Indicators of Sustainable Development

Guidelines and Methodologies

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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. This edition aims to further the momentum at the national and international level to develop and apply sustainable development indicators and to help the understanding of the various dimensions of sustainable development and their complex interactions and the facilitation of policy decisions for achieving sustainable development goals.




Indicators perform many functions. They can lead to better decisions and more effective actions by simplifying, clarifying and making aggregated information available to policy makers. They can help incorporate physical and social science knowledge into decision-making, and they can help measure and calibrate progress toward sustainable development goals. They can provide an early warning to prevent economic, social and environmental setbacks. They are also useful tools to communicate ideas, thoughts and values.


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