The author argues that independent information carried by the mass media in every country has a huge role to play in generating awareness among citizens of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which will then create the conditions for progress. The United Nations developed the goals, which are the following: (1) Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; achieve universal primary education; promote gender equality and empower women; reduce child mortality; improve maternal health; combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases; ensure environmental sustainability; and develop a global partnership for development. Journalism provides one important source of information and analysis that helps to shape citizens' perspective on and views on the MDGs. Communication campaigns make an impact across the spectrum from modifying an individual's own behavior to generating popular support and pressure for political change. Meeting the MDGs will require a concerted effort at all levels, from the individual through civil society to national governments and the international community. It is hard to envisage how this mobilization can be achieved without pushing the MDGs much further up the news agenda.
Development (2005) 48, 129–131.