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World Refugee Day: Global Trends of Forced Displacement

On today's World Refugee Day, Global2030 summarizes the latest figures from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

... more on "World Refugee Day: Global Trends of Forced Displacement" (20 June 2020)

How Serious Is the COVID-19 Pandemic and
How Long Will It Have to Be Mitigated?

These are the questions addressed in a new study by Imperial College London, conducted in collaboration with the WHO and other institutions. The authors stress that the results of their models are not forecasts, but indicate the magnitude of the problem and important influencing factors. The effects will depend above all on action in the coming weeks and months (p. 3).

... more on "How Serious Is the COVID-19 Pandemic ..." (29 March 2020)

Achievements of the Time-Bound MDG Targets

Title page of the MDG targets assessment. Global2030 released the first comprehensive assessment of all time-bound targets of the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals. The report, which comes following the close of the MDG time frame, documents the achievements and the shortcomings of the targets.

A key finding is that 8 of the 15 MDG targets reached between 80 and 320% of their goals, with most achieving about 150%. It also calculates the number of annual deaths prevented since the introduction of the targets to be between 6.85 million and 8.75 million. The child mortality target is found to be the biggest life saver. Furthermore, the pace of progress is shown to have increased in most indicators of the MDG targets. The report will be sent to heads of states, UN organizations and business companies.

P.S.: A summary of the report was released at Deliver2030 - external., which is run by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

... more on "Achievements of the Time-Bound MDG Targets"

Download: Global2030: Achievements and Unfinished Business of the Time-Bound MDG Targets - PDF, 10 pages plus annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 1.4MB (kilobytes)

Internship Placements for Refugees

Global2030 offers internships or volunteering placements for refugees with a scientific background. See www.Global2030.net/refugees.

Global2015 Project Renamed to Global2030

Logos of Global2015 and Global2030 (animated). Global2030 is the new name for the successor project of Global2015. The name change is related to the close of 2015 as the main target year of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the adoption of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. As Global2015 did, Global2030 monitors the most important global challenges including, among other topics, all MDGs and many SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). The legal name of the registered association (Global2015 e.V.) will also be changed but we intend not to include a year number (in case new global challenges appear after 2030).

SDG Targets: Strengths and Weaknesses

Title page of the presentation on the SDG targets. Global2015 presented its evaluation of the SDG targets at the Institute for Futures Studies and Technology Assessment (IZT - external.). Using our data collection, a balanced assessment revealed the extent to which the goals are realistically achievable and those goals that will require extensive efforts from stakeholders. The presentation addressed shortcomings of the SDGs where tangible targets were missing and important issues were absent. However, the overall assessment revealed the strengths of the SDG targets and potential to achieve positive results by 2030.

Download: Global2015: Stärken und Schwächen der SDG-Targets - German - PDF (in German, with most diagrams in English), 32 presentation slides, PDF (Portable Document Format), 971KB (kilobytes)

Fact Sheet on Trends of Old and New SDG Topics

Title page of the fact sheet on trends. In line with a series of our latest publications, Global2015 submitted a fact sheet on current trends to the UN negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda. The fact sheet provides trend diagrams on MDG target topics as well as new and emerging challenges. The fact sheet identifies progress, setbacks and new topics for the SDG targets. It utilizes annual trend data series from the 2015 Global Burden of Disease study and includes a comparison with the most recent WHO and UNAIDS trend data.

Download: Fact Sheet: Trends of Old and New Post-2015 Challenges - PDF, 5 pages plus an 8-page annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 404KB (kilobytes)

Fact Sheets on Post-2015 Targets and Indicators

Title page of the fact sheet on tweaking selected targets. Two further fact sheets of our series have been submitted by Global2015 to the UN negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda. The first fact sheet contributes to the tweaking of the post-2015 targets. It focusses on 8 SDG targets and provides proposals for changes as small as possible to make these targets more clearly quantifiable, to specify x-values in the draft or to preserve the intended aspiration. Our work is evidence-based and all recommendations are fully in line with the proposed post-2015 development agenda.

The second fact sheet proposes indicators for 17 selected SDG targets based on publicly available data. It was also submitted to the UN Statistical Commission (UNSC - external.) (see stakeholder feedback - external.).


Fact Sheet on Infectious Diseases

Title page of the fact sheet on infectious diseases. The second fact sheet of our series was submitted by Global2015 to the UN negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda. The fact sheet focusses on target 3.3 on infectious diseases, which was proposed by the UN Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (OWG). The fact sheet can contribute to the technical proofing of the SDG targets. The evidence-based recommendations are fully in line with the proposed post-2015 development agenda and do not refer to any controversial topics or risk unravelling the package of the SDGs.

The fact sheet provides a comparison of the contagious diseases with the highest numbers of deaths. For selected diseases – each on individual pages –, it presents the latest trend data and a data-derived recommendation of an ambitious but achievable target level for 2030.

Download: Fact Sheet: UN OWG Target 3.3 on Infectious Diseases - PDF, 6 pages plus a 6-page annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 399KB (kilobytes)

Fact Sheet on Safe and Secure Working Environments

Title page of the fact sheet on safe and secure working environments. The first fact sheet of an upcoming series was submitted by Global2015 to the UN negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda. The fact sheet focusses on target 8.8 on safe and secure working environments, which was proposed by the UN Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (OWG).

The fact sheet provides a comparison with other major global topics in terms of relative importance. Furthermore, it presents latest trend data and a data-derived recommendation of an ambitious but achievable target level for 2030. The fact sheet is based on the latest available data, in particular from the ILO, the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study 2015 and the WHO Global Health Estimates 2014.

Download: Fact Sheet: UN OWG Target 8.8 on Safe and Secure Working Environments - PDF, 2 pages plus a 2-page annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 179KB (kilobytes)

Further fact sheets are being prepared, and you can register for receiving them at our fact sheets page.

Data-derived Recommendations for Post-2015 Targets

Title page of the proposal for the UN negotiations. Global2015 submitted a new proposal for the UN negotiations on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It addresses several open issues of the ongoing negotiations. The proposal provides an assessment of trend changes achieved by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and derives from that an average level of aspiration for the SDGs. Furthermore, it suggests an approach to define global targets that accommodates the consideration of national trends and country conditions. Additionally, the proposal identifies major topics for the post-2015 agenda, based on the latest data on mortality and economic losses. This includes the update of the Global Burden of Disease study from December 2014 and January 2015.
Finally, the proposal suggests framing or clustering the 17 SDGs into a small number of summary objectives, in order to facilitate effective communication.

Download of the proposal: Data-derived Recommendations for Post-2015 Targets - PDF, 15 pages plus a 17 page annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 818KB (kilobytes)

Data-based Recommendations on Targets Proposed

Title page of the proposal to the UN OWG. Global2015 submitted "Data-based Recommendations on Targets Proposed" to the UN Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (OWG- external.. The OWG has developed targets which continue on from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which have an end date of 2015. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are intended to cover the time frame up to 2030 and will be agreed upon by the UN General Assembly.

The data and diagrams in our paper show both progress and setbacks among major global challenges, including MDG topics, between 1990 and 2010. Currently most major global challenges, though not all, are covered by time-bound and quantifiable targets proposed by the UN OWG. In particular, our paper provides data and suggestions on seven post-2015 targets proposed by the OWG, with regard to epidemics, air pollution and occupational safety etc.

Progress diagram: reduction in numbers of annual deaths 1990-2010. The paper is a pre-release excerpt of an upcoming update of our previous publication "Assessing Priorities for Rio+20" (see below). It utilizes data from many trustworthy sources such as the latest version of the Global Burden of Disease study and the WHO Global Health Estimates of June 2014.

Diagram on the infectious diseases with highest numbers of deaths per year. P.S.: The final UN OWG outcome document - external. includes now: "by 2030 … combat hepatitis, water-borne diseases, and other communicable diseases". A further post-2015 target has now been made time-bound: "by 2030 ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health care services, including for family planning, information and education". These changes are concurrent with recommendations made by Global2015.

Download of the proposal: Data-based Recommendations on Targets Proposed by the UN OWG - PDF, 11 pages plus a 22 page annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 725KB (kilobytes)

Assessing Priorities for Rio+20

Title page of the Rio+20 proposal. A proposal was written by Global2015 for the preparation of "Rio+20", the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, which will take place in June 2012. The objective of Rio+20 - external. is to secure renewed political commitment for sustainable development, assess the progress to date, and address new and emerging challenges.

The Global2015 proposal focuses on providing neutral information on major global challenges. This includes prioritizing the most urgent challenges that the world faces today, and identifying which issues have made the most progress and which have been neglected. The data on global challenges has been updated and diagrams have been included to show the comparative relevancies of the major global challenges, the progress made on issues, and target accomplishments. The proposal has been sent to the heads of appropriate UN [United Nations] bodies along with other international organizations involved in the preparation of Rio+20.

Download of the proposal: Assessing Priorities for Rio+20 - PDF, 9 pages plus a 38 page annex, PDF (Portable Document Format), 1.3MB (megabytes)

Report for the UN High-Level Meeting on AIDS

Global2015 has created a report on "HIV/AIDS in the Context of Other Global Challenges". The purpose of the report is to assist decision-makers in assessing priorities for appropriate action, taking into consideration global challenges interlinking with HIV/AIDS. Heads of government, ambassadors to the UN [United Nations], and the heads of related UN bodies were provided with the report, in regard to the High-Level Meeting on AIDS of the UN General Assembly (8-10 June 2011). The presidents of Switzerland and the USA (United States of America), governments from countries such as Australia, Brazil and the UK (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland), as well as the EU (European Union) Commission and the WHO (World Health Organization), responded with their appreciation of the objective and comprehensive nature of the analysis.

More on the report

Survey Presented at WHO/SIGN Conference

Global2015 was invited to present its Global Challenges Survey at the annual meeting of the Safe Injection Global Network (SIGN), which is hosted by the World Health Organization (WHO). 135 registered participants from 28 countries attended the conference, which lasted from the 9th to the 11th of November, 2010 in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates.
  Feedback on this first international presentation of the Global Challenges Survey was very positive, and several participants agreed to give expert reviews of the draft survey.

More on the presentation

Special Edition for the UN MDG Summit

A Special Edition of the Global Challenges Survey was created for the United Nations Summit on the Millennium Development Goals (High-Level Plenary Meeting of the UN General Assembly, 20-22 September 2010).
  The updated survey by Global2015 covers most of the Millennium targets as well as other important global challenges. Global2015 has provided the survey to world leaders and UN representatives, and will continue to monitor the most urgent global challenges to encourage further action.

To the Global Challenges Survey, September 2010 …

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  • Global2030 will collaborate with experts, scientists, artists as well as with decision-makers in politics, business and non-governmental organizations.
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March 31, 2020 Emerging Epidemics
How serious is the COVID-19 pandemic and how long does it have to be mitigated? Global2030 provides an overview based on new studies.
New report by Imperial College London shows: Without countermeasures, the COVID-19 pandemic would claim 40 million lives – with countermeasures, 30 million deaths can be avoided.
Measures against the COVID-19 pandemic must now be expanded to avoid hospitals being overwhelmed.
If left unchecked, the COVID-19 pandemic would kill 40 million people. That could be reduced to 10.5 million, if mitigation/suppression starts at 1.6 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants. Globally, this threshold will be reached in about 1 week.
Sources: Imperial College London - external., Global2030.

May 22, 2018 Biodiversity
Today is International Day for Biological Diversity: One third of global protected land is under intense human pressure.
The MDG target to reduce the loss of biodiversity was missed in 2015, so will we manage to halt the loss of biodiversity as aimed for in SDG 15?
Sources: GBD  - external., Global2030.

May 20, 2018 Food Security and Biodiversity
Today is UN World Bee Day: Caring for bees and other pollinators is part of the fight against world hunger. Pollination of crops and other plants is best ensured by an abundance and diversity of pollinators, such as the 25 000 to 30 000 species of bees.
Source: UN - external..

Air Pollution
New data: 91% of the world's population breathed polluted air in 2016 (breaking WHO air quality guidelines). Outdoor air pollution has remained approximatively stable over the past 6 years globally. It was responsible for a death toll of 4.2 million people in 2016.
Indoor air pollution due to cooking or heating with open fire resulted in 3.8 million deaths in 2016.
Source: WHO - external..

April 28, 2018 Safety at Work
It is Safe Work Day! Occupational diseases and accidents claimed 1.53 million lives in 2016, 8.4% more than in 2006. Trend is opposite to aims of SDG 8 on decent jobs.
Source: GBD study in The Lancet magazine - external..

Global2030 offers internship/volunteering placements for fundraising or research/statistics on global issues: fundraising ad on Indeed - external., research/statistics ad on GreenJobs - external..

April 26, 2018 Risk Technologies
Today is Chernobyl Disaster Day, marking the nuclear disaster with the worst human impact in history, including thousands of deaths (International Chernobyl Disaster Remembrance Day).

April 25, 2018 Malaria
Today is World Malaria Day. Malaria killed 720 000 people – mainly children – in 2016, 10% less than in 2006.
The MDG target to halt malaria by 2015 was met and substantially exceeded. Will we also achieve the SDG target to end malaria by 2030?
Sources: GBD study - external., Global2030.

April 24, 2018 Measles, Vaccination
World Immunization Week starts today. Due to measles vaccination, measles deaths dropped 84% between 2000 and 2016 worldwide.
Source: WHO - external..

April 7, 2018 Health
Top 5 global health problems due to limited access to vital resources on today´s World Health Day:

  • outdoor air pollution: 4.09 million deaths in 2016
  • child hunger: 2.74 million
  • indoor air pollution: 2.58 million
  • pneumonia and other lower respiratory infections: 2.38 million
  • neonatal disorders: 1.73 million deaths.

Source: GBD study in The Lancet magazine - external..

March 24, 2018 Tuberculosis
Today is World TB day: Tuberculosis killed 1.2-1.4 million people in 2016. TB is the world´s second-biggest infectious killer, after pneumonia.
Drug-resistant tuberculosis claimed the lives of 127 000–240 000 people in 2016 (MDR-TB, MDR/RR-TB).
Sources: GBD study - external., WHO - external..

March 23, 2018 Climate Change
New data: Global energy-related CO2 emissions managed to remain steady for three years, but grew by 1.4% in 2017, reaching 32.5 billion tonnes.
Progress of energy efficiency slowed in 2017: from an annual 2.3% improvement in energy intensity of economic output over the three years since 2014, it fell to 1.7% in 2017.
Renewables saw the highest growth rate of any energy source in 2017, meeting 1/4 of global electricity generation.
Source: IEA - external..

Safe Water
March 22 was World Water Day: Unsafe water sources killed 1.16 million people in 2016.
Source: GBD study - external..

January 22, 2018 Global Risks
The top 4 global risks 2018 as ranked by the World Economic Forum are extreme weather events, natural disasters, cyberattacks and failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Source: WEF - external..

Climate Change
New data: 2017 second-hottest year after 2016, together with 2015, and the warmest year without an El Niño. 1.1° Celsius above the pre-industrial era.
Source: WMO - external..

January 8, 2018 Natural Disasters
New data: Natural disasters killed approximately 10 000 people in 2017, much below the 10-year average of 60 000.
Natural disasters in 2017 cost $330 billion in terms of economic losses, the second-highest figure ever (inflation considered). Of these losses, only 41% were insured. The costliest disasters were hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, together causing economic losses of $215 billion.
Sources: MunichRe fact sheet - external., MunichRe press release - external..

December 18, 2017 Migration and Poverty, Conflict, Natural Disasters, Climate Change
Today is International Migrants Day: In 2015, there were an estimated 244 million international migrants and 22.5 million refugees globally. Global challenges such as poverty, conflict, natural disasters and climate change are drivers of migration.
Source: IOM - external..

December 10, 2017 Human Rights
It´s Human Rights Day: Basic human rights are still not realized for hundreds of millions of people, such as the Right to Food, the Right to Water and the Right to Health, and much too often, even the Right to Life:

  • The Right to Food is not realized for the 815 million undernourished people globally.
  • Furthermore, 20% of the world´s population do not have access to safe water, meaning their Right to Water is not realized.
  • The Right to Health is, for example, not fully realized for the 216 million people – mainly children – who suffer from malaria, a preventable disease.
  • Sadly, 5.6 million children under five are even denied their Right to Life.

Sources: FAO - external., Global Burden of Disease study - external., WHO - external., UNICEF - external..

December 5, 2017 Soil Degradation
World Soil Day is today: 33% of global land is moderately to highly degraded due to the erosion, salinization, compaction, acidification and chemical pollution of soils.
Source: FAO - external..

Today is the International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development. Global2030 volunteers are supporting research on global challenges and progress in tackling them.

December 1, 2017 HIV/AIDS
Today is World AIDS Day: AIDS killed 1.0 million people in 2016, down from a peak of 1.9 million in 2005.
The number of new HIV infections is decreasing. It was 1.8 million in 2016.
Approximately 36.7 million people were living with HIV in 2016. Their number is slowly increasing, due to the fact that thankfully mortality has been reduced more successfully than new infections have been.
20.9 million people infected with HIV received antiretroviral therapy in 2017, almost three times as much as in 2010.
Sources: UNAIDS - external., Global Burden of Disease study - external..

November 25, 2017 Gender Equality
Intimate partner violence claimed the lives of 65 000 women in 2016. Today is International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
Source: Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study in The Lancet magazine - external..

November 20, 2017 Child Mortality and Hunger
Today is Universal Children Day: undernourishment is still the no. 1 child killer, with 2.74 million deaths in 2016. It is time to realize children's right to food!
Source: GBD study - external..

Road Safety
Road accidents killed 1.34 million people in 2016 worldwide. World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims on Nov 19.
Source: GBD study - external..

Safe Water
Nov 19 was World Toilet Day: unsafe sanitation spreads disease and claimed 898 000 lives in 2016.
Source: GBD study - external..

November 10, 2017 Information and Research
Scientific facts and solutions are integral in tackling global challenges. Today is World Science Day for Peace and Development.
Source: UN - external..

November 2, 2017 Information, Citizenship
Today is the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists. "The attacks on journalism are widespread and deplorable and they undermine official accountability and help entrench corruption and other abuses of power."
Source: Agnes Callamard, UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, and David Kaye, UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression - external., both at the office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Climate Change
Current commitments under the Paris Agreement will likely result in 3°C in global warming instead of maximum 2°C; they are only one third of the reductions needed to meet the 2°C target.
Sources: UNEP press release - external., UNEP Emissions Gap Report - external..

New data: C02 concentrations increased to 403.3 ppm in 2016, 45% above pre-industrial levels and the highest in 800 000 years.
Source: WMO - external..

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Global Challenges Survey

The Global2015 draft survey summarizes the most urgent issues for human life and needs. The information is exclusively drawn from reports of scientific institutes, UN (United Nations) organizations, national departments, and other trustworthy sources.

Global Challenges Survey, September 2010

The most recent data on global challenges can be found in our social media posts, in our latest publications and, most comprehensively, in the proposal "Assessing Priorities for Rio+20" - PDF of November 2011 (9 pages plus a 38 page annex, 1.3MB [megabytes])



Participating in the Project


Everyone is welcome to contribute ideas and suggestions to the further development of the draft overview on main global challenges. Please use the contact page. Furthermore, Global2030 approaches scientists and experts to review the draft.

After being reviewed, the completed survey report on global challenges will be published here. The purpose of the survey is to inform and motivate decision-makers in particular, but also the public, to increase their efforts to tackle the global challenges addressed.