This week in class we discussed the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the High Level PoliticalForum (HLPF). In this post I will discuss the implications that the SDGs and HLPF have on international development and peoples with disability. I will also touch on which SDG fits best with my project.


The SDG’s are a list of development goals that the UN agreed upon in 2015. It is essentially the revamped version of its predecessor the Millennium Development Goals.

The UN defines the SDGs as “The blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address the global challenges we face, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity, and peace and justice. The Goals interconnect and in order to leave no one behind, it is important that we achieve each Goal and target by 2030.” I think the key aspect of the SDGs is the idea of intersectionality. If there is not development for all, then that’s a problem. For example, the MDGs did not talk about peoples with disability once, whereas the SDGs does include them in the language. Language is crucial for this type of document because without setting clear goals with direct language, too many issues may be left up to interpretation. For example, it was thought that in the MDGs peoples with disability were included throughout all the goals. However not every country made sure to include peoples with disabilities in their legislation or implementation of the MDGs.

The HLPF, as defined by the UN, is “the main United Nations platform on sustainable development and it has a central role in the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the global level.” The HLPF basically is a committee to monitor and assist with the implementation of the SDGs. The UN also mentions that part of the HLPF’s duties are to “enhance evidence-based decision-making at all levels and contribute to strengthening ongoing capacity-building for data collection and analysis in developing countries; and promote system-wide coherence and coordination of sustainable development policies.” This added component of collecting and using data is important as it insures that all the information is backed by scientific data. It is also important to note the HLPF’s requirement of promoting coherence and coordination. Often, the different actors of international development are fragmented. This move to bring information and actors together to ensure the sharing of all possible best-practices.

For my capstone project I will be focusing on SDG number 8; decent work and economic growth. I will be focusing in more on the microfinance aspect of decent work and economic growth. This means ensuring that ALL people have access to loans that will empower them to have decent employment and the chance to work. One of the major criticisms if the SDGs are that they are too broad, however if you work on a small aspect of development while working towards one of these larger goals than that is still effective.


The United Nations. “Sustainable Development Goals.” (2018) Retrieved at

The United Nations. “Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform; High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.” (2018) Retrieved at