17th October – International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Jessica Stamm, Academic Intern, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC)

The 17th of October is the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. The UN General Assembly chose this date in 1992 because on that day the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed in Paris in 19481. It is therefore a suitable moment to recall the fundamental connection between poverty and human rights. However not only is eradicating poverty a human rights imperative, it is also a peace imperative as well as a development imperative2.


The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is also an opportunity to recall SDC's overall objective: the "Swiss international cooperation […] aims to contribute to a world without poverty and in peace, for sustainable development"3. Eradicating poverty is at the core of our work and the ultimate goal of the SDC.


The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development calls for ending poverty by 2030 and to leave no one behind. For the SDC, this means (i) ensuring that populations left behind or at risk of being left behind are considered in all new cooperation or thematic strategies, (ii) aiming for transformative change by tackling exclusion, discrimination and inequality, (iii) recognizing the multiple dimensions of poverty, (iv) and enhancing information systems and the production of disaggregated data that reveal the challenges of those left behind, and strengthen the relationship between duty bearers and rights holders. 

The Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and the Chronic Poverty Advisory Network (CPAN) arranged a Panel Discussion under the title "Leaving No One Behind through economic growth, governance reform and climate change initiatives" on the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. If you are interested in how leading experts emphasize the interrelationship between the diverse areas of interest in order to reach sustainable poverty escapes, I recommend you to watch the panel discussion (see link below).



The participants were:

Vidya Diwakar, Senior Research Officer, Chronic Poverty Advisory Network, ODI
Wael Hmaidan, Executive Director of Climate Action Network (CAN) International
Andy McKay, Professor of Development Economics at the University of Sussex
Jelke Boesten, Reader in Gender and Development at the King's College of London
Danielle Spencer, Senior Technical Specialist at ActionAid UK
Tim Conway (Chair), Senior Social Development Advisor, Governance, Conflict and Social Development Team, Research and Evidence Division, Department for International Development (DFID)


1 http://www.un.org/en/events/povertyday/background.shtml

2 http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco/events/prizes-and-celebrations/celebrations/international-day-for-the-eradication-of-poverty/)

3 https://www.eda.admin.ch/deza/en/home/sdc/portrait.html

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