Q: What are the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
“The SDGs represent an indivisible tapestry of thinking and action that applies in every community everywhere in the world. They are universal…and also indivisible. Though they are presented as individual goals, they actually represent a total, completely intertwined lattice of action that is relevant for every human being everywhere.”
-David Nabarro, Under-Secretary General, Special Advisor on 2030 Agenda
The SDGs are a collection of 17 thematic and cross-cutting development goals, containing 169 targets, set by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015. They are part of Resolution 70/1 of the United Nations General Assembly “Transforming our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.” Within each SDG are aspects of the three dimensions of sustainable development: the environmental, economic, and social dimensions.
The SDGs recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while replenishing the natural endowment, tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests. The SDGs build on decades of work by countries and the United Nations.
To read more on the SDGs, follow the link here.
Q: What is the SDG Help Desk?
The SDG Help Desk is a one-stop online platform that serves as a gateway to a wide range of knowledge and analytical products, including SDG data portals, toolboxes, e-learning courses, multimedia resources, technical advice and opportunities for peer-learning and South-South cooperation.
Through the SDG Help Desk users gain access to:
- Service lines giving easy access to users and immediately directing them to what they are searching for: Knowledge Hubs, Data Portals, Technical Assistance, Community of Practice, and Toolboxes.
- Search engine harvesting information from various sources and providing information more effectively and accurately. Search here.
- Knowledge Repositories where multiple knowledge products and databases are located to give users.
- Linking platforms and collaborating through partnerships with UN organizations, research institutions and think-tanks in the region and beyond.
Q: Why was the SDG Help Desk developed?
The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) established the SDG Help Desk in response to requests for capacity development support from member states as outlined in the Resolution 72/6 “Committing to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific.” Its function is to service policy makers, sustainable development practitioners, academicians, students, and anyone who seeks information and capacity support surrounding the SDGs and their implementation.
Q: How does the SDG Help Desk complement the official Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform?
The Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform acts as a repository of a vast array of information related to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SDGs, while the SDG Help Desk acts as a gateway to information, tools, and peer-learning that links users to material from a wide range of knowledge providers from the United Nations (UN) system and beyond. This includes content from partners across the globe who share a common mission with the SDG Help Desk gateway.
Q: What is the geographical coverage of the content available through the SDG Help Desk?
Although designed with the Asia-Pacific in mind (considering the regional scope of UNESCAP), the geographical coverage of the SDG Help Desk’s content is global. Content is provided from knowledge providers across the globe and all pertinent content is linked on the gateway regardless of its origins. Similarly, users from all corners of the globe can greatly benefit from the wealth of knowledge.
Q: Do I need to register to access the resources available on the SDG Help Desk?
No, registration is not necessary to access the resources available on the SDG Help Desk. The gateway is open to all users equally. However, registration is required to participate in the SDG Help Desk E-Learning courses at no expense to the user. In addition, some of the E-learning courses linked on the platform by other knowledge providers may also require registration.
Q: Who are the SDG Help Desk partners?
The SDG Help Desk has a multitude of knowledge providers as partners from both within the UN and outside the UN system, such as think-tanks, academia and civil society. Click here to browse the partner list.
Q: How can my organization contribute to the SDG Help Desk?
If your organization has knowledge products relating to any of the SDG Help Desk’s service lines (see “1. Motivation” above for more details on the service lines), you are encouraged to reach out to the SDG Help Desk at escap-sdghelpdesk AT un.org or, alternatively, fill out the contact form here. If contacted directly by the SDG Help Desk, your organization may be requested to share specific content and enter into a partnership. All contributors will be provided with the SDG Help Desk partner guide, also available here.
Q: To whom can I address my questions on the SDG Help Desk?
Inquiries can be directed to the SDG Help Desk general email: escap-sdghelpdesk AT un.org
Alternatively, the contact form can be filled out here.
Any 2030 Agenda/SDGs related questions can also be posted and deliberated on the SDG Help Desk's discussion network.
Q: Is the SDG Help Desk compatible with my mobile device?
Yes, the gateway should be compatible with most android and iOS devices.
6. Communications Materials
Q: Can I use the SDG logo, including the colour wheel and the 17 SDG icons?
Yes. The Sustainable Development Goals logo, including the colour wheel and 17 icons are available for use in the six official languages of the UN (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish) from the link provided here,
However, guidelines for their use apply. Please read the guidelines. The guidelines are also accessible from the link provided above.
For these materials in many other local languages, please click here.