Fragile Progress: The record of the Millennium Development Goals in States affected by conflict, fragility, and crisis

Produced by Save the Children US and the Center for American Progress, this report explores progress made to fulfill the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in States affected by conflict, fragility, and crisis.

States affected by conflict, fragility, or crisis have made distressingly little progress on the MDGs. Of the 55 states examined in this report, even the best-performing country, Nepal, met just slightly more than half the MDG targets. Cambodia, the second-highest performer, has currently met 8 of the 15 targets that applied to developing countries.

This report begins by discussing the process of determining how countries are designated as being affected by conflict, fragility, or crisis, and the lack of agreement surrounding that process. It continues by comparing the progress of these different countries against data on a variety of other factors—such as socioeconomic conditions, corruption levels, trade volumes, resource flows, type of governance, and other data—to explore if certain broad conditions were more or less correlated with relative progress on the MDGs.

To supplement this data-driven analysis of the MDGs in fragile states, the report’s authors develop several practical case studies from countries that were relatively high performers on the goals to see if there are particular interventions, programs, or approaches that are effective in promoting development advances in settings of conflict and fragility.

Lastly, the report proposes a series of policy recommendations based on the authors’ findings to help shape the ongoing negotiations about the Sustainable Development Goals with the aim of making them more sensitive to the needs, capacities, and realities of fragile and conflict-affected states.

Published 2015-07-29

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