Our program has a special focus on helping our partner supreme audit institutions (SAIs) and parliamentary oversight committees contribute to development priorities, including gender equality, environmental sustainability, and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This supports Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy, the development plans of our partner countries, and the global effort to achieve the SDGs. It is also aligned with the objective of the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI), included in its 2017-2022 strategic plan, to support the implementation, follow-up and review of the SDGs.
SAIs and oversight committees play an important role in holding governments accountable for their commitments to the SDGs and other development priorities. Their audit findings and recommendations can also help governments improve the effectiveness of public programs and services related to the SDGs, in areas such as health, education, economic development, and environmental sustainability, and help ensure such services better respond to the needs and potential of women and girls.
About the SDGs
In September 2015, UN member states adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The 2030 Agenda includes 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which establish social, economic, and environmental sustainable development objectives to be achieved by 2030. These SDGs are interrelated and cover all aspects of sustainable development. The SDGs’ priorities are further specified in 169 measurable targets. The goals and targets are considered “universal” and “indivisible.” That said, each government will set its own national targets, based on national circumstances and priorities, and decide on how to incorporate these targets into national planning processes, policies, and strategies. For more about the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs, visit sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdgs
Achieving gender equality and empowering women and girls is both a standalone goal (SDG 5) and a crosscutting theme that will influence, and be influenced by, progress on the other goals. As stated in Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy, SDG 5 “is at the heart of Canada’s approach to implementing the 2030 Agenda because it will drive progress toward achieving the other Sustainable Development Goals.”
Throughout our program we emphasize the importance of gender equality, environmental sustainability, and the SDGs, and aim to support these priorities. For instance:
Our training and mentoring highlights these themes and teaches participants how they can consider them in performance audits. We develop methodology and resources to help, like our Practice Guide to Auditing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals: Gender Equality.
We encourage and support our partner SAIs to select audit topics relating to these themes and, in planning such audits, to consider SDG targets and indicators as well as gender equality implications. All Fellowship participants are required to develop a plan for a performance audit, to be conducted by their SAIs, on a topic that supports one or more of these themes.
We support our partner SAIs’ and oversight committees’ involvement in international events related to these themes, including training and conferences on auditing the SDGs organized by the INTOSAI Development Initiative (IDI). We also seek opportunities to contribute to such events and collaborate with IDI and other partners.
Additionally, we support gender equality by providing equal training opportunities for women and men, leading to opportunities for career advancement for both genders, and by assisting our partner SAIs to foster women’s empowerment in their workplaces.