Volume 3, Issue 5 , October-November 1999




In this issue:

DESA Support to the General Assembly
National Cleaner Technology Strategies
Directory of African NGOs
IMF Board to Meet ECOSOC
October-November Meetings Serviced by DESA
Technical Cooperation
Workshops , Advisory Services

Recent Publications

Statistics , Development Policy Analysis , Social Policy , Public Administration , Sustainable Development

Forthcoming Publications

Women , Statistics , Social Policy , Public Administration
Meetings Held
The Electronic UN

DESA Support to the General Assembly

The general debate of the fifty-fourth session of the General Assembly reflected a wide range of views on economic and social issues. The substantive work of the Second Committee (Economic and Financial) and Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) got under way as Mr. Desai delivered the opening remarks, centring on the need to integrate the discourse on trade, finance, social, environmental issues and human rights. He called for a different pattern of global development, one more mindful of equity and sustainability.

The Assembly, concerned about the marginalization of developing countries in globalization, decided to include in its agenda an item on "Globalization and interdependence". In collaboration with UNCTAD, DESA prepared an analytical report (A/54/358) on all interrelated issues, which provides a structure for further intergovernmental deliberations in the UN on globalization and its impact. It highlights the comparative advantages of the UN system in designing and implementing a response, both at the national and international levels, to challenges posed by globalization. It addresses the new factors that shape the global environment, the new tasks the UN faces, which traditional UN goals are harder to achieve in the new environment of globalization and interdependence, which policy tools are no longer working and why, and how the set of development actors and partners is evolving. The report contains recommendations to enhance policy coherence of the UN system's response to the challenges of globalization.

DESA is providing substantive support to the consideration of 16 agenda items and has drafted over 20 reports and notes on behalf of the Secretary-General. One of the key items deals with defining an event on financing for development, to take place no later than 2001. The ECOSOC/Bretton Woods institutions meeting in late October might serve to steer the event, whose preparation should allow time for informals, as well as regional meetings along thematic lines.

Under a related item on the financial crisis and its impact on growth and development, a report by the Finance and Development Branch of the Development Policy Analysis Division provides an update on financial flows and policy reforms adopted since the 1998 report on the subject. The report identifies the unfinished business of international financial architecture reform, as per the recommendations of the Executive Committee on Economic and Social Affairs.

In further support of the Assembly's deliberations on this subject, the Branch on 13 October held a panel discussion in the Second Committee of senior officials of IMF and Deutsche Bank, and noted scholars.

On 14 October, Thomas L. Friedman, foreign affairs columnist of The New York Times , gave a briefing on globalization, followed by an interactive period of questions and answers. The event was organized by the Division for ECOSOC Support and Coordination.

In response to General Assembly resolution 52/209 of 18 December 1997, the Division for Public Economics and Public Administration submitted document A/54/451, Report of the Secretary-General on Business and Development for consideration by the Assembly. The report deals with UN activities to promote an enabling environment for the business sector and with the increasing efforts for a partnership with business to meet the norms and goals set in the various UN conferences of the 1990s. Contributions to the report were sought from other UN agencies and bodies as well as from within DESA.

At its 28th plenary meeting on 6 October 1999, the General Assembly, on the recommendation of the Economic and Social Council, adopted by consensus resolution 54/4 on the 21-article optional protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. The protocol sets outs procedures under which individuals or groups of individuals claiming to be victims of a violation of any of the rights in the Convention can, after exhausting domestic remedies, petition the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. The protocol also empowers the Committee, the 23-member expert body established under the Convention, to monitor its implementation and to look into grave or systematic violations of the Convention.

The protocol is the result of four years of negotiations in an ad hoc open-ended working group of the Commission on the Status of Women. NGOs, including women's groups, from all regions of the world helped in the proceedings. Its adoption responds to a recommendation of the Vienna Programme of Action and the Beijing Platform for Action. It is particularly appropriate that it came during this General Assembly session, which marks the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of the Convention by the Assembly. The protocol is now open for signature, ratification and accession.

A report by the Division for the Advancement of Women on the improvement of the situation of women in rural areas outlines the impact of global trends and their policy implications on rural women and their access to productive resources, inputs and services. It draws attention to their continuing poverty in spite of their considerable role in agricultural production and suggests measures to be taken by Governments, international organizations and civil society to improve the situation.

The Division also submitted a report on its forthcoming World Survey on the Role of Women in Development (see details below under Forthcoming Publications).

The Office of the Special Coordinator for Africa and the Least Developed Countries (OSCAL) submitted a report on the implementation of the recommendations of the Secretary-General in his 1998 report on Causes of conflict and the promotion of durable peace and sustainable development in Africa.

The Fifth Committee will start substantive deliberations on the UN scale of assessments beginning the week of 18 October and will continue through the end of the session. It is expected to finalize discussions on a number of outstanding issues and make recommendations to the Committee on Contributions for its triennial review of Member States' assessments in June 2000, when the scale of contributions for the years 2001-2003 will be set.

The Statistics Division will provide substantive and technical statistical servicing to the Committee on some crucial issues such as the key parameters for the formulation of the next assessment scale; realistic conversion factors in arriving at the first approximation of relative capacity to pay of Member States; inclusion in the methodology of external debt-burden allowance for highly-indebted countries ; minimum and maximum rates of contributions; and a review of the income measures and statistical base period applied to the measure capacity to pay.

Contacts:
- on globalization: Sarbuland Khan, Tel. (212) 963-4628, E-mail: khan2@un.org
- on financial flows: Barry Herman, Tel. (212) 963-4747, E-mail: herman@un.org
- on business and development: Jacinto De Vera, Tel. (212) 963-0525, E-mail: devera@un.org
- on women in rural areas: Mac Albert Hengari, Tel. (212) 963-2825, E-mail: hengari@un.org
- on the optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, Jane Connors, Tel. (212) 963-3162, E-mail: connorsj@un.org
- on Africa: Abraham Joseph, Tel. (212) 963-4839, E-mail: josepha@un.org OR Mariama Djibo, Tel. (212) 963-8408, E-mail: djibo@un.org
- on statistics for the Fifth Committee: Cristina Hannig, Tel.(212) 963-4854, E-mail: hannig@un.org OR Felizardo Suzara, Tel: (212) 963-4856, E-mail: suzara@un.org

A summary of the economic and social aspects of the general debate and the texts of Mr. Desai's speeches to the Second and Third Committees appear as a supplement to DESA News.


Regional Expert Meeting on National Cleaner Technology Strategies
Bogota, 5-7 October

The transfer of technology to developing countries for sustainable development has been a major issue for the Commission on Sustainable Development since its creation in 1993. While much of the political debate has focused on financial support for technology transfer through ODA, there is increasing recognition that the most effective technology transfer takes place between enterprises in developed and developing countries that use the technologies commercially. This does not imply that there is no role for government, but rather that the primary objective of Governments, in both developed and developing countries, should be to promote and support private sector arrangements.

Thus, a first regional expert meeting on national cleaner technology strategies is being organized in Bogota in cooperation with the Colombian Ministry of the Environment, the Environment Agency of the Bogota region (DAMA), and the UNEP/UNIDO National Cleaner Production Centre in Colombia. It will include participants from Latin American and Caribbean Governments, industry and research institutes in the region, developed country technical assistance agencies, and regional and international organizations.

Consideration of national technology strategies for cleaner production will be based largely on background papers prepared by Richard Bendis, head of the Kansas Technology Enterprise Corporation and a consultant to the United States Government and the European Union, and by Colombian consultants, working with the National Cleaner Production Centre.

The approach taken in these background papers includes three steps: (1) a detailed study of national technological and institutional capacities in clean technologies in enterprises, universities and research institutions; (2) a study of national and international opportunities for developing and marketing clean technologies, including national government support, international assistance, and market opportunities; and (3) development of a national strategy based on public-private partnerships focusing resources on technologies for which capacities and opportunities coincide. The background papers prepared for the meeting will be revised and published based on the discussions in Bogota.

The results of the meeting will be used in the organization of subsequent regional meetings on national cleaner technology strategies. An assessment of this approach to technology transfer and recommendations for further action will be submitted to the Commission on Sustainable Development when it next considers technology transfer in 2002.

Contact: Ralph Chipman, Tel. (212) 963-5504, Fax (212) 963-4260, E-mail: chipman@un.org


Networking: Directory of African NGOs

The United Nations Office of the Special Coordinator for Africa and the Least Developed Countries (OSCAL) has just released Networking: Directory of African NGOs , prepared in implementation of a recommendation made by the Panel of High-Level Personalities on African Development, which advises the Secretary-General on African Development. The recommendation that a directory of African NGOs be published was made in recognition of the role played in their own development by African peoples, through NGOs. It is hoped that while fostering network among African NGOs, the directory will also be used by the development community to identify national partners in Africa to implement the priorities established by the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s (UN-NADAF). There are 1,558 African NGOs listed in this publication and 338 regional and international organizations listed as networks. The 500-page volume includes indexes by country and field of activity.

This publication is a result of a long process of evaluation, review and the internalization of lessons learned from constant interaction with NGOs. These feedback processes were instrumental in highlighting both the strengths and the weaknesses of African NGOs. OSCAL will build on these lessons in its advocacy role.

Among the assets of African NGOs, the following may be noted: the impact of United Nations global conferences which led to: a) increased contacts and networking among African NGOs, a welcome addition to the traditional North-South linkages; b) an increase in the number of NGOs receiving a consultative status with either ECOSOC or DPI; c) the establishment of new types of organizations matching the global trend in ideas and new challenges, including organizations to fight HIV/AIDS, organizations for older persons and for the handicapped and organizations for peace and human rights.

Other hidden assets are: d) the similarity in languages used by African NGOs in their daily work could facilitate communication and become a tool for intra-regional networking; e) the significant progress made in strengthening relationships between Governments and NGOs in some countries. For example, a "Steering Committee for NGO Policy Coordination" and a "Bureau de suivi des organisations non gouvernementales" have been established in the Office of the Vice-President of Tanzania and in the Ministry of Economy of Burkina-Faso respectively.

On the liability side, information solicited on the financial status of organizations reveals that many African NGOs are financially weak and rely largely on foreign donors. Not only do financial problems impinge upon independence of these organizations, but the gains accumulated by them over the years may disappear if they do not move to financial self-sufficiency.

OSCAL is now contemplating the second phase of this project which is the consolidation and build up of an electronic database.

Contact: Ruth Engo, Tel. (212) 963-4780, E-mail: engo@un.org


IMF Board to meet ECOSOC
28 October

As further evidence of the increased interaction between the United Nations and the Bretton Woods institutions, the IMF Board will visit New York on 28 October 1999 to meet with the Council in the afternoon. Earlier this year, in February, the Board of the Bank visited ECOSOC and in May, a number of ECOSOC ambassadors visited the IMF Board in Washington. The visit in October can be seen as a return visit of the latter and was set into motion by a suggestion of Ambassador Fulci, President of ECOSOC. The meeting will focus primarily on the outcome of the fall Bank/Fund meetings in Washington, but will also provide an opportunity to brief the Board of the Fund on the outcome of this summer's ECOSOC session.

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


OCTOBER-NOVEMBER MEETINGS SERVICED BY DESA

General Assembly, 54th session
New York, 14 September-23 December

See lead article above.

Symposium on States, Markets and Social Progress: Roles and Cooperation of Public and Private Sector
Beijing, 11-13 October

Following a decision of the Preparatory Committee on the follow-up to the Social Summit, this symposium was organized by the Division for Social Policy and Development, in cooperation with the Government of China.

The symposium will consider the relationship between the public and private sectors in advancing the goals of the World Summit for Social Development, as well as their respective roles and responsibilities. It will focus on three specific, yet inclusive, areas of particular relevance: ensuring the welfare of vulnerable groups and individuals; enlarging employment by promoting small enterprises in all sectors; and financing public goods.

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

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty (17 October 1999)
New York, 14-15 October

Two events organized by the Division for Social Policy and Development, in collaboration with the Department of Public Information, and the NGO ATD Fourth World, in observance of the Day will be held at Headquarters on 14 and 15 October, since 17 October falls on a Sunday. The first event to be held on 14 October is a panel discussion on women and the eradication of poverty. On 15 October, an outdoor musical performance to be attended by representatives of some communities in New York, as well as diplomats and United Nations staff members, will be held on the North Lawn. Details of programmes for both events are being finalized.

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

Regional Consultations on Sustainable Development of All Types of Forests
Yaounde, Cameroon, 18-22 October

By mid-October, the bulk of expert meetings organized under Government-led initiatives in support of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) will have been completed. Those remaining are part of the Costa Rica-Canada initiative: "International arrangements and mechanisms to promote the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests, in support of IFF Category III." The final meeting will take place in Ottawa, Canada, from 6 to 10 December 1999. Remaining regional consultations are scheduled as follows (the name of the colleague who is scheduled to attend on behalf of the IFF Secretariat is added in brackets):

  • West and Central Africa, Yaounde, Cameroon, 18-22 October (Jag Maini);
  • Amazon Basin, Quito, Ecuador, October, 20-23 October (Jaime Muñoz);

The Website for the Costa Rica-Canada initiative is http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/cfs/crc

Further information on the IPF/IFF process is available on the website of the IFF Secretariat at http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/iff.htm

Contact: Jagmohan Maini, Tel. (212) 963-3160, Fax (212) 963-3463, E-mail: maini@un.org OR Jaime Muñoz-Reyes, Tel. (212) 963-4151, Fax (212) 963-3463, E-mail: munoz-reyes@un.org

Africa-Asia Business Forum (AABF)
Kuala Lumpur, 25-29 October

As co-organizer of the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), the Office of the Special Coordinator for Africa and the Least Developed Countries (OSCAL) will participate in the Africa-Asia Business Forum (AABF). The AABF aims to facilitate interaction between the private sectors of Africa and Asia, principally by matching business needs. Its outcome of AABF will be used at the Asia-Africa Forum III to be held 29 November-1 December.

Contact: Emmanuel Goued Njayick, Tel: (212) 963-5006, E-mail: gouednjayick@un.org OR Abraham Joseph, tel: (212) 963-4839, E-mail: josepha@un.org

Judicial Colloquium on the Application of International Human Rights Law at the Domestic Level
Vienna, 27-29 October

The Division for the Advancement of Women will convene this colloquium for the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the tenth anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The colloquium will be an opportunity for judicial practitioners from around the world to examine how international human rights law can be used at the domestic level to achieve equality for women and girls, and to exchange experiences in this regard. It will provide an overview of relevant international human rights norms, and an extensive opportunity to discuss cases where international human rights norms have been used to benefit women and girls.

There will be six keynote speakers, and some 80 senior judges and magistrates from 65 countries, as well as academics and representatives of international organizations who work on women's and children's issues. More details on the objectives, format and participants are contained in the aide-mémoire located at http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/news/vienna.htm

Contact: Jane Connors, Tel. (212) 963-3162, E-mail: connorsj@un.org OR Christine Brautigam, Tel. (212) 963-0535, E-mail: brautigamc@un.org

Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC), Second session of 1999
New York, 29-30 October

The session will be chaired by the Secretary-General and attended by the executive heads of the United Nations funds and programmes and specialized agencies and of the Bretton Woods institutions as well as the World Trade Organization.

ACC will explore the preparedness of the system's "institutional and programmatic capacity to respond flexibly and effectively to the challenges of the next century". The Committee will review the preparations for the special session of the General Assembly in 2000 on "Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace in the twenty-first century", as well as proposals for the further implementation of activities towards a strengthened "Development of Africa", taking into consideration in particular the ECOSOC 1999 agreed conclusions on the implementation and coordinated follow-up by the UN system of initiatives on African development.

The issue of HIV/AIDS, the subject of ECOSOC resolution 1999/36, will be brought to the attention of ACC for further policy-level consideration and joint actions required in efforts to combat HIV/AIDS. Other issues involve future arrangements for natural disaster reduction following the close of the decade, the response of the system to General Assembly resolution A/53/243 (Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace), follow-up action on the decisions and resolutions of the substantive session of ECOSOC in 1999, as well as the United Nations staff security and safety.

Contact: Christopher Hackett, Tel. (212) 963-2263, Fax (212) 963-1712, E-mail: hackett@un.org OR Kwaku Aning, Tel. (212) 963-8850, Fax (212) 963-4190, E-mail: aning@un.org .

Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC), Organizational Committee
New York, 1-2 November

The Committee will chart the implementation of the decisions of ACC (see above). At its earlier session on 1-4 October, the Committee had considered, on behalf of ACC, reports on a number of its subsidiary bodies, such as the Consultative Committee on Programme and Operational Questions (fifteenth session); Inter-agency Committee on Sustainable Development (fourteenth session); Consultative Committee on Administrative Questions (Personnel and General Administrative Questions (ninetieth and ninety-first sessions)); and Consultative Committee on Administrative Questions (ninetieth session). It considered on its own behalf the reports of the Information Systems Coordination Committee (seventh session), and the Joint United Nations Information Committee (twenty-fifth session).

Contact: Christopher Hackett, Tel. (212) 963-2263, Fax (212) 963-1712, E-mail: hackett@un.org

Meeting of the Expert Group on the World Economic Outlook (Project LINK)
Athens, 1-5 November

The Fall meeting of the Expert Group on the World Economic Outlook will take place in Athens from 1 to 5 November 1999 to assess the world economic outlook and discuss issues in economic modeling and policy analysis. The meeting will focus on a recently completed baseline forecast of the immediate prospects for the global economy, its main regions and individual countries. The Expert Group comprises economic researchers from more than 60 countries who monitor trends and developments in their own economies and prepare short-term forecasts of economic activity for their country on the basis of independently developed national econometric models. Through Project LINK, these independent country models are integrated into a single global econometric model to yield a coherent picture for the short-term outlook for the world economy. The meeting is serviced by the Economic Assessment and Outlook Branch of the Development Policy Analysis Division, which prepares a baseline forecast of the immediate prospects for the global economy, its main regions and individual countries on the basis of inputs provided by country participants.

Contact: Pingfan Hong, Tel. (212) 963-4701, Fax (212) 963-1061. E-mail: hong@un.org

Workshop on "Beijing+5: Future Actions and Initiatives"
Beirut, 8-10 November

The Division for the Advancement of Women is organizing a workshop on "Beijing+5: Future Actions and Initiatives", to take place at ESCWA headquarters. The meeting will elaborate action-oriented recommendations to be forwarded for discussion to the Commission on the Status of Women at its forty-fourth session in March 2000, and the preparatory committee for the General Assembly's special session "Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century".

Contact: Maria Hartl, Tel. (212) 963-3140, E-mail: hartl@un.org

Consultation on the Further Development of a Research Agenda on Ageing for the Twenty-first Century
New York, 10-12 November

The meeting is organized by the Division for Social Policy and Development mainly to refine the priorities already identified during the Vienna meeting on the same topic, as well as specific further steps in developing the Research Agenda with key partners during 2000. The meeting will be attended by NGOs, and experts from universities and research institutions from Europe, Asia and the United States.

Contact: Rosemary Lane, Tel. (212) 963-5090, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: lane@un.org

Expert Group Meeting on International Economic and Social Classifications
New York, 15-17 November

The Statistics Division will convene this meeting. Based on the recommendation of the Statistical Commission, the Expert Group is the central coordinating body for implementing the proposed work programme on classifications. The main focus of the meeting will be on: (a) reviewing the work done on classifications; (b) formulating proposals for making the International Family of Classifications operational; © discussing future work of the Technical Sub-group on activity and product classifications; (d) reviewing the implementation of International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic Activities (ISIC) Rev3 and the harmonization of activity classifications; (e) discussing further development of the Central Product Classification (CPC); (f) coordinating training programmes on classifications; (g) coordinating electronic communication and information dissemination; and (h) reviewing progress in classifications of education, occupations and other areas.

Contact: Mary Chamie, Tel. (212) 963-4869, E-mail: mchamie@un.org OR Virgilio Castillo, Tel. (212) 963-4867, E-mail: castillo@un.org

Meeting of the Technical Sub-group on Activity and Product Classifications
New York, 18-20 November

The Statistics Division will organize the first formal meeting of this Sub-group which was created to support the work of the Expert Group on International Economic and Social Classifications. It will deal with the underlying principles and practical aspects of further development of the International Standard Industrial Classification (ISIC) and the Central Product Classification (CPC). It will address such priority issues as improving the convergence among activity classifications.

Contact: Mary Chamie, Tel. (212) 963-4869, E-mail: mchamie@un.org

Ad Hoc Expert Group Meeting on Revisiting Diversification of African Economies in the New Global Context
New York, 23-24 November

Contact: Leslie Wade, Tel. (212) 963-4420, E-mail: wade@un.org

Asia-Africa Forum III
Kuala Lumpur, 29 November-1 December

As part of the follow-up to the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), the Government of Japan has taken the initiative to co-organize with the Government of Malaysia, UNDP, the Office of the Special Coordinator for Africa and the Least Developed Countries (OSCAL) and the Global Coalition for Africa, the Third Africa-Asia Global Forum in Malaysia. The objective is to enable representatives of Asian and African countries to engage in a new millennium dialogue for Asia-Africa cooperation in capacity building, agricultural and private sector development through the sharing of experiences and lessons learnt.

Contact: Abraham Joseph, Tel: (212) 963-4839, E-mail: josepha@un.org OR Mariama Djibo, tel: (212) 963-8408, E-mail: djibo@un.org

Fifth Expert Group Meeting on Financial Issues of Agenda 21
Nairobi, 30 November-3 December

The Division for Sustainable Development will convene the meeting, which is sponsored by the Government of the Netherlands, as part of the run-up to the eighth session of the Commission on Sustainable Development in 2000 which will evaluate the progress achieved in implementing chapter 33 of Agenda 21 on financial issues. This meeting should provide Governments with a sound basis for decisions in this area and support and complement the preparations of the Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group on Financing for Development for a high-level consultation to be held before the end of 2001.

The tentative agenda for the meeting includes topics under the following broad themes:

( a ) Improving the policy framework for sustainable development finance;

( b ) Testing new policy approaches for the international and domestic financing of sustainable development.

The meeting will also focus on the major problems of sustainable development finance in sub-Saharan Africa by examining a number of relevant issues, including the progress of ODA reform, the impact of external debt, the promotion of private capital flows, and the role of environmental taxes and charges.

The meeting will prepare a report for the Ad Hoc Inter-sessional Working Group of the Commission on Sustainable Development as well as a background document containing its full proceedings for the eighth session of the Commission on Sustainable Development.

Contact: Eric Olson, Tel. (212) 963-8776, Fax (212) 963-4260, E-mail: olson@un.org .


TECHNICAL COOPERATION

Workshops

Consensus Building Conference on Capacity Building for Municipal Governance
Mombasa, Kenya, 12-13 October

The Conference, which is being co-organized by UNDP and the Government of Kenya, will consider the sector reviews prepared on the four largest towns in Kenya: Eldoret, Kisumu, Nakuru and Mombasa. Their mayors, mayors from neighbouring countries, as well as officials of the Ministry of Local Authorities and the Public Service Commission have been invited to attend.

Contact: Atnafu Almaz, Tel. (212) 963-8378, E-mail: almaz@un.org .

Fourth Congress of the Latin American Centre for Development Administration (CLAD) on the Reform of the State and Public Administration "Management Reform"
Mexico City, 19-22 October

The Congress, which is co-sponsored and co-organized by DPEPA, will discuss the following themes: "Challenges and Dilemmas of Public Policies for Equity", "Challenges of Regional Integration in the Context of Globalization" and "Modernisation of Public Management". The Division will act as Rapporteur for the last theme and present papers on "The Necessary Changes of Public Servants' Training for a Changing State".

Contact: Guido Bertucci, Tel. (212) 963-5761, E-mail: bertucci@un.org .

Workshop on Compilation of the Integrated Economic Accounts of the 1993 SNA
Beirut, 26-28 October

This workshop organized by the Statistics Division and the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) will focus on the implementation of concepts, classifications, accounts and transactions embodied in the 1993 System of National Accounts (SNA). Topics to be presented include: Structure of the integrated accounts; comparison of 1968 and 1993 SNA; production boundary; links between business accounts and national accounts; generation of income accounts; sequence of subsequent integrated accounts; ESCWA countries' experience in the implementation of the 1993 SNA.

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

Workshops on International Trade Statistics
St. Petersburg, 1-5 November
Saint Lucia, November

The International Trade Statistics Branch of the Statistics Division is conducting two training workshops on international trade statistics, for the purpose of facilitating the implementation of the Revised United Nations Concepts and Definitions for International Merchandise Trade Statistics. The first workshop will be hosted by the State Customs Committee of the Russian Federation and deal with special issues facing countries of Eastern Europe and the CIS. The second meeting, organized in cooperation with the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States and hosted by the Statistical Department of the Government of Saint Lucia is for the benefit of Caribbean States. The Branch will make presentations of the revised UN concepts and definitions in international trade statistics; representatives from other international organizations will lecture about issues relating to trade data collection; and countries will have an opportunity to present summaries of their data collection practices.

Contact: Richard Roberts, Tel. (212) 963-6037, Fax (212) 963-9851, E-mail: roberts@un.org OR Vladimir Markhonko, Tel. (212) 963-5252, Fax (212) 963-9851, E-mail: markhonko@un.org

Workshop on Implementation of the 1993 SNA with special emphasis on Regional Accounts
Aguascalientes, Mexico, 8-12 November

The workshop organized by the Statistics Division and the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and hosted by the Mexican Statistical Institute (INEGI) will focus mainly on concepts, definitions and estimation methods of regional accounting aggregates and indicators of special interest for Latin America and the Caribbean. The following topics will be presented and discussed: Concept of residence and statistical units of regional accounting; sources and methods of estimation of regional value added and gross capital formation; general government accounts and their regionalization; ECLAC countries' experiences in the compilation of regional accounts.

Contact: Cristina Hannig, Tel. (212) 963-4854, E-mail: hannig@un.org

Regional Symposium on Socio-economic Policies during Macroeconomic Stabilization in Countries with Economies in Transition
Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, 9-11 November

The Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD), in collaboration with UNDP and the Government of Turkmenistan, will organize the regional symposium on socio-economic policies during macroeconomic stabilization in countries with economies in transition.

The objective is to assist Governments of such countries in designing and enhancing socio-economic policies in response to the recommendations of the World Summit for Social Development. The meeting will enable participants to share information about possible policies and programmes to implement the outcome of the 1995 World Summit for Social Development. It will be attended by approximately 30 participants from the transition economies in Europe and Asia.

Contact: Lai Shian-Lung: Tel. (212) 963-6168, Fax (212) 963-1070, E-mail: lai@un.org

Second Asia-Africa Eco-Partnership Building Workshop
Kuala Lumpur, 23-26 November

The Workshop, which is co-organized by UNDP and the Government of Malaysia with input from the Division for Public Economics and Public Administration (DPEPA), will be attended by mayors and governors of 12 metropolitan cities in Asia and Africa, as well as representatives of non-governmental organizations dealing with environmental issues.

Contact: Atnafu Almaz, Tel. (212) 963-8378, E-mail: almaz@un.org .

Workshop and Seminar on Environmental Accessibility: Issues in Planning and Design of Accessible Urban Development
Beirut, 29 November-3 December

This workshop and seminar will be organized by the Division for Social Policy and Development, in collaboration with the Division for Social Development Issues and Policies of the United Nations Commission for Western Asia. The basic aim is to enable participants to exchange knowledge and experience, consider options for joint action to promote environmental accessibility for all, and provide opportunities for skill development and networking.

The papers of the Workshop are available at: http://www.worldenable.net

Contact: Clinton E. Rapley, Tel. (212) 963-1141, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: rapley@un.org

Interregional Seminar and Symposium on International Norms and Standards Relating to Disability
Hong Kong, 13-17 December

The seminar is organized by the Equal Opportunities Commission, Hong Kong, in cooperation with the University of Hong Kong, and with inputs from the Division for Social Policy and Development. The objective of both the seminar and the symposium is to promote awareness and understanding of the broad human rights framework and of persons with disabilities. Both events are expected to help countries identify improved concepts, methods and procedures by which they are better able to design, implement and evaluate outcomes of policies, strategies and programmes aimed at furthering equalization of opportunities by, for, and with persons with disabilities.

Contact: Akiko Ito, Tel. (212) 963-1996, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: ito@un.org

Advisory Services

At the request of UNDP/Cairo, the Division for Public Economics and Public Administration (DPEPA) will undertake an evaluation of the civil service reform in Egypt and develop a conceptual framework for the role of civil service reform in supporting social development.
The Division is providing a team of three advisers to evaluate on the effectiveness, impact and relevance of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) programme, to advise the ministries, the ACS member States and its secretariat on appropriate future directions, and to make specific recommendations on the increase of the geo-political and geo-economical aspects of the ACS.
At the request of UNDP, Bucharest, DPEPA is planning to launch a needs assessment/project formulation mission to increase national capacity in diversity management.
The Division is planning an advisory mission to Palestine to analyse the needs and determine ways of developing the fiscal and financial sectors.


RECENT PUBLICATIONS

Statistics

Monthly Bulletin of Statistics
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.Q/319 - Vol. LIII - No. 7 July 1999

Special features in this issue: world shipbuilding; world exports by provenance and destination; total exports and imports of market economies: index numbers of quantum, unit value and terms of trade by regions; civil aviation traffic: passenger-km and cargo net ton-km.

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

1996 Energy Balances and Electricity Profiles
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.W/9
Sales No. E/F.99.XVII.5

This is the ninth issue in a series of energy data for selected developing countries. This volume covers 49 and 79 countries energy balances and electricity profiles respectively and is a source of overall consumption statistics of energy commodities in all sectors for selected developing countries. The data show energy production, conversion and consumption for each fuel used in the country. Special electricity profiles for an additional group of countries are published to cover, exclusively, the electricity part of conversion and consumption activities.

Contact: Donald Shih, Tel. (212) 963-8491, Fax (212) 963-0623, E-mail: shih@un.org

Population and Vital Statistics Report
ST/ESA/STAT/SER.A/210
Series A Vol. LI, No.3
Data available as of 1 July 1999

This issue gives 1998 and 1999 estimates of world and continental population, as well as corresponding 1998 estimates for 229 countries or areas of the world, which are listed separately. Also shown for each country or area are the results of the latest nationwide census of population (total, male and female) and, wherever possible, nationally representative statistics of live births, deaths and infant deaths (deaths under one year of age) for the most recent year available. If a nationwide population census was never taken, but a sample survey was, the survey results are shown in the "Latest population census" column until census data become available.

This issue supersedes all previous ones, and the data in it are subject to future revision. For more detailed data and data relating to years not shown here, readers should consult the Demographic Yearbook .

Contact: Manuel Otero, Tel. (212) 963-4970, Fax (212) 963-4970, E-mail: otero@un.org

Development Policy Analysis

1999 World Economic and Social Survey E/1999/50/Rev.1 - ST/ESA/268
Sales No. E.99.II.C.1

The 1999 World Economic and Social Survey has just been released. In addition to the usual overview of the world economy in Part I, Part II of this survey looks at financial development, examining how the financial sector has changed in recent years and the types of arrangements and institutions that are appropriate in today's globalized financial world. The Survey addresses such issues as the banking system and capital markets, venture capital and finance for the poor, as well as the challenges presented by the global financial system.

Part I of the Survey is available online at: http://www.un.org/esa/analysis/wess/

Contact: Barry Herman, Tel. (212) 963-4747, Fax. (212) 963-1061, E-mail: herman@un.org

Social Policy

Technology and Its Impact on the Family
ST/ESA/266
Sales No. E.99.IV.6

This publication was issued in June and describes the outcome of the UN Workshop on Technology and Families, held in Dublin, 6-10 October 1998. It was organized by the Family Unit, Division for Social Policy and Development, in cooperation with the Government of Ireland, Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs, and in association with Quest Campus.

The publication considers: how technological change affects the family unit in the performance of its central and irreducible functions in any society - traditional, modern and post-modern alike; how change driven by technology affects relationships among family members; and conversely, how technology can help the family in its efforts to adapt to change in order to continue to play its central role in society.

Contact: Amr Ghaleb, Tel. (212) 963-3238, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: ghaleb@un.org

Bulletin on Ageing
Nos. 2 and 3/1998; and No. 1/1999

Contact: Rosemary Lane, Tel. (212) 963-5090, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: lane@un.org

Public Administration

Administrative Decentralization Strategies for Developing Countries
by John M. Cohen and Stephen B. Peterson
Kumarian Press, West Hartford, CT, 1999; 207 p.

The book reviews the lessons of the past four decades of administrative decentralization in transitional and developing countries. It also contains summaries and critiques of the dominant analytical framework for designing, implementing and evaluating decentralization programmes built on the lessons of the past and focussed on issues confronting developing countries in the 1990s and beyond. The book was prepared with input from the Division for Public Economics and Public Administration (DPEPA).

Contact: Jeanne-Marie Col, Tel. (212) 963-8377, E-mail: col@un.org .

Local Government and Civil Society in Small States
ST/ESA/PAD/SER.E/69
prepared jointly by the United Nations and the Commonwealth Local Government Forum.

The publication covers the International Symposium on Local Government and Civil Society held in Malta from 16 to 19 March 1999, which discussed the future of small and island developing countries. The Symposium, organized by the United Nations and the Commonwealth Local Government Forum brought together local government representatives from the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean and the Pacific on an interregional basis and provided an opportunity to debate the interface between local and central government and civil society. The Symposium culminated in the Malta Declaration on Local Government and Civil Society in Small and Island Developing States.

Contact: Mariko Nishizawa, Tel. (212) 963-2299, E-mail: nishizawa@un.org .

Sustainable Development

Guidelines for Major Groups

The Division for Sustainable Development issued these Guidelines for the eighth session of the Commission for Sustainable Development in April 2000. The paper explains the process leading up to the session, and information on how to contribute and prepare for it.

The Guidelines can be found online at: http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/mgroups/csd8guid_intro.htm

Contact: Zehra Aydin-Sipos, Tel. (212) 963-8811, E-mail: aydin@un.org


FORTHCOMING PUBLICATIONS

Women

1999 World Survey on the Role of Women in Development

The Survey which will be submitted to the fifty-fourth Session of the General Assembly and launched as a sales publication thereafter, was requested by the GA in its resolution 49/161 of 23 December 1994. The Assembly requested that the Secretary-General examine the impact of current trends and policies on the overall economic and social situation of women with emphasis on the adverse impact of the difficult economic situation affecting most developing countries, and in particular, the condition of women, including worsening conditions for their incorporation into the labour force.

In response to this mandate, the Survey addresses the changes in the world of work from the gender perspective, in the context of globalization.

The gender impact of work is mixed. Globalization has not significantly reduced gender inequalities in societies at different stages of economic development around the world. Nor has it necessarily eliminated gender-based discrimination. At the same time, it has led to a steady increase in the female share of employment. The increased economic autonomy women have gained through wage employment has broadened their life options by strengthening their self-esteem and improving their status within the household. Globalization has also changed the pattern of employment where, "irregular" conditions once associated with secondary employment have become widespread for both sexes.

The Survey argues that gender does, indeed, count as an important factor in the design, implementation and evaluation of all macroeconomic policies, development strategies and their outcomes and that its inclusion makes them more encompassing and successful in addressing current economic challenges.

Contact: Dorota Gierycz, Tel. (212) 963-5913, E-mail: gierycz@un.org OR MacAlbert Hengari, Tel. (212) 963-2825, E-mail: hengari@un.org

Statistics

Industrial Commodity Statistics Yearbook, 1997, thirty-first edition

The publication will be a unique source of statistical data on major industrial products at the global level. The data are presented on an annual basis by countries and estimates are shown for geographical regions and the world. Most of the statistics refer to the ten-year period 1988-1997 for about 200 countries and areas.

Despite a number of unresolved methodological issues related to the data compilation, these statistics are needed by many users, private companies, academic institutions and international organizations.

Contact: Vasily Romanovsky, Tel. (212) 963-4585, Fax (212) 963-9851, E-mail: romanovsky@un.org

Social Policy

Families and the World of Work: Four Case Studies of Argentina, Egypt, India and The Netherlands

This publication will look at the family in its function of developing and maintaining a reliable source of income to provide individual members with the basic necessities of life.

Contact: Amr Ghaleb, Tel. (212) 963-3238, Fax (212) 963-3062, E-mail: ghaleb@un.org

Public Administration

Governance in Africa: Consolidating the Institutional Foundations
ST/ESA/PAD/SER.E/64

Contact: Atnafu Almaz, Tel. (212) 963-8378, E-mail: almaz@un.org .

Professionalism and Ethics in the Civil Service

Contact: Dimitri Argyriades, Tel. (212) 963-2304, E-mail: argyriades@un.org .

Governance World Watch: Issues 9, 10 and 11

Contact: Haiyan Qian, Tel. (212) 963-3393, E-mail: qianh@un.org .


MEETINGS HELD

General Assembly Special Session on SIDS Issues
New York, 27-28 September

The UN General Assembly convened its twenty-second special session to review and appraise the implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA). During the general debate, a total of 130 speakers made statements.

The General Assembly adopted a Declaration in which Member States reaffirmed the principles of and their commitments to sustainable development. The Declaration calls on the international community to provide effective means, including financial resources to support the sustainable development efforts of SIDS. It also calls on the Secretary-General to improve the existing institutional arrangements in the UN so that the UN system may become more proactive in promoting and assisting sustainable development in SIDS.

The General Assembly also adopted a review document entitled State of progress and initiatives for the future implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States . The document sets forth recommendations for action in priority areas requiring urgent action, as well as on the means of implementation.

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

Inter-agency Committee on Sustainable Development (IACSD), 14th Meeting
Vienna 9-10 September

The meeting was held at the invitation of IAEA. The Committee continued its consideration of issues on which there have been recent developments such as the successor arrangements for the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR), the modalities for the proposed Environmental Management Group (EMG) and the proposed expansion of the task manager system. It discussed to the implementation of CSD7 and preparations for CSD8. The report of the second session of the Ad Hoc Inter-agency Task Force on Energy as well as the outcome of the informal meeting of the ACC Subcommittee on Oceans and Coastal Areas recently held in London were also considered. The next meeting of the IACSD will be January 2000.

The report as adopted by the Committee (ACC/1999/12) can be accessed through http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/iacsd.htm OR http://acc.unsystem.org/-subsidiary.bodies/iacsd.htm .

Contact: Karina Gerlach, Tel. (212) 963-5858, Fax (212) 963-4190

Women's International Networking Conference
Milan, 24-26 September

Zohreh Tabatabai, Focal Point on Women, in the Secretariat attended the Conference entitled "Working Internationally Now - Winning Strategies for Women in the Global Era". It was sponsored by SDA Bocconi and Price Waterhouse Coopers and IBM.

Contact: Zohreh Tabatabai, Tel. (212) 963-6828, E-mail: tabatabaiz@un.org


THE ELECTRONIC UN

WomenWatch Online Working Groups

WomenWatch, the UN Internet gateway to information about women, has launched global online working groups to prepare for next June's review of the 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women. Online discussions are already under way on violence, economic inequality, environmental sustainability, women in power and decision-making, and health. Electronic working groups on poverty, armed conflict, education, the girl-child, human rights and the media will start in October and November.

The Working Groups will discuss:

  • Policies, legislation, strategies and partnerships that have been successful in furthering women's equality;
  • Case studies, best practices and other examples of successful government and civil society efforts;
  • Obstacles that remain and how they can be overcome; and
  • What still needs to be done.

For more information and to register, visit http://www.un.org/womenwatch/forums/index.html

Contact: Dong Wu, Tel. (212) 963-0272, E-mail: wud@un.org OR Kerri Power, Tel. (212) 963-3787, E-mail: power@un.org

Online Network for Public Administration (UNPAN)

DPEPA started implementation of the On-Line Regional Network of Institutions for Capacity-Building in Public Administration and Finance (UNPAN) financed by the Development Dividend, a fund resulting from UN efficiency saving. UNPAN is a virtual electronic network that promotes the exchange of expertise and sharing of experiences and lessons learned in public administration and finance. The ultimate objective is to support, via an electronic platform, the development of efficient and effective public administration systems and competent civil services, especially in developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

UNPAN is designed to foster North-South and South-South cooperation in capacity-building of knowledge management and to provide users with major services on a worldwide basis: (a) on-line information exchange; (b) on-line training programmes, material and facilities; (c) on-line advisory services, interactive questions and answers via the UNPAN help desk; and (d) on-line conferences and workshops.

UNPAN information and knowledge focus on the following substantive areas: public policies (state-market relations, institutional issues of economic governance and sectoral policies and economic sanctions, etc); public administration (governance systems and institutions, civil service; management innovations and development, etc); and public finance and private sector development. The UNPAN system will be developed in six regional centres on public administration and finance (two in Africa, one in the Middle East, one in Asia and the Pacific; one in Latin America and the Caribbean; and one in Eastern Europe and the CIS) which will be linked with respective national centres in the above-mentioned areas. A consultative interregional meeting of participating institutions will be held in Thessaloniki, Greece, from 15 to 17 November.

Contact: Haiyan Qian, Tel. (212) 963-3393, E-mail: qianh@un.org .

New Web Site

A web site on ACC and its subsidiary machinery has been established by the Office for Inter-agency Affairs and can be accessed at http://acc.unsystem.org . The site, which is linked to all member organization sites, contains information on the ACC and its subsidiary bodies as well as the outcomes of the meetings of ACC since 1995. It also contains links, where available, to the web sites of substantive divisions/offices servicing the subsidiary machinery.

The site will be expanded to include information from member organizations which would be of interest to the rest of the system.

If you have feedback on the site or suggestions on additional links which could be established, please send them to: Karina Gerlach, Tel. (212) 963-5858, Fax (212) 963-4190.

Directory of Forest-related Institutions

In August 1998, the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) called for the Inter-Agency Task Force on Forests (ITFF) to produce a comprehensive directory of forest-related international organizations and global and regional conventions. This directory, prepared by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) on behalf of the ITFF, is now available on the website of the IFF Secretariat at http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/forest/iff_directory.htm

Document Preparation System

A User Focal Group of DESA staff has begun testing a prototype electronic document management system. The system has been developed as a collaborative tool to co-ordinate and ease the way official documents are authored, reviewed, revised and approved at various levels within the department.

The testing is to verify whether the system has correctly interpreted the work flow associated with the creation of parliamentary documentation, whether it meets the needs of the different users (i.e. authors, Directors), and whether it results in efficiencies.

Depending on the recommendations of the test group, the system may be introduced for use in the department. The prototype is the first phase of a project aimed at establishing an integrated document management system, including all phases of the document life cycle, from mandate to production to distribution.

Contact: Mary Sherwin, Tel. (212) 963-3325, Fax (212) 963-4444, E-mail: sherwin@un.org