Frequently Asked Questions

What is UNDP’s role in the Sustainable Development Goals?

UNDP is uniquely positioned to help implement the SDGs by using its global presence in 170 countries and its reputation as a trusted partner to support countries in mobilizing the partnership of governments, private sector, civil society, and citizens for SDG achievement. For more information on the SDGs click here

What is SDG Impact and why does it exist?

In order to achieve the SDGs, we need unifying standards, tools, and services that can be relied upon by investors to support a process of targeting, measuring and achieving development outcomes.


Impact investors have articulated a handful of clear market intelligence needs, providing them access to unique and differentiated insights that empower them to deploy capital effectively and in alignment with the SDGs

Standardized data and insights over time and across geographies

Impact investors derive particular value from report series that allow for comparison over time and across disparate geographies

Information on underserved markets and sub-sectors

Traditional investment data and research focuses on a narrow subset of markets and sectors, leaving significant gaps in investor understanding

Investable opportunities aligned with achievement of the SDGs

While investors understand high-level linkages to the SDGs, they lack actionable insights into concrete investment possibilities

The UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) estimates that achieving the SDGs by 2030 will require a total annual investment of $5-7 trillion, including $3.9 trillion per year in developing countries. This funding gap presents an opportunity for private sector investment.

$1.2T Private sector investment opportunity, developed countries 2

$1.2T Private sector investment opportunity, developed countries 1

New and existing public financing sources

$5-7 T Total annual investment required to achieve the SDGs 1

$12 T +
Annual market
opportunity by 2030 3

SDG Impact will provide investors and practitioners with clear guidance, tools, and insights to authenticate their contribution toward the SDGs. This initiative will catalyze private capital to further the achievement of the SDGs by:

  • Promoting the development and adoption of universally agreed upon standards for SDG- enabling investments and enterprises;
  • Developing data-driven, investor-oriented market intelligence reports that illuminate specific sectors, geographies, or thematic areas of interest for SDG investment opportunities; and
  • Designing the SDG Impact Seal and certification training;
  • Developing matchmaking services for investors seeking to connect with local entrepreneurs.

By virtue of its technical knowledge, extensive geographic reach, and credibility as a neutral body, UNDP is well positioned to offer these products.

How will SDG Impact help achieve SDGs?

SDG Impact will offer an investor-oriented offering that makes use of UNDP’s core strengths and capabilities.

SDG Impact's business model is designed to attract a mix of new and increased funding.

Opportunities for sustained growth built upon strong impact management offereings

Impact Management

SDG Impact Seal and Certification Training


Online learning modules

Training and certification of Seal providers

Annual license renewal for active Seal providers

Impact Intelligence

SDG Impact Country Mapping Reports

New donor streams and in-kind support

Research and data gathering

Report generation and dissemination

Impact Facilitation

SDG Impact Impact Investor Convenings

Sponsorship and events

Corporate, investors and government sponsors

Admittance donations / fees per convening

Who is the primary audience for SDG Impact?

The successful implementation of SDG Impact’s product offerings will change the way that business is conducted. For this reason, SDG Impact is relevant to a variety of stakeholders:

  • Institutional investors who are looking to deploy capital towards the achievement of the SDGs;
  • Philanthropic foundations who would like to quantify and articulate SDG enabling impact achieved;
  • Enterprises and corporates who would like to validate and communicate that their processes are SDG compliant;
  • Academia who can advise and challenge the standard setting process;
  • Consulting firms who can train and act as accredited independent certifiers.
What are SDG Impact's Products?

Impact Management

SDG Impact Seal and Certification Training: Verification of the policies and practices needed to authenticate SDG-enabling investment, implemented by certified, local and international entities and supported by Country Office expertise

Online training course: Anchored in the IMP’s existing frameworks this modular global online training series on impact measurement and management (IMM) as it relates to achieving the SDGs

Impact Intelligence

SDG Impact Country Mapping Reports: UNDP Country Office publications that provide investors localized insight and investment opportunities into industries, businesses, products, and market conditions that advance the SDGs

Impact Facilitation

SDG Impact Investor Convenings: Country Office hosted events that bring together SDG-aligned investors and enterprises to catalyze local investment and help Country Offices develop robust private sector networks

Will my organization get the “United Nations stamp of approval” through the SDG Impact Seal?

Accredited Independent Certifiers (AICs) will evaluate and award the SDG Impact Seal. UNDP will screen, train, and monitor AICs, but AICs will ultimately award seals to funds.

What is the SDG Impact Seal? Who can get the Seal and how can my organization
get the Seal?

A high-level Advisory Group will endorse and approve the SDG Impact Seal, which will be offered to investors and enterprises that pass a rigorous assessment of processes and practices by AICs who are accredited and monitored by SDG Impact.

SDG Impact logo

Train, certify and monitor seal providers

Accredited Independent certifiers

Asses investor/company practices against SDG Impact criteria and award Seal to complying entities

SDG Impact logo SDG Impact

Periodic audits and renewals for both AICs and Seal recipients

Country /
Regional Offices

Help align policies and practices for SDG achievement

Investors / Companies interested in SDG alignment

When ready, request review and accreditation as an investor or business contributing to the SDGS

Does SDG Impact offer customized support to investors?

SDG Impact offers customized, hands-on expert support to investors seeking to further refine their alignment with the SDGs. This support may be provided by a combination of technical experts and country-level development practitioners. UNDP will bring its experience and mandate across all SDGs to support investors to link investments to development impact.

Sustainable Development Goals © 2021 SDG Impact Terms and Conditions