Position Papers
Walter Hook
Global Urban Development Magazine (USA)
Published in
Submitted by
Peter Midgley, gTKP
Related theme(s)
Urban Mobility
All Regions

Urban Transportation and the Millenium Development Goals

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) do not include any specific goals or targets related to transportation, though transport sector interventions are critical to meeting many of the goals. The lack of transport-specific goals is due not to their unimportance, but rather to the fact that groups with interest in the transport sector did not participate in the Millennium Summit, as they were focused instead on the Commission for Sustainable Development 9 meeting the following year, which focused on transport and energy. Other sectors were no doubt similarly excluded from prioritization for similar reasons.

The lack of inclusion of concrete targets for transport in the Millennium Development Goals carries with it two risks: 1) that critical transport sector interventions will get left off the development agenda entirely, and 2) that the lack of specific targets will give wide latitude to donor agencies and governments to intervene in the transportation sector without any clear guidance from the MDGs, leading to misguided interventions that do little to reduce poverty, and may even make it worse.