SDG Goal 10: reduced inequality

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World leaders came up with the Millennium development goals with the aim of fighting all the different dimensions of poverty worldwide. These goals targeted eight main areas and have remained the world’s largest development framework for the past 17 years. These millennium goals included; eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving primary education universally, women empowerment and promotion of gender equality, reducing child mortality rates, improvement of maternal health, fighting HIV, malaria and other diseases, promoting environmental sustainability and developing a global partnership for development (Armstrong-Mensah 25).

In 2015, the MDGs were met in different ways globally as reported by the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals Report of 2015. For example, the global poverty has reduced from almost 50% in 1990 to around 14% in 2015, the enrollment of children to primary school has increased to 90% as compared to the 83% enrollment in 2000, and literacy among the youth has increased from 83% in 1990 to 91% in 2015. There has been an increase in the number of girls enrolled in schools worldwide and a 6% increase in the number of women earning outside the agricultural sector between 1990 and 2015. Other ways through which the MDGs were achieved in 2015 include a decline in the number of under-five deaths by more than half globally, decline in the maternal mortality rate by 45% since 2000, decline in HIV infections by 40%, increase in the number of people accessing Antiretroviral therapy, elimination of substances causing the depletion of the ozone layer and an increase in the developmental assistance offered by the developed countries by 66% (Genevey Pachauri and Laurence 12). All the above are just a few of the different ways through which the MDGs were met as per 2015, and they are still being met.

Indian poverty

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a set of 17 goals and 169 targets that are set in September 2015 by head of states to be accomplished by 2030.These goals run across social, economic and environmental dimensions of development. These goals were built on the success of the MDGs whose main objective was to eradicate extreme poverty in all of its forms. The SDGs are more complex than the MDGs. They are built on the fact that sustainable development is the key to global cooperation (Swatuk and Corrine 9). The main objective of the SDG is therefore to promote development using sustainable methods by deflecting from the Business-As-Usual methods to use the use of resources sustainably and promote societies that are inclusive and peaceful globally.

Goal 10 in the SDGs is one of the most important steps in the transformative vision of the world in 2030. The goal, reduced inequalities, casts light not only on the poverty levels within countries, but also between them. The goal aims at reducing inequalities in income, political social and economic exclusion and also in terms of opportunities. The inequality between countries has reduced over the years but it has been observed that the inequality within countries in 2015 was higher than it was 25 years earlier. This was especially found true in the developing countries which had a bigger inequality gap than the developed countries.  The uniqueness of this goal is that it is not a goal on its own, but it is instead a goal that cut across all other goals that have been set to be addressed in the SDGs (McRobbie and James 8). The achievement of goal 10 is dependent on the achievement of other goals and in the same way, failing to reduce these inequalities may fail lead to failure to achieve all the other goals.

India is one of the developing countries in the world, with a high population, and this makes it very prone to high inequality gaps. For this reason, it is one of the countries that are very likely to be affected by the achievement of the SDG goal number ten.

The Gini coefficient for India reduced by 3.2% between 2010 and 2015

(Agrawal 1)

The Gini coefficient (one of the measures for goal 10) for India reduced by 3.2% between 2010 and 2015. The Indian government put an emphasis in the inclusion, financial empowerment and social security of its citizens by emphasizing on the three pronged Jan Dhan-Aadhaar-Mobile programs. This was in an attempt to promote sustainable development in India by achieving equality and ensuring that all its citizens re-included politically, socially and economically by 2030. India aims at sustaining the income of 40% of the bottom population at a higher rate than the national average, empowering social, political and economic inclusion of all, facilitating safe and equal migration and travelling of people across the globe. All these targets will work towards achieving the SDG reduced inequality goal.

The challenge in applying this goal is that it is dependent on other goals. Addressing issues of financial inequality will involve changes in global financial systems which call for financial reforms and thus this goal will not be as easy to achieve as other goals. Personally, application of this goal feels very farfetched and hard to achieve especially now when developing countries in an attempt to achieve other goals, are coming up with different regulations that are making it harder for international cooperation (Mapotse). An example of this is the increased decision by different governments such as the United States to promote local trade while making it difficult for imports and trade with other countries.

The aim of the MDGs and the SDGs is mainly to promote social economic, political and environmental development with the SDG’s aiming at achieving this sustainably. The goal number 10 in the SDG promotes equality in the achievement of the social, economic, political and environmental goals equally across the globe. Promoting global cooperation is one of the ways through which this goal can be achieved while ensuring that other goals are also being implemented.

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  1. Mapotse, T. A. Cross-disciplinary Approaches to Action Research and Action Learning. , 2018.
  2. McRobbie, A., and James, J. Access and Equity Evaluation Research. Canberra: Australian Govt. Pub. Service, 1992. Print.
  3. Swatuk, L. A., and Corrine, C. Water, Energy, Food and People across the Global South: ‘the Nexus’ in an Era of Climate Change. , 2018.
  4. Genevey, R., Pachauri, R. K., and Laurence, T. Reducing Inequalities: A Sustainable Development Challenge. , 2013. Print.
  5. Armstrong-Mensah, E. A. Lecture Notes: Issues, Challenges and Global Action. , 2017. Print.
  6. Agrawal, N. Inequality in India: what’s the real story? 2016. Web. 12 Dec 2017<
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