Samagam 2018 Samagam 2022 Samagam 2023

According to UN’s The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2022, cascading and interlinked crises are putting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in grave danger, along with humanity’s very own survival. The Report highlights the severity and magnitude of the challenges before us. The confluence of crises, dominated by COVID-19, climate change, and conflicts, are creating spin-off impacts on food and nutrition, health, education, the environment, and peace and security, and affecting all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

India has made considerable progress towards meeting its SDGs but there are challenges to be met on many fronts. Nationally, India may need a special focus on 19 of the 33 SDG indicators, according to a study led by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Based on the findings, the study authors recommended that a strategic roadmap be developed toward four particular SDGs: No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health and Wellbeing, and Gender Equality.

“Meeting [the SDGs] would require prioritizing and targeting specific areas within India,” the researchers wrote. “India’s emergence and sustenance as a leading economic power depends on meeting some of the more basic health and social determinants of health-related SDGs in an immediate and equitable manner.”

It is in this context that the need for Localising SDGs gains immense importance and has been accepted as the go-to strategy for India’s meeting its commitment to the global SDGs. What does the localization of the SDGs mean? The SDGs localization is translating the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development into local actions and impacts that contribute to the global achievement of the SDGs. The 2030 Agenda emphasizes the need for an inclusive and localized approach to the SDGs. The localization of the SDGs in India entails participatory planning, designing, implementation and monitoring by relevant institutions at three levels – the central level, the state and the union territory (UT) level, and the local level (NITI Aayog, 2020).

There is growing opinion that localization relates both to how the SDGs can provide a framework for local development policy and to how local and regional governments can support the achievement of the SDGs through action from the bottom up and to how the SDGs can provide a framework for local development policy. To achieve its goals by 2030, there is need to build a mechanism for effectively localizing the SDGs — one that leverages and integrates the social capital that exists in women’s collectives and with the local self-governance of the Panchayati Raj system.

Within the Localizing the 2030 Agenda framework, ‘localizing’, is seen as a process that is sensitive to local opportunities, priorities, and ideas. It goes beyond adjusting global goals to the local level and calls for co-creating solutions through the generation of genuine partnerships, resulting in more inclusive, needs-driven, local-level responses to global challenges and objectives. Ultimately, localizing means enabling local governments and communities to be the catalysts of change to support the achievement of the global goals.

The process clearly calls for collaborative efforts among samaj-sarkar-bazar stakeholders at the local level – from setting local priorities to arrive at local action plans and local monitoring frameworks – to ensure localization SDGs and realization of the same effectively contribute to our meeting of National SDG commitments.

Samagam 2023 will seek to unravel this process of priority setting and collaborative action plans by bringing in varied stakeholders on one platform to arrive at actionable steps for local governments, CSOs and market players to take forward in their local areas of work. It will provide a platform for open discussion to pave the way for ‘local winning coalitions’ by sharing and learning from successful collaborations and from many that did not succeed.