This study applies a systems approach to examine possible systemic relationships among the SDGs implementation in India.
Cheshta Grover, Academic Tutor and TRIP Fellow, Jindal School of Government and Public Policy, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
Naresh Singh, Professor and Vice Dean, Jindal School of Government and Public Policy, and Director, Centre for Complexity Economics, Applied Spirituality and Public Policy, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
While there has been much talk about the integrative, indivisible, and interlinked strategies to achieve the SDGs (UN Sustainable Development Goals), the interactions and interdependencies are generally not explicit. Challenges remain to simultaneously capture the multilayered relationships among SDGs to strategically and coherently align national development plans.
In this paper, we use systems thinking and systems dynamics modelling analysis to capture the cross-effects of intervention policies by taking one national indicator for each of the three selected goals. These are budget inclusiveness (increase in public expenditure on health) in SDG 3 (on good health and well-being), literacy rates (literacy rate of youth in the age group of 15-24 years) in SDG 4 (on quality education) and equity (employment gender bias) in SDG 5 (on gender equality) together to assess their effect on the SDG 8 (of decent work and economic growth).
A Causal Loop Diagram has been used to present the qualitative structure of the model. In our modelling, we logically draw interlinkages and then attempt to support them with existing evidence. Our main result is to confirm that reinforcing loops of such interventions exist, which are important for sustainable development policy. We have extended the causal loop diagram by proposing what effects could be realised in other SDGs related to poverty (SDG 1), sustainable consumption and production (SDG 12), and global partnerships (SDG 17).
The paper concludes that such analysis will bring interlinkages to the foreground for prioritising the national goals and targets and hence implement policies in priority areas achievable by 2030 for India on a development strategy informed by systems thinking.
Published in: Journal of Sustainability Science and Management
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