ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Methodological Issues in SDG India Index

A Critical Assessment

The Sustainable Development Goal India Index released by NITI Aayog continues to attract public attention. This article highlights a few problems in SDG India Index—the method of aggregation, capping normalised score to be 100 when states perform better than the targeted level, data gaps, and lack of sensitivity analysis of the composite index—which need to be relooked.

The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets have to be realised not only at the national level but also at subnational levels. This is on account of the fact that every indicator invariably has a socio-economic gradient determined by a prevalent political and economic structure (Abdullah et al 2021). Resource allocations or targets decided at the country level in the multilateral forums are often distributed in respective countries according to their existing political power structure. People with least socio-economic positioning are invariably the last to be touched by policy interventions. Taking cognisance of this fact, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly has resolved that an inclusive and transparent intergovernmental process should be established to monitor the progress of SDG at subnational levels as well (Parekh and Bandiera 2020).

Owing to this, NITI Aayog has begun to release the SDG India Index.1 So far, three editions of SDG India Index have been released (NITI Aayog 2018, 2019, 2020). The 17 SDGs containing a number of socio-economic outcomes like poverty, health, education, inequality, environment, decent life, development of infrastructure require to be measured in combinations of different dimensions (MoSPI 2020).

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Updated On : 6th Feb, 2023
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