Statistics Canada and the Sustainable Development Goals

Statistics Canada is proud of its work as a professional, unbiased producer of quality statistics supporting good governance.

What are the Sustainable Development Goals?

The 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted on September 25, 2015, by the United Nations General Assembly. The 17 SDGs are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. They cover a broad range of social and economic development issues, including poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, gender equality, water, sanitation, energy, environment and social justice, with a focus on the most vulnerable and a commitment that "no one will be left behind."

Why do the SDGs matter to Canada?

The 17 SD of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development resonate in virtually all Government of Canada activities, mandates and priorities. Examples of this close alignment are

In short, the 2030 Agenda is Canada's Agenda.

The role of national statistical offices (NSOs) in the 2030 Agenda

In order to measure and monitor progress on the SDGs, high-quality data and information are required. As mandated by the United Nations General Assembly resolution 70/1, the Inter-Agency and Expert Group on Sustainable Development Goal Indicators was created and tasked with developing and implementing the global indicator framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This group comprises 28 countries, including Canada, and has been working since June 2016 to develop the Global Indicator Framework. In July 2017, the General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/71/313, which provided for the following:

National statistics are central to reporting on SDGs. It is the responsibility of national statisticians to provide data and statistics to support the measurement and achievement of the SDGs. This includes identifying appropriate data sources and methodologies to produce the statistics corresponding to SDG indicators.

The role of Statistics Canada

Statistics Canada is a trusted producer of high-quality, robust, impartial statistical information to support SDGs, working in partnership with government departments, the private sector, NGOs and international organizations.

How is Statistics Canada playing a key role in the development and dissemination of SDGs?

Since 2015, Statistics Canada has been playing a key role both domestically and internationally with regard to the SDGs. Internationally, Statistics Canada has played an active and important role in the advancement and development of the indicators and has been reporting on SDGs. Statistics Canada has

These achievements have been realized through Statistics Canada's active membership in the following bodies:

Domestically, Statistics Canada remains at the forefront of Canada's strategy on the SDGs. We are taking a proactive approach to Canada's global and national reporting through the following:

In September 2017, The Daily, Statistics Canada's official release bulletin, began including SDG tags: the tags are being used to identify products and publications that can be directly linked to SDG indicators. This includes products that will be used to provide data for Canada in global SDG reporting.

Sustainable Development Goals

On January 1, 2016, the world officially began implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the United Nations' 15-year transformative plan of action that addresses urgent global challenges. The plan is based on 17 specific Sustainable Development Goals.

The survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours is an example of how Statistics Canada supports the reporting on the Global Goals for Sustainable Development. This release will be used in helping to measure the following goals:

Moving forward

Statistics Canada is committed to continuing its work in building and strengthening its partnerships with governmental colleagues, NGOs, civil-society groups, and the private sector. Statistics Canada will continue to explore new ways to work with traditional and non-traditional partners, to examine new sources of data, and to develop new and innovative ways to meet data users' needs through the provision of tools and guidance related to the development of high-quality information.

Statistics Canada is dedicated to making "the full, transformative ambition of the 2030 Agenda a reality for all." The key to success will be to remain focused on how to measure the aspirational nature of the SDGs with statistically robust data in reporting on Canada's progress in meeting the 2030 agenda targets. Statistics Canada understands the importance of "leaving no one behind" and support the Agenda's focus on the most vulnerable people in our society.

Statistics Canada recognizes that it is difficult to measure the experiences and outcomes of the most vulnerable people. This is the reason Statistics Canada is looking at new data sources and new ways to partner with other organizations in using non-traditional data in order to determine whether these are appropriate for monitoring SDGs.

In reporting on the Sustainable Development Goals, Statistics Canada sees that the targets provide the map, while the indicators can be considered as the road signs along the way that let us know how far we have come and how much farther we need to travel. For this reason, our role in the SDGs is critical to ensure that policy makers, civil society, the private sector and Canadians have high-quality information to assess progress.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The Sustainable Development Goals (17 goals and 169 targets) reflect key global issues and are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

The goals are the following:

  1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere;
  2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture;
  3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages;
  4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education, and promote lifelong-learning opportunities for all;
  5. Achieve gender equality, and empower all women and girls;
  6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all;
  7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all;
  8. Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment, and decent work for all;
  9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation;
  10. Reduce inequality within and among countries;
  11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable;
  12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns;
  13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts;
  14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, the seas and marine resources for sustainable development;
  15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, and halt biodiversity loss;
  16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all, and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels;
  17. Strengthen the means of implementation, and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development.

For more information on the Sustainable Development Goals or to enquire about developing partnerships with Statistics Canada, please contact us at

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