The Office of National Statistics is gearing up to undertake a formal consultation on SDGs indicators. The purpose of the consultation is to understand what stakeholders think is required of reporting to ensure the effective monitoring of progress in line with the SDG targets and indicators, allowing for the UK-specific context. An additional aim of the consultation is to identify and source ‘non-official data’ (i.e. data held by stakeholders such as academia or private sector) in order to fill the identified data gaps in the official data. The consultation was due to be launched in November 2016, but has been postponed to Spring 2017 to allow all interested stakeholders to participate and increase traction with Government on the consultation conclusions and recommendations.
There are currently two Parliamentary select committees undertaking SDG consultations. The Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) is in the midst of a large inquiry which is looking across the entire SDGs framework. The inquiry is exploring how prepared the UK and the Government are to implement and achieve the SDGs. Most recently, the EAC took verbal evidence from government officials. Its final report is expected by early Spring 2017. The Women and Equalities Committee (WEC) is also exploring the SDGs, but is specifically focussing on gender inequalities and SDG5. The inquiry they are running is currently hearing oral evidence from experts and is also expected to report by early Spring 2017.