Financing section banner showing woman holding accounts book


Photo: © UN Women/Ryan Brown

The Way Forward

Financing aims to support the alignment of all resources (international, national, public and private) with the Sustainable Development Goals.

This section aims to support UN country teams’ make the shift from “Funding to Financing." Funding focused on transferring resources from a financial contributor to a recipient. Financing aims to structure different financial flows to achieve a common result.

Funding to Financing consists of several steps:

  • Step 1 is a financing analysis where the financial landscape at the country level is mapped; 
  • Step 2 involves costing the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework’s strategic outcomes and the UN’s contribution; 
  • Step 3 involves identifying the UN financing gap and the Common Budgetary Framework; and
  • Step 4 identifying the sources of finance for the UN and a Joint Resource Mobilisation Strategy.

The Special Purpose Trust Fund (SPTF) for the new Resident Coordinator system

With the adoption of General Assembly Resolution 72/279, Member States adopted a hybrid funding system for the new Resident Coordinator system. 

The successful implementation of the United Nations development system repositioning requires a fully-funded Resident Coordinator (RC) system, owned by the membership. The Special Purpose Trust Fund (SPTF), a specific fund housed within the UN Secretariat, has been established to receive, consolidate, manage and account for all contributions and financial transactions of the new RC system, in a transparent and effective way. The SPTF web portal displays in real-time all commitments, contributions and expenditures recorded for the fund.
All contributions count and their symbolic value is far greater than the sum of their parts. The aim is to expand the ownership and funding base to the maximum, building a robust system by all, for all. 

Funding sources include three streams: voluntary contributions from Member States, the doubling of cost-sharing amounts from UN entities who are members of the United Nations development system, and a 1 per cent levy applied to contributions for UN development-related activities earmarked to a single agency, single programme or project.

To see the latest contribution to the SPTF, please visit the SPTF web portal.

The Joint SDG Fund

The Joint SDG Fund is an inter-agency, pooled mechanism for integrated policy support and strategic financing. We act as a bridge for those taking action to deliver substantive and efficient results on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

People, planet, and prosperity are the fundamentals, but to transform our world we need to get the right economic, social and environmental policies in place. We also need to secure significant, ongoing resources by brokering innovative financing solutions.

The Joint SDG Fund’s role is to incite a shift in the way we “do” development, placing the focus on policy, investments, financing, and partnerships. We provide flexible, reliable, and regular support to development programmes that embody new ways of thinking. Initiatives are built on context-specific, scalable, and integrated approaches.

Inspired by the Secretary-General’s reform of the United Nations, the Joint SDG Fund works across all 17 global goals to transform current development practices and put countries on a sustainable and resilient track. A critical instrument for incentivizing and enabling new approaches, we draw from existing expertise across the United Nations Development System and a broad network of partners. Think of us as the “muscle” for a new generation of United Nations Country Teams (UNCTs) and Resident Coordinators.

Stimulating shifts in the uptake of integrated and transformative policies can lead to the creation of smart financing strategies that put SDG progress into high gear at global, regional, and country levels. The programmes we support are nationally owned and led, each built on a country’s unique United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework.

We plan to Leave No One Behind by accelerating SDG gains and mainstreaming intersectional issues like human rights, gender, youth, the environment, and people with disabilities.

To learn more, please visit the Joint SDG Fund website.


We plan to Leave No One Behind by accelerating SDG gains and mainstreaming intersectional issues like human rights, gender, youth, the environment, and people with disabilities.