Advocating Together for The SDGs

Advocating Together for The SDGs : How Civil Society and Business are Joining Voices to Change Policy, Attitudes and Practices.


Written by Richard Gilbert and Jane Nelson

Design by Steven Dickie –


Nearly three years after formally adopting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), it is increasingly clear that governments face significant challenges that could undermine progress.  These include fiscal constraints, lack of political will, institutional failures and state fragility. Moreover, governments are always under pressure to deliver short-term results, but many of the complex systemic challenges being addressed through the SDGs require long-term integrated policy reforms that need to be pursued far beyond most government and electoral lifecycles.

These constraints point to the need for active engagement by civil society organisations and companies, not to replicate government responsibilities or let them “off the hook”, but to mobilize resources and advocate for policy reforms in support of the SDGs. 

A growing area of collaboration between civil society and business in support of the SDGs is emerging in the form of joint policy advocacy.  Businesses and civil society are increasingly combining their voices and influence through specific delivery partnerships and broader coalitions to drive the policies and resources needed to achieve implementation. 

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