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Policy Paper

May 2013

Overarching Principles for a Post2015 Framework
For more information, please contact: Jenny Russell Director Development Policy and Advocacy Save the Children Mike Beard Executive Director UN Foundation Advocacy UN Foundation Suzanne Kindervatter Vice President Strategic Impact InterAction

InterAction’s Post-2015 Task Force, which developed this document, believes that certain core elements must be part of the framework that will follow the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) once they expire in 2015. InterAction is an alliance organization in Washington, D.C., of U.S.-based international organizations. InterAction has more than 180 nongovernmental organization (NGO) members that work around the world. The following principles are intended as a roadmap to what needs to be achieved across a new framework, regardless of sector. The new framework should build on these 10 principles and strive for more sustainable and equitable impact through greater coordination of stakeholders, the application of effective practices with innovative tools and approaches, and greater responsiveness to the development needs of countries and their citizens, particularly the poorest and most marginalized. The principles complement frameworks that are already in place and serve as a strong foundation for the next set of goals. These frameworks include: the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development; the International Conference on Population and Development Programme of Action; the Beijing Platform for Action; the Busan Aid Effectiveness Outcome; the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child; the Monterrey Consensus on Financing for Development; and the Millennium Declaration. By utilizing these pieces we will sustain the momentum of the MDGs and provide a more integrated framework for key elements that are critical to achieving development and equality. Maximizing the energy of women and young people is critical to the new framework. From combating extreme poverty to removing barriers to education and employment, women and youth must be at the forefront of how we confront these issues for sustainable solutions. The task force believes that if the global community can start from the precepts listed, we will eradicate extreme poverty, create sustainable development solutions and broaden the community of actors who feel responsibility for achieving the next goals. 1400 16th Street, NW Suite 210 Washington, DC 20036 202.667.8227

Ending Extreme Poverty
The next framework must not only promote development, but truly commit to ending extreme poverty across all countries. Remarkable strides have been made under the MDGs, but we can and must finish the job to ensure that the root causes of poverty – poor health and nutrition, lack of good learning outcomes, food insecurity, inadequate


shelter, environmental degradation, violence and conflict, among other factors – are better addressed. We must also tackle social barriers such as gender inequality and other forms of discrimination, which prevent the most vulnerable from accessing basic services. The next development agenda should accelerate the momentum of the MDGs and strive for a more integrated framework for key elements that were not originally reflected in the MDGs but are critical to ending extreme poverty and reducing inequalities.

Reducing Inequalities
There is overwhelming global consensus that one failing of the MDGs was that they did not consistently confront growing inequalities across the world. The MDGs' aggregate targets (e.g., halve global poverty, reduce child mortality by two-thirds) allowed many countries to focus on the easiest to reach, further opening the gap between those on the poverty line and the very poorest and most marginalized populations. Inequalities of both opportunities and outcomes must be tackled in the post-2015 framework since both impact the most vulnerable and discriminated-against groups in society (e.g., children, women, lower caste groups, persons with disabilities, indigenous populations). Gender discrimination remains the most egregious inequality and systematic violation of human rights in our world today, and the post-2015 agenda must include explicit goals for gender equality and female empowerment. Inequality should be addressed consistently across the goal framework by setting absolute, or “zero,” goals, which implicitly tackle inequality in that they strive for 100% coverage or attainment; disaggregating all targets and indicators by income and gender; and including a specific target or indicator to reduce income inequality. In addition, major demographic shifts need to be taken into account. Rapid urban growth is mainly occurring in countries least able to cope with the demand for decent jobs, adequate housing and urban basic services, which can further exacerbate inequalities. By ensuring a strong focus on social protection, decent work and inclusive growth in the next set of goals, we can address inequalities.

One Sustainable Human Development Framework
Issues of human development and environmental sustainability are inextricably linked. The post-2015 framework must use eradicating poverty as the overarching umbrella, and improving the long-term sustainability of the natural resource base as the frame upon which human health and prosperity depends. Two UN-appointed groups – the High-Level Panel and the Open Working Group – will both inform the next generation of global development goals. Nevertheless, it would be inefficient and unproductive if the outcomes were two separate and distinct frameworks. The two processes must merge earlier rather than later to ensure a single, unifying framework that integrates human and economic development with environmental sustainability.

Voices of the Most Marginalized
Already the post-2015 process has sought to collect views of ordinary citizens around the world on what the successors to the MDGs should look like. This is a positive development, but more should be done to hear from those in the Global South, populations who are the poorest and most marginalized, and those without access to the Internet or other easy ways to connect to the process. The only way to create a world where people are healthy, well-nourished, economically secure, have access to adequate shelter and have learned essential skills is to ensure that those without are given a voice to create a more just world. Unheard voices in this debate are also found in our own country, where the average American has not been informed about or connected to the process. It is incumbent upon governments and NGOs alike to bring these unheard voices to the debate so they can shape and form the next framework.

To uphold human dignity, a diversity of voices – from the most marginalized to the most influential – must assert the universality of post-2015 development goals. These goals constitute a shared agenda to meet the basic needs of all people and should incorporate responsibilities for both Northern and Southern governments, as well as other


stakeholders. A truly universal framework would set global goals applicable to all countries, to ensure a strong social and economic foundation for all people, and then allow countries to create national targets that are appropriate to each country context. Through creative, deliberative and inclusive partnerships and individual efforts, we can achieve these critical goals and deliver a sustainable development agenda in each country across the world.

Decent Work and Social Protection Floor
Because of the global recession of 2008-2009 and its lingering after-effects, much more progress is needed toward meeting the MDG targets to “achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including wom1 en and young people.” In a recent report on jobs, the World Bank noted the centrality of creating productive employment and ensuring that all jobs comply with the ILO’s core labor standards for achieving inclusive development 2 and ensuring that all workers work in safety and share in productivity improvements. Benchmarks should be adopted in the post-2015 framework for making advances in creating jobs that respect international workers’ rights and implement the UN-endorsed social protection floor.

Peace Building/Violence Reduction/Conflict
The post-2015 framework will not succeed in addressing the structural causes of poverty without tackling violence and building peace. Conflict and violence have significantly impeded progress towards all MDGs. According to the World Bank, “a country that experienced major violence over the period from 1981 to 2005 has a poverty rate 21 3 percentage points higher than a country that saw no violence.” To address conflict and violence strategically, the new framework should not only aim for a reduction in all forms of violence – including violence not related to conflict, such as domestic violence – but should also urge stakeholders to work toward a just, inclusive and sustainable peace. A peace dimension of the new framework should help stakeholders focus on a wide range of issues, including freedom of political expression, the end of violence against women and girls, the protection of and durable solutions for refugees, stateless and internally displaced persons, and transnational crime. Doing so will significantly strengthen the potential for success of all post-2015 goals.

Enhanced Partnership Models
Experience with the MDGs has demonstrated both the necessity of partnerships and their limitations under the current development structure. The next framework requires a new vision for partnerships, one which: enables all actors to advance a common agenda and contribute according to their comparative advantages; promotes an enabling environment for all actors in accordance with international human rights law; ensures civil society as a development actor in its own right; and provides for accountability at all levels. Partnerships must expand beyond traditional donor-recipient relationships, and promote cooperation among and between all levels of governments, the private sector, and civil society at the global, national and subnational levels. Models that draw in nonstate actors to partnerships that are responsive to country needs are especially needed. Furthermore, South-South partnerships have proven effective for coordination on a regional basis and provide a platform for sharing knowledge and developing solutions at a global level.

Measurability and Accountability
Building on the strength of the MDGs, the post-2015 goals must be clear and measurable, and achieve a balance between ambition and feasibility. The MDG experience further demonstrates the need to establish national targets to ensure future goals focus on the most vulnerable, enhance transparency and accountability, and better reflect the variety of local contexts. Development outcomes should be measured at the subnational and even the household level to account for disparities in power, resources and opportunities according to factors such as urban and rural divides, age and gender dynamics. Achieving equitable results in the post-2015 agenda across sectors will require greater investment in social accountability at the subnational, household and intrahousehold level with the explicit inclusion of civil society. Social or citizen accountability – including empowering individual citizens to partici-


pate in data design, collection and analysis – ensures that resources are being spent as planned so that gains in health, education, and poverty reduction can be attained. This greater complexity of what needs to be measured and by whom will require increased investments in the quality, transparency and availability of data and overall national statistical capacity.

Robust, Diverse and Accessible Financing
In order to accomplish the emerging post-2015 agenda, robust financing mechanisms supporting national priorities and investments must be developed concurrently with the new framework. While the financing mechanism should go beyond aid and traditional donors, a target of 0.7% official development assistance (ODA) continues to be important. ODA should be considered a supplement to, rather than a replacement for, the critical investments countries make to their own development. Other key parts of the financial mechanism would be enhanced national resource mobilization, including prioritizing these issues in national budget allocations, and regulating tax havens and illicit financial flows. Further, financing mechanisms should bring in new actors. Brazil, Russia, India, China and other emerging economies have a special role to play, particularly by spurring a rise in South-South cooperation. The private sector’s involvement needs to be coordinated with other donors and responsive to the needs of the poor and marginalized communities at the heart of the agenda. Cofinancing and partnerships should identify common ground between the different actors and communities, combining skills, resources and expertise for achievement of development objectives. Financial and nonfinancial commitments (such as changes to policies or practices) also must include accountability mechanisms to ensure that public and private efforts contribute to sustainable poverty-reduction goals. Data on the sources and modes of delivery of financing by all actors needs to be transparent and accessible, including for people at the community level. Finally, funding mechanisms aimed at poor communities should involve those communities in decisions about how financing is directed.

This statement has been endorsed by InterAction’s leadership. It was composed with input from members of the Post-2015 Task Force, whose full membership is listed below.

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“The Millennium Development Goals Report 2012,” UN. “World Development Report 2013,” The World Bank. “World Development Report 2011,” The World Bank.


InterAction Post-2015 Task Force
1,000 Days ACDI/VOCA Alliance for Peacebuilding Alliance to End Hunger American Red Cross International Services Basic Education Coalition (BEC) Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Bread for the World Bread for the World Institute Brookings Institution CARE Catholic Relief Services Center for American Progress Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE) ChildFund International Episcopal Relief & Development Frontline Health Workers Coalition Global Communities Habitat for Humanity International Heifer International Helen Keller International The Hunger Project International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) InterChurch Medical Assistance, Inc. (IMA World Health) INMED Partnerships for Children International Center for Not-for-Profit Law International HIV/AIDS Alliance International Housing Coalition (IHC) International Medical Corps International Women's Health Coalition International Relief & Development Jhpiego – an affiliate of The Johns Hopkins University Life for Relief and Development LIVESTRONG Foundation Lutheran World Relief Management Sciences for Health (MSH) Mercy Corps Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN) National Association of Social Workers ONE Campaign Oxfam America Pan American Development Foundation PATH Pathfinder International Perkins International Plan International USA Population Action International Refugees International RESULTS Save the Children Salvation Army World Service Office Solidarity Center U.S. Fund for UNICEF United Nations Foundation United Methodist Church General Board of Church and Society WaterAid America Winrock International Women for Women International Women Thrive Worldwide Women's Refugee Commission World Vision World Wildlife Fund