Volume 16, No.05 - May 2012

Trends and analysis

The benefits of family-oriented policies

An Expert Group Meeting on “Good Practices in Family Policy Making”, will be held in New York from 15 to 17 May 2012.

This expert Group Meeting is entitled “Good Practices in Family Policy Making: Family Policy Development, Monitoring and Implementation: Lessons Learnt”. The main issues to be discussed will be family policy making, work-family balance, recent trends in family poverty and social exclusion, anti-poverty family-focused policies, as well as social integration and intergenerational solidarity. The meeting is convened as part of preparations for the twentieth anniversary of the International Year of the Family in 2014.

Strategies promoting social integration and intergenerational solidarity are critical for families and societies. They promote social cohesion and shared responsibility and contribute to developing positive relationships across age groups and have been shown to strengthen the quality of ties between family members. In times of economic crises, intergenerational ties grow in importance, with family members shielding one another from the consequences of the loss of employment or housing.

Flexible working arrangements result in better health outcomes for parents. At a company level, they have also been associated with employee productivity, organizational commitment, retention, moral, job satisfaction and reductions in absenteeism. Investments in early childhood education and care are another form of support for parents with young children to help them remain engaged in paid work. In addition, other policy objectives such as gender equality and fair distribution of family responsibilities between both parents help achieve work-life balance for all family members.

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Internet Governance for sustainable development

The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) will hold Open Consultations and a meeting of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group (MAG) from 15 to 17 May 2012 in Geneva, Switzerland.

Today we see a growing emphasis on technical measures to address concerns about the online market for counterfeit goods and digital copyright infringement, as well as ever stronger demands to enlist Internet intermediaries as the instrument of law enforcement. These trends are emerging in States of all political persuasions, and are paralleled by longer-standing efforts to limit or control free speech in the political and social realms. All stakeholders have responsibility to ensure that everyone has the right to create, access, use and share information and knowledge in the digital realm. The IGF 2012 should look at the impacts of all topics on the free flow of information in a cross-cutting way while engaging participants on the various dimensions of the issues.

The Open Consultations and the meeting of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group (MAG) will  focus on discussions on the programme, workshops and schedule of the 2012 IGF meeting that will take place in Baku, Azerbaijan on “Internet Governance for Sustainable Human, Economic and Social Development”. Mr. Elmir Velizadeh, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Communication and Information Technologies of the Republic of Azerbaijan will chair the meetings. The MAG currently consists of 56 Members from governments, the private sector and civil society, intergovernmental organisations including representatives from the academic and technical communities

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Outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society

The 7th Facilitation Meeting on implementing the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) will be held on 17 May 2012 in Geneva.

Participants will exchange information and discuss progress in implementing three of the 11 WSIS Action Lines: the role of public governance authorities and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICT for development (Action Line C1); ICT applications – e-government (action Line C7); and international and regional cooperation (Action Line C11).

The purpose of the Seventh Facilitation Meeting, which is open to all stakeholders from the public and private sectors, the civil society, the international organizations, is to provide a platform for participants to exchange information and experiences; to identify the propriety areas for implementation within the Action Lines; and to create synergies among different stakeholders for more effective knowledge sharing and collaboration in order to ensure the implementation of WSIS at the international, regional and national levels. The Division of Public Administration and Development Management (DPADM)  is organising this Facilitation Meeting.

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