Leave No One Behind in progress to the Sustainable Development Goals: Priority actions for governments by 2020

The 2014–15 Chronic Poverty Report: the road to zero extreme poverty argued that three objectives had to be achieved to get to zero poverty: chronic poverty had to be tackled; impoverishment had to be stopped; and escapes from poverty needed to be sustained. The report identified 14 policy areas that could be critical for the eradication of extreme poverty and leaving no one behind in the process. These can also be clustered into four pillars: human development, pro-poorest growth, transformative social change and resilience.

This paper provides a reasonably comprehensive basis for identifying policies that will contribute to leaving no one behind, since the chronically poor are, by definition, those who are getting left behind in the process of development. Of course, among the chronically poor are those who are able to make progress and sustain escapes from poverty; there are also those who are stuck on the consumption floor, which has barely moved in several decades, some of whom may be experiencing ‘intersecting inequalities’ (those pertaining to different attributes like age, religion, gender, embodied in the same person) – or, in simpler terms, those who experience multiple disadvantages.

This paper explores context through a re-categorisation of countries using income levels, institutional fragility and progress on poverty, and an analysis of countries’ policy frameworks in 2015. It then explores the above priorities in context, and in each policy area outlines key measures that will underpin progress and enhance access for the poorest and most marginalised.

The aim of this analysis is to stimulate debate as to what policy mix is appropriate, necessary and desirable in different country circumstances. Once policies have been selected, policy consistency over time, as well as their sequencing; cross-government coordination to ensure delivery of the right combinations; and multi-stakeholder partnerships for implementation are indispensable tools to reach the objective of LNOB and achieve the SDGs for all. Governments vary in the extent to which they have such mechanisms in place and allow them to influence policy and implementation.

Authors: Andrew Shepherd and Kate Bird with Moizza Binat Sarwar

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Compatible or contradictory? The challenge of inclusive structural economic and environmental transformation

Multiple transformations are being sought in our societies in the face of the accelerating risk of climate change and the need to eradicate poverty. This paper sets out to explore current evidence and debate on structural economic transformation and environmental (green) transformation in relation to the eradication of poverty. 

Authors: Anna Mdee, Richard Emmott and Alberto Lemma

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Middle-income Countries Policy Guide: Addressing chronic poverty in middle-income countries: getting close to zero

Middle-income countries (MICs) are home to the majority of the world’s extremely poor people. However, some have also achieved remarkable success in reducing chronic poverty, and have been a source of inspiration for developing countries as a whole.

This Policy Guide is targeted to policymakers in middle- and lower-income Countries (MICs and LICs) who would like to be inspired and learn lessons from the countries that have reduced chronic poverty as part of their efforts to accelerate structural transformation and achieve a higher growth path. The Guide provides recommendations on how countries can replicate this achievement using lessons learnt from ten selected MICs with greatest poverty reduction record since 1990 (Cape Verde, Indonesia, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Senegal, Viet Nam, Brazil, China, Thailand and Tunisia). Evidence is analysed to identify the policies, strategies and political trajectories that have characterised their route out of extreme poverty.

Authors: Dominik Bulla, Abdou Salam Fall, Haris Gazdar, Medhi Krongkaew, Amanda Lenhardt, Sami Mouley, Alina Rocha Menocal, Andrew Shepherd and Chiara Mariotti

Click here to download the Middle-income Countries Policy Guide