It was already an open secret, but still jarring to hear put in such stark terms. Not only are we not on track to reach the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, but we’re nowhere close. In July, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said the world is “woefully off track” from where we need to be to achieve the Global Goals, and he laid out why. For years, said Guterres, the world has lacked ambition, has lacked a sense of urgency, and has failed to develop any sense of solidarity in terms of reaching the goals. Worse, post-pandemic economic woes are strangling many national economies, making it even tougher to envision progress when resources are suddenly, dramatically limited.

So where do we find hope?

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