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Sustainable development goals for global health: facilitating good governance in a complex environment.

  • Academic Journal
  • Haffeld J; Affiliated Scholar, O'Neill Institute of National and Global Health Law, Georgetown University Law Centre, Washington DC, USA. Electronic address:
  • Reproductive health matters [Reprod Health Matters] 2013 Nov; Vol. 21 (42), pp. 43-9.
  • English
  • Increasing complexity is following in the wake of rampant globalization. Thus, the discussion about Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires new thinking that departs from a critique of current policy tools in exploration of a complexity-friendly approach. This article argues that potential SDGs should: treat stakeholders, like states, business and civil society actors, as agents on different aggregate levels of networks; incorporate good governance processes that facilitate early involvement of relevant resources, as well as equitable participation, consultative processes, and regular policy and programme implementation reviews; anchor adoption and enforcement of such rules to democratic processes in accountable organizations; and include comprehensive systems evaluations, including procedural indicators. A global framework convention for health could be a suitable instrument for handling some of the challenges related to the governance of a complex environment. It could structure and legitimize government involvement, engage stakeholders, arrange deliberation and decision-making processes with due participation and regular policy review, and define minimum standards for health services. A monitoring scheme could ensure that agents in networks comply according to whole-systems targets, locally defined outcome indicators, and process indicators, thus resolving the paradox of government control vs. local policy space. A convention could thus exploit the energy created in the encounter between civil society, international organizations and national authorities.
    (Copyright © 2013 Reproductive Health Matters. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.)
Additional Information
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Country of Publication: England NLM ID: 9420826 Publication Model: Print Cited Medium: Internet ISSN: 1460-9576 (Electronic) Linking ISSN: 09688080 NLM ISO Abbreviation: Reprod Health Matters Subsets: MEDLINE
Publication: 2017-2018 : London : Taylor & Francis
Original Publication: London, England : Reproductive Health Matters,
Keywords: complexity science; global health convention; global health governance; globalization; sustainable development goals
Date Created: 20131210 Date Completed: 20150402 Latest Revision: 20131209