Equity, valuing teachers, governance and accountability should be central to post- 2015 development agenda

Last month I joined a team of 13 VSO employees, partners and volunteers at the Asia Pacific Regional Thematic  Consultation on Education in the Post 2015 Development Agenda in Bangkok. The conference was organised by the  regional offices of UNESCO and UNICEF.  Its purpose was to ensure that the voices of the Asia-Pacific region are included in the global process.

VSO realised that many groups have been excluded in discussions on the post-2015 development framework which aims to prioritise the development needs of poor and marginalised people. We felt that views of excluded groups such as female teachers and pupils living in rural areas, parents, out-of-school children, ethnic minorities, and youth are not being adequately represented.

Read more at VSO talk

UNESCO’s vision of education after 2015

The vision of education in the post-2015 development agenda must reflect two fundamental principles, said UNESCO's Assistant Director-General, Qian Tang.

He spoke at the Global Consultation on Education in the Post-2015 Development Agenda which opened on 18 March 2013, in Dakar, Senegal.  

The first principle is that the right to quality education is a fundamental human right enshrined in normative frameworks and built into the legislation of most countries.  

The second is that education is a public good. The state must be the custodian of the principles of education as a public good, paying particular attention to the promotion of equality.  

Mr Tang also underlined that while governments must be in the driving seat, we also need to recognize that the delivery of education is a collective responsibility that involves families, communities, civil society organizations and business."We need to do a better job of harnessing all of these stakeholders to improve the delivery and financing of education," he said.  

Read more at UNESCO

Post- 2015: framing a new approach to sustainable development

A new international alliance of research institutes has identified eight major shifts that must take place for humanity to achieve sustainable development.

The recommendations come in a paper published today by the Independent Research Forum on a Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda, whose members include IIED and other think tanks in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, North America and South America.

The research institutes joined forces to provide expert analysis to inform the on-going international policy processes that will shape both the Sustainable Development Goals (which nations agreed to create at the Rio+20 Summit last year) and the ‘post-2015’ development agenda, which is set to replace the Millennium Development Goals.

Read more at Eco- Business.com

Letter from leading academics addressed to High Level Panel says: Put Inequality at the heart of Post- 2015

A group of 90 academics, economists and development experts have written to the members of the High Level Panel on the Post 2015 Development Agenda to ask that they put tackling inequality at the heart of any new framework.

Ahead of the next meeting of the panel in Bali next week, the letter says that to eradicate extreme poverty in all its dimensions by 2030, the panel must find a way to reduce vast and increasing inequalities both within and between countries.

The expert signatories include former Colombian minister and leading development economist Jose Antonio Ocampo, Indian academic Jayati Ghosh, Thomas Pogge, a lead thinker in global justice debates and co-authors of the Spirit Level book, Kate Pickett and Richard Wilkinson.

The letter was also signed by Cambridge University’s Gabriel Palma and Andy Sumner from the International Development Institute at King’s College London who have put forward an alternative measure of inequality based on Palma’s ratio between the  income share of the richest 10% of a population compared with the poorest 40%.

Read more at Post2015.org- what comes after the MDGs?

People want new development goals to promote growth for all- UN

The new development agenda to follow on from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which expire in 2015, should focus on how countries can achieve growth that includes everyone, going beyond poverty eradication and international aid, according to an early snapshot of consultations with people around the world.

The United Nations launched what it calls a "global conversation" in August last year, and more than 200,000 people from across the world have contributed to a process that will run until May or June.

The United Nations Development Group released on Thursday an initial set of findings, which it hopes will inform a meeting of the U.N. secretary-general's high-level panel on the post-2015 development agenda in Bali starting on Sunday.

The report says people still regard the MDGs as "fundamental", not least because they help "channel support to people living in vulnerable situations across the world". But they also see room for improvement.

Read more at AlterNet

UN nominates Ghana to develop sustainable development goals

The United Nations' Organisation (UNO) has nominated Ghana to play a lead role among 30 member-states from five regional blocks, to develop Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that will be universally applicable, through the Open Working Group (OWG) initiative.

The Rio+20 Conference agreed to launch a process to develop a set of SDGs, which will build upon the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to converge with the post 2015 development agenda.

It was decided that an "inclusive and transparent intergovernmental process open to all stakeholders, with a view to developing global sustainable development goals to be agreed by the General Assembly," which Ghana is now playing a lead role among the 30 member-states representatives, would be established.

Mr. Ken Kanda, Ghana’s Ambassador Plenipotentiary to the UNO, noted that Ghana considers the role as a duty to humanity and the UNO to develop goals to enhance the assets of the poor and address current global crises.

Read more at GhanaWeb

Towards an exclusive and gendered post- 2015 agenda

UN Women Deputy Executive Director John Hendra participated in a panel on the “Key gender equality issues to be reflected in the post-2015 development framework” on 7 March during the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW57). The objective of the panel was to solicit the views of CSW Member States and civil society on key issues in the post-2015 agenda.

Mr. Hendra outlined UN Women’s perspective on what a post-2015 agenda that has gender equality and women’s empowerment at its heart might look like. He described the need for the inclusion of a substantive stand-alone gender equality goal that is firmly grounded in women’s rights, based on existing human rights norms and standards, including CEDAW. This goal must be comprehensive, avoid repeating the narrow focus of Millennium Development Goal 3 (MDG3), and include the specific gender issues that other goals and targets do not address, such as aim to eliminate violence against women and girls, expand women’s choices and opportunities, ensure their full participation in decision-making at all levels, and include sex-disaggregated targets and indicators.

Read more at reliefweb

We have a voice at the table | Emele Duituturaga speaks with CIVICUS about development effectiveness in the Third Sector

Emele Duituturaga Speaking at the Open Forum 2nd Global Assembly 2Emele Duituturaga (far right), Executive Director at Pacific Islands Association of Non Governmental Organisations in Fiji, sits in a plenary session with other CSO leaders at the 2nd Global Assembly of the Open Forum in Cambodia in 2011. A development specialist, academic, consultant and trainer, Emele has exceptional knowledge of gender and development issues in the Pacific region, having served in senior roles including CEO of the Fiji Ministry for Women, Social Welfare and Poverty Alleviation and Head of the Pacific Women's Resource Bureau for the Secretariat of the Pacific Community. Here, Emele speaks with CIVICUS about development effectiveness in Civil Society.

You played an important role in the Open Forum for CSO Development Effectiveness. What are, for you, the key results of this process?
The key results are the collective and unified voice of Civil Society created as a result of a very focused and well-organised global bottom-up process of consultations in over 70 different countries and reaching global consensus on the Istanbul Principles and the International Framework for CSO Development Effectiveness which we tabled at the Busan HLF4 and got global recognition for. This is truly remarkable.

What do the Istanbul Principles bring to the CSO sector, on top of existing accountability and self-regulating tools?
The Istanbul Principles bring a unifying mission and global consensus of what CSOs value and work for: a mission and consensus which other stakeholders – particularly governments and donors – have now embraced.

CIVICUS alliance to hold open membership meeting with the Board of Directors

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On Monday 8 April 2013, the CIVICUS Board of Directors invites members of the CIVICUS alliance to join and interact with them in an open online meeting.

The CIVICUS Board of Directors will be holding their next regular meeting in New York on 7 and 8 April 2013, and are eager to take the opportunity of being together in one place to reach out to members and strengthen the connectivity and sharing of ideas between the organisation’s membership and Board.

Since the last CIVICUS members Annual General Meeting in September 2012 in Montreal, there have been some key developments in the organisational governance:

Although this virtual meeting does not constitute a formal AGM, it will be an interactive chance for the CIVICUS membership and broader constituency to interact with the current Board, who have served since 2010. After a short report back from the Board Chair, the format of the meeting will be an interactive question, answer and consultation session.

If you would like to take part in the meeting from the comfort of your computer, please RSVP to Carol Baloyi, Membership Officer (E. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; T. +27 11 833 5959 ext. 109) no later than Friday 5 April 2013. Carol will send you the instructions on how to connect to the virtual meeting.

The meeting will take place at 12:00 – 13:30 New York time / 16:00 – 17:30 GMT. To check your local time equivalent, please click here.

Although this is a meeting primarily for CIVICUS members, others are welcome to join the meeting with observer status.

Join CIVICUS or renew your membership here.

Civil society and its environment – Driving sustainable development?

10:00-12:00 am, Tuesday 9 April 2013, at the United Nations, New York
Conference Room 4, North Lawn Building

CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation (CIVICUS), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Permanent Mission of Sweden to the United Nations warmly invite you to attend the presentation of findings from the forthcoming 2013 State of Civil Society Report, followed by a panel discussion on the links between an enabling environment for civil society and the successful implementation and integration of key global development agendas.

The annual CIVICUS State of Civil Society Report assesses the health of citizen participation and civil society around the world. This year’s report, to be published in late April 2013, draws on fresh data and research to explore the different components of the environment within which civil society and citizen action during 2012 took place.

The subsequent panel discussion comes at a critical time for global negotiations on the post-2015 development framework, the post-Rio+20 Sustainable Development Goals and the follow-up to the 2011 Busan 4th High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness, and will explore and sharpen the contribution to sustainable development of an enabling environment for civil society.

The event will also be an opportunity to meet and mingle with the CIVICUS Board of Directors, who will be meeting in New York ahead of this event.

If you would like to attend this event, please RSVP to Mark Nowottny (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / T. +44 7415 217002) or Sunda May (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / T. +1 212 906 6709) no later than Thursday 4 April 2013. You can view the full programme here.

For those of you not able to attend in person, please be advised that the event will be webcast on the UN Web TV: http://webtv.un.org/.

We look forward to seeing you at this discussion.

CIVICUS logo P M to Sweden       UNDP

Drive for Quality in Global Education Post- 2015

Education experts gathered in the Senegalese capital Dakar this week to discuss what priorities should look like once the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) expire in 2015. The conclusion: more focus on quality and how to measure it; on equity and access for hard-to-reach children; and on what should happen during the first three years of secondary school. “We need a goal that encompasses our broad aim of quality education, equitably delivered, for all children,” said Caroline Pearce, head of policy at the Global Campaign for Education (GCE).

The meeting was one of 11 global consultations on the post-2015 development agenda. Millennium Development Goal 2 - to achieve universal primary education - succeeded in pushing up enrolment rates: in 2010 some 90 percent of children were enrolled in primary school, up from 82 percent in 1999, according to the UN. But the goal was narrow and even more narrowly interpreted: it focused only on access to primary education, and implementers tended to judge success by enrolment rates rather than completion rates.

Read more at IRIN

Population dynamics in the post 2015 framework

The Global Consultation on Population Dynamics in the Post-2015 UN Development Agenda recently published its final outcome document: “A Call to Integrate Population Dynamics into the Post-2015 Development Agenda” after its Dhaka meeting in Bangladesh from the 11-12th of March 2013. [Please note: while the titles on the consultation website have not been updated, this is the final document].

It considers population to be a cross-cutting issue, calling for any emerging development framework, goals and targets to be informed by population projections. It will  inform the report of the UN High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda (HLP) and the UN Secretary-General’s report to the UN General Assembly (UNGA).
It makes recommendations in relation to health, labour, education and urban planning. It also calls for: capacity building regarding the ability to collect and analyse demographic data; universal  health care including sexual and reproductive health; and encourages the provision of health and reproductive education. It also argues for the elimination of child marriage, and addresses migration, youth and ageing issues.

The outcome document was formulated after a series of consultations, the most recent having invited participants to comment on a draft of the outcome document.

Read more at Post2015.org- what comes after the MDGs?

Africa Wide Consultations on Post- 2015 Development Agenda and Expert Group Validation Meeting on Africa’s Progress Report on MDGs, Tunis, Tunisia, 11- 14 March 2013

The 2015 deadline to the current Millennium Development Goals has led to a flurry of activities on what the post 2015 development agenda should look like. The question is not whether there will be a set of international development goals after 2015, but rather, what the proposed framework will consist of. In effect, should the MDGs be retained in their current configuration with an extended deadline? Reformulated? Or replaced by an alternative framework? Underlying all these is the question of which option is likely to have the greatest impact on poverty eradication in Africa.

At the global level, activities have been initiated led by a UN Task Team coordinated by DESA and UNDP resulting in the report Realizing the Future We Want For All, which whilst reaffirming the Millennium Declaration of 2000, proposes a set of global objectives based on the three concepts of human rights, social development and environmental sustainability. This will constitute one of the base documents to be discussed at a Special Session of the General Assembly on the post 2015 development agenda in September 2013. This same group has also prepared guidelines for consultations at the global, regional and national levels – including thematic issues. These guidelines are open-ended and adaptable to the local context. Furthermore, the Secretary General established a High Level panel on the post 2015 agenda and the appointment of the President of Liberia of Ms. Johnson Sirleaf as co-chair of this panel together with the newly established Assistant Secretary General for post 2015 development planning Ms. HajiaAmina Mohammed provides a unique opportunity to feed the outcomes of the Africa-wide consultations into the report of the High Level Panel.

Read more at Union Africaine

African regional consultation on post- 2015 to lead to common African position

African policymakers met in Hammamet, Tunisia, to put forward Africa’s voice in shaping the post 2015 development agenda.

African Development Bank Vice-President for Operations, Aly Abou-Sabaa said: “This is the time for Africa to set its targets for the post-2015 development agenda […] It is critical that the voice of Africa is heard and accepted”.
Participants emphasised that any post 2015 goals should focus on quality, as opposed to the trying to cumulate up a large number of objectives. There was also a consensus over the need for political support to push for inclusive, greener and fairer growth, with greater accountability in the service sector, and a move to innovation driven economies which could provide decent jobs. The need for better development financing, and assistance with economic transformation was also highlighted.

The meeting was organised by the African Development Bank (AfDB), the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), the African Union Commission (AUC) and the UNDP. It was the final meeting in a series of three consultations on the post 2015 development agenda, following meetings in Kenya (October 2012) and Senegal (December 2012). These consultations have been designed to develop a formal African position on the post-2015 development agenda, to be endorsed by African Ministers and ratified by Heads of State at the African Union Summit in May 2013.

Read more at Post2015.org- what comes after the MDGs?

Sustainable Development Goals Must Sustain People and Planet Experts Say

In the wake of last week's meetings at the UN on the definition of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a group of international scientists have published a call in the journal Nature today, arguing for a set of six SDGs that link poverty eradication to protection of Earth's life support. The researchers argue that in the face of increasing pressure on the planet's ability to support life, adherence to out-dated definitions of sustainable development threaten to reverse progress made in developing countries over past decades.

Ending poverty and safeguarding Earth's life support system must be the twin priorities for the Sustainable Development Goals, say the researchers. The team identified six goals that, if met, would contribute to global sustainability while helping to alleviate poverty.

Read more at Science Daily

Post- 2015 development agenda must address youth issues- new UN envoy

The process of establishing a post-2015 development agenda must include youth input and participation to reflect the issues that concern them, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Envoy on Youth stressed today in his first press conference since he assumed office.

“We are at a crossroads. With 1,000 days left to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), we are discussing and trying to set the new priorities for the post-2015 development agenda,” said Ahmad Alhendawi, referring to the eight anti-poverty targets with specific objectives on poverty alleviation, education, gender equality, child and maternal health, environmental stability, HIV/AIDS reduction, and a ‘Global Partnership for Development.’

“This is definitely an opportunity where young people can participate in setting the agenda, and then own this agenda by being equal partners in its implementation and evaluation,” he told reporters in New York via satellite from Dakar, Senegal, where he is attending the World Education Forum.

Read more at UN News Centre

Here’s The World You Want

This week in Dakar, Senegal, where the Education for All goals were first defined in 2000, education partners are getting together again to discuss the post-2015 agenda. More than 120 education stakeholders from civil society, youth, private sector, foundations, academics, governments and the United Nations will review progress achieved since 2000 and discuss the remaining challenges. They will identify emerging priorities and outline options for ensuring that education remains a priority in the new development framework post 2015.

Read more at Education for All Blog

The 2013 Human Development Report” Rise of the South

On March 14th, the UNDP released the 2013 Human Development Report, entitled “The Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse World”. It examines the radical shifts in global dynamics driven by the rise of the emerging powers, and their implications for human development.

It identifies over 40 countries in the South which have done better than expected in terms of Human Development over the past decades. The report analyses the factors behind their achievement, and the challenges they face now and in the future.

These countries have their own history and chosen trajectory, yet they share similar characteristics and face very similar challenges at a time of increasing interconnection and interdependence.

The Report encourages a better representation of the South in global governance institutions, and points to new ways of financing essential public goods in the South.

Read more at Post2015.org- what comes after the MDGs?

Governance Consultations on Post- 2015 Agenda Culminate in Final Meeting

The final meeting of the Post-2015 Thematic Consultation on Governance took place from 28 February-1 March 2013, at the Pan-African Parliament in Midrand, South Africa. The consultation aimed to build consensus and recommend how to integrate global, regional, national and sub-national governance and accountability with the intergovernmental process on the UN’s post-2015 development agenda.

The global thematic consultation on governance in the post-2015 development agenda has been co-led by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), in partnership with the Government of Germany.

During the final, high-level meeting of the consultation, which was attended by 250 participants and broadcast live on the web, plenary, panel and roundtable discussions sought to identify key areas and themes of governance, and discussed positioning governance and accountability in the post-2015 development agenda.

Read more at the International Institute for Sustainable Development

Consultative Meeting on Post- 2015 Development Agenda

On 25 March, IIASA, UKP4, INCASA and UNORCID will co host a High-Level Panel academia stakeholders consultative event on the Post-2015 Development Agenda.  IIASA Deputy Director Nebojsa Nakicenovic, Ecosystem Services and Management Program Leader Michael Obersteiner, and World Population Program Project Leader Samir KC will all make presentations on identifying and addressing future challenges.

With the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) coming to an end in 2015, the world currently faces the twofold challenge of designing a new framework for development that both incorporates the successes of the MDGs while at the same time aiming at tackling their shortcomings. In the meantime, the nature and dynamics of poverty have been changing. Development took place within a context of growing inequality both within and between countries.

The majority of poor people now live in middle-income countries and most of them in cities as urbanization is proceeding at an accelerated pace. Challenges to past development achievements and future opportunities include global environmental change, economic crises, conflict and instability.

Read more at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

UN Post- 2015 Goals to Address Development

The current UN under-secretary general for Economic and Social affairs [Wu Hongbo] has revealed the UN is working on a new set of development plans once the current window for the Millenium Development Goals is reached in 2015.

During his trip to Hong Kong, Wu Hongbo said, out of the eight UN millennium development goals, some of them will definitely be accomplished by 2015. China has made immense contribution to it.

"In fact, China was setting a good example by eradicating the extreme poverty in millions. Without these efforts, United Nations cannot meet its target in slashing the total number of people living in extreme poverty by half."

Read more at CRI English

Sustainable development goals and the post- 2015 agenda: Why does participation matter?

The MDGs have been a powerful tool in influencing the policy agenda with a strong human development focus. During the next 1000 days until the MDGs deadline, we will focus on helping countries to accelerate MDGs progress. In order to help countries identify bottlenecks and accelerate results, UNDP introduced the MDG Acceleration Framework (MAF) in 2010. The MAF has been applied in 46 countries with considerable success.

As we approach the MDGs deadline, the UN embarks on the most comprehensive global consultation ever undertaken. The post-2015 process is a truly global conversation, involving and engaging both developed and developing countries, civil society, youth, the private sector, parliamentarians, the poor and the marginalized.

Read more at UNDP

Post 2015 Agenda Must Address Challenges of Poverty- GBeneol

Dr. Precious Gbeneol, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Millennium Development Goals has advocated that global post 2015 development Agenda can only have the necessary impact on the development of developing nations if it has at its core eradication of poverty with focus of enablers of economic development and job creation.
The SSAP-MDGS who spoke at the informal dialogue titled: “Turning Commitment to Realities- Perspectives on The Post 2015 Development Agenda” during the 57th Commission on the status of women at the United Nations headquarters in New York last week. She therefore listed issues that must be addressed in the post 2015 development framework to include access to sustainable energy, infrastructure, population demographics and governance.

She noted that the changing population demographics imply that the greatest challenge facing developing countries at the moment is providing   economic opportunities for young, educated segment of population of their population and ways to do this must be included in the framework of the new development agenda.

Read more at Spy Ghana

Africa: ECDE Must be Part of Post- MDG Agenda

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have achieved much for children all over the world. By helping to channel political commitment and investments, they have contributed to reducing child mortality and increasing educational enrolment. But with the MDGs due to expire in 2015, people are increasingly talking about what should happen next. However, few of them are talking about Early Childhood Development and Education (ECDE). And they should be.

The reasons for investing in ECDE programmes are numerous and interrelated. A child's ability to think, form relationships and live up to his or her full potential is directly related to the synergistic effect of good health, good nutrition and appropriate stimulation and interaction with others. A large body of research has proven the importance of early brain development and the need for good health and nutrition.

Research has proven that children who participate in well-conceived ECDE programmes tend to be more successful in school, are more competent socially and emotionally, and show higher verbal and intellectual development during early childhood than children who are not enrolled in high quality programmes.

Read more at allAfrica

Education for Every Child: A Post- 2015 Priority

In 2000, 164 governments met in Dakar, Senegal and pledged to achieve the six "Education for All" goals by 2015 committing to provide quality basic education for all children, youth and adults. This week, education experts from all over the world meet again in Dakar to discuss the best way to ensure education, training and learning is reflected in the post-2015 agenda.

Hosted by the Government of Senegal with support from the governments of Canada, Germany and the Hewlett Foundation, the meeting was led by United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the United Nations Education and Scientific Organization (UNESCO).

The last two decades have seen remarkable gains in education. Much of it is due to global commitments to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Education for All targets. The number of children of primary age out of school has plummeted from 115 million in 2000 to 61 million in 2010. More than 50 million more children are in education.

Read more at Huff Post

People must be centre of development

A roundtable meeting to discuss development issues in the Pacific, particularly after the conclusion of the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) programme in 2015, was held last month in the Timor-Leste capital of Dili.

Jointly hosted by the Government of Timor-Leste and the Port Vila, Vanuatu-based Pacific Institute of Public Policy, the conference aimed to set an agenda for post-2015 development initiatives.
Like most ‘global’ initiatives that are conceived in the hallowed, comfortable offices of multi disciplinary experts and academics, no matter how much ‘field input’ is solicited, collated and number crunched, the final strategy that comes out can be a little else than a one size fits all solution. In hindsight, most development observers and workers, especially in the diverse Pacific islands region, would agree that much more particularisation needed to be done, taking on board the concerns of individual countries.

Read more at Island Business

No nation should be left behind in crafting post- 2015 development agenda: GA President

The President of the General Assembly on Thursday called for the participation of all nations in crafting a sustainable development agenda after 2015, the deadline for fulfilling the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Vuk Jeremić spoke at the first meeting of the Open Working Group of the General Assembly on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS).

He said the process of formulating the SDGs will be a complicated one, requiring great diplomatic skill.
Mr. Jeremić stressed that fulfilling the goals of eradicating extreme poverty should be the starting point and also called for addressing other issues, such as food insecurity, the environment and climate change.

"I personally believe that never before have we had to face such a complex and interdependent set of existential challenges. In my view, defining the post-2015 development agenda is about crafting a new global partnership in which no nation is left behind, and no country opts out. If ever a true, aspirational consensus has been needed in the United Nations, it is now. We must come together in common cause, with a single purpose: to make a universal transition to sustainability in a way that equitably addresses the needs of humanity for the 21st century."(34")

Read more at United Nations Radio

Global Consultation on Education in the Post- 2015 Agenda

The Global Consultation on Education will take place from 18 to 19 March in Dakar, Senegal. Co-organized by UNESCO and UNICEF, it aims to:

•    review progress in education since 2000,
•    identify emerging priorities and cross-cutting issues,
•    outline options for ensuring that education is effectively addressed in the Post-2015 development agenda.
The meeting will bring together representatives of Ministries of Education around the world, as well as education experts UN agencies, civil society and youth organizations and the private sector. UNESCO's Assistant Director-General for Education, Mr Qian Tang will attend the Consultation.  

It is organized with the support of the Governments of Senegal, Canada and Germany.

Read more at UNESCO Office in Dakar

UAE takes part in global meet on populace dynamics

Minister of State Dr Maitha Al Shamsi led the UAE delegation to the 2-day Global Leadership Meeting on Population Dynamics and the Post-2015 UN Development Agenda, which concluded in Dhaka, Bangladesh on Wednesday.

The meeting reviewed population dynamics and sustainable development that improves the lives and livelihoods of both present and future generations.

It brought together leaders and experts from all geographic regions, representing national and local governments, international and inter-governmental organisations, academia, civil society, and the private sector to provide a clear and common vision on how population dynamics should be integrated in the post-2015 development agenda.

Read more at The Gulf Today

Global Compact Network Pakistan Meeting on March 21

Global Compact Network Pakistan in collaboration with Employers’ Federation of Pakistan is organising a private sector/ stakeholders consultation meeting on Post-2015 Development Agenda on March 21, 2013. Pakistan has been on target on 8, off track on 25 targets and no progress on the remaining 8, according to the information submitted to the Special Committee of the National Assembly in February 2013.

As a stakeholder, the UNGC is holding a private sector leader’s roundtable for developing Post 2015 Developing Agenda and input has been sought from the private sector in Pakistan for consideration in this roundtable.

The purpose of this event is to consult the private sector stakeholders particularly the UNGC member organisations for their input on Post 2015 Development Agenda in terms of Pakistan’s perspective and prepare our recommendation for the forthcoming roundtable. staff report.

Read more at Daily Times

2nd National Consultation on the Post- 2015 Development Agenda held in Beijing

The second round of consultations in China on the Post-2015 Development Agenda took place on Monday in Beijing. Renata Dessallien, UN Resident Coordinator, Zhang Xiao'an, Vice President of the United Nations Association, and more than 100 representatives from social organizations, UN agencies and government agencies participated in discussion of what the global development roadmap should look like after the conclusion of the Millennium Development Goals' (MDGs) lifespan.

The discussions were wide-ranging and focused on six key areas: Poverty reduction and inclusive growth, environmental and green development policy, global health, women and children, education and international co-operation. Crucially, the talks were held from a bottom-up perspective to give a voice to the poor and other marginalized groups – three quarters of the participants were representatives of social organizations. The output from the Beijing consultation as well from earlier talks at Kunming in December 2012 will be presented to the High-Level Panel convened by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to advise the General Assembly on its post-2015 agenda.

Read more at UNDP China

Growth in the post- 2015 Agenda

Director-General Pascal Lamy, in a speech at the Conference on International Cooperation in 2020 in the Hague on 7 March 2013, said that “economic growth and trade — as a driver of growth — deserve a prominent place in the post 2015 development agenda. We need an agenda that integrates economic growth with social inclusion and with environmental protection.”

He added: “Collectively we must plan for a common destination for the post-2015 development agenda. We need a compass that has countries converging around the same destination. ‘Convergence’ must be an overarching principle. At the same time we need to allow for differences in the pace and rhythm of getting there. And we must make special efforts towards the poorest and weakest. These are in my view the three basic ingredients for a post-2015 development agenda.”

Read more at Beyond 2015

Moroccan diaspora contributes to post- 2015 development agenda

As part of the national consultations on the UN post-2015 development agenda (www.worldwewant2015.org/), IOM and UNDP Morocco will tomorrow (13/3/13) organize a special session to allow the diaspora to contribute to the process.

The event will include ministries, Moroccans residing abroad, those who have just returned, diaspora associations and researchers, as well as members of the UN Country Team.

An online discussion took place ahead of the meeting on www.maghribcom.gov.ma, a web platform launched in 2013 by the Ministry of Moroccans Residing Abroad, to encourage the broadest possible participation by Moroccan expatriates.

Read more at International Organization for Migration (IOM)

Wanted: Your post- 2015 development priorities

It is about 1,000 days until the end of 2015 and the culmination of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) — the targets set in 2000 for environmental stability, child and maternal health, poverty alleviation, education, gender equality and HIV/AIDS reduction. So how are we doing in achieving these targets?

The latest MDGs report card trumpets significant progress. In fact some targets, such as halving the number of people without access to safe drinking water, have been met far ahead of time. Yet others, like the second half of that same MDG — access to basic sanitation — are far from being achieved, and maybe even farther than thought depending on how they are measured.

In his forward to the 2012 MDGs Report, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon cautiously declared that the “results represent a tremendous reduction in human suffering and are a clear validation of the approach embodied in the MDGs. But, they are not a reason to relax.”

Read more at Our World 2.0

Post- 2015: Failing to address disaster risk is not an option

This week in Helsinki, the global community continues to consult on how it will follow up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), set to expire in 2015. As we look to the future, one thing is clear: We can no longer afford to ignore disaster risk or the relationship between disasters and development.

Disasters set back development achievements. This is obvious when a hurricane washes away a school. However, development decisions can also affect disasters – for example, when houses are built to a standard that doesn’t resist earthquakes. Sometimes the relationship is more nuanced; even an earthquake-resistant highway isn’t much good if it encourages poor people to move into a flood plain.

Read more at UNDP

Keep population dynamics in post- 2015 goals

The global leadership meeting on population ended in Dhaka on Wednesday with a call on the countries to address and integrate population dynamics into the post-2015 development agenda when the current MDGs will expire.
Ministers and representatives of the 51 countries adopted a unanimous ‘Dhaka Declaration’ recognising that people are “at the centre of sustainable development that improves the lives and livelihoods of both present and future generations”.

Foreign Minister Dipu Moni concluded the two-day meeting calling upon the countries to move forward with the declaration which brought four different population issues – its growth, ageing, migration and urbanisation – into one declaration.

The meeting was a part of the 50 global consultative meetings that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had earlier planned to hold with some agreed themes including population dynamics.

Read more at Bdnnews24.com

Africa- Wide Consultation on the Post- 2015 Development Agenda and Review of Africa’s Progress Towards the MDGs

The 2015 deadline for the current Millennium Development Goals has led to a flurry of activities on what the post-2015 development agenda should look like. Should the MDGs be retained in their current configuration with an extended deadline, reformulated, or replaced by an alternative framework? Underlying all these is the question of which option is likely to have the greatest impact on poverty eradication in Africa.

Ministers, parliamentarians, policy-makers, members of the Secretary-General’s High Level Panel on the post-2015 agenda, as well as representatives from civil society, youth organizations and the private sector, will attend the third and final regional consultation to define Africa’s position on the post-2015 development priorities, and review Africa’s progress on reaching the MDGs, on March 11-14, 2013 in Hammamet, Tunisia.  

The meeting is hosted by the African Development Bank (AfDB), in partnership with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the Africa Union Commission (AUC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Read more at African Development Bank Group

Addressing Inequalities: The Heart of the Post- 2015 Agenda

As the 2015 deadline for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) approaches, the United Nations, Member States and civil society have started consultations on a new development framework that will succeed the MDGs. Eleven global thematic consultations on topics identified as critical to the post-2015 framework are taking place over the next several months, each of which is co-led by two UN agencies.

Within the ongoing thematic consultations the urgency of addressing inequality head-on and the question on how a new reference framework for development can take into account the need for inclusive growth have emerged as two major, cross-cutting issues. Preliminary exchanges on the subject have shown that dealing conceptually with inequalities within the post-2015 framework may prove challenging.

In order to discuss the different dimensions of inequality and concrete options to address them through development efforts after 2015, the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) has organized an event on Inequality, Inclusive Growth and the post-2015 Framework -- How can the post-2015 framework address inequalities and foster inclusive growth? The event brought together a motley array of senior representatives from UN Agencies, governments, academia, private sector and NGOs and generated a lively discussion on how the post2015 framework could tackle inequality.

“There is now a broad recognition of the powerful and corrosive effects of inequality. The post-2015 agenda needs to emphasize that there is a crucial need to invest in people especially amongst those who are most excluded.” said H.E. Jean-Francis R. Zinsou, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Benin to the United Nations and Chairperson of the Coordination Bureau for LDC Group.

Read more at UNCDF

Call to save lives and protect investments from war and disasters

More than 100 delegates from over 20 countries met in Helsinki today to discuss how to make sure countries around the world can better prevent the fallout of conflicts, war and disasters from reversing the gains in development, economic growth and provision of services to their people in the future global development agenda.

The United Nations-convened dialogue considered how the nature of conflicts and violence is changing.

There is now one casualty from a recognized war for nine casualties of organized crime and intra-state conflicts.

Many leaders therefore believe that the new face of conflict requires a new solution and a new response from governments and the international community.

"In countries experiencing conflict there are usually severe problems in gender equality, and frequently rape and other gender-based violence is a particularly abhorrent aspect of conflict," the Minister of International Development of Finland, Heidi Hautala, said.

Read more at Prevention Web: Serving the information needs of the disaster reduction community

Beyond 2015: A successor vision in the making of next Millennium Development Goals (MDG)

There are many of us who strongly believe that the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have been a major politico-economic initiative of the post-Cold War world. With the launch in September 2000 of UN-MDG by the UN General Assembly, the subsequent twelve years have unmistakably affirmed the continuing relevance of the United Nations system to the modern world with its seemingly eight simple goals, their 19 targets and 60 indicators.

The specificity of this claim is not intended to take away the importance of other international initiatives of the post-Cold War World, such as environmental protection and sustainable development, which started with the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). In June 2012, its successor platform the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development is guiding national international actions.

Read more at IndepthAfrica

Reconfirming Rights, Recognizing Limits, Redefining Goals

The international conference “Advancing the post-2015 sustainable development agenda: Reconfirming rights, recognizing limits, redefining goals” in Bonn will bring together about 250 civil society activists and representatives from key stakeholders in March in order to draw together civil society inputs into this relevant debate.

The meeting will take place on 20-22 March 2013. Funding for a limited number of participants, mainly from developing countries, is available.

At present, a multitude of discussion and consultation processes is going on worldwide: some in the context of the Rio+20 process, others preparing the Post-2015 agenda, some with a specific sector focus, others on national or regional level.

While the international institutions welcome the make up of wide-ranging and participatory processes, there is a need to gain a better overview on civil society perspectives and demands in order to advocate more effectively for their implementation.

“Advancing the post-2015 sustainable development agenda” aims at providing such an overview by bringing together key actors in the discussion and helping them to exchange information and learn from each other.

Supported by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), the conference is being shaped by a Steering Committee composed of many of the major international civil society networks such as Social Watch, CIVICUS, Beyond 2015, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN), Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP), Global Campaign for Climate Action (GCCA), VENRO and the Baltic Sea Forum.

The conference strives to bring together key actors in the Post-2015 Sustainable Development discussion helping them to exchange information, learn from each other benefiting from our sector’s diversity and agree joint demands and strategy where this is possible.

Read more at Social Watch

20- 23 March: Advancing the Post- 2015 Sustainable Development Agenda, Bonn

Advancing the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda Reconfirming Rights – Recognising Limits – Redefining Goals

This global event will bring together about 250 civil society activists and representatives from key stakeholders in order to draw together civil society inputs into the Sustainable Development and Post-2015 discussions. It will take place on 20 – 22 March 2013 in Bonn, Germany. Funding for a limited number of participants, mainly from developing countries, is available.

At present, a multitude of discussion and consultation processes is going on worldwide: some in the context of the Rio+20 process, others preparing the Post-2015 agenda, some with a specific sector focus, others on national or regional level. While wide-ranging and participatory processes are welcome, we need to gain a better overview on civil society perspectives and demands in order to advocate more effectively for their implementation. Advancing the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda aims at providing such an overview by bringing together key actors in the Post-2015 Sustainable Development discussion and helping them to exchange information, learn from each other, benefit from our sector’s diversity and agree joint demands and strategy where this is possible.

Read more at NGO Branch Department of Economic and Social Affairs

Caribbean Forum Identifies Priorities for Sustainable Development

The Caribbean Forum on "Shaping a sustainable development agenda to address the Caribbean reality in the 21st century" took place in Bogota, Colombia, on 5-6 March 2013, and concluded with participants adopting conclusions on priority areas as well as guidelines on how to continue working toward development in the Caribbean.

The meeting was organized by the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Government of Colombia.
Over 50 participants, including representatives from Caribbean states, international, regional and subregional organizations, and civil society, attended the Forum, where they discussed issues of importance to sustainable development in the sub-region and preparations for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to be held in Samoa in 2014.

Read more at Sustainable Development Policy & Practice

Protecting children, safeguarding their development from conflict violence and disasters

More than 100 delegates from over 20 countries met in Helsinki today to discuss how to make sure countries around the world can better prevent the fallout of conflicts, war and disasters from reversing the gains in development, economic growth and provision of services to their people in the future global development agenda.
The United Nations-convened dialogue considered how the nature of conflicts and violence is changing.
There is now one casualty from a recognized war for nine casualties of organized crime and intra-state conflicts.
Many leaders therefore believe that the new face of conflict requires a new solution and a new response from governments and the international community.
“In countries experiencing conflict there are usually severe problems in gender equality, and frequently rape and other gender-based violence is a particularly abhorrent aspect of conflict,” the Minister of International Development of Finland, Heidi Hautala, said.

Read more at UNICEF

Disability inclusive development agenda towards 2015 & beyond

Join the online consultation for a disability inclusive development agenda towards 2015 and beyond, part of the preparatory process for the UN High-level Meeting on Disability and Development (HLMDD). The discussion questions cover the questionnaire developed to guide the consultations for the HLMDD.
The consultation started on Friday, 8 March and run for three weeks until 28 March.

The World We Want gathers the priorities of people from every corner of the world and aims to help build a collective vision that will be used directly by the United Nations and World Leaders to plan a new development agenda launching in 2015, one that is based on the aspirations of all citizens!

In 2000, world leaders promised to halve extreme poverty by 2015 with a global plan called the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Thanks to millions of people taking action and a massive global effort, we have already made real progress. The number of people living in poverty has fallen to less than half of its 1990 level. Over two billion people gained access to better drinking water. The share of slum dwellers living in cities fell, improving the lives of at least 100 million people!

Read more at United Nations Regional Information centre for Western Europe

HIV high on the agenda at the fifty- sixth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs

In wide-ranging opening remarks to the current session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs in Vienna, the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Yury Fedotov placed HIV and drug use at the heart of the global agenda.

“HIV transmission through injecting drug use continues to be one of the main unresolved challenges of the international community. Widespread stigma, discrimination and lack of access to evidence-informed HIV services are among the key challenges,” he said.

Addressing the gathering of more than 1 000 representatives of Member States and civil society, he suggested that despite “notable progress” in increasing access to HIV services for people who inject drugs, there is still a long way to go.

In an apparent nod to the post-2015 development agenda Mr Fedotov put the challenge of the epidemic within the context of a health and rights-based prism: “[H]uman rights and public health considerations must be at the core of the international response to drug use and HIV,” he maintained.

Read more at UNAIDS

The Future We Want

At a United Nations summit held at the turn of the century, the UN agreed on eight ambitious goals designed to rid the world of the worst extremes of poverty. They set themselves a deadline of 2015 to meet their targets and 189 UN member states agreed to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as they were called.

Today, with less than two years remaining before the deadline of 2015, the UN is already conducting post-2015 consultations on what should follow this ambitious agenda. However, while the MDGs have helped to focus attention on poverty, it is clear that economic inequality is on an upward trend. International and inter-regional class divides have become too deep to ignore.

MDGs progress has too often failed to reach those most in need: women and girls, those living in extreme poverty and those living in remote or rural areas. It is also clear that some issues, such as environmental sustainability require much greater resources and political commitment to achieve progress, given the new challenge of climate challenge and the growing need for energy.

Read more at Dawn.com Blog

Help less developed countries: Hasina

The Prime Minister made the call while inaugurating a two-day Global Leadership Meeting on Population Dynamics at the Ruposhi Bangla Hotel in the capital.

She also made three recommendations as part of the global consultation in the context of post-2015 development agenda on sustainable development.

In her first recommendation, she called for viewing millions of young and trainable persons as a resource as she said providing employment for an increasing number of youth is a key challenge for a developing country like Bangladesh.

"Providing employment for an increasing number of young people, as in Bangladesh, is a key challenge - for us and the world. In a global context, millions of our young, trainable persons should be viewed as a resource, within an evolving production function," she said.

Read more at bdnews24.com



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