In order for societal development to be sustainable, several factors have to be taken into account, and people have to be included at all levels.
Sustainable societal development
Economic growth is essential for combating poverty, but growth must also be sustainable. This means that in the process of building up basic services, we must take into account factors such as environmental impact, climate change and loss of biodiversity.
Working to promote a sustainable and equal society is a very important part of Swedish development aid. Sida mainly focuses its support through initiatives in the following areas:
- Improved water resource management, increased access to clean water and basic sanitation
- Improved access to sustainable energy alternatives
- Sustainable cities
Increased access to basic public services such as energy, water, sanitation and housing are crucial for poverty reduction and economic development. It is also a foundation for other human rights. Sweden and Sida have taken the lead in putting issues about environment and sustainable development on the global agenda, as well as to include questions about participation and equality.
The starting point of Sida's work with sustainable societal development is strengthening countries' capacity and ability to create strong ownership among decision makers on different levels. Support for both authorities and individual organisations is important. Cooperation with other donors and international bodies are required in order to address cross-boundary issues, as well as collaboration with business sector and research institutions.
The private sector has an important role in building and developing societies. Innovative technology solutions should be encouraged in order to find new solutions to problems that hinder development. Through collaboration and support to companies that seek to contribute to Swedish development goals, Sida encourages development of new technologies, financing and new partnerships.
Through new financing methods such as development loans and guarantees, Sida can contribute to the implementation of, and reduce risks for major infrastructure investments in developing countries