Giving Compass' Take:

• A report from the 17 Rooms secretariat uses the framework of the UN Sustainable Development goals to identify four "Great Transitions" that the world is making today: for justice, environment, technology, and the next generation.

• How have the events of 2020 impacted world progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals and other international targets? Why might 2021 be an especially critical year to take action on pressing global issues? 

•If you're not yet familiar with them, learn more about the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.

This year has exposed the world’s extraordinary fragility. Managing a pandemic is hard enough. Doing so while addressing other urgent stresses—like inequality, violence, and climate change—adds to the degree of difficulty. What should be done to move forward? This was the question tackled by 17 Rooms 2020, a yearly convening of leading experts and practitioners brought together by the Brookings Institution and The Rockefeller Foundation to channel ideas and energy into actions for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

COVID-19 and related crises have made the SDGs even more important, according to this year’s 17 Rooms summit participants. The goals offer a “North Star” to help steer longer-horizon efforts out of crisis. But the shifting global context requires a new outlook. What should this prioritize? Inspired by the insights of the 17 different “Rooms,” or working groups, we boil it down to four Great Transitions: for justice, for the environment, for technology, and for the next generation. These transitions represent a series of burgeoning global changes that still require a doubling down of effort in order to succeed.