Ending Poverty: The Road to 2030
May 11-12, 2017UN City, Copenhagen, Denmark

This two-day preparatory conference will take a look at the progress made on SDG 1, which calls for ending extreme poverty by 2030. The outcomes from this conference will be used as inputs in preparation for the 2017 UN High Level Political Forum to be held in July.

This event presents an opportunity to showcase the world’s progress to date on reducing extreme poverty, identify barriers to future progress on SDG 1, convene country representatives to reflect on real-life lessons and progress, and highlight and share the World Bank Group’s work and analysis of ending global extreme poverty by 2030 and boosting shared prosperity in every country.

The two-day event will include a range of sessions and workshops. The first day will take stock of where the world is today on this goal, and what factors put future progress on poverty reduction at risk, such as slow growth, inequality, instability, data deprivation, erosion of social protection and human development systems and programs. The second day will focus on a select group of countries which have been successful in reducing extreme poverty, and will share lessons learned, challenges, policy choices, and tradeoffs that were necessary to achieve this progress.

The event will be organized by the World Bank Group in partnership with UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) and UN Development Programme (UNDP). 

Day 1: The World’s Progress, Building on Successful Approaches

8:00–9:15 Registration
9:15–9:30  Welcoming Remarks 
9:30–10:30 Ending Poverty: Can We Get There by 2030? 
10:30–11:00 Coffee
11:15–12:30 What Gets Measured Gets Done: How Data Deprivation Puts Poverty Reduction at Risk
12:30–2:00 Lunch

Building on What Works to Reduce Poverty: Emerging Approaches in Traditional Areas

Attendees broken into three moderated discussion groups, on the following themes:

  • Inclusive Economic Growth (supporting long term growth includes bringing inprivate sector, infrastructure investment, instruments to reduce risk, inclusive growth, etc)
  • Investing in People (education, equalizing opportunities, building resilientworkforce, competitiveness, childhood stunting, nutrition, decent jobs, etc)
  • Insurance and Resilience (effective safety nets, pandemics, refugees, buildingresilience to shocks, DRR, inequality of access to insurance, Global ConcessionalFinancing Facility, etc)
3:45–4:00 Coffee
4:00–5:00                 Conclude Break-out Sessions, Report Out in Plenary 

Day 2: Emerging Challenges, Barriers to Progress, Possible Solutions

9:00–10:30 Global Trends That Threaten Progress toward 2030 
10:30–10:45 Coffee
10:45–12:30 Tackling Challenges and Finding Solutions: Breakout Sessions
12:30–2:00 Lunch
2:00–3:30 Working with Advocates, Civil Society, and the Private Sector to Fight Poverty 
3:30–3:45 Coffee
3:45–5:00 The Road Ahead: Concrete Actions and Recommendations for the UN’s High Level Political Forum, Closing Remarks


Day 1: The World’s Progress, Building on Successful Approaches

Ending Poverty: Can We Get There by 2030?


What Gets Measured Gets Done: How Data Deprivation Puts Poverty Reduction at Risk


Building on What Works to Reduce Poverty: Emerging Approaches in Traditional Areas

Inclusive economic growth

Investing in People

Insurance and resilience


Day 2: Emerging Challenges, Barriers to Progress, Possible Solutions

Global trends that threaten progress toward 2030 (slow growth, fragility, climate change, inequality, urbanization, demography, etc.)


Tackling challenges and finding solutions: breakout sessions

Approximately 80 representatives from governments, international organizations, civil society, and private sector from around the world met on May 11-12, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark to discuss how to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 1 (SDG 1): Ending Poverty In All Its Forms Everywhere. The meeting was co-hosted by the World Bank Group, UNDP and UN DESA. The following summarizes key facts on global poverty, and the main points discussed during the conference.  

Key Facts on Global Poverty

The world has made great strides in eliminating extreme poverty in the last decades. Nearly 1.1 billion people have moved out of extreme poverty since 1990. However, 800 million people in the world still live below $1.90/day, almost 32 percent of the population of developing countries live below $3.10/day- a level of deprivation that is unacceptable. And while the world has seen improvements in a number of areas beyond income, such as maternal mortality, school enrollments, and others, persistent gaps in access to crucial services for the poorest and the marginalized will form a barrier to ending poverty by 2030.  

Progress towards ending poverty hinges on addressing growing global challenges such as climate change, fragility and conflict, demographics, macro-economic instability, rapid urbanization, and the social and economic costs of exclusion and inequality. These challenges plague all countries, but have a particularly detrimental impact on those facing compounding vulnerabilities. Despite making up a third of the world’s population, half of today’s extreme poor are children, the vast majority of the extreme poor live in rural areas, around 65 percent work in agriculture, and almost 40 percent have no formal education.  Extreme poverty is increasingly concentrated in fragile and conflict situations, in areas prone to natural disasters and in countries where inequalities are high. This underscores the importance of the cross-cutting 2030 Agenda commitment to Leave No One Behind.  

The conference underscored the need to take a multidimensional approach to tackling poverty, recognizing that wellbeing is not just defined by the amount of money in a person’s hands, but also about the quality of his or her life. 

First main point: Promote Inclusive and Sustainable Growth

It will be impossible to reduce poverty without closing existing economic and opportunity gaps, including by addressing inequalities, discrimination and social exclusion but also by looking at a country’s entire economic and social system to understand how policies impact all segments of the population. Ending poverty requires policy choices that support sustained and inclusive growth: reduce inequalities, boost human capital, improve connectivity to markets, promote decent jobs, promote good governance, and protect the vulnerable from shocks. It also increasingly means addressing growing concerns about the role of, and adaptation to, technology, lack of economic mobility, and perceptions of unfairness. Inclusive economies must embrace governments as well as private sector and non-state actors for effective and efficient delivery of policies that address poverty.  

Second main point: Invest in People  

Investing in the quality of people’s health, nutrition and education builds a strong foundation for life-long success. When complemented with investments in infrastructure and universal access to basic services such as healthcare, education, water and energy, and paired with strong, inclusive labor markets, all people, regardless of gender, age, location, or economic background – including minorities -  have the opportunity to live up to their full potential and provide for themselves and their families throughout their lives.   Investment in people must start in childhood and cut across all drivers of change – from agriculture, manufacturing and technology, to health, education, skills building, support for youth and urban-rural connectivity. This holistic approach to investing in people, that promotes policies with a multiplier effect across different populations groups, is critical for all 17 SDGs.  

Third main point: Promote Resilience  

Recent gains made towards ending poverty are at risk given global trends towards slower economic growth and the threat of negative shocks such as natural disasters, pandemics and recessions. Investments in resilience locally, nationally and globally will be critical to facing the local impacts of global challenges and ensuring that those who have seen progress in the past are not pushed back into poverty. It will be important to focus on those most exposed to climate, health, economic, and conflict/fragility-based vulnerabilities. While inclusive economic growth and investment in human capacity can help build strength at an individual level, social protection and safety nets and strong and stable institutions are critical to mitigating and responding to known and unknown risks across societies. In fragile and conflict situations, it will also be critical to ensure that development and humanitarian efforts complement each other to both respond to immediate crises and work on building more resilient and stable societies.  

Cross-Cutting Issue: Better Use of Evidence

Robust data and analysis on the many dimensions of poverty must inform policy making and decision making. The power of numbers and evidence is clear, and more effort needs to be made to close data gaps, disaggregate data, build capacity and strengthen data use. What gets measured, gets done; but focus must be equally placed on strengthening timely access to quality and publically available data in accessible formats as well as using existing data and analysis in a dynamic policy setting framework that also encourages learning from experiences and sharing knowledge.  

Cross-Cutting Issue: Multi-pronged Financing Strategies  

A holistic response to poverty eradication is built on a financing strategy that includes both public and private sector and promotes inclusive economic strategies. Financing strategies cannot depend solely on one person or political party; they must be embedded in institutions, have strong ownership, leadership and vision, and must be predictable and sustainable while recognizing the challenge of meeting immediate short term needs as well as longer-term objectives. This balance is particularly critical in responding to broader poverty and development objectives in fragile and conflict states.  

Cross-Cutting Issue: Stronger, More Inclusive and Diverse Partnerships

Partnerships across state and non-state actors, including the voices of the poor, are critical for success both in making change on the ground and advocating for change in the public sphere. Greater collaboration and coherence across actors are pivotal in the fight to end poverty, and the value added of all stakeholders in implementation of policies should be recognized. For example, creative insurance mechanisms in the field of agriculture can leverage government, private sector, and civil society resources.

Conference Details
  • Date/Time: Thursday, May 11, 2017 – Friday, May 12, 2017
  • Venue: UN City, Marmorvej 51, 2100 Copenhagen Ø, Denmark
  • Language: English
  • Contact: