October Days for Sustainable Development: Research Round Table

2015 is a unique year for development:

  • It is the European year of Development;
  • It is the year of the UN Summit on sustainable development;
  • It is the year of the due date of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs);
  • And the year of the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The expected adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals in September 2015 is an important moment for all the players involved in sustainable development. The October Days for Sustainable Development will:

  • help to both engage stakeholders to deal with, respectively, developed and developing countries, and help the negotiators who will participate in the international debates on the achievement of the SDGs;
  • focus on the implementation challenges that will confront EU member states and some of the EU partners in development cooperation;
  • contribute to awareness and capacity building and international cooperation;
  • engage the participants to debate on the identification of appropriate data sets for the indicators and development of abilities, such as elaboration and analysis of the indicators.
  • contribute to linking the SDGs to EU processes such as the EU2020 Strategy. This will help disseminate the idea that the “universality” principle of the SDGs also involves EU governments.


The panel discussion brings together recognized experts in the analysis and evaluation of the SDGs and public policies as well as experts from finance and environmental circles. The forum aims to discuss recommendations for decision makers and other stakeholders involved in the SDGs negotiations.

The forum represents also an opportunity to raise awareness among the civil society in Luxembourg regarding the SDGs and discuss actions to foster an empowerment process in the EU and in the developing countries.

Welcome and Introduction

Mr. Jan Vaapaavuori  Vice-President of the European Investment Bank

Mr. Ben Fayot  Luxembourg Godwill Ambassador for Sustainable Development

Prof. Dr. Rainer Klump  President of the University of Luxembourg


Session 1: What other data would we like to have to evaluate inequalities in the SDGs?

Chair: Luisa Ferreira European Investment Bank Institute  

Serge Allegrezza STATEC

Carrie Exton OECD

Daniele Checchi University of Milano

Walter J. Radermacher EUROSTAT


Inequalities within and between countries are key issues to the global strategy for development and could hamper progress towards the SDGs. Data is a major constrain to build adequately SDGs indicators. In fact, inequality measurements require individual-level and, preferably, longitudinal data to trace out changes. In this session, data timeliness and quality are also critical. In this session, data sources and evaluation methods to build inequality indicators are discussed as well as the potential role of international cooperation among statistical and research institutions.


Session 2: What types of indicators are most suited for policy analysis?

Chair: Daniel Byk Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Economy Luxembourg

Rudi Delarue European DG for Employment and Social Affairs

Raya Muttarak Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital


Panos Tsakloglou Athens University of Economics and Business


The Leadership Council of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network views indicators as (i) a management tool - to help countries develop implementation and monitoring strategies for achieving their goals; (ii) a report card - to measure progress and ensure the accountability of governments and other stakeholders for achieving their goals. The most popular economic indicators in this context include: Gross Domestic Product, the Human Poverty Index, the Human Development Index, and the Income Poverty Headcount. In recent years others have been added to the list, such as the Multidimensional Poverty Index and the Better Life Index. Policy indicators have many desirable characteristics including being relevant, transparent, built on well-established data sources , theoretical sound. This session discusses the choice of the most suitable indicators to inform policy and the trade off between their different characteristics.


Session 3: Producing knowledge for action on the SDGs in the EU:  What might it take? 

Chair: Ariane Koenig University of Luxembourg

Marguy Kohnen  Ministry of Sustainable Affairs and Infrastructures of Luxembourg

Eric Marlier  LISER

Brian Nolan  INET Oxford University

Lucia Vergano DG Environement

Implementing the SDGs requires a multi-level governance process, engaging different stakeholders from key institutions and actors from civil society. Measuring the new goals entails refining proper indicators and reinforcing data collection from new sources. This is key to tackling the multiple dimensions of well being,  building reliable and transparent indicators and strengthening political accountability. This session discusses the importance of systemic thinking and collaborative processes across different expertise for a better understanding of interdependencies between different sustainable development goals to build actionable knowledge.


Session 4: How can we best assist partner countries in development cooperation?

Chair: Véronique Faber IInFiNe.lu and Microinsurance Network

Martin Evans UNICEF

Ali Gamatié   Former Vice-Governor of the Central Bank of West African States

Vincent Glaesener LuxDev

Johannes Jütting  Paris21


Optimizing the efficiency, effectiveness, relevance and sustainability of development cooperation among key stakeholders has been a challenge for many years. Several high-level fora (Rome 2003, Paris 2005, Accra 2008, Busan 2011, Mexico 2014) as well as the recent Action Plan for Effectiveness of Development Aid 2014 – 2016 by the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign Affairs have addressed this issue and developed recommendations. Key principles include sector and geographic focus, inclusive partnerships, predictability, transparency and mutual accountability, coordination and harmonization, mobilization of internal resources, triangular and South-South cooperation, cooperation with the private sector and the civil society. While this theory may appear as a consensual road to build development strategies, reality often proves out to be more complex, including local adverse externalities that need to considered, such as the lack of natural resources, weak governance, conflicts and natural disasters, poor policy and investment environment, etc. This session discusses how to strengthen the capacity of partner countries and how to ensure an appropriate development and economic (business-related) environment in order to foster development.



Mr. Marc Schiltz  Fonds National de la Recherche


Round Table Discussants attending the forum

  • Marta Barazzetta (University of Luxembourg)
  • Eyal Bar-Haim (University of Luxembourg)
  • San Bilal (European Centre for Development Policy Management)
  • Eric Bonsang (LISER)
  • Massimo Bricocoli (University of Luxembourg)
  • Tania Brugnoni (1535, Differdange)
  • Jean-Christophe Burkel (Union luxembourgeoise de l’économie sociale et solidaire)
  • Louis Chauvel (University of Luxembourg)
  • Andrew Clark (Paris School of Economics)
  • Roberta Cucca (University of Vienna)
  • Conchita D’Ambrosio (University of Luxembourg)
  • Marleen De Smedt (Eurostat)
  • Jaap Dronkers (Maastricht University)
  • Bernhard Ebbinghaus (Mannheim University)
  • Francesco Farina (University of Siena)
  • Anne Frausing (Caritas Luxembourg)
  • Alessio Fusco (LISER)
  • Isis Gaddis (World Bank)
  • Anne-Laure Gaffuri (Eurostat)
  • Fritz Gebhard (Eurostat)
  • Anne-Catherine Guio (LISER)
  • Myriam Hadnes (University of Luxembourg)
  • Anne Hartung (University of Luxembourg)
  • Dirk Hofäcker (Duisburg-Essen University)
  • Anja Leist (University of Luxembourg)
  • Hakan Lucius (European Investment Bank)
  • Félix Martins de Brito (Chambre des Salariés)
  • Kandala Ngianga-Bakwin (LIH)
  • Javier Olivera Angulo (LISER)
  • Victor Osei Kwadwo (Maastricht University)
  • Thierry Paccoud (InSyDe Luxembourg)
  • Flaviana Palmisano (University of Luxembourg)
  • Federico Perali (University of Verona)
  • Chiara Peroni (STATEC)
  • Alexander Plekhanov (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development)
  • Alessandro Santoro (University of Milano-Bicocca)
  • Francesco Sarracino (STATEC)
  • Hilmar Schneider (LISER)
  • Eva Sierminska (LISER)
  • Jacques Silber (Bar-Ilan University)
  • Saverio Stranges (LIH)
  • Philippe van Kerm (LISER)
  • Raymond Wagener (former IGSS)



















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