Tracking Hunger and Nutrition SDG Targets: Gaps, Challenges and Possibilities

    The cornerstone of any Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) programme, especially for global targets such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and its successor, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), is quality, comprehensive and real-time data. Without such data, M&E processes and operations are neither reliable nor relevant. This rule applies, for example, to targets related to nutrition and hunger-without effective nutrition monitoring capable of capturing trends in under-nutrition at an early stage, policy decisions to combat nutritional issues become ineffective. This paper maps the current monitoring systems in place in India and the constraints of the current information available (data gaps, periodicity gaps or inadequate coverage). It also examines whether data-related pitfalls of the MDGs remain applicable, and explores measures by which these gaps can be addressed in a way that will help achieve the hunger and nutrition targets of the SDGs by 2030.