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Key principles for developing sustainable development strategies

Differing national circumstances and priorities among countries result in varied approaches to strategic planning. These are reviewed on page 35. But consultations with developing countries during the OECD DAC dialogues, and wider international experience emerging from the UN regional consultative workshops on sustainable development and experience of comprehensive development frameworks and poverty reduction strategies, have shown that there are common features of good practice. These are presented as a set of principles which underpin the development of effective strategies in many developing countries (Box 3.1). These principles have been endorsed by the DAC in its policy guidance on strategies for sustainable development (OECD DAC 2001a). In November 2001, a UN international forum on national strategies for sustainable development (held in preparation for the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development) confirmed almost identical principles – which the Forum termed ‘elements’ (Box 3.2) – these were defined as being applicable to both developed and developing countries alike (UNDESA 2002b).