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MEDIA REPORTS

HUMAN DEVELOPMENT

This page was updated on: 01/26/10

 

2007


Human Development Media Report Archives: 2010; 2009; 2008; 2006; 2005; 2004; 200
3; 2002

NOVEMBER 2007

2007 HUMAN DEVELOPMENT REPORT EXAMINES CLIMATE CHANGE AND DEVELOPMENT
On 27 November 2007, the UN Development Programme’s (UNDP) Human Development Report on ‘Fighting climate change: Human solidarity in a divided world’ was launched in Brasilia, Brazil, with Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva as well as the Spanish Minister for Development, Leire Pajin, on hand. Kemal Dervis, UNDP Administrator, stressed that this year’s Global Human Development Report, a UNDP flagship publication, was being launched at a significant time, as governments were preparing to gather in Bali to negotiate the roadmap for further negotiations on commitments for the post-2012 period. He also noted that the Report will help galvanize action of UN Country Teams working with national counterparts on climate change adaptation and disaster preparedness. Kevin Watkins, UNDP’s lead author of the Report, stressed the threat of climate change to development given that the world’s poorest people are most vulnerable to its consequences. He said the Report argues that, with the right reforms, many of the negative effects of greenhouse gas emissions can be reversed without sacrificing economic growth. To achieve this goal, the Report proposes a combination of carbon taxation, cap-and-trade programmes, energy policies and technology transfers. 

Links to further information
Human Development Report 2007/2008: Fighting Climate Change – Human Solidarity in a Divided World
UNDP Newsroom
 

MDG achievement fund CRUCIAL TO ANTI-POVERTY GOALS
At a special event on the Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund, held in New York, US, on 3 December 2007, Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro hailed the Government of Spain for committing €528 million to the Fund since December 2006. She noted that, at the mid-point toward the 2015 deadline, Spain’s initiative to fulfill the pledges it made in the Paris Millennium Declaration are crucial to the lives of the most vulnerable. While referring to the MDGs as one of the UN’s greatest challenges, she stressed that achieving the MDGs is a matter of political will.

Links to further information
UN News Story, 4 December 2007
Deputy Secretary-General Press Release, DSG/SM/356, 4 December 2007

UNDP-Spain MDG Achievement Fund

UNDP APPEALS FOR HELP TO WOMEN AND GIRLS AFFECTED BY CONFLICT OR NATURAL DISASTERS
On 8 November 2007, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) launched an appeal to raise US$10 million dollars to finance a two-year initiative to help women and girls affected by conflicts or natural disasters. The eight point agenda for women’s empowerment and gender equality in crisis prevention is based on the need to protect women from violence in crisis; ensure access to justice; strengthen women’s voices and representation; build peace with and for women; promote gender equality; put women’s needs first in the recovery effort; and strengthen women’s networks in crisis.

Link to further information
UN News Centre, 8 November 2007

WORLD’S MOST COMPLETE URBAN ARCHIVE ESTABLISHED
On 6 November 2007, the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) announced a partnership with the University of British Columbia (UBC) to
establish one of the world’s most complete online information archives on urban issues. The UBC/UN-HABITAT Archive is expected to cover more than 30 years of print and electronic material, stretching from the first UN conference in 1976 up to the 2006 World Urban Forum III. According to the sponsors, the Archive will cover issues raging from urban life, housing, transportation, infrastructure, resources management, and land tenure to governance and climate change.

Link to further information
UN-HABITAT News story, 5 November 2007

MDG MONITOR OFFERS NEW TOOL IN THE BATTLE AGAINST GLOBAL POVERTY
On 1 November 2007, at UN headquarters in New York, US, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in partnership with Google Earth and maps and Cisco Systems, launched the MDG Monitor. MDG Monitor is a new UN website that offers a tool for policymakers, development practitioners, journalists, and students. It aims to track, in real time, efforts by countries to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The site includes interactive maps, country profiles, and RSS news fed. At the launch of the site, the Secretary-General highlighted the importance for strengthening monitoring of MDGs’ achievement in order to identify areas and countries that need further intervention.

Links to further information
UNDP Newsroom, 1 November 2007
MDG Monitor
UN News, 3 November 2007

Secretary-General Press Release, 1 November 2007

OCTOBER 2007

 

PEOPLE LIVING IN POVERTY AS AGENTS OF CHANGE

On 17 October 2007, the UN celebrated International Day for the Eradication of Poverty under the theme “People Living in Poverty as Agents of Change.” As part of the global campaign Stand Up Against Poverty, from 16-17 October 2007, more than 6,000 events were held in 110 countries led by the UN Millennium Campaign. A record breaking 38.8 million people around the world joined the campaign to call upon international leaders to deliver on their promises to end poverty by 2015.

Links to further information
Press Conference on International Day of Poverty, 17 October 2007
UN News, 18 October 2007
Press Conference, Stand up for Poverty, 18 October 2007
Secretary-General News Release, 10 October 2007

Stand Up Against Poverty website

IFAD TO provide microcredit IN Bangladesh
On 11 October 2007, the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) launched a national development project in Bangladesh. The project will target rural areas, particularly female microentrepreneurs, to increase their economic opportunities. IFAD will provide US$ 35 million of the approximately US$ 60 million for the Finance for Enterprise Development and Employment Creation Project, which is expected to help 120,000 microentrepreneurs and generate 200,000 jobs.   

Link to further information
UN News Centre, 11 October  

ASIA-PACIFIC PROGRESS REPORT OFFERS mixed picture FOR reaching mdgs
On 8 October 2007, the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) launched the 2007 MDG Progress in Asia and the Pacific report in Bangkok and Manila.
Among the report’s findings is the indication that Millennium Development Goal (MDG) achievements in Asia and Pacific have been uneven across and within countries, with some areas falling behind Latin America or even Sub-Saharan Africa for certain targets. Asia-Pacific has demonstrated slow progress in reducing child mortality and child hunger, with two-thirds of the world’s underweight children – a rate that exceeds Sub-Saharan Africa. Other areas of slow progress in Asia-Pacific are in access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation, as well as mounting environmental pressure from land degradation, poor water management, rising pollution and climate change.

Links to further information
UN News Centre, 8 October 2007
UNESCAP News Service Press Release, 8 October 2007

WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT CRITICAL FOR ACHIEVING UN GOALS – SECRETARY-GENERAL

On 2 October 2007, at the Americas for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Gala for the Health and Dignity of Women, in New York, US, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stressed that the empowerment of women is a fundamental condition in order to make progress towards peace and security, improve living standards and respect for human rights. He emphasized the need to understand the mandate of UNFPA, which provides services to improve maternal health. The Secretary-General also congratulated Ted Turner, founder and chairman of the UN Foundation, on receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award for his commitment to the work of the UN.

 

Links to further information
Secretary-General’s Press release, 3 October 2007 (SG/SM/11201)
UN News Centre, 3 October 2007

WORLD HABITAT DAY HIGHLIGHTS THAT A SAFE CITY IS A JUST CITY
On the occasion of the World Habitat Day, a week of activities from 1-5 October 2007 was planned around the theme “A safe city is a just city.” The activities began in The Hague, the Netherlands, and ended in Monterrey, Mexico. In The Hague, 40 young council members presented a “Millennium Municipality Declaration” to UN-HABITAT Executive Director Anna Tibaijuka, pledging support to the Millennium Development Goals and referencing the role of local governments to encourage citizen’s initiatives. In Monterrey, the celebrations were part of the concluding session of the UN-HABITAT’s International Conference on the State of Safety in World Cities. Delegates at that conference recommended recognizing urban planning and slum upgrading as mechanisms to build safer cities. 

Also as part of the celebrations, UN-HABITAT honored individuals and institutions with the Annual World Habitat Award for their commitment in improving human settlements and launched the Global Report on Human Settlements 2007, entitled Enhancing Urban Safety and Security.

Links to further information
World Habitat Day 2007 website
Global Report on Human Settlements

 

SEPTEMBER 2007

UN ANNOUNCES MDG FESTIVAL TO BE HELD IN 2008
The UN announced that it will organize a MDG Festival in June 2008, which will feature high-profile international celebrities and entertainers who will present awards for outstanding achievements to promote the Millennium Development Goals.

Links to further information
UN News Centre, 12 September 2007

UNGA ADOPTS DECLARATION ON RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES
On 13 September 2007, the UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. One hundred forty-three member States voted in favor of the Declaration, while eleven abstained and Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the US voted against the non-binding text, which addresses the individual and collective rights of indigenous peoples, and their rights to culture, identity, language, employment, health, education and other issues.

Link to further information
UNPFII website

AUGUST 2007

UN-HABITAT LAUNCHES GLOBAL ALLIANCE OF PUBLIC WATER OPERATORS
On 15 August 2007, UN-HABITAT launched the Global Water Operators Partnership Alliance, which aims to assist governments to strengthen the capacities of the public water operators that provide 90 per cent of water supply and sanitation service delivery in developing nations – in accordance with the Millennium Project Task Force on Water. UN-HABITAT Executive Director Anna Tibaijuka noted that the alliance is part of the efforts to achieve Millennium Development Goal 7, Target 10, to reduce by half the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water by 2015.

The operational cost for this initiative is estimated to be US$7 million for the initial three years. UN-HABITAT has committed to provide core staff and office expenses, while Alliance partners – including several donor governments - will contribute towards its substantive activities.

Links to further information
UNHABITAT, 15 August 2007

UN News Centre, 16 August 2007

INTERNATIONAL DAY RECOGNIZES INDIGENOUS PEOPLES’ CONTRIBUTIONS
In his message marking International Day of the World’s Indigenous People, observed on 9 August, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recalled the theme for the Second International Decade of World’s Indigenous People (2005-2015), “Partnership for action and dignity,” and called for effective participation of indigenous peoples in achieving the international development agenda, respect for their human rights and elimination of discrimination, marginalization and poverty. Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Sha Zukang, noted that indigenous peoples are often located in biologically rich areas and have accumulated a wealth of knowledge about the functioning of these environments, which can play a crucial role in adapting to and redressing climate change impact.

Links to further information
UN News Centre, 9 August 2007
UN Secretary-General’s Press Release, 3 August 2007
UN Press Release, 7 August 2007

YOUTHS’ CONTRIBUTIONS TO MDGS HIGHLIGHTED
This year’s International Youth Day, observed on 12 August, adopted the theme “Be seen, be heard: youth participation for development.” UN-Secretary General Ban Ki-moon hailed the enthusiasm and energy of youth women and men as committed partners towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), while calling upon governments to meet their commitments made in the World Programme of Action for Youth.

Links to further information
Youth at the United Nations website
UN Secretary-General’s Press Release

POVERTY-ENVIRONMENT INITIATIVE LAUNCHES PORTAL
The launch of the portal UNDP-UNEP Poverty-Environment Initiative (PEI) in July 2007 marked another milestone in the process of scaling-up the UNDP-UNEP global partnership on PEI. The website will be gradually built up as part of the knowledge management programme of the newly established UNDP-UNEP Poverty-Environment Facility in Nairobi. In early September 2007, the
Division of Regional Cooperation will share with partners and stakeholders an overall update on the status of and future plans for PEI scale-up and the Poverty-Environment Facility.

Link to further information
PEI website

JUNE 2007

LARGEST URBAN GROWTH RATE IN HISTORY – UNFPA REPORT

According to the “State of the World’s Population Report: Unleashing the Potential of Urban Growth,” released on 27 June 2007 by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the population of African and Asian cities will double by 2030, adding 1.7 billion people globally. The report recommends that city authorities and urban planners should offer secure tenure on land that has access to power, water and sanitation services, and ensure that those living in poor communities have access to education and health care, and be encouraged to build their own homes. Commenting on the findings of the report, UNFPA Executive Director, Thoraya Ahmed Obaid said “we must abandon a mindset that resists urbanization and act now to begin a concerted global effort to help cities unleash their potential to spur economic growth and solve social problems.”

Links to further information
UN News Centre, 27 June
State of the World’s Population Report 2007

UN REFORM PILOTS STARTING TO DEVELOP “ONE UN” PROGRAMMES
Several countries that are part of the “One UN” pilot initiative, which will test how the UN family can deliver in a more coordinated way at country level, have started to develop “One Programmes” by translating their joint vision, detailed by their UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF), into a joint operational document. Viet Nam, which started before the “One UN” pilot initiative, has operationalized part of its UNDAF in a “One Plan” of six UN entities that will be amended to include a further five UN agencies in 2008. Mozambique has produced a common operational document and Rwanda just finalized a draft outline of a similar document. Albania has been drafting a “One Programme Framework,” while Cape Verde is discussing how other agencies can become involved in the Executive Committee agencies’ (i.e. UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF and WFP) existing common operational document.

Link to further information
Formula One Newsletter, Issue 3, June 2007

MAY 2007

QATAR TO HOST FOLLOW-UP TO UNGA DEBATE ON MDGs
In a letter dated 7 May 2007, UN General Assembly (UNGA) President Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khalifa has informed UN Member States about the meeting entitled “Financing Development to achieve the MDGs” to take place in Doha, Qatar, from 17-18 June 2007, which is a follow-up to the thematic debate “Partnerships to achieve the MDGs,” held in November 2006. The meeting will focus on translating existing commitments into action, reviewing developing country efforts to implement scaled up Millennium Development Goal (MDG) strategies, and exploring innovative financing sources, and could serve as an input to the preparatory process of the ‘Follow-up International Conference on Financing for Development to Review the Implementation of the Monterrey Consensus,’ which will convene in Doha in the second half of 2008.

Links to further information
UNGA President’s letter, 7 May 2007
Draft programme

Africa's urban poor get valuable lessons in farming
UN agencies, such as UNICEF, the World Food Program and the Food and Agriculture Organization, and local NGOs are looking to urban gardens as an alternative to feeding programs targeted at poor city dwellers in developing countries. Urban gardens have low start-up costs, and in some cases locals have scaled them up into a full-fledged businesses. Examples of locals growing their own food rather than relying on aid can be found from the slums of Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, to Accra, Ghana, to Hyderabad, India.      

Link to further information
Christian Science Monitor story, 9 May 2007

APRIL 2007

UN LAUNCHES LEADERSHIP CAPACITY SCHEME FOR WORLD�S POOREST COUNTRIES
On 25 April 2007, the UN launched a programme to assist least developed countries (LDCs) in developing their national leadership capacity to address key development challenges, ranging from HIV/AIDS to poverty reduction. The programme will initially pilot in nine countries, including Cambodia, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia. Anwarul K. Chowdhury, UN High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing States and Small Island Developing States, has indicated that, if successful, the initiative will be extend to 20 LDCs by the end of 2007 and will cover all 50 LDCs by next year.   

Links to further information
Zeenews.com, 28 April 2007

UN-Office of the
High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing States and Small Island Developing States website

Commission on Population and Development focusES ON changing POPULATION age structures
At its fortieth session, the UN Commission on Population and Development
focused on how governments can take advantage of the demographic dividend, or window of opportunity, given changing population age structures and their implications for development, such as labour shortages, higher costs for social services and pensions. The annual session convened from 9 to 13 April 2007, at UN Headquarters in New York, US, during which it considered a report by the UN Secretary-General (E/CN.9/2007/3) on world population monitoring, which indicated that the highest ratio of potential workers to dependents is in Africa, with 5 percent of the population being elderly, followed by Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean. The Commission concluded by calling governments to offer incentives for older persons to continue in the workforce and to invest in young people to ensure the sustainability and solvency of pension schemes.

 

Links to further information

UNDESA, Population Division

UN News Centre, 13 April 2007

UN News Centre, 9 April 2007

 

MARCH 2007

 

international women�s day FOCUSES ON �ending impunity for violence against women and girls�

On the occasion of International Woman�s Day on 8 March 2007, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon emphasized that empowerment is a condition for building better lives. Additional statements to mark the day included UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour�s reminder that violence against women is the most common crime but often the least to be punished.
 

Links to further information

UN News Centre, 8 March 2007
UN Secretary-General Press Release, 6 March 2007
UN Department of Public Information website for International Women�s Day

 

FEBRUARY 2007

E-DISCUSSION LAUNCHED IN PREPARATION FOR ECOSOC MINISTERIAL
The UN Development Group�s (UNDG�s) is hosting a month-long e-discussion on �Strengthening Efforts to Eradicate Poverty� in March 2007. This discussion will feed into the Economic and Social Council�s (ECOSOC) annual ministerial substantive review (AMR), which was mandated by the 2005 World Summit to assess progress made towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and implementation of other goals and targets agreed at the major UN conferences and summits over the past 15 years. The two-day AMR will convene during ECOSOC�s high-level segment in July 2007, with a number of activities feeding into it. In addition to the e-discussion, a global AMR preparatory event is planned to take place in New York in March 2007 and three tentative country-led meetings are planned in Mexico, Bangladesh and Morocco in the first half of 2007.

Link to further information
NGLS invitation to participate in e-discussion

UNDP AND UNEP LAUNCH POVERTY AND ENVIRONMENT FACILITY
On 6 February 2007 the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) fortified their partnership by launching a joint Poverty and Environment Facility at the 24th session of UNEP Governing Council in Nairobi, Kenya. The facility is one of the first concrete examples of UN reform and will help developing countries integrate sound environment management into their poverty reduction and growth policies

Link to further information
UNDP press release, 6 February 2007

UN HABITAT AND THE NETHERLANDS LAUNCH WATER AND SANITATION PROJECT IN LAKESIDE TOWNS IN EAST AFRICA
The UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) has launched a joint project with Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda to improve the water and sanitation facilities of six towns around Lake Victoria. The project is funded by the government of the Netherlands and aims to help these countries achieve the Millennium Development Goal of halving by 2015 the number of people without access to safe drinking water and sanitation.

Link to further information
UN News Center, 9 February 2007

JANUARY 2007

DESPITE GLOBAL ECONOMIC SLOWDOWN, DEVELOPING COUNTRIES EXPECTED TO GROW IN 2007 � UN REPORT
Jose Antonio Ocampo, UN Under-Secretary General for Economic and Social Affairs, has highlighted a new UN report�s finding that developing countries will continue to grow despite a slow down in the world economy�s growth. He said the global economic slowdown should not jeopardize the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals during the 10 January 2007 launch of the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2007. He added that the Report emphasizes that, after three consecutive years of high economic growth, the global economy is expected to unwind due to the cooling of the housing market in the US. The slow economic growth in the US, projected to be 2.2 percent in 2007, followed by the protracted economic recovery of Japan and Europe, will moderate consumer demand. Nevertheless, the report points out that East Asian economies will continue to lead economic growth, particularly the Chinese economy.  The report indicates that coordination of economic policies could build greater confidence in the stability of financial and foreign-exchange markets and help avoid negative growth effects.

Links to further information
UN News Centre, 10 January 2007
World Economic Situation and Prospects 2007
UNDESA Press release, 11 January 2007

Launching of the Report �  webcast

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