|DESA News Vol. 11, No. 9||September 2007|
The warming of our planet is real. Arctic ice is melting, coral reefs are dying, and sea levels and extreme weather events are rising. Yet climate change is not only an environmental issue. It has a clear economic and social impact, and some of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable, who have contributed least to climate change, will be hit hardest and soonest. Increasing droughts, floods and heat waves are already leading to declines in crop productivity and food security, as well as rising poverty and conflict.
Some groups are systematically locked out of the benefits of development. They cannot escape from poverty as they are deprived of opportunities that are available to others, and have difficulty asserting their rights because of race, cast, disability, social status or other social identity. Creating an inclusive society means building communities based on social justice, and participation by all at all stages of decision-making.
On 1 August, Mr. Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, briefed the press on the need for a new global strategy on climate change in the context of development. The UNFCCC Secretariat reports to the Secretary-General through the Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
Innovative initiatives to address youth employment at the country level are urgent. While young people make up a quarter of the total labour force, but they constitute almost half of the world’s total unemployed, and are three times more likely to be unemployed than adults. This report presents a review of national action plans, and is especially useful as it allows countries at all levels of development to share experiences in addressing youth employment challenges.
Participation and transparency improve the quality of governance within a society, and the living conditions of its citizens. Participation entails access to all stages of the policy process – policy formulation, implementation and review. Transparency enables all actors to participate as informed contributors.
Mr. Richard Kozul-Wright was appointed Chief of the Development Strategy and Policy Analysis Unit of the Development Policy and Analysis Division on 8 August. Mr. Kozul-Wright joined DESA in 1991 to work on the World Economic and Social Survey and in 1993 moved to UNCTAD where he was a contributor to the World Investment Report, the Trade and Development Report, and the Economic Development in Africa Report.