Sport SDGs Indicator Framework
The potential of sport-based approaches to contribute to wide-ranging development outcomes has been acknowledged across international policy declarations, most significantly in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This recognises sport as an important enabler to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The SDGs themselves are high-level goals that all UN Member States adopted in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030.1 Many of these aspirational SDGs have contributing factors found within the sport, physical education and physical activity ecosystem. This contribution has the potential to support the achievement of identified SDG targets.
For sport, physical education and physical activity to maximise its contribution to achievement of the SDGs, a broad range of stakeholders must be mobilised, and sport policy must be integrated within the SDG implementation mechanisms. Development of improved systems for measuring the contribution of sport, physical education and physical activity to sustainable development is an essential foundation step toward realising the full potential of the sector for development and peace.
National governments and, increasingly, the intergovernmental community recognise the need for common indicators, benchmarks and self-assessment tools for the monitoring and evaluation (M&E) of sport policy as they look to move from intent to measurable implementation of policy.
This version of the sport and SDG measurement framework and model indicators responds to commitments made at the Sixth International Conference of Ministers and Senior Officials Responsible for Physical Education and Sport (MINEPS) VI, in the UN Action Plan on Sport for Development and Peace (SDP) 2018–2020 and at the Ninth Commonwealth Sports Ministers Meeting. The Kazan Action Plan (UNESCO, 2018), resulting from MINEPS VI, includes a specific objective to ‘develop common indicators for measuring the contribution of physical education, physical activity and sport to prioritized SDGs and targets’ (UNESCO, 2017). The UN Action Plan on SDP includes an objective to ‘strengthen national statistical capacity and monitoring systems to ensure access to sport-related data including through the establishment of indicator protocols’ (UNGA, 2018).
The Toolkit aims to directly inform the commitments noted above, as well as other international efforts to align local, national and international sport policies and programmes with the SDGs. Through increased alignment and strengthening associated M&E frameworks, the contributions of sport, physical education and physical activity to the SDGs and associated national priorities can be maximised. An iterative design process has been employed in developing this Toolkit, through which an overarching measurement framework and model indicators have been developed, tested and redesigned. This ensures a thorough assessment is ultimately possible, concerning the viability and value of developing common global indicators and datasets on sport and the SDGs. This represents the third iteration of the sport and SDG measurement framework and model indicators.
The main purpose of this Toolkit is to outline a common, systematic approach to measuring and evaluating the contribution of sport, physical education and physical activity to the SDGs. In doing so, this Toolkit outlines a common approach for the development of sport-related policies, implementation plans and strategies along with core principles associated with the design of M&E frameworks that will maximise the contribution of sport, physical education and physical activity to sustainable development.