Following the United Nations (UN) global conferences of the 1990s that enlisted and indeed came up with some major international development goals, countries, including Botswana, embraced a global development agenda that came to be known as the Millennium Declaration in September 2000 (Botswana: Millennium Development Goals Status Report 2004). The Millennium Declaration outlines eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs); namely; eradicating extreme poverty and hunger; achieving universal primary education; promoting gender equality and empower women; reducing child mortality; improving maternal health; combating HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and other diseases; ensuring environmental sustainability and developing a global partnership for development.
By signing and adopting the Millennium Declaration, countries committed themselves to the realization of the MDGs by 2015; a major challenge for the developing countries that are faced with different competing needs. The MDGs are in line with Botswana’s strategic vision - Vision 2016 – that “articulates Botswana’s long-term development aspirations and provides a broad framework for development” (Botswana: Millennium Development Goals Status Report, 2004:14). Despite the commitment to the MDGs, their attainment by the different countries has been largely threatened and indeed slowed down by the recent global economic crisis that had ripple effects particularly on economies of developing countries because of the nature of their economies.
This study reviewed progress made so far towards the attainment of the MDGs since their embracement in 2000. It argues that countries have made some progress towards achieving the MDGs with differing levels. This is in part because countries are at different levels of development and are faced with competing needs. Although there are eight MDGs, the focus of this study was to conduct policy oriented research on global partnerships as one of the critical goals of the MDGs.