The annual Spotlight Report, assesses the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the structural obstacles to its realization, with a particular focus on the rich and powerful. In assessing progress, the report not only focuses on policy incoherence, but analyses and assesses the extent to which policies are framed by the ambitious principles of the 2030 Agenda, particularly the human rights framework, and the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities.
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This spotlight on SDG 9 - Industry, innovation and infrastructure - is an extract from the Civil Society Report "Spotlight on Sustainable Development 2018" - the new global report which assesses obstacles and contradictions in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.
"The world is off-track in terms of achieving sustainable development and fundamental policy changes are necessary to unleash the transformative potential of the SDGs.” This is the main message of the Spotlight Report 2018, the most comprehensive independent assessment of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The report was launched on 9 July, the opening day of the High Level Political Forum at the United Nations in New York by a global coalition of civil society organizations and trade unions.
Unmasking the Hidden Power of Cities. Using their authorities, energy and promise to secure the common good.
The Partnership for Working Families, which recently co-authored a new report on the unique power of cities to make progressive change, has launched “We Make This City,” a 10-city national campaign “for community-controlled, publicly owned institutions, structures, and services. We are fighting to ensure all people have access to the systems and structures needed to live full and healthy lives. This includes transportation systems that connect us to work, schools and services, the ability to afford housing in the communities we love, access to clean water and energy and organized power for workers who make all this possible. Public infrastructure connects us all and should serve the needs of the people, not the pockets of corporations. (…) As we struggle to meet our people’s basic needs, corporate interests tell us that they are actually the solution to our problem. Private entities are taking over our roads, our water and our schools — the building blocks of our cities — to create more profit for themselves. It isn’t working for us. The rich are getting richer and our people are suffering.”
The report provides the most comprehensive independent assessment of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In recent decades, the combination of neoliberal ideology, corporate lobbying, business-friendly fiscal policies, tax avoidance and tax evasion has led to a massive weakening of the public sector and its ability to provide essential goods and services.
Australian Asset recycling schemes, which were also advocated by the U.S. Trump administration, have been criticized as inefficient, unnecessary and as driving costly and inappropriate public asset sales and ‘public-private partnerships’ (P3s).
Development banks have become a critical component of the effort to build up poorer economies, but their ways of working are flawed. As a result, their contributions can do more harm than good. many governments are calling on them to expand their contribution in key areas such as sustainable infrastructure, agriculture or industrialisation. In recent years some national Public Development Banks (PDBs) – particularly from BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) – have emerged as international actors by expanding their remit to financing projects in other developing countries. Not all PDBs succeed, and even the successful ones carry the risk of major negative impacts on development – sometimes due to external factors beyond their control, but more often because of flaws in their design and operation. As a new Eurodad report – published this week as the IMF and World Bank gather for their Spring Meetings in Washington DC – shows, inconsistent performance is partly down to the diverse mandates, roles and operational strategies of the institutions themselves. Eurodad believes some PDBs are failing because they have lost sight of why they were created.
In a new Economic Policy Institute report, “No Free Bridge,” researcher Hunter Blair shows just why these partnerships are far from a “eureka” moment for America’s infrastructure woes. “The idea that P3s allow infrastructure to be built for free is economic snake oil,” Blair said.
The financial commodification of public infrastructure. The growth of offshore PFI/PPP secondary market infrastructure funds.
This research report by Dexter Whitfield is a detailed analysis of the rapid growth of Offshore PFI/PPP secondary market infrastructure funds that have taken over or merged with smaller funds, so that they now have a dominant position in the ownership of PFI/PPP projects.
In light of a cautious emphasis given to public-private partnerships (PPPs) as a mechanism to finance infrastructure projects and highlighting the need for capacity building and knowledge sharing at the Third International Conference on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa, this paper reviews the extant literature on the subject and identifies areas requiring better understanding and institutional innovation for ensuring value for money, minimizing contingent fiscal risk and improving accountability. This paper will discuss recent findings on the effectiveness of PPPs and reflect on their suitability as a key vehicle to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Financing change: How to mobilize private sector financing for sustainable infrastructure (McKinsey Center for Business and Environment). This paper has offered an overview of the barriers and opportunities for increasing privatesector investment in sustainable infrastructure. There are a number of areas that would benefit from further examination, such as how to create frameworks for blending private and public capital, how to assess existing instruments, how to develop innovative solutions, and how to work better with business.
Fact Sheet: Infrastructure. Privatization of Local and State Infrastructure: Selling off public assets to the highest bidder
Infrastructure privatization can actually increase costs for a city and its residents, eliminate accountability to the public, and compromise the quality of critical services that residents regularly rely on.