Welcome to Agenda 2030 at the local level

Welcome to Nordregio's website about Agenda 2030 at the local level. Here you will find publications and events featuring Nordic frontrunners and their tools to reach challenging SDGs.

In 2024 – the final year of this project – our focus will be on producing a Nordic Voluntary Sub-National Review (VSR). This joint Nordic VSR is the first of its kind, developed by Nordregio together with the Nordic Associations of Local Governments. It will be presented to a global audience during the UN High-Level Political Forum in July 2024.

The Nordic VSR builds on a survey sent to all Nordic municipalities about their work to localise Agenda 2030 and integrate the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into their operations and steering documents. We asked about their priorities and progress, obstacles, and resources. By sharing results and experiences of how to develop inclusive and sustainable communities, we want to inspire locally on a global scale and facilitate peer-learning between Nordic and global actors. Transferable methods and strategies will be made available online in a Nordic Toolbox. 

The Nordic countries have a long tradition of strong local governance. With the Nordic VSR, we want to showcase the vital role of local governments to make progress towards a more sustainable world. As emphasised by the UN and OECD, at least 105 of the 169 SDG targets cannot be reached without proper engagement and collaboration at the local level. The Nordic VSR will also have a specific focus on youth inclusion.

Nordregio’s research on Agenda 2030 at the local level, and ongoing knowledge exchange activities with Nordic municipalities are funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers, in line with "Our Vision 2030". Signed by all the Nordic Prime Ministers, the vision aims at making the Nordic region the most integrated and sustainable in the world by 2030.

Associations of local authorities supporting Agenda 2030

Important partners and supporters of local efforts and monitoring of Agenda 2030 are the Associations of Local Authorities and Regions in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. Find more about their work in our report Agenda 2030: How to reach the goals and measure success at the local level and below.

KL is an association and interest organisation for the 98 municipalities of Denmark. KL represents their interests at national and EU level supports them with consultancy services and ensures that local authorities are provided with information and up-to-date knowledge that is relevant to their work.

AFLRA represents all 309 cities and municipalities in Finland and works with regional councils, hospital districts, as well as limited companies that are under local government control. The Association represents its members’ interests and engages in co-development strategies to address challenges faced by the local government sector. In addition, AFLRA provides expert advice to its members.

Samband represents the interests of the local authorities in Iceland and provides a forum for their cooperation. All 69 municipalities in Iceland are members of the association. In recent years, Samband has supported the municipalities in localising the SDGs through different activities.

All 356 municipalities and 11 regions in Norway are members of KS. The Association represents members’ interests when consulting with national authorities and other actors; takes part in bargaining collective labour agreements on behalf of its members; and provides services to its members. KS emphasises the 2030 Agenda and the need to localise the SDGs in its strategies and plans.

Salar represents all 290 municipalities and 21 regions in Sweden. As part of its mandate, the association supports its members in their work towards implementing the SDGs. Salar aims, amongst other goals, to increase knowledge about the SDGs, provide indicators to measure progress in the local work, and offer expert advice on a range of sustainability topics such as public procurement.

For more information, feedback, suggestions and your ideas on SDGs implementation, please contact:

Åsa Ström Hildestrand, Project Manager Agenda 2030