Quick links:


Main content:

Global Challenges at a Glance

Synopsis of global challenges

The Global2015 survey gives an overview of the most urgent global challenges for human needs and life. All the challenges examined deal with existential damages or risks for human life.

Analysing 24 challenges the survey identifies the following 6 as the most important:


World Nutrition and Poverty Eradication

856 million people suffer chronic hunger, which kills roughly 7 million per year. 980 million people live below the line for extreme poverty of one dollar per day. The members of the United Nations have agreed upon the targets to halve the proportions of undernourished and of extreme poor people from 1990 to 2015. Trends: 0/+

Keeping Climate liveable

Man-made climate change will probably include a global warming of 1.1-6.4°C (degree Celsius) by 2100 and weather extremes, harming agriculture, biodiversity, freshwater, coastal zones, health, etc. (and so on) Over 30 industrialized countries have agreed to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 to 2012 by 5%. Trend: 


Stop Epidemics

HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)/AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome), tuberculosis and malaria combined kill 5 million people per year. There are also new global risks of resistant viruses and diseases. The UN (United Nations) members target to halt the spread of HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other major infectious diseases by 2015. Trends: 0/

Stabilizing Finance/Economy

Financial crises have increased, with fiscal costs of more than 1 trillion $ (Dollar [of the United States of America]). Countries of the global South are in debt to industrialized countries by a total of more than 2.7 trillion $. A far-sighted risk management and, as promoted by the UN, debt relief can reduce risks. Trends: /+


Safe Birth Conditions

Due to the lack of assistance by skilled attendants there are at least 3 million infant and maternal deaths each year. The UN members have set the targets of reducing the mortality rate of children under the age of 5 by two thirds and the maternal mortality rate by three quarters by 2015. Trend: +

Maintaining Biodiversity

12 of 14 indicators for biodiversity, which is important for ecosystem stability, show a negative trend. Species abundance has declined by 40% since 1970. The UN targets to reduce the rate of loss of biodiversity significantly by 2010. Trend: 


You will find data sources and more information on these and other issues – like peace, water supply, or capacity building – in our draft synopsis on global challenges, which gives a complete overview.

Draft (2007)