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Tool to Hold Governments Accountantable on Global Goals

People’s Report Card Launched - New Tool to Hold Governments Accountable for Global Goals

(Immediate, 30th September 2015) The Social Progress Imperative today launched the new People’s Report Card - a way to help track whether our leaders are living up to the promise of meeting the new United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development. The first People’s Report Card, released today, shows that the world scores just a C- but we need an ‘A’ grade to meet the Global Goals in 2030.

The People’s Report Card is designed as a way for citizens to hold their leaders accountable for the commitments they have made. This week the UN announced 17 Global Goals and 169 targets which include ending extreme poverty and delivering gender equality by 2030. The People’s Report Card distils all of this into a measurement scale from F to A, where F is humanity at its worst and A is humanity at its best.

The data is drawn from the Social Progress Index - an annual measure of national progress which assesses how countries are doing in three different ways: how healthy, free and safe they are. Using this analysis the People’s Report Card provides an aggregate picture of how the world is performing on these key issues that matter in all of our day-to-day lives.

The report is being hosted and supported by Global Citizen.

Each year between now and 2030 Global Citizen and the Social Progress Imperative will publish a People’s Report Card for both the world and for every country. The initiative is the culmination of years of work, whose purpose is to translate global social progress into a set of comprehensible figures.

Simon Moss, Managing Director of Campaigns at Global Citizen, said: “We applaud the UN’s ambitions and celebrate the historic opportunity of the Global Goals. We have the ‘what?, now the debate must move on to the ‘how?’. The People’s Report Card is the start of a conversation about making sure that we, the citizens of the world, are heard in that debate.

“ We want to ensure that Global Citizens everywhere can find out exactly how the world and their country is doing and how much more progress is needed to get us from today’s C- to that A grade. Any student and any parent will realize that the hard work for all global citizens starts now.”

Michael Green, Executive Director of the Social Progress Imperative, said: The People’s Report Cards will be a simple and direct benchmark of how humanity is progressing on our journey towards the Global Goals over the next fifteen years. They will empower all of us to ask the hard questions and to hold our leaders to account if policy does not translate into progress. We have fifteen years to find the political will, the resources, and the partnerships that can deliver a giant leap forward in the wellbeing of humanity to get us from a C- to that A grade.”

The People’s Report Card is an effective accountability tool to track how far the world is progressing towards meeting the Global Goals. The data which drives the score is closely linked to the data that the UN will be using to map the path to 2030. For example, Global Goal 6 says that by 2030 we should achieve “adequate and equitable sanitation for all.” The Social Progress Index compare the goal of universal access to how well the world is doing on measures like access to toilet facilities. To meet Global Goal 3, Good health and wellbeing, the world needs to significantly reduce “maternal mortality.” So the Social Progress Index compares the goal of only losing 70 mothers per 100,000 live births to how many women die each year in childbirth. All of the data is used to generate the three indicators which show how effectively we are meeting the goals of being safe, free, and healthy – and it’s C’s across the board. Full details of the methodology are available on the Social Progress Imperative website here.

The launch follows the publication last week of new research by Deloitte which found that economic growth alone is highly unlikely to be enough for us to meet the Global Goals and that a productivity revolution in social progress is needed if we’re to succeed in this ambition.

The Social Progress Index, was created by a team whose chief advisor is Professor Michael E. Porter of Harvard Business School, and is designed as a complement to GDP and other economic indicators to provide a more holistic understanding of countries’ overall performance.


Notes to editors:

About the Social Progress Imperative

The Social Progress Imperative’s mission is to improve the lives of people around the world, particularly the least well off, by advancing global social progress by: providing a robust, holistic and innovative measurement tool—the Social Progress Index (SPI); fostering research and knowledge-sharing on social progress; and equipping leaders and change-makers in business, government and civil society with new tools to guide policies and programs.

About Global Citizen

Global Citizen is a content and campaigning platform where people can learn about and take action on the world’s biggest issues. Global Citizen works in partnership with and supports some of the most effective organizations working to end extreme poverty. Committed to providing the most interesting stories, effective actions and powerful campaigns, Global Citizen aims to unlock the power of every individual to play his or her part in the movement to end extreme poverty in the next 15 years. For more information, visit and follow @GlblCtzn Twitter, Facebook andInstagram using #GlobalCitizen.

Financial Support

The Social Progress Imperative is registered as a nonprofit organization in the US, and is grateful to the following organizations for their financial support: Cisco, Compartamos Banco, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd. (Deloitte Global), Fundación Avina, The Rockefeller Foundation, and the Skoll Foundation.

What is social progress?

Social progress is defined as the capacity of a society to meet the basic human needs of its citizens, establish the building blocks that allow citizens to improve their lives, and create the conditions for individuals and communities to meet their full potential.

*GDP per capita definition

The Social Progress Index uses the World Bank definition: “GDP per capita based on purchasing power parity (PPP). PPP GDP is gross domestic product converted to international dollars using purchasing power parity rates. An international dollar has the same purchasing power over GDP as the U.S. dollar has in the US. GDP at purchaser's prices is the sum of gross value added by all resident producers in the economy plus any product taxes and minus any subsidies not included in the value of the products. It is calculated without making deductions for depreciation of fabricated assets or for depletion and degradation of natural resources. Data are in constant 2011 international dollars.”

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