Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies
The UN explains:
Goal 16 of the Sustainable Development Goals is dedicated to the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, the provision of access to justice for all, and building effective, accountable institutions at all levels.
This aims to promote peaceful societies at national levels, as well as the role of cooperation at the international level.
The UN has defined 12 Targets and 23 Indicators for SDG 16. Targets specify the goals and Indicators represent the metrics by which the world aims to track whether these Targets are achieved.
Goal 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
16.1: Significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere
16.2: End abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against and torture of children
16.3: Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all
16.4: By 2030, significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen the recovery and return of stolen assets and combat all forms of organized crime
16.5: Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms
16.6: Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels
16.7: Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels
16.8: Broaden and strengthen the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance
16.9: By 2030, provide legal identity for all, including birth registration
16.10: Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements
16.a: 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
16.b: Promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies for sustainable development
Just, peaceful and inclusive societies provide a firm foundation for business to thrive. All companies need to play a part in creating a fair environment for business by complying with laws and regulations, improving transparency, protecting whistle-blowers and setting the highest standards of integrity amongst their workforces.
Worldwide, more than 1.2 billion people live in areas affected by conflict and fragility. (Fragility covers five dimensions – violence, justice, institutions (including effective governments and regulatory bodies), economic foundations and resilience). Corruption, bribery, theft and tax evasion (all illicit financial flows) cost developing countries around US $1.26 trillion per year. More than 6 billion people live in countries with a serious corruption problem.
What can business do? Check how robust your compliance is with local laws governing tax and trade practices in all your countries of operation. And that you’re keeping pace with changes in laws and regulations. Put in place a corporate company code of ethics or conduct and provide training on it.