Policy Guides

Delta 8.7 aims to help policymakers understand “effective measures” to end forced labour, modern slavery, human trafficking and child labour that Member States committed to take by 2030 as stated in SDG Target 8.7. Since the platform’s launch in September 2018, as the Alliance 8.7 Knowledge Platform, we have worked to improve policy actors’ access to reliable data and information about “what works”. This has included the development of country data dashboards featuring publicly available data on Target 8.7 forms of exploitation, a Forum for exchange on recent research and evidence, and introductory Thematic Overviews.

Between April 2020 and March 2021 Delta 8.7 underwent a process to develop three “Policy Guides” to complement these Thematic Overviews and deepen the evidence base. Where the Thematic Overviews aimed to provide policy actors with a simple way into recent evidence and thinking on a specific aspect of SDG Target 8.7 exploitation or responses to it, the Policy Guides have a more ambitious goal: to provide a snapshot of “what works” to achieve Target 8.7.

Available now, these Policy Guides seek to identify the mix of multilateral and national policies needed to accelerate progress towards Target 8.7 in one of three broad policy domains:

  1. Crisis including conflict, humanitarian and crisis response, as well as migration.
  2. Justice – including criminal and civil justice, survivor engagement and support, including the role of the health sector;
  3. Markets – including all aspects of economic, trade and financial policy, including supply chains and development policy;

Download the respective Rights Lab Evidence Reviews, Public Databases of Evidence and each Policy Guide below:

Crisis Policy Guide Justice Policy Guide Markets Policy Guide
Rights Lab Evidence Review Rights Lab Evidence Review Rights Lab Evidence Review
Public Database of Evidence Public Database of Evidence Public Database of Evidence

The audience for these Guides, is specifically, multilateral and national-level policymakers. They do not dictate to policymakers how they should organize to achieve Target 8.7 — because that requires an understanding of the specific problems in each country, the resources available to tackle them, and other contextual factors. Instead, the Guides seek to provide an evidence-based policy resource that is useful across contexts, and to policy actors around the world, including those thinking about multilateral policy frameworks.

The Policy Guides prioritize scientifically rigorous information regarding what works. As a result, the guidance offered is not comprehensive, nor definitive. It is thorough and deep in areas where evidence is comprehensive and rigorous; it is patchier and more or less speculative in other areas. This, however, helps to highlight areas where evidence is strong, and areas where it is more lacking.

The deliberative process by which the Policy Guides were formulated (described further below) was designed to be replicable. The aim was to capture the current state of knowledge on what works, and allow future iterations of these Policy Guides to reflect changes in the underlying state of knowledge.  See the Policy Guide Concept Note which laid out the plan for the guides in its entirety.


Available now are three Policy Guides, one per domain highlighted above. Each Policy Guide identifies where there is agreement and where there is disagreement, as well as identifies areas that warrant further research or policy experimentation.


Delta 8.7 is the convenor of this process. As convenor, Delta 8.7 has served as central secretariat to the process, has commissioned background evidence reviews, has organized the consultations within the process, has provided drafting support and will edit and publish the final Policy Guide documents.

In April 2020, Delta 8.7 convened a Steering Group for the process. This group consists of senior leaders in the SDG Target 8.7 field. The Steering Group has convened regularly throughout the process to provide advice and counsel, and ensure its integrity and the utility of the final products. This included making recommendations to Delta 8.7 on Working Group membership.

In May 2020, Delta 8.7 convened three global expert working groups for the respective domains:

  1. Crisis
  2. Justice
  3. Markets

Each Working Group has approximately 25-30 members. The first of three public consultations, members were selected following an open call for nominations, with members selected for gender, geographic, age, institutional, stakeholder group and disciplinary diversity. Survivor voices have been included in the consultation process.

After reviewing the nominations, the Steering Group recommended a Chair for each Working Group, supported by Delta 8.7, and who holds the pen for the relevant Policy Guide. Chairs have followed a common template to ensure comparability across the Policy Guides, and has delegated drafting of sections to Working Group members.

Drafting Process

The drafting process for these Policy Guides is modelled after other relevant international processes combining mixed sources of expertise to reach consensus on policy options, such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The following section outlines the timeline and key steps for the drafting of this guide.

In addition to convening the three global expert Working Groups responsible for developing these Guides, two additional public consultations were included:

  1. Public Submission of Evidence
  2. Public Consultation on Draft Policy Guides

Public Consultation on the Process and Call for Nominations

As part of the first round of public consultation, Delta 8.7 requested feedback on the Policy Guide Concept Note which lays out the plan for the guides in its entirety and put out a call for experts to join three global Working Groups. Here are the working groups.

Public Submission of Evidence

Between July and September 2020, Delta 8.7 assembled a public database of evidence on what works to achieve SDG Target 8.7. This was assembled through submissions from the public and through a parallel literature review carried out by an independently commissioned consultant—the University of Nottingham Rights Lab.

Both public submissions and the independent review provided specific information about twenty data points for each piece of evidence submitted, allowing for classification of that evidence. The full comprehensive database will be released soon.

Public Consultation on Draft Policy Guides

Each Policy Guide will undergo a period of public consultation conducted by Delta 8.7 to permit critique and comment on the draft Guides. As an open call for feedback, we encourage comments from individuals or organizations. You have the option to submit feedback anonymously through the feedback form.

Delta 8.7 will collate responses on the Policy Guide and distribute them to the Working Group Chair and Working Group Members. At the final working group meeting in February 2021, the Working Group Chair will lead a group discussion with members to collectively decide how and what feedback will be incorporated into the final draft of the Policy Guide. Please note feedback for this question may not be incorporated for this draft, but it may help inform future work on policy guides.

For any additional questions on the process, please read the Policy Guide FAQs or be in contact with Angharad Smith – angharad.smith@unu.edu

Policy Guide Working Groups