In April, the United Nations Chief Information and Technology Officer, Atefeh Riazi, visited Seattle, where she met with numerous companies and non-profits, including many Global Washington members. The purpose of her meetings was to explore how the UN can support globally-minded organizations in using information, technology, and innovation to accelerate progress toward the 17 Sustainable Development Goals – also known as The Global Goals.

Just prior to Ms. Riazi’s visit, the UN had announced the adoption of Tableau Software globally, an effort intended to visualize trends in the data and improve the way Member States use data to inform decision-making. Despite some gaps in the data, the global development community is forging ahead and doing everything in its power to move the needle.

Ms. Riazi has said she believes the for-profit sector has an important role to play, alongside the non-profit sector, which already has been expanding and deepening its use of new technologies and innovative solutions.

Without a doubt, the challenges are immense, and UN Member Countries have set ambitious targets to reach by 2030. In this issue, we’ll take a closer look at the global health goal.

In a 2017 assessment, the UN noted that major progress had been made on Sustainable Development Goal 3 (“Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”). Yet, in order to meet its own aggressive targets, several key areas would require special attention. Chief among them were reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health; infectious diseases; and a focus on health systems strengthening.

Read more about technology and innovation's role in accelerating progress in global health by Andie Long at Global Washington.