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About the project

SDG Indicators for municipalities

In 2015 the United Nations set international Sustainable Development Goals in its 2030 Agenda. The SDGs are relevant not only at national and regional level, but also at local level.


The objective of the project “SDG Indicators for municipalities” is to identify suitable indicators to depict the implementation of SDGs at municipal level in Germany and provide corresponding data, if possible.

The identification of suitable indicators is subdivided into the collection, evaluation and selection of indicators for the SDG sub-targets and partial targets that are generally relevant at municipal level in Germany.

Data is provided for all towns and municipalities (Städte / Gemeinden) with a population of more than 5,000 and for all counties (Landkreise).


The methodological procedure for developing and providing SDG Indicators for municipalities can be roughly divided into three phases: checking the relevancy of SDGs (phase I), evaluating and describing the indicators (phase II) and the collection and analysis of indicator parameters (phase III).

Phase I comprises three stages: in the first stage, the sub-goals were sub-divided into individual statements (partial goals) where necessary. In the second stage, the question of whether the respective individual goal addresses a major problem for German municipalities (problem check) was assessed. In the third stage, the question of whether municipal tasks could help to contribute to the achievement of the respective individual sub-goal or partial goal (task check) was examined.

Phase II consisted of four stages: in stage one, selected indicator catalogues and databases were used in order to assign the indicators they contained to the sub-goals or partial goals that were classed as relevant. In the second stage, all indicators were checked for validity, comprehensibility, data availability, data quality and function, which allowed a better assessment of the overall quality of the indicators. In the third stage, particularly suitable parameters were selected for the SDG Indicators catalogue. In stage four, info profiles gave detailed descriptions of the selected indicators.

Phase III concentrated on the collection and analysis of indicator parameters. As far as possible, data collection extended to all towns and municipalities (Städte / Gemeinden) with a population of more than 5,000 and to all counties (Landkreise); although the data are not collected by the municipalities directly but by central sources. The data are provided by the SDG-Portal. The purpose of data analyses was to arrive at a better understanding of the interrelations between Type I Indicators.

You can find more information on the methods used at


A working group was formed. The members of the working group “SDG Indicators for municipalities” are Bertelsmann Stiftung, the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development (BBSR), the German County Association (DLT), the Association of German Cities (DST), the German Association of Towns and Municipalities (DStGB), the German Institute of Urban Studies (Difu), the European Secretariat of ICLEI and the German section of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR).