About the Millennium Development Goals
In September 2000, 147 Heads of State and Government - and 191 nations in total - adopted the Millennium Declaration (pdf), committing themselves to a series of targets, most of which are to be achieved by 2015. The declaration outlines peace, security and development concerns including environment, human rights and governance.
By committing to the Declaration, world leaders agreed to a set of eight time bound and measurable Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), further strengthened by the reaffirmation and strong support of the entire international community at the 2005 World Summit.
Numerical targets have been set for each goal. Appropriate indicators have been selected to monitor progress on each of the targets. A common list of 18 targets and more than 40 indicators corresponding to these goals has been prepared collaboratively by the UN, the World Bank, IMF, and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development to monitor progress and to ensure a common assessment and understanding of the status of MDGs at global, regional and national levels. At the country level, Governments, with UN support, adapt goals and targets to national circumstances.
» Millennium Development Goals and the UN role
The MDGs provide a framework for the entire UN system to work together coherently towards a common purpose. UN Country Teams on the ground in 134 countries are uniquely positioned to help advocate for change, connect countries to knowledge and resources, and coordinate broader efforts at the country level. The work of UN Country Teams (UNCTs) on the MDGs has been guided by the United Nations Core Strategy on the MDGs. The strategy includes:
Campaigning and mobilization: National campaigns bring together civil society organizations, media, academia, parliamentarians, and celebrities to call attention to development needs;
Analysis: UNCTs assist national governments in preparing MDG needs assessments and cost analysis and help integrate them into national development plans and Poverty Reduction Strategies.
Monitoring and reporting: UNCTs assist national governments in preparing MDG reports, which help countries plan their development in alignment with the MDGs. UN Country Teams also provide assistance to national data collection (DevInfo) systems.
Operational activities: UNCTs provide support to developing countries in the preparation of MDG-based national development strategies or Poverty Reduction Strategies, and carry out joint programmes in areas such as poverty, hunger and food security, governance, natural resource management, education, land rights, water, micro-credit, social services, HIV/AIDS and gender, among others.