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Putting inequality in the post-2015 picture

Research report

Written by Claire Melamed

Research report

There’s a growing consensus among the countries, UN agencies and civil society organisations involved in discussions on the post-2015 development agenda that equity, or inequality, needs to be somehow integrated into any new framework.

Equality is one of the core values of the UN’s Millennium Declaration, the statement of principles underlying the MDGs.  Many people agree that the current set of MDGs, which focus on average progress measured at the country and global level, have masked the inequalities that lie behind these averages.  There’s a sense that another method of measuring progress is needed, which will provide more information about how that progress is distributed, and also provide incentives to focus on those groups which are being left behind.   

Inequality has been on the fringes of the development policy agenda for a long time, but until now there has been no clear policy agenda to tackle it.  The process of developing and negotiating a post-2015 global framework for development offers a chance to think about what that policy agenda should be, how to incentivise governments and other actors to act on it, and how to measure progress. 

This paper considers some current proposals for integrating inequality  into a post-2015 framework.

Claire Melamed