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What are UN Sustainable Goals?

The UN Sustainable Development Goals are the roadmap for how to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address the global challenges we all face, including those related to poverty, hunger, inequality, climate change, decent employment, and peace and justice. There are 17 goals all working together with promise to create the world we want. 

Did you know, more and more companies see strategic value in standards like the Sustainable Development Goals?  According to SDG Reporting Challenge 2017,

  • 62% of companies mentioned the UN SDGs in their reporting
  • 37% of companies selected priority  from SDGs
  • 79% of companies that prioritized the SDGs chose SDG 13 Climate Action
  • 28% of companies set quantitative targets and linked these to societal impact

Why Align your Social Impact to Sustainable Development Goals?

There are some good reasons why companies are starting to align with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in their impact reporting. 

1) The most important reason is being able to communicate local impact in the global language. While there are multiple impact frameworks, standards, and tools are trying to help organizations align, most organizations still struggle to measure, manage, and communicate the impact.

2) Millennials are seeking transparency while accepting jobs, buying products, and making investments.  Corporate impact is much more important to this generation than previous generations. They are asking hard questions beyond surface-level statistics and reporting.  How are you creating an impact? Where is it coming from?  What are the externalities? Who are stakeholders and beneficiaries?

3) Now social impact has become a centerpiece in business strategy. Business needs permission (positive engagement) from people to do well. One of the biggest challenges facing private equity, corporate, impact investors, and other asset owners is how to build a portfolio that defines and generates true impact. This challenge is addressed by the efforts of groups such as the Impact Management Project (IMP), TONIIC T-100, and OCED.


Learn more about how to align your impact with SDG!

How to Align with SDG and other Standards

UN SDGs has 17 goals and 169 targets with 230 agreed upon indicators. Aligning to SDGs require planning and understanding of not only SDGs but many different standards from your industry.


Already gathering impact data?

If you are a corporate,  an impact investor, an international development agency, or a philanthropic organization and you need to map your metrics to SDG goals and targets you need metrics mapping. SaaS Platform like SoPact has built in 2500+ metrics so you can aligns your metrics to appropriate SDGs seamlessly. For example,  business would likely to use SDGCompass-based mapping from SDG to over 10+ standards such as GRI, CDP and other. For impact investment, we follow TONIIC T-100 mapping between SDG and IRIS. In addition, we cross-link various other standards such as GRI which tends to be qualitative metrics with IRIS which tends to have related quantitative metrics. By linking them together different users can create a rich reporting end result. 

If you are just starting the impact measurement process then first step s is to define goals and targets as per your Theory of Change. Align to other standards as described above and select appropriate metrics. 









Who Can Align to Sustainable Development Goals?

  1. Business, Sustainability, and CSR
  2. Impact Investors
  3. Grant Makers
  4. International Development Organization
  5. Philanthropic Organizations such as Foundations, NGOs

Partnership in UN Sustainable Development Goals

Example SDG Reportings

Communicate Your Local Impact with Global Goals

ICA Impact Report - Final 2_Page_10ICA Impact Report - Final 2_Page_08ICA Impact Report - Final 2_Page_13


Actionable Impact Management eBooks, Groundwork, Metrics, Data, and Communication. Learn More & Download.

Open Source & Practical Framework for Measuring Social Impact

- Asia Pacific Center for Social Innovation


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Actionable Impact Management

Open Source & Practical Framework for Measuring Social Impact

  • GroundworkTheory of Change & Data Capacity
  • Metrics: How to select outcome metrics
  • DataHow to improve data capacity
  • CommunicationHow to communicate your impact effectively