Launched in 2020 by the Global Economy and Development program, the Center for Sustainable Development (CSD) generates leading research and insights to advance global sustainable development and implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) within and across all countries.

As the world enters the third decade of the 21st century, concurrent global crises of pandemic disease, economic contraction, systemic inequities, and severe environmental degradation are evolving amid a rebirth of nationalism, rapid technological change, hyper-fragmented public debates, and breakdowns in international cooperation. Against that backdrop, the SDGs, as established by all countries at the United Nations in 2015, form a crucial reference point for the community of nations in charting a new course toward economic, social, and environmental progress by 2030.

In response, the CSD is committed to supporting international, U.S., and networked societal leadership for sustainable development across all countries, including within the U.S. and other advanced economies. The Center builds on several years of active research and engagement led by Brookings scholars to inform the global sustainable development agenda and to promote inclusive and sustainable growth for all. CSD experts’ efforts have a particular focus on issues related to extreme poverty, the “leave no one behind” agenda, the metrics of sustainable development, sustainable development finance, climate change, the future of work, regional divergence, and the importance of local government leadership and innovation.

CSD undertakes research and convenings to advance five interconnected and mutually reinforcing issue areas:

  1. Defining the challenge: sustainable development economics and empirics.
  2. Identifying mechanisms and instruments to advance SDG implementation.
  3. Advancing sustainable development at local and other sub-national levels.
  4. Advancing effective financing for sustainable development.
  5. Advancing U.S. official and American societal leadership for global sustainable development.

Our team

John W. McArthur, Director and Senior Fellow
Chandrika Bahadur, Nonresident Fellow
Amar Bhattacharya, Senior Fellow
Daniel Bicknell, Senior Project Manager
Margaret Biggs, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Matthew Bishop, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Alexandra Bracken, Assistant Director
Raj M. Desai, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Patrick Fine, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Tarek Ghani, Nonresident Fellow
Caren Grown, Senior Fellow
George Ingram, Senior Fellow
Shrijana Khanal, Senior Project Coordinator
Homi Kharas, Senior Fellow
Johannes F. Linn, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Julie McCarthy, Nonresident Fellow
Sarah E. Mendelson, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Jane Nelson, Nonresident Senior Fellow
Odera Onyechi, Research Analyst
Anthony F. Pipa, Senior Fellow
Charlotte Rivard, Research Analyst
Naheed Sarabi, Visiting Fellow
Angela Shields, Senior Project Manager
Jacob Taylor, Fellow
Adam Triggs, Nonresident Fellow
Priya Vora, Nonresident Fellow
Rebecca Winthrop, Senior Fellow & Director, Center for Universal Education
Zoe Swarzenski, Project Manager and Policy Analyst

The center houses the following projects:

Global also organized the Brookings Blum Roundtable, an annual forum for global leaders, entrepreneurs and practitioners to discuss innovative ideas and advance groundbreaking initiatives to alleviate global poverty.

To help celebrate the launch of the Center for Sustainable Development, an array of distinguished leaders around the world shared their congratulations, words of wisdom, and calls to action.