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Citizenship

Watch This TED Talk if You Want to Know How to End Extreme Poverty

Why Global Citizens Should Care
The United Nations’ Global Goals map out a world without poverty, hunger, preventable disease, gender inequality, environmental harm, and give the world a path for eliminating extreme poverty. You can join us in taking action on these issues here.  

In 2015, the United Nations released the Global Goals, or the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a bold framework for global development.

The 17 goals cover a range of issues including ending poverty, creating sustainable fisheries, and promoting inclusiveness.

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In this TED Talk, economist Michael Green breaks down the Global Goals, explains how far the world has to go to achieve them, and describes the obstacles that are in the way.

"We are living in a world that is tantalizingly close to ensuring that no one need die of hunger or malaria or diarrhea," Green says in the talk. “If we can focus our efforts, mobilize our resources, galvanize the political will, that change is possible.”

Green says that on a scale of zero to 100 of achieving the Global Goals, the world was at 69.1 in 2015, with Denmark having the highest national score, and the Central African Republic scoring the worst.

These scores were determined through the Social Progress Index, which pulls in reams of social indicators such as access to food, education, human rights and much more, and distills them into data points to measure progress. Global Citizen is a partner of the Social Progress Index.  

Read More: What Are the Global Goals — and How Close Are We to Achieving Them?

Throughout the the talk, Green walks through the 17 goals and leverages data to highlight opportunities and pitfalls.

He warned world leaders of picking and choosing what goals to focus on and urged them to consider the goals holistically.

“The goals are an unwieldy set of indicators and goals and targets, but they also include the challenges our world faces,” he said.

“If we choose to double down on the SDGs we can solve, if we go for SDGs a la cart and go with the easy sdgs, then we will have missed the point of the sdgs, and failed on the promise of the SDGs.”