framework. and matched to the relevant chapters of Agenda 21. State indicators describe the current situation (for example nutritional status of children or land covered by forests). V. or response. economic.

state or response was often ambiguous. Issue. Among them. A main reason for the prominence of thematic frameworks is their ability to link indicators to policy processes and targets. A thematic framework for indicators is also well suited to monitor progress in attaining the objectives and goals stipulated in national sustainable development strategies. Most countries in all regions of the world that have developed national sustainable development indicators have based them on a thematic framework. especially in official national indicator sets. C. indicators are grouped into various different issues relating to sustainable development. B. the classification of indictors into driving force. the second CSD indicators. This requires that all forms of capital be expressed in common terms. It is flexible enough to adjust to new priorities and policy targets over time. but also natural. . Capital frameworks There are other approaches to measuring sustainable development. human. This provides a clear and direct message to decision-makers and facilitates both communicating with and raising the awareness of the public. the capital approach has found a lot of attention. social and institutional capital. such as the indicators used in the Baltic 21 Action Programme. Consequently.or theme-based frameworks are the most widely used type of frameworks. It attempts to calculate national wealth as a function of the sum of and interaction among different kinds of capital. which were still organized along the four dimensions of sustainable development. The issues or themes are typically determined on the basis of policy relevance. and it did not adequately highlight the relationship between the indicators and policy issues. including not only financial capital and produced capital goods.0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition was not suited to addressing the complex interlinkages among issues. there were uncertainties over causal linkages. usually in monetary terms. were embedded in a more flexible theme/ sub-theme framework. the Mediterranean Sustainable Development Strategy and the Sustainable Development Indicators for the European Union.or theme-based frameworks Issue. This is also true of regional strategies and indicator programmes. In these frameworks.

how development can be made sustainable. And future technological innovation and human ingenuity may greatly expand the scope. but. renewable for non-renewable sources of energy. “An International Framework for Constructing National Indicators for Policies to Enhance Sustainable Development Background paper prepared for the UN Expert Group meeting on Indicators of Sustainable Development. This draws attention “to what resources we have at our disposal today. and. Accounting frameworks Indicator systems based on accounting frameworks draw all indicators from a single database allowing for sectoral aggregation and using consistent classifications and definitions. second. It is. a reasonably stable climate or biological diversity. thus. they all try to identify first what development is. The most prominent example in this regard is the System of Integrated Environmental and Economic Accounting (SEEA) pioneered by the United Nations Statistical Commission with the International Monetary Fund. the concept of using capital as a way to track sustainable development could be a powerful tool for decision-making. there may also be assets that are fundamental and for which no substitution is possible. and towards the issue whether we manage these in ways that make it possible to maintain and further develop the resource base over time.”14 Explicit in the capital approach is the notion of substitutability between different types of capital. clearly linked to the standard system of national accounts 14 Knut H Alfsen. There remain many challenges to using a capital framework. and the integration of intra-generational equity concerns within and across countries. Nonetheless. Among them are disagreement about how to express all forms of capital in monetary terms. problems of data availability. 13-15 December 2005. and work in this area should be encouraged. There are clear examples of substitutability—machines for human labor. The SEEA extends national accounting to environmental aspects through a satellite system of accounts. This could include. D. which is indeed a complex issue. synthetics for some natural resources. p 7 . the World Bank. and Thorvald Moe. in general. the European Commission and OECD. for example.ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  The frameworks for sustainable development indicators based on this approach vary. questions about substitution. However.

2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition (SNA). In case of capital frameworks. By basing indicators in a consistent database allowing for meaningful sectoral and spatial disaggregation. take into account two of the four pillars of sustainable development—the social and institutional pillars Nevertheless. Several countries are using the SEEA. It allows for the construction of a common database from which some of the most common sustainable development indicators in the economic and environmental spheres can be derived in a consistent manner. progress towards specific targets included in a strategy as well as crosssectoral impacts can be consistently assessed. report E/2006/24 and especially document E/ CN 3/2006/9 for procedural aspects Laszlo Pinter. and it is in the process of being proposed as an international statistical standard. For thematic frameworks. 15 See United Nations et al (2003). In this new edition. SEEA Handbook. at least not yet. Peter Hardi and Peter Bartelmus. some of these concerns are being addressed through efforts both to expand the system by incorporating human capital and to explore the possibility of linking the frameworks with social accounting matrices (SAM) which have been developed in consistency with the national accounts. 13-15 December 2005 (New York) Document No UNDSD/EGM/ISD/2005/CRP 2 16 . the CSD indicators further strengthen the relationship with the SEEA by increasingly adopting definitions and classifications contained in the SEEA and in many cases by introducing sectoral breakdowns based on standard classifications. the SEEA facilitates moving from modeled and estimated data towards directly obtained capital measures. The SEEA includes accounts expressed in monetary terms as well as accounts in physical terms.15 Integrated national account frameworks such as the SEEA were not set up specifically to address sustainable development and therefore do not. “Indicators of Sustainable Development: Proposals for a Way Forward Discussion Paper prepared under a consultant agreement on behalf of the UN Division for Sustainable Development Expert Group Meeting on Indicators of Sustainable Development. the SEEA is especially useful if the indicators are used for monitoring and evaluation of development strategies. for the details on the SEEA and United Nations Statistical Commission (2006).16 Implementation of the SEEA would improve systems of sustainable development indicators embedded in capital frameworks as well as those based on thematic frameworks.

publication an data on this indicator are available on the website of the World Bank. the Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI) and the Environmental Performance Index (EPI). and adding expenditures on education. Adjusted Net Saving was developed by the World Bank. The Ecological Footprint. Aggregated indicators There have been several efforts to develop aggregated indicators to capture elements of sustainable development. The GPI. Our Ecological Footprint: Reducing Human Impact on the Earth. see http://go.org/3AWKN2ZOY0 18 19 20 . many of these indicators are specifically focussed on the environmental dimension of sustainable development and resource management.worldbank. developed and main17 Wackernagel. Both ESI and EPI have been developed by the Center for Environmental Law and Policy at Yale University and the Center of International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University in collaboration with the World Economic Forum and others. M and W Rees (1996).edu/esi/ for details See http://www.ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  E. It is calculated by subtracting monetary values for resource depletion and damage caused by air pollution from traditional net savings derived from national accounts. environmental impact and energy efficiency into an index aimed at measuring policy impact. 19 More comprehensive aggregated indicators on sustainable development include the Adjusted Net Saving and the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI).yale. Gabriola Island See also http://www footprintnetwork org See http://www. environmental management efforts and the capacity of a society to improve its environmental performance—into 21 indicators and finally into a single index. integrates 76 data sets—tracking natural resource endowments. The ESI. translates human resource consumption and waste generation in a country or any other entity into a measure of biological productive land and water and relates it to a measure of biological capacity.yale. pollution. Most aggregate indicators are primarily used for raising public awareness and receive notable attention in the media.20 This indicator is also included in the set of CSD indicators in the economic development theme.edu/epi/ for details Methodologies. Examples of such indicators include the Ecological Footprint. past and present pollution levels. originally developed by Wackernagel and Rees (1996)17. New Society Publishers. Rather than offering a comprehensive view of sustainable development. 18 The EPI aggregates 16 indicators related to resource depletion.

Energy Indicators for Sustainable Development: Guidelines and Methodologies See United Nations World Tourism Organization (2004).redefiningprogress. H and J B Cobb (1989). or the sustainable tourism indicators25. methodologies. Beacon Press. modifies GDP by adding economic contributions of household and volunteer work. These tend to be small core sets of indicators closely linked to policy priorities that provide quick and visible signals to policy-makers and to the general public.org/newprograms/sustIndi/gpi/index. the environment and a sustainable future. weighing of the variables.shtml Daly. the energy indicators of sustainable development24. F.22 All these indicators face significant challenges to aggregation related to data availability. in case of indexes. prominent examples include biodiversity indicators developed to measure progress towards the internationally agreed target of significantly reducing the loss of biodiversity by 201023. Headline indicators usually co-exist with larger sets of indicators for more comprehensive policy-making and monitoring. For the common good: Redirecting the economy toward the community.21 It is related to the Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare (ISEW) developed by Daly and Cobb (1989). Indicators of Sustainable Development for Tourism Destinations: A Guidebook 24 25 . and family breakdown in order to arrive at a measure of well-being. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition tained by Redefining Progress. these are most likely to be used by ministries or NGOs to track policy implementation and to inform the public. this ongoing work represents important attempts to aggregate a broad range of variables in order to convey a message that is easy for both decision-makers and civil society to understand. At the national level. pollution. selection of variables and. Nonetheless. There is also increasing use of headline indicators by both countries and organizations. At the international level. there is a trend to construct issuespecific sets of sustainable development indicators. but subtracting factors such as crime. Boston See Convention on Biological Diversity (2002) and World Summit of Sustainable Development (2002) for the exact text Work on the indicators is coordinated by the 2010 Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (www twentyten net) See IAEA et al (2005). Other indicator approaches There are other approaches to using indicators for sustainable development outside of formal frameworks. For example. A potential prob21 22 23 See http://www.

headline indicators are excellent means of attracting media attention. .ApplyingCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  lem with headline indicators in that they could be used for politics. rather than policy. however. that is. raising public awareness and supplementing pedagogical materials for primary and secondary education. their choice could reflect current political priorities rather than significant issues influencing future sustainability. Used correctly.

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 VI. Poverty PROPORTION OF POPULATION LIVING BELOW NATIONAL POVERTY LINE Sub-theme:  Income poverty Core indicator Brief definition:  The proportion of the population with a standard of living below the poverty line as defined by the national government. Description of CSD Indicators of Sustainable Development This chapter contains a short description of all CSD indicators. The national poverty rate is one of the core measures of living standards and it draws attention exclusively towards the poor. Progress against absolute poverty is now a widely accepted yardstick for assessing the overall performance of developing economies.08 a day. especially income poverty. PROPORTION OF POPULATION BELOW $ 1 PER DAY Sub-theme:  Income poverty Brief definition:  The proportion of the population having per capita consumption of less than $1. Description:  The population below $1 a day provides a uniform measure of absolute poverty for the developing world. using data from nationally representative household surveys. National estimates are based on population-weighted subgroup estimates derived from household surveys.htm A. It provides information on progress towards poverty alleviation. a central objective and requirement of sustainable development.un. measured at 1993 international prices. . Description:  The indicator (also known as national poverty rate) is a standard measure of poverty.org/esa/sustdev/natlinfo/ indicators/isd. Detailed information is available in the methodology sheets contained in the accompanying CD-Rom as well as on the internet at http://www.

it also provides tangible evidence of inequities. and less access to services than wealthier people. Poor people generally have less voice.” Empirical studies suggest that the impact of growth on poverty reduction is greater when initial income inequality is lower. less income. Description:  The provision of adequate sanitation is necessary for poverty alleviation and to protect human health and the environment. Description:  The indicator shows the extent of inequality in income distribution within a country. When societies become more equitable in ways that lead to greater opportunities for all. Inequality in outcomes such as income or consumption and inequality in opportunities hinder human development and are detrimental to long-term economic growth. When broken down by geographic (such as rural/urban zones) or social or economic criteria.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition RATIO OF shARE IN NATIONAL INcOME OF hIGhEsT TO LOWEsT qUINTILE Sub-theme:  Income inequality Brief definition:  The ratio of the share in national income (or consumption) accruing to the highest 20 percent of the population to the share accruing to the lowest 20 percent. PROPORTION OF POPULATION UsING AN IMPROVED WATER sOURcE Sub-theme:  Drinking water Core indicator Brief  definition:  Proportion of population with access to an improved drinking water source in a dwelling or located within a convenient distance . The indicator monitors progress in the accessibility of the population to sanitation facilities. Improved sanitary facilities range from simple but protected pit latrines to flush toilets with sewerage. PROPORTION OF POPULATION UsING AN IMPROVED sANITATION FAcILITY Sub-theme:  Sanitation  Core indicator Brief  definition:  Proportion of population with access to a private sanitary facility for human excreta disposal in the dwelling or immediate vicinity. a basic and essential social service. Accessibility to adequate excreta disposal facilities is fundamental to decrease the faecal risk and frequency of associated diseases. the poor stand to benefit from a “double dividend.

shARE OF hOUsEhOLDs WIThOUT ELEcTRIcITY OR OThER MODERN ENERGY sERVIcEs Sub-theme:  Access to energy Core indicator Brief  definition:  Share of households without access to electricity.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  from the user’s dwelling. as primary fuel for cooking and heating. The indicator monitors progress in the accessibility of the population to improved water sources. such as fuelwood. Furthermore. which is associated with increased mortality from . Lack of access to modern energy services contributes to poverty and deprivation and limits economic development. crop wastes and dung. crops or other agricultural waste. Solid fuels include biomass fuels. When broken down by geographic (such as rural/ urban zones) or social or economic criteria. Description:  The indicator covers multiple sustainable development issues. Most importantly. and share of households using ‘traditional’ non-commercial energy options. public stand-pipes and piped connections to houses. Electricity and other modern energy services are an essential component of providing basic social services. PERcENTAGE OF POPULATION UsING sOLID FUELs FOR cOOKING Sub-theme:  Access to energy Brief definition:  Percentage of population using solid fuels as source for cooking. affordable and reliable energy services are necessary to guarantee sustainable economic and human development. Description:  The provision of adequate sanitation is necessary for poverty alleviation and to protect human health and the environment. it also provides tangible evidence of inequities. rainwater. adequate. shrubs and straw. dung. Improved drinking water sources include bottled water. charcoal. the use of solid fuels in households is a proxy for indoor air pollution. Accessibility to improved water sources is fundamental to decrease the faecal risk and frequency of associated diseases. and coal. such as wood. Description:  The indicator monitors progress in accessibility and affordability of modern energy services including electricity. protected boreholes springs and wells. It is also a universal human development indicator.

Governance PERcENTAGE OF POPULATION hAVING PAID BRIBEs Sub-theme:  Corruption Core indicator Brief  definition:  Percentage of population having been asked or having complied to expectation by government officials to pay a bribe for his or her services. living area. structural quality/durability of dwellings. access to improved sanitation facilities. security of tenure. . Overcrowding. Description:  The indicator measures prevalence of corruption among government officials through crime surveys. They deprive residents from their human rights. An increase of this indicator is sign of deteriorating living conditions in urban areas. PROPORTION OF URBAN POPULATION LIVING IN sLUMs Sub-theme:  Living conditions Core indicator Brief definition:  The proportion of urban population lacking at least one of the following five housing conditions: Access to improved water. A decline of this indicator is a sign of progress on the corruption component of good governance. central to poverty alleviation and sustainable development in general. Good governance is essential for sustainable development. Description:  This is a key indicator measuring the adequacy of shelter.0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition pneumonia and other acute lower respiratory infections among children as well as increased mortality from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancer (where coal is used) among adults. sufficient. The indicator also measures access to modern energy services. High demand for biomass fuels to meet household energy needs can contribute to deforestation and subsequent land degradation. B. inadequate housing. not overcrowded. Disaggregating the indicator by type of housing conditions gives further information on the severity of inadequate living conditions. lack of water and sanitation are manifestations of poverty. are associated with certain categories of health risks and are often detriments to future development.

LIFE ExPEcTANcY AT BIRTh Sub-theme:  Mortality Core indicator Brief definition:  The average number of years that a newborn could expect to live. It is expressed as deaths per 1. as well as violent crimes. poverty and nutrition. accessibility and quality of health services. Intentional homicides. particularly of mothers. Under-five mortality levels are influenced by the availability. access to safe water and sanitation. Description:   This indicator measures the risk of dying in infancy and early childhood. a large fraction of all deaths occurs at ages under 5 years. among other factors. The phenomenon of crime compromises human dignity. education. C.000 POPULATION Sub-theme:  Crime Core indicator Brief Definition:  Number of intentional homicides recorded in criminal (police) statistics. rape and/or robbery. The indicator can also be used as a measure for the adherence to the rule of law.000 live births. have a very significant negative impact on sustainable development. such as assault. Countries with sufficiently reliable crime statistics may wish to expand the indicator by including violent crimes.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  NUMBER OF REcORDED INTENTIONAL hOMIcIDEs PER 100. In high-mortality settings. if he or she were to pass through life subject to the age-specific death rates of a given period. Description:  The indicator measures how many years on average a newborn is expected to live. Health UNDER-FIVE MORTALITY RATE Sub-theme:  Mortality Core indicator Brief  definition:   Under-five mortality rate refers to the probability of dying before age 5. given current age-specific mortality risks. creates a climate of fear and erodes the quality of life. Life . a component of good governance. Description:  The indicator measures the development of intentional homicides over time.

IMMUNIzATION AGAINsT INFEcTIOUs chILDhOOD DIsEAsEs Sub-theme:  Health care delivery Core indicator Brief definition:  The percent of the eligible population that have been immunized according to national immunization policies. by proxy. HALE captures both fatal and non-fatal health outcomes and provides a more complete picture of the impact of morbidity and mortality on populations. measles. poliomyelitis. which are in turn an integral part of development. is of fundamental significance to reflect on health system progress. Primary health care is defined as essential health care made accessible at a cost the country and community can afford. Description:  Healthy life expectancy (HALE) provides a summary of overall health conditions for a population. Accessibility of health services.2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition expectancy at birth is an indicator of mortality conditions and. than life expectancy alone. tuberculosis and hepatitis B before their first birthday. if he or she were to pass through life subject to the age-specific death rates and ill-health rates of a given period. PERcENT OF POPULATION WITh AccEss TO PRIMARY hEALTh cARE FAcILITIEs Sub-theme:  Health care delivery Core indicator Brief definition:  Proportion of population with access to primary health care facilities. equity and sustainable development. tetanus. (ii) the proportion of children . The definition includes three components: (i) the proportion of children immunized against diphtheria. Description:  The indicator monitors progress in the access of the population to primary health care. social and cultural accessibility and acceptability. pertussis. going beyond just physical access. hEALThY LIFE ExPEcTANcY AT BIRTh Sub-theme:  Mortality Brief  definition:  The average equivalent number of years of full health that a newborn could expect to live. and including economic. with methods that are practical. of health conditions. scientifically sound and socially acceptable.

DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  immunized against yellow fever in affected countries of Africa. . but sometimes for other base population. which include family planning. which in turn affect sustainability and development. Description:  This indicator monitors the implementation of immunization programs. percentage of stunting (height-for-age below -2 SD of the WHO Child Growth Standards median) among children under five years of age. Reproductive health programmes. an important element of primary health care. and percentage of overweight (weight-for-height above +2 SD of the WHO Child Growth Standards median) among children under five years of age. cONTRAcEPTIVE PREVALENcE RATE Sub-theme:  Health care delivery Brief  definition:  This indicator is generally defined as the percentage of women of reproductive age (15-49 yrs) using any method of contraception at a given point in time. The health benefits of contraceptive use include the ability to prevent unwanted pregnancies. Contraceptive prevalence is also an indicator of access to reproductive health services. and is integral to the achievement of sustainable development. such as all women of reproductive age at risk of pregnancy. Description:  The measure indicates the extent of couples conscious efforts and capabilities to control their fertility. are among the factors that promote changes in demographic behaviour and trends. and (iii) the proportion of women of child-bearing age immunized against tetanus. It is usually calculated for women married or in union of reproductive age. thereby reducing the resort to induced abortion as well as potential complications of pregnancy and the risks of maternal mortality. NUTRITIONAL sTATUs OF chILDREN Sub-theme:  Nutritional status Core indicator Brief  definition:  Percentage of underweight (weight-for-age below -2 standard deviation (SD) of the WHO Child Growth Standards median) among children under five years of age. Good management of immunization programmes is essential to the reduction of morbidity and mortality from major childhood infectious diseases.

Studies have shown that prevalence is higher among the poor illustrating a negative association between prevalence and household income . PREVALENcE OF TOBAccO UsE Sub-theme:  Health status and risks Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the percentage of the population aged 15 years or older that daily smokes any tobacco product. Tobacco consumption is costly and contributes to poverty and associated health inequalities at the individual and national levels. HIV/AIDS. For that purpose. are the most widely used indicators of nutritional status in a community. Tobacco is an undisputable health threat causing 5. measuring death rates of major diseases is also important. MALARIA. It is calculated from the responses to individual or household surveys that are nationally representative. especially over a longer horizon. particularly in young children. Anthropometric measurements to assess growth and development. Description:  The indicator measures the morbidity caused by major diseases. malaria. typically in cases per 100. and representing the second risk factor for mortality worldwide. malaria. The indicator also provides information on the success of measures to fight major diseases. The indicator is measured separately for relevant major diseases.000 people. Description:  Prevalence of current daily tobacco smoking among adults is a measure useful to determine of the economic and future health burden of tobacco use. and provides a primary basis for evaluating the effectiveness of tobacco control programmes over time. MORBIDITY OF MAjOR DIsEAsEs sUch As hIV/AIDs. tuberculosis and other diseases are major impediments to sustainable development. The goals of sustainable development can only be achieved in the absence of a high prevalence of debilitating diseases. TUBERcULOsIs Sub-theme:  Health status and risks Core indicator Brief  definition:  Prevalence and/or incidence of major diseases such as HIV/AIDS. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Description:  The purpose of this indicator is to measure long term nutritional imbalance and malnutrition resulting in undernutrition (assessed by underweight and stunting) and overweight.4 million deaths in 2005. tuberculosis. especially in many developing countries.

These disorders are the cause of staggering economic and social costs. D. poor quality of life and increased mortality. Education GROss INTAKE RATE INTO LAsT YEAR OF PRIMARY EDUcATION Sub-theme:  Education level Core indicator Brief definition:  Total number of new entrants in the last grade of primary education. sUIcIDE RATE Sub-theme:  Health status and risks Brief definition:  The number of deaths from suicide and intentional selfharm per 100 000 people. Universal primary education is an important goal of the international sustainable development agenda. Description:  The indicator is an important proxy for the prevalence of mental health disorders in a country. Education is a process by which human beings and societies reach their fullest potential. Premature deaths from tobacco-related diseases also lead to productivity losses.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  and/or wealth. as mental health disorders. expressed as a percentage of the population of the theoretical entrance age to the last grade of primary education. Mental health disorders are a major impediment to the well-being of populations in developed and developing countries. It is critical for promoting sustainable development and improving the capacity of people to address environment and development issues. especially depression and substance abuse. People with these disorders are often subjected to social isolation. The cost of treatment of tobacco-caused diseases is high and falls heavily on the finances of poor households and countries. are associated with 90% of all suicides. . regardless of age. The indicator is also called Primary Completion Rate. Description:  The indicator measures whether or not the entire eligible school age population has access to school and whether or not they complete the full primary cycle.

Description:  The indicator shows the proportion of children of primary school age who are enrolled in primary school. For instance. workers and citizens who are willing to develop and adopt new technologies and organisation techniques as workers. As society shifts towards sustainable production and consumption patterns. Description:  The indicator measures the extent to which working-age population is engaged in learning activities. Adult Tertiary Schooling Attainment Level is defined as the proportion of the population of working age (2564 years) which has completed at least the first stage tertiary education. as well . Life-long learning is essential to sustainable development. and excludes children of other age groups enrolled in primary school age as well as children of primary school age enrolled in other levels of education. LIFE LONG LEARNING Sub-theme:  Education level Brief definition:  Percentage of the population aged 25 to 64 in education or training. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition NET ENROLMENT RATE IN PRIMARY EDUcATION Sub-theme:  Education level Core indicator Brief definition:  The indictor is the ratio of the number of children of official school age (as defined by the national education system) who are enrolled in primary school to the total population of children of official school age. Description:  These indicators provide measures of the quality of the human capital stock within the adult population of approximately working age. Net enrolment refers only to children of official primary school age. Universal primary education is an important goal of the international sustainable development agenda ADULT sEcONDARY (TERTIARY) schOOLING ATTAINMENT LEVEL Sub-theme:  Education level Core indicator Brief definition:  Adult Secondary Schooling Attainment Level is defined as the proportion of the population of working age (25-64 years) which has completed at least (upper) secondary education. those who have completed upper secondary education can be expected either to have an adequate set of skills relevant to the labour market or to have demonstrated the ability to acquire such skills.

Demographics POPULATION GROWTh RATE Sub-theme:  Population change Core indicator Brief definition:  The average annual rate of change of population size during a specified period. The scale and quality of human resources are major determinants of both the creation of new knowledge and its dissemination. In settings where the conditions for sustainable agricultural and rural development are not in place.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  as new attitudes and behaviour as citizens and consumers will be needed. If reported separately for urban and rural area. high rates of rural population growth could negatively affect the use of land. air. Description:  The population growth rate measures how fast the size of population is changing. migration from rural to urban areas and the transformation of rural settlements into urban places. energy and other resources. caused by rates of natural increase (excess of births over deaths) in urban areas. Description:  This indicator provides a measure of the stock of literate persons within the adult population who are capable of using written words in daily life and to continue to learn. The high growth of urban populations. it provides a measure of urbanization. Any shortfall in literacy would provide indications of efforts required in the future to extend literacy to the remaining adult illiterate population. ADULT LITERAcY RATEs Sub-theme:  Literacy Core indicator Brief definition:  The proportion of the adult population aged 15 years and over that is literate. It reflects the accumulated accomplishment of education in spreading literacy. It is often reported separately for urban and rural areas. water. is of concern in many countries. TOTAL FERTILITY RATE Sub-theme:  Population change Brief definition:  The average number of children (live births) a cohort of women would have at the end of their reproductive period if they were sub- . E.

It is also normally disaggregated into children dependency ratio and old-age dependency ratio. and set the conditions for sustainable development. combat poverty. lower fertility has improved the ability of families and governments to make a better use of scarce resources. It can be reported separately for the whole year and for peak seasons or days. Adolescent fertility (births to women under 20 years of age) constitutes a matter of concern for many governments. DEPENDENcY RATIO Sub-theme:  Population change Core indicator Brief definition:  The dependency ratio relates the number of children (014 years old) and older persons (65 years or over) to the working-age population (15-64 years old). while the children born to young mothers tend to have higher levels of morbidity and mortality. in particular regarding social support needs. In many countries. Description:  Dependency ratios indicate the potential effects of changes in population age structures for social and economic development. . decreasing population size. Description:  Fertility is one of the variables that directly affect population change. eventually. specially in regions still experiencing relatively high fertility. A high dependency ratio indicates that the economically active population and the overall economy may face a greater burden in supporting the young and/or older economically dependent populations. The total fertility rate is expressed as children per woman. On the other hand. Early childbearing entails a much greater risk of maternal death.1 children per woman) could face rapid population ageing and.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition ject to the age-specific fertility rates of a given period. and can be disaggregated into various age-specific fertility rates. protect and repair the environment. Its calculation assumes that there is no mortality. RATIO OF LOcAL REsIDENTs TO TOURIsTs IN MAjOR TOURIsT REGIONs AND DEsTINATIONs Sub-theme:  Population change Brief definition:  The number of visitors (tourists and same day visitors) divided by the number of local residents in tourist regions and destinations. countries experiencing below-replacement fertility levels (below 2.

Disasters caused by vulnerability to natural hazards have a strong negative impact on the development process in both industrialized and developing countries. floods. hUMAN AND EcONOMIc LOss DUE TO DIsAsTERs Sub-theme:  Disaster preparedness and response Brief definition:  The number of persons deceased. earthquakes. Natural hazards PERcENTAGE OF POPULATION LIVING IN hAzARD PRONE AREAs Sub-theme:  Vulnerability to natural hazards Core indicator Brief  definition:  The percentage of national population living in areas subject to significant risk of prominent hazards: cyclones. The sub-national risk levels are then aggregated to arrive at national values. missing. F. The indicator measures the risk at sub-national scale by using historical and other data on hazards and on vulnerability. The risk of death in a disaster caused by natural hazards is a function of physical exposure to a hazardous event and vulnerability to the hazard. drought. While tourism represents a key source of income and employment in most tourist receiving regions and destinations. following integrated approaches and sustainability principles. and the amount of economic and infrastructure losses incurred as a direct result of the natural . Description:  This indicator contributes to a better understanding of the level of vulnerability to natural hazards in a given country.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Description:  The ratio can indicate total and seasonal pressure on the environmental and social resources of host regions and populations. High vulnerability means higher exposure to natural catastrophes in the absence of disaster reduction measures. thus encouraging long-term. sustainable risk reduction programs to prevent disasters. volcanoes and landslides. it also exerts considerable pressure on the environmental and socio-cultural resources of host populations. management and monitoring of tourism activities. The indicator may be calculated separately for each relevant prominent hazard. Negative environmental and social impacts of tourism can be prevented and mitigated with appropriate planning. especially in peak periods. and/or injured as a direct result of a disaster involving natural hazards.

5°C. less the removal of the main . N2O. which is known to be the most important. The indicator may be expressed as percentage of total population (for human loss) and of GDP (for economic loss). agriculture. sectoral CO2 emissions can be considered. PFCs and SF6 can be converted to CO2 equivalents using the so-called global warming potentials (GWPs) provided in assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. sulphur hexafluoride (SF6). which is expected to have a very negative impact on economic. land-use change and forestry (LULUCF). Description:  The indicator provides estimates of the human and economic impact of disasters. Description:  This indicator measures the emissions of carbon dioxide. of carbon dioxide (CO2). anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG).0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition disaster. Atmosphere cARBON DIOxIDE EMIssIONs Sub-theme:  Climate change Core indicator Brief definition:  Anthropogenic emissions. adversely affecting progress towards sustainable development. Disasters involving natural hazards can have devastating short and long-term impacts on the society and the economy of any country. Description:  This indicator measures the emissions of the six main GHGs which have a direct impact on climate change. hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). and the sector of land use. waste. social and environmental conditions in most countries of the world. perfluorocarbons (PFCs).5 to 4. nitrous oxide (N2O). G. In addition to total emissions. less removal by sinks. The typical sectors for which CO2 emissions/removals are estimated are energy. of the main greenhouse gases (GHGs) carbon dioxide (CO2). HFCs. Emissions of CH4. A doubling of the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is believed to cause an increase in the global mean temperature of 1. in terms of impact on global warming. EMIssIONs OF GREENhOUsE GAsEs Sub-theme:  Climate change Brief  definition:  Anthropogenic emissions. industrial processes. methane (CH4). less removal by sinks.

The phase-out of ODSs. lead. animals. materials. Additional air pollutants are carbon monoxide. An increase of greenhouse gas concentration in the atmosphere contributes to global warming. thereby allowing inference of the amounts of ODSs being eliminated as a result of the protocol. and air quality. which is a major global challenge to sustainable development. Improving air quality is a significant aspect of promoting sustainable human settlements. plants. cONsUMPTION OF OzONE DEPLETING sUBsTANcEs Sub-theme:  Ozone Layer Depletion Core indicator Brief definition:  This indicator shows the consumption trends for ozone depleting substances (ODSs) controlled under the Montreal Protocol on Substance that Deplete the Ozone Layer. particulate matter (PM10. if those are not available: SPM. black smoke). micro-organisms. marine life. and their substitution by less harmful substances or new processes. Description:  This indicator depicts the progress towards the phase out of ODSs by the countries which have ratified the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer and its Amendments. . will lead to the recovery of the ozone layer. Description:   The indicator provides a measure of the state of the environment in terms of air quality and is an indirect measure of population exposure to air pollution of health concern in urban areas. sulphur dioxide. The priority is collection of the indicator in large cities. and PM2. the indicator also provides information on the fulfilment of this global commitment.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  GHG CO2 through sequestration as a result of land-use change and forestry activities. biogeochemical cycles. For countries that have committed to reduce or stabilize their GHG emissions under the Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. nitrogen dioxide. nitrogen monoxide and volatile organic compounds including benzene (VOCs). AMBIENT cONcENTRATION OF AIR POLLUTANTs IN URBAN AREAs Sub-theme:  Air quality Core indicator Brief definition:   Ambient air pollution concentrations of ozone. whose depletion has adverse effects on human health.5.

From an environmental point of view. Such information is useful in identifying opportunities to protect land uses or promote future allocation aimed at providing the greatest sustainable benefits for people. for example. changes in land use will. . deterioration of the physical. Degraded land includes land affected by soil erosion. permanent pasture. LAND DEGRADATION Sub-theme:  Land use and status Brief  definition:  The share of land which due to natural processes or human activity is no longer able to sustain properly an economic function and/or the original ecological function. may pose a threat to ecosystems. forests and woodland. Land LAND UsE chANGE Sub-theme:  Land use and status Brief definition:  The indicator measures changes of the distribution of land uses within a country over time. The indicator can also be seen as an overall measure of the reduction in quality of land resources. if available and appropriate. and to sustainable agriculture in particular. built-up areas. result in changes in possible agricultural production and influence employment opportunities. chemical and biological or economic properties of soil and/or long-term loss of natural vegetation. Economically. Description:  The indicator measures the extent of land degradation.2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition H. Finer classifications may be chosen. Description:  The indicator provides information on changes in the productive or protective uses of the land resource to facilitate sustainable land use planning and policy development. and lead to natural habitat loss and landscape changes. unsustainable land use is an important factor in land degradation. other. which is an impediment to sustainable development in general. In many developing countries it is a major cause of poverty and further environmental damage due to overuse of national resources. permanent cropland. Broad land use categories are: Arable land.

which are fragile and not suitable for cultivation. inter alia. including climatic variations and human activities. and land under permanent crops is the land cultivated with crops that occupy the land for long periods and need not be replanted after each harvest.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  LAND AREA AFFEcTED BY DEsERTIFIcATION Sub-theme:  Desertification Brief  definition:  The proportion of land in drylands that is affected by desertification. Description:  This indicator shows the amount of land available for agricultural production and. This indicator is of value to land planning decision making. therefore. in some situations. and dry sub-humid areas resulting from various factors. the cropland area available for food production. damage the environment. desertification is a central problem in sustainable development. rising food and fibre demand and a decline in farm sizes forces small farmers to extend cultivation to new areas. which has contributed significantly to agricultural growth in recent years. a central sustainable development goal for large areas of the world. maintenance of that productivity is critical to the present and future livelihood of many hundreds of millions of people. ARABLE AND PERMANENT cROP LAND AREA Sub-theme:  Agriculture Core indicator Brief Definition:  Arable and permanent crop land is the total of “arable land” and “land under permanent crops”. For dryland areas. Arable land is the land under temporary crops. Crop intensification. Combating desertification is. Description:  The indicator describes the extent and severity of desertification at the national level. temporary meadows for mowing or pasture. semiarid. land under market and kitchen gardens and land temporarily fallow (for less than five years). can ease the pressure on cultivating new lands but farm practices adopted for raising yields can also. Desertification is defined as land degradation in arid. In many developing countries. . While many dryland ecosystems have generally low levels of absolute productivity.

UsE OF AGRIcULTURAL PEsTIcIDEs Sub-theme:  Agriculture Brief definition:  Use of pesticides in metric tons of active ingredients per unit of agricultural land area. soil acidification. and potassium (K20). and residues may reach surface and groundwater through leaching. Nutrient components of crops and their by-products are based on their standardized chemical composition. Pesticides tend to accumulate in the soil and in biota. It is necessary that this intensification keeps negative impacts to the resource base and the wider environment within bounds so that the sustainability of the system is not threatened. AREA UNDER ORGANIc FARMING Sub-theme:  Agriculture Brief definition:  Ratio of total utilized agricultural area occupied by organic farming to total utilized agricultural area. for crops and livestock. The three components are nitrogen (N). Description:  This indicator measures the use of pesticides in agriculture. and potential contamination of water supply with nitrates. Whereas pesticides may increase agricultural production. In many countries. which is linked to the intensification of agriculture. Organic farming involves holistic production management systems. emphasizing the . Intensive fertilizer application is linked to nutrient losses that may lead to eutrophication of water bodies. Humans can be exposed to pesticides through food. Data on the quantities of fertilizers used are converted into the three basic nutrient components and aggregated. they pose challenges to health and environment. intensification of agricultural production is a response to increases in food demand and in the scarcity of agricultural land. Description:  This indicator shows the potential environmental pressure from inappropriate fertilizer application. phosphorous (P205). IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition FERTILIzER UsE EFFIcIENcY Sub-theme:  Agriculture Brief definition:  The indicator measures the extent of fertilizer use recovery in agriculture per crop unit.

The indicator may further distinguish between primary and other forests.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  use of management practices in preference to the use of off-farm inputs. severe and . PROPORTION OF LAND AREA cOVERED BY FOREsTs Sub-theme:  Forests Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator measures the share of forest area in total land area. and play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle. herbicides and other chemicals. The primary forest area is defined as “Naturally regenerating forest of native species. Organic farming contributes to reducing environmental loading on soil and water resources and pressure on biodiversity. combined with enhanced management of natural resources. The forest area is defined as “land spanning more than 0. habitat for wildlife. water and soil. Description:  This indicator shows the importance of organic farming. particularly in tropical regions. where there are no clearly visible indications of human activities and the ecological processes are not significantly disturbed”. not only improves the health of ecosystems but also fosters the health of animals and people and increases income generation and communities’ self-reliance. Forests provide many significant resources and functions including wood products and non-wood products. The reduction of use of pesticides. Primary forests are usually associated with high levels of biological diversity.5 hectares with trees higher than 5 metres and a canopy cover of more than 10 percent. conservation of biological diversity. A continuing and fast decreasing forest area in a country might be an alarm signal of unsustainable practices in the forestry and agricultural sector. They support employment and traditional uses. The area of primary forest is an important indicator of the status of the forest ecosystem as a whole. The indicator may be extended to cover organic forestry and aquaculture. recreational opportunities. When possible the area of primary forest should also be reported on. Description:   The indicator allows for monitoring changes in the area covered by forests over time. or trees able to reach these thresholds in situ. FOREsT TREEs DAMAGED BY DEFOLIATION Sub-theme:  Forests Brief definition:  This indicator is defined as the percentage of trees on forest and other wooded land in the defoliation classes moderate.

including data on forest health. Defoliation is needle or leaf loss in the assessable crown as compared with a reference tree. It is a critical means to eradicate poverty. Description:   The purpose of the indicator is to provide information on the state of forest defoliation. Defoliation is influenced by a combination of climatic factors (especially drought). in particular air pollution. economic and social functions and on forest management practices. Description:  The indicator will provide information on forest management practices. thus. Other combinations of distance-to-coast and elevation may be used as definition of coastal zones. provides information on the impact of policies which reduce the occurrence of such influencing factors. It can be based on a variety of information. Oceans. Another approach is to measure the population living in river delta areas. the extent to which forests fulfill targets related to their environmental. The indicator. atmospheric pollution and forest pathogens. seas and coasts PERcENTAGE OF TOTAL POPULATION LIVING IN cOAsTAL AREAs Sub-theme:  Coastal zone Core indicator Brief definition:  Percentage of total population living within a 100 kilometres from the coast and 50 meters above sea level. to significantly halt deforestation and to halt degradation of natural resources and the loss of biodiversity. AREA OF FOREsT UNDER sUsTAINABLE FOREsT MANAGEMENT Sub-theme:  Forests Brief definition:  This indicator will measure the forest area that is under sustainable forest management. Sustainable forest management for a variety of uses is essential to achieving sustainable development. which are important areas at the land-ocean interface. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition dead. The extent of defoliation provides an indication of the health of forests. typically due to the economic benefits that accrue from access . Description:  This indicator measures the concentration of population in coastal areas. I. soil conditions.

e. land cover change. stocks that are either “Underexploited”. Description:  The indicator provides important information on the environmental status of coastal waters. Description:  The indicator provides information on the state of exploitation of fishery resources at the global. It measures the level of sustainable production from capture fisheries. The indicator quantifies an important driver of coastal ecosystem pressure. i. especially with regard to wastewater and marine pollution caused by ships. “Moderately exploited” or “Fully exploited” according to formal stock assessments based on a FAO procedure. pollutant loads. The indicator also provides information on the effectiveness of environmental regulation. regional and national levels. Stocks that are “Overexploited”. PROPORTION OF FIsh sTOcKs WIThIN ThEIR sAFE BIOLOGIcAL LIMITs Sub-theme:  Fisheries Core indicator Brief  definition:  Percentage of fish stocks exploited within their level of maximum biological productivity. BAThING WATER qUALITY Sub-theme:  Coastal zone Brief definition:  The indicator describes the changes over time in the quality of designated bathing waters (inland and marine) in terms of compliance with standards for microbiological parameters (total coliforms and faecal coliforms) and physicochemical parameters (mineral oils. “Depleted” and “Recovering” are outside their maximum biological productivity. It is based on formal stock assessments. an important element of food security. . Violation of bathing quality standards poses health risks for the population as well economic risks to the tourism sector.. surface-active substances and phenols). coastal fisheries. Among the most important pressures are habitat conversion.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  to ocean navigation. and it also quantifies an important component of vulnerability to sea-level rise and other coastal hazards. A high population concentration in the low-elevation coastal zone (defined as less than 10 meters elevation) increases a country’s vulnerability to sea-level rise and other coastal hazards such as storm surges. and introduction of invasive species. tourism and recreation.

Protected marine areas are essential for maintaining marine ecosystem diversity. in conjunction with management of human impacts on the environment. for shared fish stocks. Description:  The indicator represents the extent to which marine areas important for conserving biodiversity. The lowered biomasses and fragmented habitats resulting from the impacts of fishing are predicted to lead to local extinctions especially among large. are protected from incompatible uses. the marine trophic index provides a measure of ecosystem integrity. PROPORTION OF MARINE AREA PROTEcTED Sub-theme:  Marine environment Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the share of national marine area (territorial water plus exclusive economic zones) that has been reserved by law or other effective means to protect part or all of the enclosed environment. MARINE TROPhIc INDEx Sub-theme:  Marine environment Brief definition:  The marine trophic index measures the change in mean trophic level of fisheries landings by region and globally. scientific research (including baseline monitoring). It could be calculated separately for different marine ecological regions. cultural heritage. and other values. The indicator may be disaggregated by management category of the protected areas. if appropriate classification systems are available. long-lived. The long term sustainability of fisheries is. Excessive fishing is the most widespread and dominant human impact on ocean ecosystems and is a major impact on marine biodiversity. directly linked to human livelihoods and well-being. . in turn. Description:  In addition to being an indicator of the sustainability of fisheries. recreation. and ranges from a value of 1 for primary producers up to a level of 5 for marine mammals and humans. slow growing species. regional catch and effort statistics. Trophic level is defined as the position of an organism in the food chain. leaving ecosystems less able to cope with natural or human-induced change.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition derived from national and. Declining trophic levels result in shortened food chains. natural resource maintenance.

are of particularly high species richness. In many countries.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  AREA OF cORAL REEF EcOsYsTEMs AND PERcENTAGE LIVE cOVER Sub-theme:  Marine environment Brief definition:  The indicator measures trends in the extant area of coral reefs (a ‘key ecosystem’ for many countries). It is an important measure of a country’s vulnerability to water shortages. . and the percentage live cover of those reefs. are under a high degree of threat. expressed as a percentage of the total volume of water available annually through the hydrological cycle (total renewable water resources). The terms water resources and water use are understood as freshwater resources and freshwater use. represent rare or unusual habitat. Description:  The indicator illustrates the effectiveness of national measures designed to conserve marine biological diversity and ensure its use is sustainable. domestic and industrial sectors). Scarce water could have negative effects on sustainability constraining economic and regional development. or those ecosystems for which it is possible to measure changes in extent. Freshwater PROPORTION OF TOTAL WATER REsOURcEs UsED Sub-theme:  Water quantity Core indicator Brief definition:  Total annual volume of groundwater and surface water withdrawn from its sources for human use (in the agricultural. Key ecosystems are those ecosystems for which it is most important to measure changes in extent. are severely reduced in area relative to their potential original extent. J. Description:  The indicator shows the degree to which total renewable water resources are being exploited to meet the country’s water demands and is thus a measure of water scarcity. and leading to loss of biodiversity. and/or are of high actual or potential economic importance. coral reefs contain rare or locally endemic or threatened species.

The indicator also provides information on progress in implementation of integrated water resources management plans. Value added (gross) by economic activity is defined as in the National Accounts as the value of output less the value of intermediate consumption. Description:  This indicator measures the intensity of water use in terms of volumes of water per unit of value added. can have serious consequences for sustainable development. even without fatal consequences. Water used by an economic activity consists of the sum of (i) water directly abstracted from the environment either permanently or temporarily for own use and (ii) water received from other industries including reused water. disrupt children’s development and education. PREsENcE OF FAEcAL cOLIFORMs IN FREshWATER Sub-theme:  Water qualitity Core indicator Brief definition:  The proportion of freshwater resources destined for potable supply containing concentrations of faecal coliforms which exceed the levels recommended in the World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality. in the longer term. especially among children. are the major cause for morbidity and mortality in many developing countries. . which. it shows whether a country has decoupled decouple water use from economic growth. Diarrhoeal diseases. largely the consequence of faecal contamination of drinking-water supplies. Frequent diarrhoeal episodes. Over time.0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition WATER UsE INTENsITY BY EcONOMIc AcTIVITY Sub-theme:  Water quantity Core indicator Brief  definition:  The indicator is defined as cubic metres of water used per unit of value added (in US $) by economic activity. It is an indicator of pressure of the economy on the water resources. It identifies communities where contamination of water with human and animal excreta at source or in the supply poses a threat to health. Description:  The indicator assesses the microbial quality of water available to communities for basic needs.

The presence of high BOD may indicate faecal contamination or increases in particulate and dissolved organic carbon from non-human and animal sources that can restrict water use and development. Description:  This indicator assesses the potential level of pollution from domestic and industrial/commercial point sources entering the aquatic environment. by level of treatment (primary. Description:  The purpose of this indicator is to assess the quality of water available to consumers in localities or communities for basic and commercial needs. It is also one of a group of indicators of ecosystem health. including fish. Human ill health due to water quality problems can reduce work capability and affect children’s growth and education. High levels of oxygen consumption pose a threat to a variety of aquatic organisms. in order to reduce pollutants before being discharged to the environment. secondary or tertiary). high levels of organic matter and hazardous substances. It helps to identify communities where wastewater treatment action is required to protect the ecosystem. posing threats to aquatic ecosystems and human health. WAsTEWATER TREATMENT Sub-theme:  Water quality Brief  definition:  Proportion of wastewater that is treated. necessitate expensive treatment and impair ecosystem health. Untreated or insufficiently treated wastewater can result in increased nutrient levels. . and monitors progress towards reducing this potential within the framework of integrated water resources management.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  BIOLOGIcAL OxYGEN DEMAND (BOD) IN WATER BODIEs Sub-theme:  Water quality Brief definition:  BOD measures the amount of oxygen required or consumed for the microbiological decomposition (oxidation) of organic material in water.

The indicator may also be disaggregated by management category of the protected areas. in conjunction with management of human impacts on the environment. planning and design. and other values. MANAGENT EFFEcTIVENEss OF PROTEcTED AREAs Sub-theme:  Ecosystem Brief definition:  This indicator will measure the effectiveness with which protected areas are being managed based on information about the context. scientific research (including baseline monitoring). and conservation outcomes of protected areas.2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition K. It can be calculated separately for different terrestrial ecological regions. Description:  The indicator represents the extent to which areas important for conserving biodiversity. natural resource maintenance. cultural heritage. TOTAL AND BY EcOLOGIcAL REGION Sub-theme:  Ecosystem Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the share of terrestrial area that has been reserved by law or other effective means to protect part or all of the enclosed environment. management processes. but also whether these are effectively managed. Description:  Management effectiveness of protected areas is an important indicator of how well protected areas are conserving biodiversity. resource inputs. recreation. Biodiversity PROPORTION OF TERREsTRIAL AREA PROTEcTED. are protected from incompatible uses. . However. It shows how much of each major ecosystem is dedicated to maintaining its diversity and integrity. to determine whether this is a successful strategy it is necessary to know not only about the area and systems they cover. delivery of goods and services. Protected areas are essential for maintaining ecosystem diversity in countries and ecological regions. This is critical as most nations use protected areas as a cornerstone of biodiversity conservation.

Description:  The indicator assesses the relative effectiveness of measures for conserving biodiversity at ecosystem level. animals. micro-organisms and physical environment of any given place. Key ecosystem require attention and specific policy measures as they contain rare or locally endemic or threatened species. and the complex relationships linking them into a functional system. Key ecosystems can be defined as either those ecosystems for which it is most important to measure changes in extent. It is a tool to estimate the need for specific conservation measures to maintain the biological diversity in a country or region. inter-basin transfers or water withdrawal. fragmentation can be assessed based on number. and/or are of high actual or potential economic importance. are under a high degree of threat. The indicator has the potential to illustrate the effectiveness of national measures designed to conserve biological diversity. represent rare or unusual habitat. through the effects of area reduction. largely negative implications for their native biodiversity. . are severely reduced in area relative to their potential original extent. are of particularly high species richness. or those ecosystems for which it is possible for measure changes in extent. placement and amount of water stored behind dams.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  AREA OF sELEcTED KEY EcOsYsTEMs Sub-theme:  Ecosystem Brief definition:  This indicator measures the extant area of identified key ecosystems. Description:  The fragmentation of habitats caused by human activities has significant. For forests and other terrestrial habitat types the patch size distribution of habitats may be derived from vegetation information systems. For river fragmentation. FRAGMENTATION OF hABITAT Sub-theme:  Ecosystem Brief definition:  This indicator measures the fragmentation of identified key habitats. as well as through interruption of ecosystem processes and associated ecosystem degradation. Ecosystem refers to the plants. defined as the interruption of a river’s natural flow by dams. edge exposure and isolation.

or can be aggregated to incorporate a number of taxa (e. ABUNDANcE OF INVAsIVE ALIEN sPEcIEs Sub-theme:  Species Brief definition:  The indicator measures the number of invasive alien species in a given country or region. Critically Endangered. The indicator illustrates the effectiveness of national measures designed to limit the loss in biodiversity. butterflies). The indicator is an adaptation of the IUCN Red List Index. Extinct and endangered species constitute a major loss of biodiversity. The indicator also illustrates the effectiveness of local. and the relative effectiveness of measures to maintain it. national.g. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition chANGE IN ThREAT sTATUs OF sPEcIEs Sub-theme:  Species Core indicator Brief definition:  This indicator is an index based on the number of species in each category of the IUCN Red List (Least Concern. habitats. or species. An invasive alien species is a species introduced outside its normal distribution whose establishment and spread modifies ecosystems. and the number of species changing categories between assessments as a result of genuine improvement or deterioration in status. the best known and most accepted methodology for assessing trends in the status of threatened species at a global level. according to data availability and indicator applicability. Near Threatened.g. Endangered. which plays a critical role in overall sustainable development. Extinct in the Wild. The indicator can be applied to individual species groups (e. Description:  The indicator allows monitoring the abundance of species over time. in a fashion similar to the Living Planet Index). birds. ABUNDANcE OF KEY sPEcIEs Sub-theme:  Species Brief  definition:  This indicator uses estimates of population trends in selected species to represent changes in biodiversity. . regional and global measures to protect endangered species. Extinct). Vulnerable. Description:  The indicator allows monitoring the extinction risk of species over time.

by modifying the habitat. species released for hunting or biological control). L.g. but more commonly are unintentional (e. It is obtained by calculating gross capital formation as percentage of gross domestic product. or for the pet trade). Species introductions caused by humans may be intentional (e. or altering native species dynamics.g.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Description:  The indicator measures an important threat to biodiversity. IAS have been a major cause of extinctions. INVEsTMENT shARE IN GROss DOMEsTIc PRODUcT Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Core indicator Brief definition:  This indicator refers to the share of investment in total production. especially on islands and in freshwater habitats. It is a powerful summary indicator of economic development. . introduced with traded goods such as lumber. Gross capital formation (investment) is defined as the total value of gross fixed capital formation plus changes in inventories and acquisitions less disposal of valuables. in the ballast water of ships. Invasive alien species (IAS) may threaten native species as direct predators or competitors. It reflects changes in total production of goods and services. Description:  The indicator is a basic economic growth indicator and measures the level and extent of total economic output. Economic development GROss DOMEsTIc PRODUcT PER cAPITA Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Core indicator Brief  definition:  Levels of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita are obtained by dividing annual or period GDP at current market prices by population. GDP is the sum of value-added of all production units including all taxes and subsidies on products which are not included in the valuation of output. A variation of the indicator could be the growth of real GDP per capita which is derived by computing the annual or period growth rate of GDP in constant basic producers’ or purchasers’ prices divided by corresponding population. Gross fixed capital formation is the total value of produced assets used in the production process for more than one year. as vectors of disease. even though it does not account for social and environmental cost of production and consumption.

If calculated as net savings. GROss sAVINGs Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Brief  definition:  The indicator is defined in national accounts as gross disposable income (i. Description:  The indicator modifies traditional net savings in order to derive an aggregate savings concept more commensurate to sustainable development. gross national income plus the balance of current transfers with the rest of the world). as gross (net) savings divided by gross (net) disposable income. Both gross and net savings may be expressed as rates. capital transfers to the rest of the world. an important element of the sustainable development process. possibly.e. the alternative net savings. Acquisitions of capital goods provide important information on future economic performance of a society by widening and deepening the capital stock. It provides important information on domestic means of implementation for sustainable development. Education expenditures are added as they can be seen as investments in human capital. especially in developing countries with low amounts productive capital. Description:  The indicator measures the part of income available for investment or. forests) and less pollution damage (damage from urban air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions). for example. A negative adjusted net savings rate can be interpreted as a reduction in total wealth of the economy. gross savings less capital depreciation.e. IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Description:  The investment ratio gives an indication of the relative importance of investment as opposed to.e. gross national income less capital depreciation plus the balance of current transfers with the rest of the world). i. plus expenditures for education. i. consumption. If available. thus implying unsustainability. . ADjUsTED NET sAVINGs As PERcENTAGE OF GNI Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Brief definition:  Adjusted net savings is defined as net savings (i. The indicator measures. may provide superior information. The indicator is then computed by dividing adjusted net savings by gross national income.e. it is an important indicator for future net wealth. minerals. less depletion of a variety of natural resources (oil. thus.

the indicator can alternatively or additionally be defined as total external debt (private and public) divided by GNI. Total debt consists of external debt (debt held by non-residents) and internal debt (held by residents). While external borrowing is a method of supplement- . which if too high hampers economic growth. Inflation. especially if unanticipated. Very high and accelerating inflation rates may be caused by excessive financing of public debts through seignorage and can be sign of unsustainable public finances. Consumer price indices are based on a representative basket of goods and services purchased by consumers in an economy. Description:  With regard to public debt. High and increasing debt ratios can be seen as an indication of unsustainable public finances. For countries where external debt is a major concern.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  Depletion of natural resource is deducted to reflect the decline in asset values associated with their extraction and harvest. Description:  The indicator measures inflation. has often unwanted distributional effects. DEBT TO GROss NATIONAL INcOME RATIO Sub-theme:  Sustainable public finance Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator can be defined as the total amount of outstanding debt issued by the general government divided by gross national income. as it reduces real income of fixed income earners and shifts wealth away from creditors to debtors. High and unanticipated inflation increases uncertainty and leads to inter-and intra-temporal misallocation of resources as long as prices are not fully flexible. this is one of the indicators that measures the burden of servicing the external debt of a country in relation to its total income (GNI). Composition and relative weights of the basket are reviewed periodically. Pollution damages are deducted as they reduce human and real capital. the indicator is a standard measure of public finance. Debt constitutes a burden for future generations as it reduces the amount available for their consumption and investments. With regard to external debt. INFLATION RATE Sub-theme:  Macroeconomic performance Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the cost of living as measured by the annual percentage increase of the consumer price index.

own-account workers and members of producers’ cooperatives). EMPLOYMENT-TO-POPULATION RATIO Sub-theme:  Employment Core indicator Brief  definition:  The employment-to-population ratio is defined as the proportion of a country’s working-age population that is employed. an unsustainable external debt burden will choke development. VULNERABLE EMPLOYMENT Sub-theme:  Employment Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the share of own-account workers and contributing family members in total employed people. Description:  This indicator provides information how many persons are vulnerable to economic risk because of weak institutional employment arrangements. Description:  The employment-to-population ratio provides information on the ability of an economy to create employment. The indicator is based on the broader indicator ‘status in employment’ which distinguishes between three categories of the total employed. These are: age and salaried workers (also known as employees). For policy purposes. often associated with low labour productivity and economic growth rates. as they can provide information on gender differences in labour market activity in a given country. High values of the indicator may also indicate a large agricultural sector in terms of employment. It is typically disaggregated by sex and by age group. self-employed workers (employers. Employment-to-population ratios are of particular interest when broken down by sex. employment-to-population ratios of youth and old are particular relevant. is viewed as the desired portion of the economically active population (labour force). The indicator may be broken down by sex. Employment. The indicator provides information on the informalization of labor markets. which may be associated with increasing and persistent poverty. contributing family workers (also known as unpaid family workers). as opposed to unemployment. .8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition ing savings and financing the investment gap in a country. Own-account workers and contributing family members are regarded as especially vulnerable as they have by definition no formal work arrangements and are therefore more likely to have a low degree of job security and to lack access to social security.

improved health and skills of workers (“human capital”) and the generation of new technologies.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment  LABOUR PRODUcTIVITY AND UNIT LABOUR cOsT Sub-theme:  Employment Core indicator Brief  definition:   Labour productivity is defined as output (in constant prices) per unit of labour. shARE OF WOMEN IN WAGE EMPLOYMENT IN ThE NON-AGRIcULTURAL sEcTOR Sub-theme:  Employment Core indicator Brief  definition:  The indicator is the share of female workers in wage employment in the non-agricultural sector expressed as a percentage of total wage employment in that same sector. may indicate a decrease in international competitiveness. including employers’ contributions to social security and pension schemes. Unit labor cost represents a direct link between productivity and the cost of labour used in generating output. Description:  Positive changes in labour productivity measure the part of economic growth due to more effective work by those who are employed. improvements in organization as well as physical and institutional infrastructures. Unit labour cost is defined as labour compensation per unit of gross value added produced. a rise in labour cost that is higher than the rise in labour productivity. A rise in a country’s unit labour cost represents an increased reward for labour’s contribution to output. Driving forces behind labour productivity include the accumulation of machinery and equipment. Both hours worked and number of persons employed can be used as unit of labour. The non-agricultural sector includes industry and services. if other costs are not adjusted in compensation. Total labour compensation includes gross wages and salaries of employees and other costs of labour that are paid by employers. Description:  The indicator shows the extent to which women have access to paid employment. However. which will affect their integration into the monetary economy. especially in tradable goods producing sectors. The indicator can be reported for the total economy as well as for different sectors. It also indicates the degree to which labour markets are open to women in industry and services sectors which affects not only equal employment opportunities for women but also economic efficiency .

Description:  The number of Internet users is a measure of Internet access and use. As an information distribution system. including work. It provides those in rural and remote areas with closer contact to the outside world. new economic opportunities as well as possibilities for more environment-friendly options for the marketplace. FIxED TELEPhONE LINEs PER 100 POPULATION Sub-theme:  Information and communication technologies Brief definition:  The indicator is derived by dividing the number of fixed telephone lines by total population and multiplying by 100. Promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women thus eliminating all forms of gender-based discrimination in labour markets is essential to defeating poverty and fostering sustainable development. entertainment and data files.80 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition through flexibility of the labour market and the economy’s capacity to adapt to changes over time. the Internet and its usage provide opportunities for bringing education and information within the reach of all. NUMBER OF INTERNET UsERs PER POPULATION Sub-theme:  Information and communication technologies Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator is computed by first dividing the number of Internet users by total population. Telecommunication is critical to support sustainable development and is closely linked to social. Description:  This indicator is one of the broadest and most common measurements of the degree of telecommunication development in a country. The Internet is defined as a world-wide public computer network that provides access to a number of communication services including the World Wide Web and carries email. and then multiplying by 100. Internet-enabled mobile phone. digital TV. games machine etc. Location of use can refer to any location. as they are potential substitutes for . Modern communications are considered to be relatively benign to the environment. economic. news. It is also a critical factor for many economic activities and improves exchange of information among citizens. Internet users are those who use the Internet from any location. It also provides significant. It can significantly shorten time lags as well as open up a new range of information resources. Internet access may be via a computer. and institutional development.

MOBILE cELLULAR TELEPhONE sUBscRIBERs PER 100 POPULATION Sub-theme:  Information and communication technologies Brief definition:  The indicator is derived by dividing the number of mobile cellular subscribers by total population and multiplying by 100. It is a critical component of future economic growth. Moreover. GROss DOMEsTIc ExPENDITURE ON REsEARch AND DEVELOPMENT As A PERcENT OF GROss DOMEsTIc PRODUcT Sub-theme:  Research and development Brief  definition:  Gross domestic expenditure on scientific research and experimental development (R&D) expressed as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Description:  This ratio provides an indication of the level of financial resources devoted to R&D in terms of their share of the GDP. mobile telephony has overtaken fixed telephony in its importance as means of communication. R&D is essential for expanding the knowledge basis and developing new and improved products in the economy. TOURIsM cONTRIBUTION TO GDP Sub-theme:  Tourism Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the sum of the value added (at basic prices) generated by all industries in response to internal tourism . Gross domestic expenditure on R&D (GERD) activities are defined as the total intramural expenditure on research and development performed on the national territory during a given period. Description:  This indicator is one of the broadest and most common measurements of the degree of telecommunication development in a country. This includes both current costs and capital expenditures. The indicator is also used as a general infrastructure indicator. R&D on issues relevant for sustainable development increases the scientific basis for informed decision-making in this area. economic. Telecommunication is critical to support sustainable development and is closely linked to social.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 8 transport and induce relatively low levels of environmental pollution. and institutional development. In many developing countries.

the current account balance represents the net foreign investment or net lending/borrowing position of a country vis-à-vis the rest of the world. non-financial assets. Repayment of these liabilities decreases the resources future generations have available for consumption and investment. A current account deficit has to be financed through an increase in financial and non-financial liabilities vis-à-vis the rest of the world or a decrease in reserve assets. Along with net capital transfers and acquisition/disposal of nonproduced. M. Persistent current account deficits or surpluses indicate a macroeconomic instability that is not conducive to sustained economic growth and. The current account is part of the balance of payments and contains financial transactions of economic value between residents and non-residents of an economy. the current account components are the balance of trade in goods and services.82 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition consumption and the amount of net taxes on products and imports included within the value of this expenditure. . Global economic partnership cURRENT AccOUNT DEFIcIT As PERcENTAGE OF GDP Sub-theme:  Trade Core indicator Brief  definition:  The indicator is the balance of the current account divided by gross domestic product. It is based on tourism satellite account (TSA). balance of income (compensation of employees working abroad and income from foreign investments) and current transfers (workers remittances and government transfers). contributes to the economic objectives of governments and shows its possible role as a relevant player in moving towards a more innovative economy. a satellite account to standard national accounts that serves as the international standard on tourism statistics. to sustained means of implementation of sustainable development goals. Description:  Current account balance is part of the measure of an economy’s savings. There is increasing consensus on the importance of tourism as a strategic sector in the national economy insofar as it provides an essential contribution to the economic well-being of the resident population. In the 5th edition of the balance of payment manual. therefore. Description:  GDP generated by visitor consumption is the most comprehensive aggregate illustrating the economic relevance of tourism.

Especially if compared with tariffs imposed on exports from developed countries. whereas for developing country importers it is a measure of South-South trade. Description:  Trade can play a major role in achieving sustainable development. the indicator provides information on whether the tariff structure of a country is commensurate with fair trade principles. the indicator is one measure of the relative importance of North-South trade. Exports from developing countries and from LDCs constitute a major source of external financing for sustainable development of those countries. Trade-weighted averages may also be used to compute this indicator. AVERAGE TARIFF BARRIERs IMPOsED ON ExPORTs FROM DEVELOPING cOUNTRIEs AND LDcs Sub-theme:  Trade Brief definition:  The indicator can be defined as the simple average tariff imposed by country on exports from least-developed countries (LDCs) and from other developing countries to the country. The indicator can be disaggregated by product groups. the indicator may be further broken down into product groups. . Tariff barriers imposed on exports from developing countries and LDCs may hinder the sustainable development in those countries. As the basket of exported goods for many developing countries and especially LDCs is relatively small. The indicator also provides information on the implementation of international commitments to increase the trade opportunities of developing countries. For developed country importers.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 8 shARE OF IMPORTs FROM DEVELOPING cOUNTRIEs AND LDcs Sub-theme:  Trade Brief  definition:  The indicator is defined as the share of merchandise imports from least-developed countries (LDCs) and from other developing countries in total imports into the reporting countries in a given year. Description:  Trade can play a major role in achieving sustainable development. The simple average tariff is the unweighted average of the effectively applied rates at the most detailed tariff line level.

FOREIGN DIREcT INVEsTMENT (FDI) NET INFLOWs AND NET OUTFLOWs As PERcENTAGE OF GDP Sub-theme:  External financing Brief  definition:  This indicator is defined as the share of foreign direct investment (FDI) net inflows and of FDI net outflows in GDP. For donor countries. the indicator provides information on the adherence to the internationally agreed target of ODA to be at least 0. net of repayment of principal. respectively. the indicator provides information on the contribution of foreign countries to sustainable development as well as on their dependency on foreign aid. For many developing countries. ODA consists of grants and concessional loans. and aimed mainly at promoting development and welfare of developing countries.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition NET OFFIcIAL DEVELOPMENT AssIsTANcE GIVEN OR REcEIVED As PERcENTAGE OF GROss NATIONAL INcOME Sub-theme:  External financing Core indicator Brief  definition:  This indicator is defined as the total ODA given or received as a share of GNI of the source or recipient country. FDI is investment made to acquire a lasting interest in or effective control over an enterprise operating outside of the economy of the investor. ODA comprises bilateral disbursements of concessional funds to developing countries and multilateral institutions. Description:  The indicator is a measure of the size of flows that are both concessional. Description:  The indicator shows the provision of external financing resources in the form of direct investments at home from foreign investors and abroad from domestic investors.7 % of GNI. FDI inflows are a major and relatively stable source of external financing and thereby provide important means of implementation of sustainable develop- . ODA remains an important source of external means of implementation for sustainable development in many developing countries. and are net of repatriation of capital and repayment of loans. FDI net inflows and net outflows include reinvested earnings and intra-company loans. For developing countries. When ODA receipts by developing countries are measured. ODA comprises disbursement of concessional finance from both bilateral and multilateral sources. When ODA flows by donor countries are measured.

As a result of increased globalization the importance of remittances has been rapidly increasing in the last decade. FDI also contributes to the transfer of technology and management skills.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 8 ment goals. minus the materials that are exported. Consumption and production patterns MATERIAL INTENsITY OF ThE EcONOMY Sub-theme:  Material consumption Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the ratio of Domestic Material Consumption (DMC) to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at constant prices. Sustained increases in FDI inflows are often a sign of an improved general investment climate. In many cases. manufacturing and waste disposal. N. material processing. Reductions in intensity of . For many countries. FDI outflows have the potential to improve sustainable development in receiving countries. Description:  The indicator provides a basis for policies to decouple the growth of the economy from the use of natural resources in order to reduce environment degradation resulting from primary production. remittances are a major and stable source of external financing and thereby provide important means of implementation of sustainable development goals. REMITTANcEs As PERcENTAGE OF GNI Sub-theme:  External financing Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as total current private transfers received by residents in a country plus compensation of employees earned by nonresident workers and migrants’ transfers divided by Gross National Income (GNI). Description:  This indicator shows the extent of financial benefit for a country from temporary and permanent movements of its residents who are able to work abroad. DMC is defined as the total amount of materials (measured by weight) directly used in the economy (used domestic extraction plus imports). Conversely. Reducing the material intensity of production and consumption of goods and services is essential to environmental protection and resource conservation.

material processing. Primary production of raw materials. minus the materials that are exported. Energy is a key factor in economic development and in providing vital services that improve quality of life. biomass. Materials may be broken down by type of material (minerals. both by depleting resources and by creating pollution. Although energy is a key requirement for economic progress. by recycling used and waste material. manufacturing and waste disposal. and ultimate disposal of the waste material has major environmental impacts. its production. DOMEsTIc MATERIAL cONsUMPTION Sub-theme:  Material consumption Brief Definition:  Domestic Material Consumption (DMC) is defined as the weight of the total amount of materials directly used in the economy (used domestic extraction plus imports). It can be broken down by main user category. Description:  DMC is a useful indicator. use and by-products have resulted in major pressures on the environment.8 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition material use can be achieved by more efficient use of natural resources in production and consumption. The indicator provides a basis for policies to increase the efficient use of raw materials in order to conserve natural resources and reduce environment degradation resulting from primary extraction. ANNUAL ENERGY cONsUMPTION. fossil fuels). as it provides an assessment of the absolute level of use of resources. . Description:  This indicator measures the level of energy use and reflects the energy-use patterns in the economy overall and in different sectors. TOTAL AND BY MAIN UsER cATEGORY Sub-theme:  Energy Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as the total energy consumption (total primary energy supply or total final consumption) in the economy (in tonnes of oil equivalents). and by shifts in consumption patterns to less material intensive goods and services. processing of the materials into products.

It reduces environmental degradation caused by non-renewable energy sources. to decouple economic growth from energy consumption. tide and wave) and combustible renewables and waste (biomass. Description:  Declining trends in overall energy use relative to GDP (or value added) indicate that the economy is able to improve its energy efficiency and. animal products. municipal waste and industrial waste). GENERATION OF hAzARDOUs WAsTEs Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management Core indicator Brief definition:  The total amount of hazardous wastes generated per year through industrial or other waste generating activities. Renewable energy sources are divided into non-combustible (geothermal. gas) and nuclear. hydro. and in particular of electricity from renewable sources of energy. Energy from renewables can increase energy security and lead to diversification of energy supply. Non-renewables are fossil fuels (coal.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 8 shARE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY sOURcEs IN TOTAL ENERGY UsE Sub-theme:  Energy Brief definition:  The share of renewable sources in total primary energy supply or total energy consumption. petroleum products. according to the definition of hazardous waste as referred to in the Basel Convention and other related conventions. INTENsITY OF ENERGY UsE. TOTAL AND BY EcONOMIc AcTIVITY Sub-theme:  Energy Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as energy use (of the economy in total and of the main sectors) divided by gross domestic product (or value added in case of a sector). Description:  The promotion of energy. hence. contributes to the mitigation of climate change and reduces the depletion of natural resources. solar. Description:  The indicator provides a measure of the extent and type of industrialization in a country and the nature of industrial activities including . Improving energy efficiency has beneficial effects on energy security and reduces pressures from economic activities on the environment. wind. crude oil. is a high priority of sustainable development for several reasons.

Normally. Waste generated per unit of value-added shows if there is decoupling of waste generation from economic growth. incinerated. composted. Description:  The indicator measures the proportion of waste generated which is recycled. both hazardous and nonhazardous. or changes in national hazardous waste legislation.88 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition technologies and processes generating hazardous wastes. and therefore impact on human health. Reduced generation of hazardous wastes may indicate reduced industrial activities in a country. or landfilled on a controlled site. The amount of waste recycled and composted reduces the demand for raw materials. There may also be a benefit of increased income generation for the urban poor through recycling schemes. expressed per capita and per unit of value added (in US $) by economic activity (at constant prices). leading to a reduction in resource extraction. It gives an indication of the environmental impact of waste management in the country. municipalities and households. GENERATION OF WAsTE Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management Brief  definition:  The amount of all waste. . long-term exposure is required before harmful effects are seen. Description:  The main purpose is to show the trend in the generation of waste produced by different human activities. generated by selected main groups of industries or sectors of the economy. The treatment and disposal of the generated waste may cause environmental pollution and expose humans to harmful substances and bacteria. The proper treatment and disposal of waste is important from an environmental and social viewpoint but can be an economic burden on industries. introduction of cleaner production in the industrial processes. WAsTE TREATMENT AND DIsPOsAL Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management Brief definition:  Percentage of waste which is recycled. incinerated. Waste represents a considerable loss of resources both in the form of materials and energy. changing patterns in consumers’ habits. and landfilled on a controlled site. composted. The generation of hazardous wastes has a direct impact on health and the environment.

such as pollution. can have a direct impact on health and the environment through exposure to ionizing radiation. measured in passenger-km. Description:  The purpose of the indicator is to represent the progress in managing the various radioactive wastes that arise from the nuclear fuel cycle and/or from nuclear applications. MODAL sPLIT OF FREIGhT TRANsPORT Sub-theme:  Transport Brief  definition:  The indicator measures the share of each mode (road. than mass transit. Description:  The indicator provides information on the relative importance of different modes for passenger transport. It provides a measure of both the current status of radioactive waste management at any time and the progress made over time towards the overall sustainability of radioactive waste management. if not properly managed. agriculture. MODAL sPLIT OF PAssENGER TRANsPORT Sub-theme:  Transport Core indicator Brief definition:  The indicator measures the share of each mode (passenger cars.DescriptionofCSDIndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment 8 MANAGEMENT OF RADIOAcTIVE WAsTE Sub-theme:  Waste generation and management Brief definition:  Progress in the management of radioactive waste is measured against key milestones related to both the processing of waste into forms suitable for either safe storage or for placement into a designated endpoint (the “form factor”) and to the placement of waste into an endpoint facility (“endpoint factor”). measured in tonne-km. global warming as well as a higher accident rate. rail and inland waterways) in total inland freight transport. such as nuclear power generation and other nuclear fuel cycle related activities. buses and coaches. Radioactive waste. is considered. industry and research. and trains) in total inland passenger transport. radioisotope production and use for applications in medicine. Radioactive waste from various sources. The use of cars for passenger transportation is generally less energy efficient and has greater environmental and social impacts. .

Description:  The indicator measures how much energy is used for moving both goods and people. . transport is a major user of energy. mostly in the form of oil products. Road transport is less energyefficient and produces more emissions per tonne-kilometer than either rail or inland waterways transport. Energy use for transport therefore contributes to the depletion of natural resources. Transport serves economic and social development through the distribution of goods and services and through personal mobility. Therefore. ENERGY INTENsITY OF TRANsPORT Sub-theme:  Transport Brief definition:  The indicator is defined as fuel used per unit of freightkilometer (km) hauled and per unit of passenger-km traveled by mode. the use of road for freight transport has greater environmental and social impacts. Reducing energy intensity in transport can reduce the environmental impacts of this sector while maintaining its economic and social benefits. as well as a higher accident rate.0 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition Description:  The indicator provides information on the relative importance of different modes for freight transport. to air pollution and to climate change. such as pollution. than either rail or inland waterways transport. which makes transport the most important driver behind growth in global oil demand. At the same time. global warming.

1–12.1–5.46 17.1–7. International cooperation to accelerate sustainable development in developing countries and related domestic policies Combating poverty Changing consumption patterns Demographic dynamics and sustainability Protecting and promoting human health conditions Promoting sustainable human settlement development Integrating environment and development in decision-making 2.  Appendix 1.66 6. Preamble Paragraphs 1. 17. 4. 10. 6. 7.1–4.40 12. including enclosed and semi-enclosed seas.104 15.1–17. cONsERVATION AND MANAGEMENT OF REsOURcEs FOR DEVELOPMENT 9.80 8. sOcIAL AND EcONOMIc DIMENsIONs 2. and coastal areas and the protection. 15.1–8.76 .1–1.46 7.1–11.1–13.1–18.11 16.1–3.1–14.35 10.136 18.6 sEcTION I. all kinds of seas. 12.1–15.27 5.90 19. 13.1–19. Protection of the atmosphere Integrated approach to the planning and management of land resources Combating deforestation Managing fragile ecosystems: combating desertification and drought Managing fragile ecosystems: sustainable mountain development Promoting sustainable agriculture and rural development Conservation of biological diversity Environmentally sound management of biotechnology Protection of the oceans. 11.1–2. management and use of water resources Environmentally sound management of toxic chemicals. 14. 16.1–9. 19.43 3.54 sEcTION II. 18. including prevention of illegal international traffic in toxic and dangerous products 9. 3.18 11.12 4. 5. Agenda 21 — Table of Contents chapter 1.24 14. rational use and development of their living resources Protection of the quality and supply of freshwater resources: application of integrated approaches to the development.1–6.63 13.1–16.1–10. 8.

12 25. cooperation and capacity-building Science for sustainable development Promoting education.14 sEcTION IV.7 29. 39. 35.1–23. Environmentally sound management of hazardous wastes.1–25. 32.1–21.17 26.9 27.2 IndicatorsofSustainableDevelopment:GuidelinesandMethodologies—ThirdEdition 20. 38. 34.25 36.4 24.1–37.1–20. sTRENGThENING ThE ROLE OF MAjOR GROUPs 23.1–31.30 .10 40. 30.1–24. Preamble Global action for women towards sustainable and equitable development Children and youth in sustainable development Recognizing and strengthening the role of indigenous people and their communities Strengthening the role of non-governmental organizations: partners for sustainable development Local authorities’ initiatives in support of Agenda 21 Strengthening the role of workers and their trade unions Strengthening the role of business and industry Scientific and technological community Strengthening the role of farmers 23. 36.1–22. 24.13 28.1–34.45 39.1–32.1–30.9 sEcTION III. 27. including prevention of illegal international traffic in hazardous wastes Environmentally sound management of solid wastes and sewage-related issues Safe and environmentally sound management of radioactive wastes 20. 40. 22. 37.49 22. MEANs OF IMPLEMENTATION 33.1–29.1–40.14 30.1–28.1–33.1–36. 31. 28.29 35.21 34.12 32. 21.13 38.1–38.27 37. 29.1–39.1–26.1–27. 26. 25.30 31.46 21.1–35. Financial resources and mechanisms Transfer of environmentally sound technology. public awareness and training National mechanisms and international cooperation for capacity-building in developing countries International institutional arrangements International legal instruments and mechanisms Information for decision-making 33.

Participation of major groups Paragraphs 1-6 7-13 14-23 24-46 47-52 53-57 58-61 62-71 72-80 73-74 75-76 77-78 79-80 81-136 137-170 139 140-142 143 144 145-150 151-157 158-161 162-167 168-170 . Means of implementation Institutional framework for sustainable development A. V. Role of the Economic and Social Council E. VII. Introduction Poverty eradication Changing unsustainable patterns of consumption and production Protection and managing the natural resource base of economic and social development Sustainable development in a globalizing world Health and sustainable development Sustainable development of small island developing States Sustainable development for Africa Other regional initiatives A. Role and function of the Commission on Sustainable Development F. III.  Appendix 2. Role of the General Assembly D. Sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific C. xI. Johannesburg Plan of Implementation Table of contents chapter Title I. Objectives B. Ix. Strengthening institutional arrangements for sustainable development at the regional level H. II. IV. Sustainable development in the West Asia region D. VIII. Sustainable development in Latin America and the Caribbean B. Strengthening the institutional framework for sustainable development at the international level C. Role of international institutions G. VI. Sustainable development in the Economic Commission for Europe region x. Strengthening institutional frameworks for sustainable development at the national level I.

08.Published by the United Nations ISBN 978-92-1-104577-2 Sales No: E.II.A.2 07-53189—December 2007—2.300 .

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