Data in action – testing the UN’s urban sustainable development goal in Greater Manchester

When the University of Salford’s SURF project needed rapid research and data collection for a global pilot project to test out proposed UN indicators on cities, they asked Quantum to help.

We delivered a rapid project to pilot the targets and indicators for the UN’s new Sustainable Development Goals #11 “Make Cities and Human Settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.” We ran a workshop with Greater Manchester local authorities, AGMA and United Utilities to prioritise which indicators to test and to prioritse which were most relevant to the city. Following on, we gathered and analysed a large volume of data and discussed if and how it might help make Greater Manchester more inclusive, safer, resilient and sustainable. International targets and indicators need to be locally relevant, yet internationally comparable. How can we compare slum indicators for Greater Manchester with those in Cape Town?

We presented our findings at the Urban Goal Campaing workshop in Sweden which compared our findings in Greater Manchester with other pilots in Kenya, Sweden, South Africa and India. Our findings have been published as part of an international report to inform the UN process of determining Sustainable Development Goals; an academic article has been co-authored for publication later in 2015 and a local report will be prepared.

Dr Beth Perry, SURF Director said “Yet again Quantum proved an excellent partner in our research work. I was extremely impressed – not only by their professionalism and high quality outputs, but also by their collegiality and the values and commitment that underpin their work.”

Please email louise@quantumst.co.uk if you’d like a copy of the report or if you’re developing indicators for your city or project.

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