Every minute, 20 people are displaced due to conflict or persecution.


Goal 16: Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions

Promote Peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable, and inclusive institutions at all levels.


Reduce violence everywhere

Significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere.


Protect children from abuse, exploitation, trafficking and violence

End abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against and torture of children.


Promote the rule of law and ensure equal access to justice

Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all.


Combat organized crime and illicit financial and arms flows

By 2030, significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen the recovery and return of stolen assets and combat all forms of organized crime.


Substantially reduce corruption and bribery

Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms.


Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions

Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels.


Ensure responsive, inclusive and representative decision-making

Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels.


Strengthen the participation in global governance

Broaden and strengthen the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance.


Provide universal legal identity

By 2030, provide legal identity for all, including birth registration.


Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms

Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements.


Strengthen national institutions to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime

Strengthen relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime.


Promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies

Promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies for sustainable development.

Current Situation

The U.N. categorizes SDG 16 into three distinct areas: conflict and violence, national and institutional stability, and democratic human rights. As the World Bank notes, “poverty is increasingly concentrated in countries affected by conflict.”

The global effort to lift people out of poverty cannot be advanced without a stronger focus on peacebuilding. Conflict is considered by WHO to be a multi-faceted human health crisis, as well as recently becoming the leading cause of hunger, and contributes to environmental degradation and overall inequality.

Access to internationally recognized national human rights institutions remains overdue in 78 countries, in particular in Eastern and South-Eastern Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, Oceania and sub-Saharan Africa. 

Access to internationally recognized national human rights institutions remains overdue in 78 countries.

Impact Opportunity

Measuring progress in the areas of SDG 16 is a particularly complex task, strongly affected by the way statistical models and data collection methods are framed. According to a widely circulated statistical model developed by Christopher Farris, human rights practices have been steadily improving over time.

Yet as recent analysis has shown, Farris’ model obscures the complexity of human rights trends around the world. Conversely, an analysis from Freedom House found that for the 14th consecutive year, 2019 declined in political freedoms across the globe.

This was indicated by the fact that individuals in 64 countries experienced a deterioration in their political rights and civil liberties, while those in just 37 experienced improvements.

Individuals in 64 countries experienced a deterioration in their political rights and civil liberties, while those in just 37 experienced improvements.


In The News

Solving global sustainability challenges with the help of AI

James Hodson from AI for Good spoke to Reuters, in their new series AI Experts, where they discuss how the forthcoming AI revolution is worth a healthy amount of attention in the public domain on how technologies can be deployed to address long-standing societal challenges.

Read the interview here.


Shared Datasets

Pulls together data sets in an open format to track SDG16 and provide a snapshot of the current situation, and eventually progress over time.

Tracks global conflict and violence.

Tracking human rights abuses over time.

Covering major topics on law and order by country.

Find data sets on topics including early childhood development, infant mortality, and intimate partner violence.

Provides data and analysis, and supports partners to identify and implement solutions to internal displacement.

he Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED), a disaggregated data collection, analysis, and crisis mapping project, maintains a database of all forms of human conflict from over 50 developing countries.

National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, an agency within the United States Department of Defense, records instances of hostile attacks against ships and mariners via its Anti-Shipping Activity Messages (ASAM) database.

The Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) aim to facilitate the sharing of experiences, including successes, challenges, and lessons learned, with the goal of accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.



Global Governance, Multi-Actor Cooperation, and Civil Society

Goal Partners

Safe to Learn

Safe to Learn is an initiative dedicated to ending violence in schools, improving learning outcomes, better leveraging investments in education, and raising awareness towards violence against children.

Costa Rica | SDG Integration

UNDP and partners develop science-based maps for policy implementation based on national priorities, convening 30 national and 20 international institutions. Together, these partners are transforming spatial data and policy priorities into actionable maps to safeguard Costa Rica’s essential life support areas.

Innocence Project

The Innocence Project is a nonprofit legal organization that is committed to exonerating individuals who it claims have been wrongly convicted through the use of DNA testing and to reforming the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice.

Defending Women - Defending Rights

The International Campaign on Women Human Rights Defenders is an international initiative for the recognition and protection of women who are activists advocating for the realization of all human rights for all.

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is a global organization dedicated to saving lives, protecting rights and building a better future for refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people. The UNHCR works to ensure that everybody has the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge, having fled violence, persecution, war or disaster at home.

Derechos Humanos

Derechos Humanos is a grassroots organization that promotes the human and civil rights of all migrants regardless of their immigration status.

We’re applying Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to measure and accelerate progress on the United Nations SDGs. » Learn more

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