The annual Spotlight Report on Sustainable Development is the most comprehensive independent assessment of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and SDGs, co-published by eight international NGOs, networks and trade unions, including the Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR).
The 2020 edition - “Shifting Policies for Systemic Change” -builds on the previous years’ analysis of structural obstacles to sustainable development and proposals for transformative change, but unpacks them with relation to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The report consists of three parts:
• The first, based on national civil society reports, describes how COVID-19 and resulting lockdown has affected countries in different ways, depending on their social and economic circumstances. It also highlights examples of civil society responses to these crises and the various forms of social mobilization for transformational change.
• The second part describes how governments and international organizations have responded to the economic and health crises resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
• The third part of the report argues that policy responses to COVID-19 must not repeat the mistakes of the past or return us to the deeply dysfunctional, structurally unequal status quo. What kind of policies, strategies and systemic changes are necessary to ensure the primacy of human rights, gender justice and environmental sustainability? Responding to the so-called ‘Great Reset’ launched by the World Economic Forum to “rescue capitalism”, the Spotlight Report offers as an alternative an “8 R” agenda for transformational recovery.
1. Re-value the importance of care in societies
2. Re-empower public services
3. Re-balance global and local value chains
4. Reinforce the shift towards climate justice
5. Redistribute economic power and resources
6. Re-regulate global finance
7. Reinvent multilateral solidarity
8. Redefine measures of development and progress
CESR’s Kate Donald and Ignacio Saiz author the section on redistributing economic power and resources, arguing that in designing and implementing relief and recovery packages, governments have the chance to start breaking up the concentration of corporate and elite power at the root of the inequalities starkly exposed by COVID-19.
The report also features contributions from CESR allies and partners beyond the core editorial group, including the Institute for Economic Justice in South Africa and Centro de Derechos Económicos y Sociales (CDES) in Ecuador.
The Spotlight Report is published by the Arab NGO Network for Development (ANND), the Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR), Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN), Global Policy Forum (GPF), Public Services International (PSI), Social Watch, Society for International Development (SID), and Third World Network (TWN), supported by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation.