Volume 14, No.9 - September 2010

Trends and analysis

Global statistical system and human capital

16th Session of the Committee for the Coordination of Statistical Activities (CCSA) will be held in Vienna, Austria, from 1-3 September

The Committee for the Coordination of Statistical Activities (CCSA) is the main interagency mechanism in the professional field of official statistics, bringing together chief statistical managers from over 35 United Nations system and other international organizations, active in the collection and dissemination of official statistics. The Committee was established in 2002, taking over its key objectives from the former Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC) Subcommittee on Statistical Activities, namely to promote coordination, integration and complementarity among the statistical programmes of the international organizations.

The Committee meets twice a year and the upcoming session will be jointly hosted by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The key topics on the agenda of the Sixteenth CCSA session include a special session on human capital and discussions on the Global Statistical System and the role of CCSA, development and maintenance of an Inventory on Global Statistical Standards, coordination of capacity building activities, use of non-official data in estimations made by the international organizations, establishment of a Network of statisticians working in international organizations, etc.

Information will also be provided about the outcomes from the recent Conference on Data Quality for International Organizations, status of the SDMX partnership and programme of work and celebration of the World Statistics Day. A report of the Committee’s ongoing activities will be presented to the forty-second session of the United Nations Statistical Commission.

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Supporting MDGs with ICT

PrepCom meeting for the presentation of the “MDG eMatrix” on 1-2 September and High-level Breakfast Presentation on 21 September

On 1-2 September 2010, the Global Alliance on ICT and Development (GAID) will convene a preparatory meeting for the presentation of the “MDG eMatrix (ICT for MDG Project)” at the margins of the High-level Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly on 21 September.

The principal objective of the PrepCom meeting is to finalize, through an interactive discussion and exchange of ideas and suggestions among high-level representatives of all relevant stakeholders, the design and features of the project.

On 21 September 2010, GAID will host a High-level Breakfast at which the “MDG eMatrix (ICT for MDG Project)”, the major new initiative of the Alliance, will be presented to high-level participants. Organized in the context of the High-level Plenary Meeting (HLPM) of the General Assembly, GAID will present the project to distinguished representatives of the Member States attending the HLPM of the General Assembly, Executive Heads of the entities of the UN system and other international organizations, top-level executives from the global private sector and other high-level stakeholders.

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Implementing national action plans on violence against women

Expert Group Meeting will be held at the ECLAC/Subregional Headquarters for the Caribbean, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago from 13-15 September, convened by DESA’s Division for the Advancement of Women in collaboration with ECLAC

Participants will review national action plans on violence against women and analyze different approaches and their effectiveness, as well as identify key elements and good practices for the development, content, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of national action plans on violence against women. A model framework for national action plans on violence against women to serve as a tool for Member States and other stakeholders in their efforts to adopt and implement such plans will be developed during this meeting.

The group of approximately eighteen (18) experts from all parts of the world includes government officials, lawyers, non-governmental organizations, academics and activists with in-depth knowledge and experience on national action plans addressing violence against women.

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Discussing forest management and governance

Workshop on forest governance and Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+) in Latin America will be held from 31 August- 3 September in Oaxaca, Mexico

Organized by the Governments of Mexico and Switzerland and other partners with the support of the United Nations Forum on Forest, the workshop will discuss the relationships among sustainable forest management, forest governance, REDD+ and livelihoods, among other topics.

The Oaxaca workshop aims to better our understanding of the linkages and synergies between decentralisation and broader forest governance reforms, SFM, the improvement of living conditions for people who depend on forests and the increasing role of forests in climate change mitigation and adaptation.

The results are expected to directly feed into the 9th session of the UN Forum on Forests on the main theme “Forests for people, livelihoods and poverty eradication”, and will also contribute to the climate change process and inform UNFFCC COP 16, to be held in Mexico in November 2010.

The workshop will identify trends, facilitate the sharing of experience and distil lessons learnt on SFM, forest governance and decentralisation and REDD+ and identify opportunities and threats to livelihoods and poor people; contribute directly to the ninth session of UNFF; and inform discussions during COP16 in Mexico and contribute to REDD+ design.

Participants will include governments (both central and decentralised government units), development and environmental NGOs, local and indigenous peoples representatives, private sector representatives, regional organisations, and other relevant stakeholders from Latin America and other regions and global organisations such as UNFF, FAO, ITTO, UNFCCC.

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Moving forest financing forward

First meeting of the Ad Hoc Expert Group (AHEG) on Forest Financing will be held from 13-17 September in Nairobi, Kenya

In 2009, a special session of the ninth session of the UN Forum on Forests decided to establish the Open-ended Intergovernmental AHEG Forest Financing to make proposals on strategies to mobilize resources from all sources to support the implementation of sustainable forest management, the achievement of the global objectives on forests and the implementation of the non‑legally binding instrument on all types of forests, including, inter alia, strengthening and improving access to funds and establishing a voluntary global forest fund.

The Expert Group in Nairobi will involve presentations by government-nominated experts, regional processes and development banks, forest related international organizations, major groups as well as prominent experts on forest financing. These discussions will inform participants of the main developments happening on forest financing in terms of actions, programmes and strategies, the remaining gaps, needs, obstacles, and required actions in this field, and features of feasible forest financing strategies. Experts will also discuss plans for intercessional activities on forest financing in the lead up to the tenth session of the Forum in 2013.

A preliminary report from the Expert Group will be submitted to the ninth session of the UN Forum on Forests (24 January – 4 February 2011) and final recommendations will be submitted for consideration and decision to the tenth session of the Forum in 2013.

Forest finance has been one of the most complex issues in the international forest policy debate over the last 17 years. Given the increased recognition of the role of forests in addressing major global challenges including climate change, forest finance issues are of high importance for the global community.

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Using the Internet for the benefit of all

Internet Governance Forum (IGF) will be held from 14-17 September at the Lithuanian Exhibition and Convention Centre (LITEXPO) in Vilnius and will focus on the overall issue of IGF 2010 – developing the future together

International representatives of government, the private sector, civil society, the academic and technical communities, international organizations and the media will discuss the overall issue of “IGF 2010 – developing the future together”. This theme reflects the open and inclusive nature of the IGF with its multilateral, multistakeholder, democratic and transparent approach to discussions of Internet-related public policy issues.

The Vilnius meeting will help articulate a view of how we can use the Internet for the benefit of all humankind, and how we can further address the risks and challenges ahead. Internet governance should not be seen as an end in itself, but as a means of achieving development for all as expressed in internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

In broad-based consultations the following programme for the meeting includes: Managing critical Internet resources; security, openness and privacy; access and diversity; Internet governance for development; taking stock of Internet governance and the way forward and emerging issues: cloud computing.

Some 1,500 participants from more than 100 countries are expected to attend. Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development Jomo Kwame Sundaram will open the meeting.

The Internet Governance Forum is not a decision-making body, but a space for dialogue for all those involved to discuss Internet governance issues, where all participants engage as equals.  There will be no negotiated outcome, but the meeting will seek to create an open and inclusive dialogue among all participants on public policy issues relating to the Internet and create new dynamics between participating institutions.

The Internet Governance Forum is an outcome of the Tunis phase of the World Summit on the Information Society, which took place in 2005. In the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society, Governments asked the Secretary-General to convene a new forum for policy dialogue to discuss issues related to key elements of Internet governance in order to foster the Internet’s sustainability, robustness, security, stability and development.

The initial four meetings of the IGF so far were held in Athens (2006), Rio de Janeiro (2007), Hyderabad (2008) and Sharm El Sheikh (2009). They illustrated the complexity and multifaceted nature of public policy issues related to Internet governance.

The General Assembly will decide later this year whether to follow the Secretary-General’s recommendation and extend the IGF mandate for another five years.

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Reviewing the status of progress regarding poverty eradication

Expert Group Meeting on Poverty Eradication is part of the preparations for the 49th session of the Commission for Social Development (CSocD) and will be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 15-17 September

Organized by DESA’s Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD), in collaboration with the Economic Development and NEPAD Division of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, the meeting is convened in the context of ECOSOC resolution 2010/L.5 in which the Economic and Social Council decided that the priority theme for the 2011-2012 review and policy cycle of the Commission should be “Poverty Eradication”, taking into account its relationship to social integration and full employment and decent work for all.

The outcomes of the meeting will provide important inputs to the work of the Commission, in particular contributing to reviewing the status of progress regarding poverty eradication as well as examining continuing challenges and prospects for poverty eradication in developing countries.

The primary objectives of the expert group meeting are to undertake a comprehensive review of successes, best practices and lessons learned, obstacles and gaps, as well as key challenges and opportunities, leading to concrete national, regional and international strategies for action.

The recommendations that will come out of this meeting will assist the Commission for Social Development during its deliberations of the priority theme for the 2011-2012 review and policy cycle. The deliberations of the meeting will also contribute to the preparation of the Report of the Secretary-General to be submitted to the 49th session of the Commission for Social Development on the priority theme of “Poverty Eradication”.

The working language of the meeting will be English (UNECA will provide French translation). Documentation for the meeting will be provided in English.

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Increasing women’s access and use of technology

Expert group meeting (EGM) on Gender, science and technology will take place from 28 September-1 October in Paris, France, in preparation of the fifty-fifth session of the Commission on the Status of Women

The EGM will be organized by DESA’s Division for the Advancement of Women (now part of UN Women) and in collaboration with UNESCO and explore the gender dimensions of science and technology, and identify policies and programmes that can accelerate progress towards the internationally agreed development goals, including the MDGs.

It will examine strategies for: Increasing women’s access to and use of technology, including more gender-responsive products, increasing women’s access to and participation in science and technology education and training, and eliminating barriers to women’s participation in science and technology employment.

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