Volume 3, Issue 1 , February-March 1999




In this issue:

Financing for Development
Functional Commissions Meet
Commission for Social Development , Commission on Sustainable Development , Statistical Commission , Commission on the Status of Women , Commission on Population and Development
Preparations for ECOSOC
February-April Meetings
Advisory Services
Recent Publications
Discussion Papers , Population , Social Policy , Public Administration , Statistics
Meetings Held
New On the Web

FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT

"We need to rethink development cooperation".

Thus spoke the Secretary-General to the second meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended WorkingGroup on Financing for Development, in an address delivered on his behalf by Mr. Desai last week. Thegroup is to make recommendations to the General Assembly on the form, scope and agenda of a high-level United Nations intergovernmental forum on financing for development, to be held before the end of 2001.

The agreement by consensus to begin an extensive process of discussions on this issue under UNaegis is significant. The report on the global financial architecture just issued by the Executive Committeeon Economic and Social Affairs, of which Mr. Desai is convenor, is an example of the Secretariat’s effortsto advance the debate on current concerns. Other initiatives include consultations with the Bretton Woods Institutions, in preparation for ECOSOC (see article below) . At stake is the role of the UN as a forum on international finance.

Preparations for the high level event are likely to involve DESA management in the coming months.In particular, the Development Policy Analysis Division (DPAD) is providing substantive secretariat support . It sees the need to engage the World Bank fully in the process, and to advise the Working Group about parallel activities carried out by other intergovernmental bodies which have a direct bearing on the ad hoc group’s work.

The Group has begun to discuss the substance of the forthcoming high-level event, based on eightthemes identified by member states in response to a poll by DPAD, and has set aside for the time being a discussion on the nature of the event to be held at the end of this process. The Group set up two clusters for informal discussions of four themes each for four days, starting on 15 March and 6 April. The Group will reconvene in May.

Papers are posted online on the Financing for Development web page, at: http://www.un.org/esa/ffd/ffdreports.htm . (See also DESA News, Vol.3, No.1, p.11-12).

The ECESA report on global financial architecture is accessible from the ESA web page at:www.un.org/esa


FUNCTIONAL COMMISSIONS MEET

From now till late April, when the Commission on Sustainable Development will conclude its work,an intensive period of negotiations on economic and social development will take place at Headquarters as the functional commissions, major subsidiary organs of the Economic and Social Council, meet to address specific issues on the development agenda. Three of the Commissions (on social development, women and population) will also work on plans for the five-year review of progress in realizing the plans of the global conferences on those issues. Several of the Commissions have developed multi-year programmes of work. Initiatives are under way to further harmonize those programmes. The results of deliberations will be reported to the Economic and Social Council, which will review them at its substantive session in Geneva in July.

Commission for Social Development, thirty-seventh Session
New York, 9-19 February

The Commission will have on its agenda two priority themes: Social services for all and initiation of the overall review of the implementation of the outcome of the Summit . In the first week, a panel of experts lead the discussions on strategies to reach the goal of universal coverage and access by all to basic social services, with Federico Mayor, Director-General of UNESCO, and Carol Bellamy, Executive Director of UNICEF giving additional insight on "Basic education for all".

The second week will focus on preparations for the Special Session of the General Assembly in2000. Participants will review and assess the achievements and problems in implementing the commitments made at the Summit and identify further concrete initiatives to fulfil the goals set at Copenhagen.

There will be a one-hour NGO segment after the general debate on each priority theme, whereNGOs will hold a dialogue with the Commission, as was done last year with considerable success.

The Commission will also review issues on ageing and the International Year of Older Persons1999. In addition, it will have before it the outcome of the recent World Conference of MinistersResponsible for Youth held in Lisbon, 8-12 August 1998, as well as the World Forum on Youth held inBraga (Portugal). A panel on youth will also be held on the last day of the session.

Main documentation:

- Report of the Secretary-General on social services for all (E/CN.5/1999/2).

- Report of the Secretary-General on further initiatives for the implementation of the outcome of the WorldSummit for Social Development (E/CN.5/1999/3).

- Report of the Secretary-General on preliminary assessment of the implementation of the outcome of theWorld Summit for Social Development (E/CN.5/1999/4).

- Note by the Secretary -General transmitting the report of the expert workshop on innovations in thedelivery and financing of social services (E/CN.51999/6).

- Note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the expert workshop on ensuring access to social services of under-served populations (E/CN.5/1999/7).

Please call the contact person for a list of additional documentation.

For more information, please see the Division’s web page at: http://www.un.org/esa/socdev

Contact: Gloria Kan, Tel. (212) 963-5873, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: kan@un.org.

Commission on Sustainable Development
Inter-sessional Working Group on Tourism, 22-26 February 1999

At the forthcoming seventh session of the Commission, tourism will be the economic sectoridentified for special discussion. This inter-sessional working group will focus on the theme, to identifyunresolved issues and formulate policy options for review by the Commission. It will work on the basis of areport prepared by the Division for Sustainable Development which analyzes linkages with economic andsocial development, and environmental protection.

Contact: Juergen Holst, Tel. (212) 963-4677, Fax (212) 963-4260, E-mail: holst@un.org or DonaldLee, Tel. (212) 963-8762, Fax (212) 963-4260, E-mail: lee.unescap@un.org.

Inter-sessional Working Group on Oceans and Small Islands, 1-5 March 1999

Oceans and seas , and the review of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Islands Developing States will be other themes taken up by the Commission on Sustainable Development at its next session. This inter-sessional meeting will assess the implementation of the Programme of Action, and flag issues of mobilization of resources in support of the Programme.

Contact for Oceans and Seas: Anne Rogers, Tel. (212) 963-2476, Fax (212) 963-1795, E-mail:rogersa@un.org

Contact for Small Islands: Deonanan Oodit, Tel. (212) 963-4671, Fax (212) 963-4340, E-mail:oodit@un.org

Statistical Commission, thirtieth Session
New York, 1-5 March

The Statistical Commission will hold its thirtieth session in New York from 1-5 March 1999. Themain agenda items are (a) approval of the draft classifications of expenditure according to purpose (for usein national accounts); (b) adoption of revised draft principles and recommendations for a vital statisticssystem; (c) follow-up to recent major United Nations conferences including harmonization and rationalization of development indicators; and (d) a review of new proposals for the functioning of the Commission.

The Statistics Division has prepared the documentation for many of the agenda items; other UN andnon-UN organizations have also provided documentation.

For more information and full text of documents, see: http://www.un.org/Depts/unsd

Contact: Richard Roberts, Tel. (212) 963-6037, Fax (212) 963-9851, E-mail: roberts@un.org

Commission on the Status of Women, forty-third Session
New York, 1-19 March

In the first two weeks, the Commission will discuss two critical areas of concern from the BeijingPlatform for Action: women and health ; and institutional mechanisms for the advancement of women. Panels discussing these areas will include experts from Governments, experts appointed by the Secretary-General, experts working in the UN system and experts from civil society. Presentations are expected to lead to the elaboration of action-oriented conclusions on the respective critical areas of concern.

The open-ended parallel working group of the Commission will meet from 1-12 March to continuethe drafting of an optional protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discriminationagainst Women.

The third week will be used to discuss the General Assembly’s special session (Women 2000:Gender Equality, Development and Peace for the Twenty-first Century) to be held from 5 to 9 June 2000. This special session will assess the implementation of the results of the Fourth World Conference onWomen held in Beijing in 1995 and propose further actions and initiatives. The Commission on the Status of Women held its first session as preparatory committee for the special session during its forty-second session in March 1998. The second session of the CSW as preparatory committee will be held from 15 to 19 March 1999. The third one is to take place in conjunction with the forty-fourth session of the CSW, 6 to 24 March 2000. Two panel discussions including experts specializing in further actions and initiatives will be convened to stimulate discussion on preparations for the review. The Secretariat paper on the question of further actions and initiatives as requested by CSW at its forty-second session will serve as background.

Documentation:

- Commission on the Status of Women, forty-third session, Provisional Agenda (E/CN.6/1999/I)

- Framework for further actions and initiatives that might be considered during the special session, Women 2000: Gender Equality, Development and Peace for the 21st Century. Report of the Secretary-General (E/CN.6/1999/PC/2)

- Thematic issues before the Commission on the Status of Women. Report of the Secretary-General(E/CN.6/1999/4).

For more information on the panels, on CSW and full text of documents, please see the Division’swebsite at: http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/csw

Contact: Kristen Timothy, Tel. (212) 963-3104, E-mail: timothy@un.org or Elizabeth Hailu, Tel. (212)963-1706, E-mail: hailue@un.org

Commission on Population and Development
Thirty-second session, New York, 22-24 March
Open-ended session, New York, 24-31 March

The Commission on Population and Development will meet in regular session, 22-24 March 1999,and in open-ended session acting as preparatory committee for the special session of the GeneralAssembly on review and appraisal of the Programme of Action of the International Conference onPopulation and Development, 24-31 March.

The topic of the regular session will be Population growth, structure and distribution, with specialemphasis on sustained economic growth and sustainable development, including education . A report onthis topic, prepared by the Population Division, will be presented to the Commission. The Commission will also review the implementation and proposed future programme of work of the Population Division.

At the preparatory committee, two reports will be presented for information: (a) the report on thereview and appraisal of the progress made in achieving the goals and objectives of the Programme ofAction of the International Conference on Population and Development and (b) the report of theinternational forum on the operational review and appraisal of the implementation of the Programme ofAction. One document will be presented for consideration: the report of the Secretary-General for thespecial session of the General Assembly containing draft measures for the further implementation of theProgramme of Action.

For more information and the full text of documents, see the Division’s website at: http://www.undp.org/popin

Contact: Birgitta Bucht, Tel. (212) 963-3183, E-mail: bucht@un.org


PREPARATIONS FOR ECOSOC

A number of initiatives leading up to the substantive session of the Economic and Social Council inGeneva in July are taking place in implementation of GA resolution 50/227 on revitalization of the UN inthe economic and social fields :

  • A meeting between the World Bank’s Board of Directors and ECOSOC held in conjunction with the latter’s organizational session earlier this month resulted in a substantive exchange of views, including on country-level coordination. On several issues, such as poverty eradication and governance, the UN could be pleased that the Bank is adopting some of its key substantive concerns.

  • An ECOSOC/Bretton Woods Institutions Meeting on the Functioning of the International Financial Markets , and the Stability of Financing for Development will be held on 29 April 1999 in New York. Panellists will be chairpersons of the Interim Committee of the IMF, the Joint IMF/World Bank Development Committee, the G-10 and the G-24. Member States’ participants will include policy makers from foreign offices, ministries for international development cooperation, and finance ministries. This range is expected to add dimension to the discussion, vis-à-vis meetings of the Washington-based institutions which involve mainly finance ministers.

  • An informal meeting of ECOSOC on development indicators will be held in early May. It will be preceded in March by an Expert Group Meeting hosted by the Statistics Division ( see below underFebruary-April Meetings ).

  • Following the decision to devote the high-level segment of ECOSOC to poverty eradication , five preparatory panels will be held on the following themes: "Advancing gender equality and eradicating poverty" (New York, 16 March, sponsored by UPU); "Food security, basic infrastructure and natural resources as imperative dimensions of poverty eradication and strategies" (New York, 23 April, sponsored by the World Bank); " Ensuring access to fundamental social services and putting vulnerable groups first" (New York, 12 May, sponsored by UNDP); "The role of training in promoting access to work" (Turin, 4 July, hosted by the Government of Italy); "National policies and international cooperation for people-centred economic growth" (Geneva, 6 July, during the ECOSOC High-level Segment).

Contact: Sarbuland Khan, Tel. (212) 963-4628, Fax (212) 963-1712, E-mail: khan2@un.org


FEBRUARY-APRIL MEETINGS

Virtual Working Group on National Machineries for Gender Equality
8 February-19 March

This six-week virtual working group is reviewing progress in implementing the BeijingPlatform for Action on the topic of Institutional Mechanisms/National Machineries for theAdvancement of Women.

WomenWatch, the UN Internet gateway on the advancement and empowerment of women,developed this virtual working group as a forum for activists, experts, researchers, governmentofficials and other interested individuals to share concrete ideas and suggestions for the upcomingsession of the Commission. WomenWatch is the joint initiative of DAW, UNIFEM and INSTRAW.

A key topic for review and discussion at the forty-third session of the Commission on theStatus of Women will be the contributions and challenges of national machineries. Persons whowork in national machineries, have collaborated as NGOs, or have interacted as outsidesupporters or observers, were invited to add their views to the global discussion in the workinggroup.

The working group's proposals will feed into the General Assembly’s special session in June2000. It also is a forum to exchange experiences on the following topics:

  • case studies, best practices, and other examples describing how national machineries can successfully promote a gender perspective in government policies;
  • strategies and partnerships that national machineries and NGOs have devised together to influence government;
  • accountability and monitoring mechanisms such as gender budgeting and gender impact studies and their usefulness; and
  • the role of national machineries in formulating legislation that supports gender equality.

The discussion focuses on these and other questions and is organized around specifictopics for the convenience of working group members, who receive from three to four messagesdaily and one summary weekly. Anyone who has electronic mail can subscribe to the workinggroup.

  • To join, please send an e-mail to the following address:
    majordomo@sade.sdnp.undp.org
  • Don't enter a subject.
  • In the body of the message, type the text: SUBSCRIBE ww-natmach
  • Leave the rest of the message blank.
  • You will receive a welcome letter to the working group.

The WomenWatch website will provide information about the Working Group, as well asarchive messages. The website address is: http://www.un.org/womenwatch

Contact: Kerri Power, Tel. (212) 963-3787, E-mail: power@un.org ; or Dong Wu, Tel. (212)963-0272, E-mail: wud@un.org ; or Christina Janssen, E-mail: cjanssen@sdnp.undp.org

Commission for Social Development, Thirty-seventh session
New York, 9-19 February

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet.

Commission on Sustainable Development - Ad Hoc Inter-sessional Working Group onTourism
New York, 22-26 February

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet .

ACC Inter-Agency Committee on Women and Gender Equality (IACWGE), fourth session
New York, 23-26 February

The Committee will meet for its fourth session from 23 to 26 February. Angela E.V. King isits current Chairperson and Kristen Timothy its Secretary.

During 1998, task managers worked on a review of the Women In Development/Genderfocal points function; on the compilation of good practices on gender mainstreaming; onmethodologies for gender-sensitive budget codes; on the compilation of a database on gendertraining materials; and on developing methodologies for gender impact analysis. Based on theirreports, the Committee is expected to take decisions on future actions.

On 24 February, the Committee will hold a one-day workshop with resident coordinators andagency field representatives on implementation of the Platform for Action and GenderMainstreaming. This dialogue is expected to develop recommendations on improving attention togender issues in the coordinated follow-up to UN conferences at the field level. It is also expectedto contribute to a better reflection of gender in the United Nations Development AssistanceFramework process. Some 15 field-based colleagues are expected to participate in this dialoguewith the Committee.

The Committee will seek to improve coordination with other ACC bodies. Following Ms.King’s exchange with CCPOQ in September, Mr. Desai, in his capacity as Chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Sustainable Development (IACSD) and incoming Chair of CCPOQ, hasaccepted her invitation to speak to the Committee at its afternoon session on 23 February.

Documentation:

- Report of the Inter-Agency Committee on Women and Gender Equality on its third session (NewYork, 25 to 27 February 1998) (ACC/1998/3).

Contact: Christine Brautigam, Tel. (212) 963-0535, E-mail: brautigam@un.org

Meeting of Representatives of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) with ProspectiveBilateral and Multilateral Donors
New York, 24-26 February

A meeting between SIDS’s representatives and prospective donors is to take place in theECOSOC Chamber, 24-26 February, to determine the funding of projects for sustainabledevelopment in SIDS.

Contact: Deonanan Oodit, Tel. (212) 963-4671, Fax (212) 963-4260, E-mail: oodit@un.org

Commission on Sustainable Development - Ad Hoc Inter-sessional Working Group onOceans and Small Islands Developing States
New York, 1-5 March

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet .

Statistical Commission, Thirtieth Session
New York, 1-5 March

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet .

Commission on the Status of Women, Forty-third Session
New York, 1-19 March

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet .

Working Group on the Resident Coordinator System of the Consultative Committee onPolicy and Operational Questions (CCPOQ)
New York, 5-8 March

Among the issues on the agenda: learning and training requirements emerging from theimplementation of UN reforms as identified by the ad hoc task force; a new draft of themanagement process as a result of the consultation process with Executive Heads and CCPOQfocal points; and the revised guidelines of United Nations Development Assistance Framework(UNDAF), Common Country Assessment (CCA) and Global Support System (GSS) for eventualendorsement by CCPOQ. The Working Group held its first session of the year on 21-22 January. Among the issues discussed, a particular focus was given to training and learning within CCPOQ,for which an ad hoc task force was established to prepare specific proposals for the next WorkingGroup meeting in March. The Working Group also reviewed outstanding matters concerning therevised guidelines of UNDAF, and CCA and GSS, and considered the management process ofimplementing of resolution 53/192. Other issues included the strengthening of the residentcoordinator system, the preparation of new guidelines on capacity building and the review of draftguidelines on the right to development. The Development Cooperation Policy Branch of DESCprovides support to the Group.

Contact: Monica Nogara, Tel. (212) 963-5083, E-mail: nogara@un.org

Expert Group Meeting on Development Indicators
New York, 8-10 March

In preparation for the informal ECOSOC meeting on development indicators, which is nowscheduled for 10-11 May 1999, the Statistics Division will host an expert group meeting to discussthe issue of harmonization and rationalization of development indicators. Participants willinclude both national and international statisticians as well as national and international users ofdevelopment indicators (NGOs, UN funds and programmes, World Bank, OECD, country donoragencies etc.)

Contact: Grace Bediako, Tel. (212) 963-7771, E-mail: bediako@un.org or Angela Me, Tel.(212) 963-4823, E-mail: me@un.org

Consultative Committee on Policy and Operational Questions (CCPOQ)
New York, 10-12 March

Commission on Population and Development, Thirty-second Session
New York, 22-24 March
Open-ended Session, 24-30 March

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet .

Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF): Seminar on Practical Trade-Related Aspects ofConservation, Sustainable Management and Sustainable Development of All Types ofForests
Geneva, 6-8 April (tentative)

This initiative in support of the IFF originated with the Government of Brazil during thesecond session of the IFF in Geneva in August-September 1998. It is co-sponsored by UNCTADand the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) with the support of the IFF Secretariat. The seminar aims to help resolve some of the pending trade and environment issues in order toarrive at IFF III with information which may facilitate the removal of some of the square brackets inthe document under negotiation. Jaime Muñoz-Reyes will attend on behalf of the IFF Secretariat.

Contact: Jaime Muñoz-Reyes, Tel. (212) 963-4151, Fax (212) 963-3463, E-mail: munoz-reyes@un.org

Expert Meetings on International Arrangements on Forests
Spring 1999

A series of expert meetings and regional consultations will be held on Internationalarrangements and mechanisms to promote the management, conservation and sustainabledevelopment of all types of forests , co-sponsored by Costa Rica and Canada, with additionalsupport from Switzerland. The first meeting of the interim steering committee took place in SanJosé, 28-30 October and an informal briefing for delegations was held in New York on 20November. The first global expert meeting will take place in San José, Costa Rica, 23-27February 1999, followed by regional consultations from May to October 1999. The final meetingwill take place in Canada in November 1999. The first meeting in San José aims at identifyingelements of an international arrangement or mechanisms on forests that will be forwarded to thethird session of the IFF to be held 3-14 May 1999 in Geneva. The regional consultations will aimat identifying regional priorities and consensus building, the result of which will be presented andconsolidated at the final meeting in Canada.

Contact: Jag Maini, Tel. (212) 963-3160, Fax (212) 963-3463, E-mail: maini@un.org or Elisabeth Barsk-Rundquist, Tel. (212) 963-3263, Fax. (212) 963-3463, E-mail: barsk-rundquiste@un.org

Commission on Sustainable Development, Seventh Session
New York, 19-30 April

See article above in Functional Commissions Meet . Further coverage will be provided inthe next DESA News .

CEDAW Subregional Training Workshop
Cotonou, Benin, 20-21 April

The workshop is entitled, "Support to the Preparation of States Party’s Reports to besubmitted to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)". Itaims to assist national Governments in implementing the Convention. This workshop will befollowed by two weeks of in-country advisory services. DAW will provide technical assistance forpolicy makers to enhance the knowledge and understanding of the Convention, and step-by-stepconcrete advisory services for government officials who are responsible for the preparation andsubmission of State Party reports.

Contact: Tsu-Wei Chang, Tel (212) 963-8370, E-mail: changt@un.org or Makiko Tagashira,Tel. (212) 963-4836, E-mail: tagashira@un.org

Committee for Development Policy
New York, 26-30 April

The Committee will focus on "The role of employment and work in poverty eradication inthe context of globalization: the empowerment and advancement of women" . It was asked tocomplete its work on a vulnerability index -- examining how such an index would work indetermining which States were considered least developed.

Contact: Jozef van Brabant, Tel. (212) 963-4752, Fax (212) 963-1061, E-mail:brabant@un.org

ECOSOC/Bretton Woods Institutions Meeting on the Functioning of the InternationalFinancial Markets and the Stability of Financing for Development
29 April 1999

See Preparations for ECOSOC above.

Administrative Committee on Coordination, First Regular Session
Geneva, April 1999


ADVISORY SERVICES

  • The Socio-Economic Policy and Development Management Branch of the Division for Social Policyand Development sent an advisory mission to Armenia in December 1998 upon the request of itsGovernment. This mission assisted in the implementation of Armenia's socio-economic strategyfor economic growth by identifying key issues and preparing three project proposals onsocio-economic reforms. The success of this mission prompted the Office of the Prime Minister ofArmenia to request a second mission in March 1999. This follow-up mission on advisory serviceswill finalize the preparation of project documents and organize a national workshop on innovativetools of investment policies for socio-economic development.

    Contact: Alexei Tikhomirov, Tel. (212) 963-1070, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: tikhomirov@un.org .

  • The Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW) will perform an advisory service in Argentina on Evaluation of Training Programmes in Increasing Political Participation of Local Women Leaders (INT/99/R04) through an evaluation mission, scheduled for March 1999. It aims at reinforcing women’s capacity in political participation both at the local and national levels, through enhancing their leadership and management skills in all decision- making processes. Specifically, existing Argentinian training programmes on increasing the political participation of local women leaders will be evaluated to assess their impact and identify good practices and common constraints.

    Contact: Tsu-Wei Chang, Tel. (212) 963-8370, E-mail: changt@un.org , or Makiko Tagashira, Tel. (212) 963-4836, E-mail: tagashira@un.org .

  • The Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW), in collaboration with UNDP Africa, is implementing a regional project on "Assessment of Gender Mainstreaming and Empowerment of Women in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Review of UNDP Supported Activities" (RAF/99/003). The project, under way by mid-February 1999, aims to support Governments’ efforts in mainstreaming a gender perspective into all policies and programmes, through building a critical map and knowledge-base on concrete activities and best practices to promote gender mainstreaming at the national level. Based on the two previous projects carried out by DESA in the area of governance and poverty eradication, this project is intended to identify and document the work carried out by UNDP Africa on gender equality, with special reference to gender-mainstreaming and direct support to women in its governance and poverty eradication programmes.

    Contact: Tsu-Wei Chang, Tel. (212) 963-8370, E-mail: changt@un.org , or Makiko Tagashira, Tel. (212) 963-4836, E-mail: tagashira@un.org


RECENT PUBLICATIONS

Discussion Papers

DESA has begun a series of Discussion Papers. Distributed primarily on line, the seriespromotes independent research and professional communication of staff. Papers are posted at: http://www.un.org/esa/papers.htm . Titles currently available include: Public versus PrivateProvision of Pensions; Inefficiencies of Global Capital Markets; and, Greening the NationalAccounts: Approach and Policy Use.

Population

Charting the Progress of Populations
ESA/P/WP.149

This report provides information on 12 key statistical indicators on the goals of recent UnitedNations global conferences. For each indicator, the report includes an analytical summary, withmany graphs, and basic information about the data and their sources. A particular effort wasmade to show where countries currently stand and how close they are to the goals agreed at theconferences.

The report grew out of the participation of the Population Division/DESA in activities aimedat ensuring a coordinated and system-wide implementation of the goals and commitments adoptedat the recent conferences, which led to the Division’s preparation of the Wall Chart on Basic SocialServices for All, 1997 (ST/ESA/SER.A/160). The report provides more information and, in somecases, updated information on the indicators in that chart.

Contact: Mary Beth Weinberger, Tel: (212) 963-4531, Fax (212) 963-2147, E-mail:weinberger@un.org .

Social Policy

Poverty Reduction Strategies
ST/ESA/260
Sales No. E.98.II.A.4

This publication is the outcome of a seminar organized by the Secretariat. The following isa summary of a review by Arjun de Haan, an officer in the UK Department of InternationalDevelopment.

The publication considers different approaches to poverty analysis, and whether differentmethods identify different groups as poor. A key distinction is made between a ‘physiologicaldeprivation model’, and a ‘social deprivation model’. The document emphasizes indicators, i.e.situations of deprivation versus processes leading to it. Different approaches to poverty analysis are shown to lead to different policies. Donors use acombination of approaches.

One of the findings of the paper is that in the Division for Social Policy and Development,the operational activities of the Socio-economic Policy and Management Branch, whichcommissioned the paper, should focus on areas outside World Bank analyses which haveunderestimated political power and social organization as relevant for poverty analysis, althoughthat may be changing.

The publication is a useful guide on types of poverty intervention, what differentorganizations do, and what premises types of interventions are based on. Poverty analysis hasevolved in the 1990s, from the dominant income-based approach towards incorporating broaderdefinitions of, and participatory approaches to, poverty. The publication makes a contribution inthat regard.

Contact: John Langmore, Tel. (212) 963-5855, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: langmore@un.org

Inefficiencies of Global Capital Markets
ST/ESA/1998/DP.2

This paper, one of the newly-established DESA discussion papers, sketches some elementsof the economic theory which recommends the current deregulation of trade, banking andinternational exchange. Where market participants are not responding to the new conditions asexpected, the paper explores ( i ) the actual opportunities and incentives to which they areresponding instead, (ii) some unexpected interactive effects which freer trade, freer banking andfreer capital exchanges have on each other, and consequently on the validity of the branches oftheory which recommend their deregulation; and (iii) some characteristics of the general kind ofscience which has guided the deregulatory and other 'small government' policies and expectations. It then suggests what kind of regime might allow a more efficient global economy to serve morehuman purposes than it is yet serving, within and between developed and developing economies, ifthe formidable opposition to such a reform could be overcome. The paper was authored by HughStretton, Professor, School of Economics, University of Adelaide, Australia.

It can be viewed on line at: http://www.un.org/esa/papers.htm

Contact: James Kanu, Tel. (212) 963-1806, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: kanu@un.org

Report of the Expert Meeting on International Economic and Social Justice
Pocantico Conference Center of the Rockefeller Brothers' Fund
ESA/DSDP/BP.1

The papers in this publication were the outcome of a meeting on "International Economicand Social Justice", co-sponsored by DESA’s Division for Social Policy and Development, and theCarnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs. The papers have been prepared asbackground documentation for use during the preparations for the special session of the GeneralAssembly in the follow-up to the Social Summit.

The meeting was organized around a group of papers with discussants that addressed keyissues in international trade, finance, labour policy, taxation, and income distribution. This reportprovides a brief overview of each paper, the discussions that followed and the policyrecommendations that came out of the conference.

Contact: James Kanu, Tel. (212) 963-1806, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: kanu@un.org .

Public Administration

Eco-Partnership Tokyo: Cultivating an Eco-Society
ST/TCD/SER.E/57

This is a summary report of the proceedings of the World Conference on InternationalCooperation of Cities and Citizens for Cultivating an Eco-Society, Tokyo, 26-29 May 1998. Thereport explores the strategies to cultivate an eco-society through the exchange of ideas andexperiences and to strengthen the partnership and collaboration of all the actors. The reportdiscusses establishing regional recycling systems, international cooperation toward the realizationof an eco-society and the civilization of an eco-society.

The full report of the conference is available on CD-ROM and posted on the Internet atwww.eco.gr.jp

Contact: Dawne Gautier, Tel. (212) 963-2306, Fax (212) 963-9681, E-mail: gautier@un.org

Statistics

Monthly Bulletin of Statistics
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.Q/310 Vol. LII - No. 10 October 1998
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.Q/311 Vol. LII - No. 11 November 1998
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.Q/312 Vol. LII - No. 12 December 1998

Provides monthly statistics on 60 subjects from over 200 countries and territories, togetherwith special tables illustrating important economic developments. Quarterly data for significantworld and regional aggregates are included regularly.

Contact: Gloria Cuaycong, Tel: (212) 963-4865, Fax: (212) 963-0623, E-mail: cuaycong@un.org

1996 Industrial Commodity Statistics Yearbook
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.P/36
Sales No. E/F.98.XVII.17

The Yearbook provides statistics on the production of major industrial commodities (about530 industrial commodities and about 590 statistical series) by country, geographical region,economic grouping and for the world. Data are provided for a ten-year period (1987-1996) and forapproximately 200 countries. The commodities have been selected on the basis of theirimportance in world production and trade of principal products of mining and manufacturing. Thepublication has two annexes: annex I is an alphabetical index of commodities; annex II is a table ofcorrespondence between the ISIC-based commodity codes, the SITC Rev.2, SITC Rev.3 andHarmonized System (HS) codes.

Contact: Vasily Romanovsky, Tel: (212) 963-4585, Fax (212) 963-0623,E-mail: romanovsky@un.org

Handbook on Civil Registration and Vital Statistics Systems Computerization
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.F/73
Sales No. E.98.XVII.10

The Handbook provides guidance to decision makers and the relevant authorities ofcountries for the development and implementation of administrative data processing systems forcivil registration and vital statistics. It focuses on guiding the process and analysis leading tocomputerization and offers options, including model organizational structures for planning,implementing and maintaining computerization. It examines the framework, goals and purposes ofcomputerized civil registration, looks at the interface between civil registration, vital statisticssystems and other agencies, and enumerates some of the major decisions and problem areas onecan anticipate with computerization. The Handbook gives priority to a system concept under whichthe registration of vital events takes place in the Civil Registration System, which by extractionfrom the database delivers the required data to the Vital Statistics System for statistical treatment. The Handbook is one of a series of five prepared by the United Nations Statistics Division as partof the International Programme for Accelerating the Improvement of Civil Registration and VitalStatistics Systems which was launched in 1991.

Contact: Violeta Gonzales-Diaz, Tel: (212) 963-4966, Fax: (212)963-1940,E-mail: gonzales-diaz@un.org

SNA News and Notes (Newsletter) Issue No. 8: November 1998 (English)

The SNA News and Notes is a biannual newsletter on national accounts. This issueincludes notably the following articles: "SNA 68 and SNA 93 compared: Public enterprises", "Whatis FISIM", "Canada publishes report on historical revision of Canadian SNA", "1993 SNAimplementation in the Philippines", "Manuals on Monetary and Financial Statistics", "Treatment ofAsset Transfer Costs".

Contact: Karoly Kovacs, Tel: (212) 963-4748, Fax: (212) 963-1374,E-mail: kovacs@un.org


MEETINGS HELD

International Forum
The Hague, 8-12 February

UNFPA convened this forum for an operational review of the implementation of theProgramme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development. Themeeting was preceded by Fora of Parliamentarians, NGOs, and Youth. Delegates from 177 Statesapproved a report covering the forum’s themes: creation of an enabling environment for population programmes: gender equality and the empowerment of women; reproductive rights and health; strengthening partnerships; financing. The report of the forum will be presented to the Commission on Population and Development at its thirty-second session. Staff of the Population Division participated. The Hague Forum is part of ICPD+5, a series of review activities leading up to a high-level special session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York from 30 June to 2 July 1999.

Additional info can be found at the UNFPA website: http://www.unfpa.org/icpd.

Contact: Birgitta Bucht, Tel. (212) 963-3183, E-mail: bucht@un.org

Seminar on Economic Governance and the Asian Slump
10 February 1999

This seminar was organized by the Division for Public Economics and Public Administrationand given by Robert Wade of Brown University. He explored the underlying governance aspect ofthe current Asian financial crisis, by looking at both the national and global governance levels.

In particular, this talk dealt with the following questions and provided a concrete proposal onhow to overcome the crisis: Was there ever an East Asian "model" of capitalism? If so, what wasits economic logic? What was the role of "crony capitalism" and "corruption", of "excessivegovernment intervention" in markets? What are the main causes of the Asian crisis and collapse?What was the role of financial deregulation and opening of the capital account? Ofunder-regulation of financial systems? What was the role of the major external actors, the IMF andthe US Treasury? How, more generally, is state power implicated in the crisis--at the national leveland at the level of other nations projecting their power into the region?

This seminar was preceded by another in a series on economic governance: "Towards amore differentiated perspective on industrial policy", which was held on 28 October 1998. Thespeaker, Richard Nelson of Columbia University, an eminent scholar and renowned pioneer ofevolutionary economics, provided a new perspective on the traditional debate over efficacy ofindustrial policy.

Contact: S. Ran Kim, Tel. (212) 963-8391, Fax (212) 963-2916, E-mail: kim3@un.org

CEDAW, twentieth session
New York, 19 January-5 February

The twentieth session of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women(CEDAW) -- the only United Nations human rights treaty body that deals exclusively with women’srights -- took place at UN Headquarters. The reports of seven State party to the Convention on theElimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women were examined: Algeria, China,Colombia, Greece, Kyrgyzstan, Liechtenstein and Thailand. Those reports and additionalinformation on CEDAW are available on the DAW website: http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/cedaw

Contact: Jane Connors, Tel. (212) 963-3162, E-mail: connorsj@un.org or Philomena Kintu,Tel. (212) 963-3153, E-mail: kintup@un.org

European Meeting on Home Care Services
Lisbon, 6-8 January

The Division for Social Policy and Development was represented by Sergei Zelenev. Themeeting served as a forum on social issues of social services in the European Union such aspolicy responses to financial problems, organization of home care delivery and family care. Participants also presented some new practices and innovations in home care delivery. Mr.Zelenev made a presentation on policy dilemmas in the delivery of social services.

Contact: Sergei Zelenev, Tel. (212) 963-4732, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: zelenev@un.org


NEW ON THE WEB

  • The Division for Social Policy and Development received two awards for its work on Internet accessibility during the "International Day of Disabled Persons" celebration, on 3 December 1998. In a ceremony at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York, the Non-Profit Computing Organization presented the Division with the "Howard Silverman Award" for making social development information accessible to all. In a separate ceremony in Washington, D.C., the People-to-People Committee on Disability also recognized the efforts of the Division to promote international Internet accessibility with the "Bernard Posner Memorial Award". Check out the Division's site at http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/disabled.htm

  • The Statistics Division organizes conferences, expert group meetings and training courses on cartography and geographical names. The schedule of planned conferences, a checklist of their reports, and the full text of several recent reports have recently been added to the Division’s Web site (http://www.un.org/Depts/unsd/ ). An extensive update on the work of the Division’s popular demographic software and GIS project for developing countries, "PopMap" was also posted recently.

  • The documentation of the current sessions of the functional commissions is being posted on the respective thematic pages; documents of ECOSOC are posted at: http://www.un.org/esa/coordination/ecosoc/1999doc.htm