Big Push for Sustainability

The Big Push for Sustainability (BPS) can be understood as the guiding concept to promote economically, socially and ecologically sustainable development in Latin America and the Caribbean, following the approaches of the 2030 Agenda. The concept is based on the premise that economic growth in the region, by definition, faces two major constraints: it must be compatible with external restrictions and with environmental sustainability. At the same time, growth with and for equality is required, that is, a minimum growth that enables to eradicate poverty, raise high-quality formal employment and implement social policies for a strong and persistent reduction of inequality. These three conditions for sustainable growth in the region generate three gaps, which ECLAC identifies as:  

  • (1) the gap between growth needed for equality and growth compatible with external balance (social gap)  
  • (2) the gap between externally balanced growth and ecologically stable growth (environmental gap) 
  • (3) the gap that exists between the minimum growth rate for equality and which, in turn, is compatible with the stability of the ecosystem (sustainability gap)  

Overcoming these gaps through a virtuous combination of public policies in strategic sectors would make it possible to make a quantitative and qualitative leap in the development of the region – a Big Push for Sustainability. 

Within the framework of the projects "Inclusive, Sustainable and Smart Cities" and "Recover Better", german cooperation supports the design of public policies in the sectors defined by ECLAC as priorities to close the aforementioned gaps. For example, in the field of urban connectivity, it is jointly challenged to operationalize the BPS concept through technical advice and capacity building. Likewise, it collaborates in specific areas of fiscal, social and industrial policy, supporting the concrete application of the BPS approach to a pilot level in order to take advantage of the lessons learnt and generate new knowledge for its operationalization. As a cross-cutting pillar, it seeks to promote (inter-)regional dialogues and synergies with other relevant public and private stakeholders, including the German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS), the Council on Economic Policies (CEP) and Think Tanks from other regions, as well as with different projects of the German Cooperation. 

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