Islamabad- The Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms in collaboration with UNICEF and Higher Education Commission organised a two-day national consultation on Data, Evidence and Analytics for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The first day was chaired by Dr Tariq Banuri, Chairman HEC and was attended by Neil Buhne, UN Resident Coordinator, Shahid Naeem, Head of SDGs Section at Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms and Mr. Luis Gorjon, Head of UNICEF Social Policy Section. Mussarrat Youssuf from UNICEF moderated the sessions.

The consultation was attended by many Vice Chancellors of universities from across the country, professors, teachers and students as well as government officials from federal and provincial levels, including representatives from Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). It focused on two primary themes: the data, evidence and analytics needed to support the SDGs and the engagement of universities, both faculty and students, in fulfilling these needs.

In his keynote address, Dr Banuri situated the SDGs in the long evolution of international efforts for peace, justice and poverty eradication. He described to participants how all 17 sustainable development goals are essentially aimed at achieving the first goal i.e. ending poverty in all its forms everywhere. The other goals are aimed directly at specific aspects of poverty eradication, some at the determinants of poverty eradication and others at the threats to successful elimination of poverty eradication.

Shahid Naeem outlined Pakistan’s specific commitments to the SDGs. Neil Buhne highlighted inclusion and equality, and Luis Gorjon stressed the importance of goal on eradicating poverty as well as its measurement to include children ensuring we ‘leave no one behind’.

A session was dedicated to the monitoring, evaluation and research needs of Pakistan’s commitments to SDGs. Mussarrat Youssuf elaborated on the importance of evaluation and research in the achievement of SDGs.