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Sustainable development in the European Union — A statistical glance from the viewpoint of the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable development in the European Union — A statistical glance from the viewpoint of the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable development has long been part of the political agenda of the European Union. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their related targets, approved in September 2015 by the UN General Assembly, provide a new policy framework worldwide towards ending all forms of poverty, fighting inequalities and tackling climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind.

This publication builds on Eurostat’s long experience in monitoring the EU Sustainable Development Strategy. It provides a statistical glance at the current situation in the EU and its Member States, but now from the viewpoint of the SDGs. The publication is based on a limited number of indicators which are relevant for the EU and aims to capture the broader ambition of each SDG. In total, 51 indicators are presented, mainly produced and disseminated by Eurostat. For each indicator the publication presents data for the most recent available year for the EU-28 and the EU Member States and trends (in general from 2000) for the EU-28.

Figures for the future — Sustainable development in our everyday life — A guide for citizens

Figures for the future — Sustainable development in our everyday life — A guide for citizens

‘Leave nobody behind’, the central ethos of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), guides Anne through her new project on sustainable development. Once again she is investigating whether the EU has moved towards sustainable development over the past 10 years, this time in the context of the SDGs. Based on indicators provided by Eurostat, she tries to find out how relevant the SDGs are in the European context.

‘Figures for the future’ is a statistical guide to the EU sustainable development indicators in the context of the SDGs. It communicates statistical figures as seen through the eyes of a fictional 21-year-old student, Anne. Anne aims to find answers to many questions that relate to our everyday life and our future. What does it mean to be poor in Europe? How do we treat nature and our natural resources? Will there be jobs for young people like her? What about quality of life?

These and many other questions are answered while Anne is writing a blog on sustainable development as part of her Young Women in Journalism scholarship. She links events in her everyday life to the SDGs, and looks into the statistics behind.

This book is a summary of all her blog entries.

Video presenting the publication

Making of

Sustainable Development Monitoring Reports Sustainable Development Monitoring Reports

Sustainable development in the European Union — 2015 monitoring report of the EU Sustainable Development Strategy

Sustainable development in the European Union — 2015 monitoring report of the EU Sustainable Development Strategy

The EU Sustainable Development Strategy (EU SDS), launched by the European Council in 2001 and renewed in June 2006, aims for the continuous improvement of quality of life for current and future generations. The Eurostat monitoring report, published every two years, provides an objective, statistical picture of progress, based on the EU set of sustainable development indicators. Quantitative rules applied consistently across indicators, and visualised through weather symbols, provide an assessment of whether Europe is moving towards the objectives and targets defined in the strategy. The statistics presented in the report, covering the period from 1990 to 2014 (or the latest year available), illustrate the range of issues relevant for sustainable development, and should contribute to raising awareness of the opportunities and challenges lying ahead.

Other publications Other publications

Figures for the future - 20 years of sustainable development in Europe? A guide for citizens

Figures for the future - 20 years of sustainable development in Europe? A guide for citizens

'Figures for the future' is a guide to the EU sustainable development indicators (SDIs) and the trends they show. It communicates statistical figures as seen through the eyes of fictional 17-year-old student Anne. Anne aims to find answers to many questions that relate to our everyday life and our future. She has the task of informing fellow students from around the world about whether Europe has moved towards sustainable development over the past 2 years. She turns to the EU SDIs provided by Eurostat, trying to give sense and meaning to a multitude of data. She illustrates statistics by linking the topics to an important day in her life. Students from around the world add their points of view to the European perspective.


Presentation on sustainable development indicators (slides of the publication):

This presentation is also available in 22 of the EU official languages, see below.


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