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The Sustainable Development Goals Fund is a development cooperation mechanism created in 2014 by UNDP, on behalf of the UN system, with an initial contribution of the Government of Spain. The SDG Fund was created to support sustainable development activities through integrated and multidimensional joint programmes. It builds on the experience, knowledge, lessons learned, and best practices of the previous MDG Achievement Fund (2007-2013), while expanding its activities towards sustainable development and a greater focus on public-private partnerships. Gender and women’s empowerment is a cross-cutting priority in all our areas of work. The SDGF intends to act as a bridge in the transition from MDGs to SDGs, providing concrete experiences on “how” to achieve a sustainable and inclusive world post 2015.


The initial resources of the SDG Fund came primarily from a contribution of the Government of Spain to the UN system. Over 20 donors are already contributing to the SDG Fund´s programmes. The SDG Fund is open to other donors including national governments, aid agencies and private sector. Other private and public sector partners have made direct contributions to the SDG Fund.

A Steering Committee, represented at the highest level by UN Agencies and contributing Member States, meets at least once per year and provides overall guidance and strategic direction. UNDP’s Multi Partner Trust Fund Office is entrusted with the administration of the Fund as Administrative Agent. The SDG Fund Secretariat, a small, specialized and technical team sitting on UNDP’s Bureau of External Relations and Advocacy will ensure that the decisions of the Steering Committee are applied and followed up, and will coordinate the programmatic, advocacy, evaluation, and knowledge management aspects of the SDG Fund. At country level, joint programmes have established governance mechanisms that represent the interests of the national government.

The SDG Fund operates at the country level through joint programmes implemented by specialized UN agencies in collaboration with national counterparts and other stakeholders in order to bring integrated and holistic approaches to national and local development challenges.

As the largest ever contribution of a single country to the UN Development System for the achievement of MDGs, the MDG Fund reached more than 9 million direct participants through 130 joint programmes in 50 countries. Its work was anchored in integrated, holistic approaches to development problems identified by national partners. In addition, the MDG Fund established other thematic, advocacy, and knowledge partnerships to advance the MDGs. All this experience has been extensively evaluated and analyzed, and findings from this evaluation process are feeding the work of the new facility. Moreover, the SDG Fund’s Secretariat is sharing these findings with other development partners so as to inform other development initiatives, especially those rooted in joint and integrated programmes.

The SDG Fund publishes information about current job and internship opportunities at its Secretariat on UNDP's employment page: Implementing partners at each country joint programmes use their own communication vehicles to reach local talent in the country.

The MDG Achievement Fund  evaluation and knowledge management strategies have produced valuable insights on development cooperation in the form of lessons learned, key findings, knowledge products, publications, and reports. All this knowledge has been compiled and is now accessible through the MDG-F’s website and online library. Disseminating and sharing the knowledge generated by the MDG Fund with development aid practitioners and decision makers represents an important area of work for the SDG Fund´s team.

According to UN DOCO, the UN office that promotes coordination and coherence among UN Agencies, a “joint programme is a set of activities contained in a common work plan and related budget, involving two or more UN organizations and (sub-) national partners." It is the preferred mode of work if the development challenge to be tackled requires the collective expertise and action of different specialized agencies and national partners. The joint programme's governance structure is crucial for the success of its work. In this regard, SDG Fund will relies on the critical and strategic coordination and executive role of the UN Resident Coordinator (RC), the highest representative of the UN in the country. More information on joint programes.

The current 22 joint programmes have been selected through a competitive and indepedent experts-reviewed process according to the requirements established in the SDG Fund Terms of Reference. Link with more information on the SDG Fundjoint programme selection process.