Addressing global challenges requires a collective and concerted effort, involving all actors. Through partnerships and alliances, and by pooling comparative advantages, we increase our chances success."
- Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General

What do we do?

Throughout its history, the United Nations system has worked with the private sector and civil society. In 2005, Member States recognized the importance of, and expressed strong support for, active engagement of non-state actors in promoting the development agenda of the United Nations system.

UNOP has worked in close collaboration with the United Nations Foundation to further promote and implement partnership advisory services and outreach initiatives, and foster innovative strategies for engaging non-state actors with the UN System. The Office has also brokered and coordinated strategies to strengthen the Organization's expertise and capacity to engage corporations, foundations, and individuals in UN causes and to support the United Nations system in its advocacy and outreach efforts through partnership building.

The United Nations Office for Partnerships serves as a gateway for public-private partnerships with the United Nations system in furtherance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). UNOP fosters innovative strategies for engaging non-state actors including global corporations, philanthropic foundations, and civil society organisations to help meet UN objectives.

The Office provides Partnership Advisory and Outreach Service in response to the growing demand from the United Nations system, Governments and non-State actors in pursuing public-private partnerships, through high-impact events and advice to potential partners regarding procedures and best practices to promote the SDGs as a framework for action.

2014 Events

2013 Events

2012 Events

2011 Events

2010 Events

Media for Social Impact Summit

11 April 2014, New York

On April 11th, 2014 the United Nations Office for Partnerships in partnership with the PVBLIC Foundation hosted the inaugural Media for Social Impact Summit. The event brought together influential UN agencies and leading media companies, advertising firms and creative agencies to highlight the power of media to drive social change. PBVLIC Foundation is grant organization that mobilizes the power of the media to push for social change.

The Summit provided an opportunity to showcase campaigns through keynotes, panels and roundtables for representatives to network and create partnerships to further progress. Attendees and participants included Dove, Rainforest Alliance, UN Women and many more. Actor and social activist, Adrien Grenier, was awarded a Media for Social Impact Award for his work with as well as Dove for their “Real Women Real Bodies” campaign.

Annette Richardson, Senior Advisor to the United Nations Office for Partnerships along with Elizabeth Nyamayaro, Senior Advisor to Under Secretary-General and Executive Director at UN Women headed the roundtable discussion on Women and Girls at the event.

The event most certainly brought together bright minds in media to build partnerships to further social good and progress.

Success for Progress

7 March 2014, New York

On March 7th, on the eve of the International Women’s Day, the United Nations Office for Partnership co-hosted in partnership with investment company Ohana & Co. a luncheon entitled “Success for Progress.” The event brought together 150 top Luxury and Lifestyle brands to celebrate the crucial role that women play in shaping the social and economic fabric of present and future generations, and to remind us that the empowerment of women and girls is a human right not just economics.

The discussion evolved around topics such as Advancing Global Development Priorities through Brand Advocacy, and The Essential Role of the Fashion and Beauty Industries to Empower Women and Girls Globally. Notable speakers included Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women; Paul Van Zyl, CEO Maiyet; Joey Adler, CEO Diesel Canada; Sade Baderinwa, WABC News Anchor; Melanie Griffith, Celebrity Activist; Susan Rockefeller, Filmmaker and Philanthropist; and Jeannette Chang, Senior Vice President and International Publishing Director, Hearst Magazines International.

Turning Inspiration into Action

4 March 2014, New York

On March 4th , the United Nations Office for Partnerships and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Corporate Citizenship Center in collaboration with Business Call to Action co-hosted the 4th annual women’s forum. Entitled “Turning Inspiration into Action: Next Steps for the Private Sector to Empower Women Globally”, the event dived deep into the many challenges that women and girls still face in attaining economic independence with a strong focus on the solutions. The forum also highlighted the private sector’s role in these efforts and how companies and their partners are working to build a supportive ecosystem for women and girls all over the world.

Notable speakers included Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women; John McKernan, President of the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation; Robert Orr, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Policy Coordination and Strategic Planning; Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair of the Clinton Foundation; and Melanne Verveer, Executive Director of the Institute for Women, Peace and Security at Georgetown University.

With its over 800 participants the forum examined the subject of women and economy coming to the inevitable conclusion that economically empowering women is not only possible, but there is no other choice.

2014 Investor Summit on Climate Risk

15 January 2014, New York

On 15 January 2014, global financial leaders gathered in the ECOSOC chamber on the occasion of the Investor Summit on Climate Risk, co-organised by Ceres, the UN Foundation and the United Nations Office for Partnerships. The topics of the presentations and discussions that took place during the Summit varied from the latest climate science trends and their implications for investment portfolios, to innovations on energy efficiency and clean technology, as well as the financial community’s role in supporting sustainable energy and climate policies. Throughout the day, it was inspiring to hear leaders from the world’s largest pension funds, asset managers, and corporations articulate how they are rising to the climate challenge. The message of the Summit was clear: Tackling climate change and transitioning to a clean energy future is one of the greatest opportunities of the 21st century.

A central theme and outcome of the summit was the call for more investments in clean energy, including renewable energy and energy efficiency. A report issued by Ceres at the Summit estimated that the financing of low-carbon clean energy and energy efficiency technologies required was approximately $1 trillion annually between now and 2050 in order to avoid global warming of more than 2 degrees Celsius. You may read more about the outcomes of the summit and about the clean trillion on Ceres website. To watch the full coverage of the summit , please follow link to the UN webcast.

Among the Summits many notable speakers included Christiana Figueres, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change; Robert Orr, Assistant Secretary-General for Policy Planning, Tom Steyer, Farallon Capital Management; Nick Robins, HSBC; Robert E. Rubin, former Secretary of the U.S. Treasury; Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO, Thomas DiNapoli, New York State Comptroller, Michael Liebreich, Bloombergy New Energy Finance and Timothy E. Wirth, Vice-Chairman of the UN Foundation. The Investor Summit on Climate Risk at the United Nations is a biennial event first held in 2003. It is the pre-eminent forum for leading institutional investors to discuss the implications of climate change for capital markets and their portfolios.

Forbes 400 Philanthropy Summit

2 December 2013, New York

On 5 June, in partnership with Forbes Magazine and the UN Foundation, the United Nations Office for Partnerships co-hosted the Forbes 400 Philanthropy Summit at the United Nations. The day started with opening remarks by Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, honoring over 150 billionaire entrepreneurs and philanthropists who have turned their attention to some of the greatest social issues of our time. Attendees, such as Bill Gates, Bono and Warren Buffett, who represent close to half a trillion of the world’s wealth, discussed how they can use their wealth, fame and entrepreneurial talent to eradicate poverty.

The Summit reinforced one of the United Nations Office for Partnerships’ goals: to discuss the role of private philanthropists within public initiatives and ponder how market-based solutions can address global challenges. The Summit emphasized the responsibility the public, private and entrepreneurial sectors share in order to find large-scale solutions for peace-building and prosperity. Participants included UN Foundation Founder and Chairman Ted Turner, Nobel Peace Prize Winner and Founder of Grameen Bank Professor Muhammad Yunus, as well as Former President of Ebay and Founder of the Skoll Foundation, Jeff Skoll. Two Forbes 400 Lifetime Awards were also presented. Muhammad Yunus received the “Forbes 400 Lifetime Achievement Award for Social Entrepreneurship” and Warren Buffet earned the “Forbes 400 Lifetime Achievement Award for Philanthropy”.

To honor this event, on 2 December, Forbes’ Special Philanthropy Issue was released on newsstands. For more information, please click here.

Social Innovation Summit

19 November 2013, New York

On November 19-20, the Social Innovation Summit held its West Coast forum at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in Palo Alto, California. Annette Richardson, Senior Advisor to the United Nations Office for Partnerships was invited to moderate a roundtable panel discussion on the topic of “Women and Girls” with Wendy Hawkins, Executive Director of the Intel Foundation and Martha Adams, award-winning documentary producer.

The summit is a bi-annual event bringing together people on the nexus of technology, investment, philanthropy, global development and business to create solutions and catalyze transformational partnerships. Companies and foundations represented at the summit included Google, Apple, Credit Suisse, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Goldman Sachs and’s Foundation “”. This summit is a platform to explore “what’s next” in the area of social innovation.

For more information, please click here.

MENA + Social Good

7 November 2013, New York

On 7 November, Annette Richardson, Senior Advisor to the United Nations Office for Partnerships took part in an interactive Global Summit entitled “MENA+ Social Good” discussing “The Power of One: Social Responsibility”, co-hosted by Al-Mubadarah, an Arab Empowerment Initiative. The Summit’s virtual panelists discussed the role of the internet, social media and technology in enabling and advancing social good in the Arab World, attracting a global audience of over 30,000 people.

Moderated by Hazami Barmada, MENA+Social Good Founder & Organizer, Al-Mubadarah, Founder & CEO, speakers from all over the world virtually came together and created global and impacting conversations, uniting under the idea that technology can shape both the future and productivity of the Arab World. Participants ranged from Dr. Kevin Dusneath, Director of Cisco in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Russia to Endeavor members in the region such as Omar Elsahy, reaching a wide range of thye private sector, philanthropists and civil society.

Options and initiatives aimed at eradicating poverty, youth unemployment, re-framing images of the region and increasing and directing philanthropy were amongst the most overarching themes of the event. For more information, please click here.

Solution Revolution

6 November 2013, New York

On the 6 November, 2013, the Office for Partnerships and the Democracy Fund co-coordinated an event with the Economic and Social Council & and the Economic and Financial Committee (2nd Committee) of the General Assembly and Deloitte, to find solutions for addressing sustainable development challenges and accelerating the achievement of the MDG’s. Development challenges which were approached with perspectives from UN partners, the private sector, and also provided recommendations and policy alternatives to the international community on ways to move forward. The meeting gathered together senior officials from the UN and private sector to engage in an interactive dialogue with member states. Paul MacMillan, Global Industry Leader of Deloitte headed the panel discussion which was moderated by ABC’s Emmy Award-winning News Anchor, Sade Baderinwa. For more information, please click here.

The World Summit on Innovation & Entrepreneurship

9 October 2013, New York

On 9 October, Annette Richardson, Senior Advisor to the United Nations Office for Partnerships took part in an innovative panel which discussed “Disruptive Innovations: Pushing New Frontiers”, at this year’s World Summit on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (WSIE) at New York City’s Museum of the Moving Image. The WSIE is an annual platform where founder Sam Hamdan, brings “dreamers, drivers, and doers” together to discuss, challenge and innovate new ways to transform today’s enterprises, cities and labs. WSIE’s goal is to bring all kinds of people to interact, rumble and fuse together for a better ‘tomorrow’. Participants ranging from royal representatives such as Truls Burg from Norway discussing “Norway’s Future: Led by Innovation” or Suneet Singh, founder of DataWind discussing “Why Frugal Technology Matters for Billions” , allowed the communication space to be bigger and more powerful than ever before. UNOP’s Senior Advisor's discussion was moderated by Adi Ignatius, Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Business Review and her fellow panelists included: Albert Green, CEO of Kent Displays, Lars Boilesen, CEO of Opera Software, Alan Dabbiere, Chairman & Founder of AirWatch, Eric Bonabeau, Chairman & Chief Scientific Officer of Icosystems and lastly Richard H. Hulit Jr., Vice-President of Product Management Market Technology at NASDAQ OMX. Each panelist was given the challenge to discuss how business norms are changing and how, with both technology and relationships between different sectors and industries, can businesses, entities and people be a part of the change to institutionalize ideals for a better world.The discussion revolved around the idea that partnerships are an essential key to being an integrated part the future. The panelists emphasized the need to filter through all the big data that we are faced with, through the amalgamation of the mediums that we have and are creating, in order to build more impactful global outcomes.

Global Citizen Festival

28 September 2013, New York

On 28 September, in support of the Secretary-General’s initiatives, the UN Office for Partnerships leadership participated in the Global Citizen Festival, an annual concert held in Central Park in New York City, produced and curated by the Global Poverty Project. This global event aimed to raise awareness on issues such as Sanitation, Food Aid Reform, Poverty, Gender Equality and Health through strategic advocacy partnerships.

This year’s Festival pulled in start power with Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, Bono, John Mayer, Kings of Leon and other celebrities performing throughout the day. Stevie Wonder advocated for “equal rights for women” and “education for all”.

The Festival succeeded in advocating issues linked to the Millennium Development goals to 60,000 Global Citizens via global live streaming and fostering global motivation to change positively for the future. Among its many outcomes, the Global Citizen Festival inspired Global Citizens to take over 900,000 actions to end poverty and support the world’s poorest populations. 50,000 of these actions were aimed at calling leaders of the condom industry to dedicate a part of their annual profits to family planning initiatives, to which many companies responded positively.

For more information on the Global Citizen Festival, please visit the Global Poverty Project  website.

MDG Success

23 September 2013, New York

On 23 September, the UN Office for Partnerships closely collaborated with the Executive Office of the Secretary-General on the planning and execution of “MDG Success: Accelerating Action and Partnering for Impact”, a high-level meeting hosted by the Secretary-General on the eve of the opening of the General debate of the sixty-eigth session of the General Assembly.

This high-level forum was tasked with the mission to catalyse and accelerate further action to achieve the MDGs, with the emphasis on the “how” – bringing together examples from partnerships across the spectrum of MDGs and Secretary-General’s initiatives and focusing on concrete ways to scale up success and opportunities for more. The Secretary-General aimed at replacing multiple single issue events with one coherent day-long event that drew lessons across issue areas and mobilized support for the full range of MDGs. 

The event was articulated in structured dialogues on lessons and strategies across issue areas, focusing on key functional elements such as achieving scale, accountability and innovation, to ensure country-level implementation and ownership and key players with a critical role to accelerate progress. The event had input from multi-stakeholder initiatives and movements such as Every Woman Every Child, Sustainable Energy for All, the Global Education First Initiative, Zero Hunger Challenge, the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement, and the Call to Action on Sanitation, which goals and activities span the MDGs. 

It showcased joint efforts pushed for refined, actionable and highly-motivated “last mile” commitments in each issue area and offered the experience of the different Secretary-General’s multi-stakeholder partnership initiatives as a model to chart the way forward.

Folding the initiatives into one full day session demonstrated an enhanced coherence around the development agenda and its means of implementation and helped push the debate on partnership as a critical tool for mobilizing finance, expertise, knowledge, and broad coalitions of leaders around UN goals and mandates.

MDG Success produced some very good outcomes including $2.5 billion pledged in support of Millennium Development Goals. Strong positive feedback from many stakeholders has been very well received. The event was an important proof of the concept for mobilizing across constituencies.

For more information about MDG Success and the Secretary-General’s multi-stakeholder initiatives, please click here. For more pictures of the event, please visit the United Nations Information Centre's link.

Unveiling of the Winning Design for the Slavery Memorial

23 September 2013, New York

On 23 September, the United Nations Office for Partnerships participated in the unveiling of the winning design for the Permanent Memorial in Honour of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. Rodney Leon, a New York architect, won the competition with a design entitled “Ark of Return”. He presented his work as “a symbolic spiritual space and object where one can interact and pass through for acknowledgement, contemplation, meditation, reflection, healing, education and transformation.”

TThe UN Office for Partnerships collaborated with the logistical organization of the international design competition administered through UNESCO’s Headquarters in Paris, in partnership with the Advisory Board and the Permanent Memorial Committee, chaired by the Permanent Representative of Jamaica. The competition received more 300 submissions by artists and architects from 83 different nationalities. Once erected in autumn 2014 at an easily accessible location at United Nations Headquarters, the memorial will be a symbol in acknowledgment of the tragedy of slavery and racial prejudice and will serve educational purposes for future generations.

To know more about the initiative and follow the progress of the Memorial construction, visit the Permanent Memorial website and the Permanent Memorial Facebook page. For more pictures of the unveiling ceremony, click here

“Made in Africa” Luncheon

26 September 2013, New York

On 26 September, the UN Office for Partnerships supported the Made in Africa Foundation working luncheon co-hosted by Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher of The New York Times at the New York Times offices in New York City.

The exclusive gathering included Mr Ozwald Boateng, Founder of the Made In Africa Foundation, Mr Chris Cleverly, CEO of the Made in Africa Foundation, Mr Tony Elumelu, Chairman of Heirs Holdings, Mr Jamie Fox, Actor, Chinese private–equity giant Patrick Zhong of the Fosun Group, former UK Foreign Secretary and International Rescue Committee CEO David Miliband, Ms Annette Richardson, Senior Advisor at the UN Office for Partnerships and senior representatives of the African Development Bank.

The luncheon aimed to discuss the need to finance growing infrastructural projects in Africa as vehicles to employment and growth across sectors. The partnership between the African Development Bank and the Made in Africa Foundation act as a catalyst for growth across sectors, provide employment and spread wealth, focusing on commercially viable infrastructure projects that strengthen Africa.

The African Development Bank’s President, Mr Donald Kaberuka, explained via video that “in order to increase the rate of infrastructure delivery in Africa, we need to speed up project preparation and project development. The critical objective is to shorten the time between the idea and financial close from a current average of seven years to less than three years”.

For more information please visit the Made in Africa Foundation website.

Blouin Creative Leadership Summit

23 September 2013, New York

The Louise Blouin Foundation and the UN Office for Partnerships co- hosted the eighth annual Blouin Creative Leadership Summit on 23-25 September at the Metropolitan Club in New York City. The Summit is a think-tank style forum, established by the Louise Blouin Foundation in strategic partnership with the United Nations Office for Partnerships, that encourages a shared knowledge of culture, technology and a mutual confrontation of challenges posed by poverty, conflict and economic instability. Discussions brought together experts such as Martin Chalfie, a Nobel laureate and University Professor at Columbia University, Mr. Stephen Friedman, President of MTV, and many other leaders in the fields of diplomacy, media, arts, technology, culture and business.

This year’s Summit introduced a third day of conversations solely focused on the Arts and Culture with topics ranging from “The Art of Iran”, “Trends in the Art Market” and “The Museum of the Future”.

For more information on the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit, please visit their  website.

Investing In Africa

22nd September 2013, New York

On 22 September, in collaboration with the Office of the Permanent Observer of the African Union to the United Nations, the UN Office for Partnerships and Renaissance Capital “Investing in Africa” co-hosted a private dinner focused on discussions about the future of development in Africa through long-term investments.

The dinner, held at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City, brought together prominent global investors, representatives of African Governments, the African Union and Renaissance Capital leadership. 

Mr. John Hyman, Chairman and CEO of Renaissance Capital and Mr Roland Rich, Officer-in-Charge of the UN Office for Partnerships, welcomed guests with an open discussion on the future of African development. Mr Charles Robertson, Global Chief Economist of Renaissance Capital, led a successful presentation of the economic future of Africa and the benefits of long-term investments.

Mr. Robert C. Orr, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Strategic Planning, and Dr Anthony Mothae Maruping, Economic Commissioner for the African Union, were among the distinguished guests. The “Investing in Africa” dinner fostered a new type of discussion centred on African investment for sustainable development. 

For more information about Renaissance Capital, please click  here.


16th September 2013, New York

On 16 September, the Economic and Social Council Chamber served as the venue for the TEDxUNPlaza conference entitled ‘BRAVE: United in Action’. The day-long event featured short, engaging talks by thought leaders and change makers in various fields of global affairs, including technology, medicine, film, and entertainment. The goal of the event was to showcase innovative, multi-disciplinary solutions to complex issues in a manner that is accessible to the global public. The event was opened by Nikhil Seth, Director of the Division for Sustainable Development at UN-DESA and webcast around the world.

The aim of TEDxUNPlaza is to gather inspirational speakers in order to talk individuals into empowering themselves, thinking and acting for a better future, bravery was chosen as this year’s theme for being a crucial element enabling to implement the needed change. All through the different sessions - “Women’s Empowerment”, “Change Everything”, “Ideas to Action” and “Being Human” – participants from all background and ages shared their experiences as motors of change.

Among stories told, Mallory Weggemann, world record-breaking US Paralympic swimmer (pictured) talked to the audience about the importance of never giving up in order to achieve dreams. In a presentation called “Triumph after Tragedy”, she stated: “Everything happens for a reason. […] It is not the moments in life that define who we are: it is what we do after, how we react to events”. To listen to more speakers and watch the event, please click here.

TEDxUNPlaza is an independently organized TEDx event curated by local and international TEDx organizers, with the support of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs and the UN Office for Partnerships. It marked the beginning of various special events leading up to the very first session of the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.  

To learn more about this event, including the featured speakers, we encourage you to visit the TEDxUNPlaza website

Social Innovation Summit 2013

29th May 2013, New York

On May 29th and 30th, The UN Office for Partnerships co-hosted, in partnership with Landmark Ventures, the Social Innovation Summit 2013.  The first day was hosted at JP Morgan Headquarters with the following day at the General Assembly Hall.

The Social Innovation Summit is a forum that explores “What’s Next?” in the world of Social Innovation.  The summit connects and inspires a global network of leaders to discuss the key strategies and business innovations creating social transformation across the corporate, investment, government, and non-profit sectors.  Participants include top Fortune 500 Corporate Executives, Venture Capitalists, Government Leaders, Foundation Heads and Social Entrepreneurs eager to discuss global challenges, analyze innovative approaches for problem-solving, and build lasting partnerships that enable them and their organizations to maximize social impact. 

Will Kennedy, Senior Programme Officer UNOP, participated in the Thursday evening portion moderating a panel titled “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”.  Annette Richardson, Senior Adviser, also spoke on Thursday evening discussing women and girls empowerment.  The full day summit at the UN was opened up by Robert Orr, Assistant Secretary-General, and Roland Rich, UNOP Officer-in-Charge. 

Topics discussed varied from philanthropy, childhood development, personalized education, women’s and girls empowerment to the role of technology and innovation in fuelling economic growth and fighting poverty.  The diversity in the issues discussed and the partnerships formed was best represented in the panel centred on environment awareness in business, with Matthew Arnold, the head of environmental affairs at JPMorgan Chase, and Jason Clay, senior vice president of market transformation at the World Wildlife Fund, two sides that have been at opposite ends of the discussion in the past, now working together to further progress.

Attendees were able to vote for non-profit organizations to receive grants from JPMorgan. The 11 winners were granted $275,000 as part of the Chase Community Giving Program. They included: • Green Bronx Machine International, which teaches students in the South Bronx self-sustainability through cultivating edible gardens in the classroom • 10x10 Fund, a social action campaign around investing in adolescent girls' education in the developing world • Bright Pink, which supports the prevention and early detection of breast and ovarian cancer in young women • Unreasonable Institute, which teaches entrepreneurs how to launch financially sustainable businesses and non-profits •, which supports the growth of computer programming education; charity: water, which works to bring clean and safe drinking water to every person in the world • Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, which provides free transformational healing for seriously ill children and their families in the Northeast • Right to Play, which uses play to empower youth to overcome the effects of poverty, conflict and disease • Venture for America, which provides a program for talented graduates to spend two years with a start-up to help mobilize them as entrepreneurs • K9S For Warriors, which provides service canines to veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress • Dixon Center, which addresses the urgent needs of military service members and veterans and their families.

The summit utilized star power, like Rooney Mara, to champion her work as an ambassador for Oxfam America, where her role as the president of the Uweza Foundation, a charity that supports community-based empowerment programs for children and families in Kibera, one of Africa's largest slums, located in Nairobi, Kenya.  Actress Glenn Close was also there to discuss her work as the co-founder of Bring Change 2 Mind, a San Francisco-based non-profit working to end the stigma and discrimination that stems from mental illness.

African First Ladies Health Summit

2 April 2013, Los Angeles

The 2nd African First Ladies Health Summit was held on April 2-4 at the Intercontinental Hotel in Los Angeles, California. Stemming from a collaboration between the United Nations Office for Partnerships (UNOP) and the African Union Commission to the United States, the Summit was attended by the First Ladies, Second Ladies and government representatives from Ghana, Gabon, Nigeria, Congo, Guinea, Congo-Brazzaville, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia and Angola. Also in attendance were many other African government officials, business leaders and foreign assistance agency representatives.

The discussions focused on improving health care for women and children in Africa and highlighted the UN Secretary-Generals ‘Every Women Every Child’ initiative aiming to save the lives of 16 million women and children by 2015. The First Ladies called for definitive action steps and multi-stakeholder commitments which compliment each nation's priorities and vision for a better future for women and children.

Consultation on Ethanol Cookstoves and Fuel at the UN

4 April 2013, New York

On April 4th, the UN Office for Partnerships (UNOP) was a co-host of The Public-Private Alliance Foundation (PPAF) consultation in support of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves. The consultation focused on a pilot project supporting the commercialization of ethanol cook stoves and fuel in Haiti. The consultation brought together a range of actors to advance the expansion of the project.

This clean cookstove project is underway in towns of Southeast Haiti where growing sugarcane and alcohol production have a strong tradition. The high-proof alcohol distilled by small-scale Haitian sugarcane distilleries provides the fuel for the project stoves. Commercialization of the cookstoves and fuel takes advantage of existing equipment and technology and creates a new value stream for farmers and distillers. The project responds to a growing desire by Haitians at all levels to overcome the poverty, respiratory disease and deforestation trap of the country’s heavy reliance on cooking with wood or charcoal.

The cookstoves can be used by a large cross section of the population including low-income mothers, community organization representatives, small business owners, government officials and by hotels. It is the first project of its kind in Haiti. PPAF works with collaborators to save lives, improve livelihoods, empower women, and protect the environment in the developing world at household and small business levels.

For further information on the PPAF and this initiative please visit the website.

Pearl Initiative Roundtable on Corporate Accountability and Governance

7th March 2013, Manama, Bahrain

On March 7th, the United Nations Office for Partnerships (UNOP) participated in a roundtable discussion with the Pearl Initiative in Manama, Bahrain. The Pearl Initiative, developed in collaboration with UNOP, is a GCC-based, private sector-led, not-for-profit organisation set up to foster a corporate culture of transparency, accountability, good governance and best business practices in the Arab world. Pearl Initiative seeks to influence the thinking of business leaders in the region, and has achieved much through tangible initiatives on anti-corruption, corporate governance, ethics and integrity, integrated reporting, corporate disclosure and responsible business practices.

This event brought together over forty executives and senior officials from GCC public companies, private sector, state-owned enterprises, United Nations, financial institutions and other government entities. Roland Rich, UNOP Officer-in-Charge, expressed his pleasure in working with the Pearl Initiative to advance fundamental principles within the region. He stressed the importance of working with the private sector to advance progress on key global issues.

The other discussion leaders were Jamal Fakhro, Chairman at KPMG MESA Region, Mahmood Al-Kooheji, CEO of Mumtalakat and Chairman of ALBA, and Hala F. Almoayyed, Executive Director at Almoayyed Contracting Group. The discussion focused on the need for strong culture of corporate governance and the importance of being proactive to avoid government mandated regulation. Protocols are needed from the top of an organization to the bottom to ensure integrity and transparency.

International Women’s Day Forum: How ♀ Economic Empowerment Strengthens Business

8th March 2013, New York

On March 8th, the U.S. Chamber Business Civic Leadership Center and United Nations Office for Partnerships will celebrate on the occasion of International Women’s Day at the Ford Foundation headquarters.

This annual forum brings together leaders committed to the economic empowerment of women and explores the influential role women play in the global business value chain. As more women formally enter into the economy, positive macroeconomic externalities include increased productivity for business, increased school attendance for civil society, and higher economic growth. However, woman and girls still face many challenges in attaining economic independence. This forum will highlight the influential role women play in the business sector and how companies and their partners are working to catalyze the economic empowerment of women in global markets.

This event is by invite only. For more information please click here.

Beyond Money Roundtable

7th February 2013, New York

The UN Office for Partnerships is pleased to co-host the Beyond Money Roundtable discussion with Recipco, which will be held on Thursday, February 7th, 2013. Beyond Money is a public-private initiative to engage relevant and affected parties to cooperate in, and contribute to, the development, dissemination and implementation of innovations in economic theory and practice designed to improve global economic and social conditions. The intention of the initiative is to inspire and motivate worldwide changes to the current mechanisms of trade and finance that will be more inclusive and will improve the global economy through better use of the world’s available and often wasted capacity. Issues related to capacity exchanges, alternatives to sovereign currency-based trade and other new market methodologies will be discussed. The event will bring together UN staff for a discussion on current and new mechanisms of economic trade and development and how the UN system can utilize and contribute to this initiative to impact the fulfilment of the UN goals and objectives.

The event will be hosted in the North Lawn Building at the United Nations Headquarters at 3:00 on February 7th, by invite only. For further information on Recipco, please visit their website.

Pearl Initiative Roundtable Luncheon on Corporate Accountability in the Arab World

24th September 2012, New York

In cooperation with the UN Office for Partnerships (UNOP), the Pearl Initiative, a private sector-let non-profit organization set up to improve transparency, accountability and business practices in the Arab world, held a Roundtable Luncheon on Corporate Accountability at the United Nations on Monday, September 24th, 2012. 

The high-level roundtable marked the two-year anniversary of the launch of the Pearl Initiative, and brought together business leaders from the public sector and private companies, state owned enterprises and family firms, GCC Government Leaders, UN Leaders and Ambassadors as well as Heads of NGOs and Foundations to discuss the current state and the future of corporate accountability and transparency in the region.

Welcoming the participants to the luncheon were the Co-Founders of the Pearl Initiative, Badr Jafar, President of Crescent Petroleum, and Amir Dossal, Founder and Chairman of Global Partnerships Forum. They were followed by Roland Rich, Officer-in-Charge, UN Office for Partnerships; Basil Moftah, Thomson Reuters MD for Middle East, Africa and Russia; Adel Abdellatif, Chief, Regional Programme Division for the Regional Bureau for Arab States at UNDP, Joseph Rizzo, PWC’s UN Global Relationship Partner; and Hoda Al Khamis-Kanoo, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation (ADMAF) – all whom shared personal insight and experiences of corporate best practices in the region.

“Our approach recognizes the private sector is fuelled by incentive.  If corporations are to embrace good governance as part of the very fabric of their business models, then they must be persuaded it makes business sense to invest in good governance,” said Badr Jafar while conveying the organization’s mission.  “We envisage an environment in which current and future business leaders see corporate accountability and transparency as key pillars of business success.  And, we are determined to be the leading organization for influencing and improving business behavior in the Arab world.”

Roland Rich expressed UNOP’s enthusiasm about working with the Pearl Initiative to help realize this vision. “The goal is to build multi stakeholder partnerships.  The corporate world has the know-how and resources to build such constituency.  We need to assist the Secretary General to make this a reality, and work with stakeholders to deliver on the Millennium Development Goals,” he said. 

The Pearl Initiative seeks to influence the thinking of business leaders in the Arab world, and has achieved much through tangible initiatives on anti-corruption, corporate governance, ethics and integrity, integrated reporting, corporate disclosure and responsible business practices.  Among its many successes are the launch of a joint regional Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI) with the World Economic Forum, and numerous round-table seminars in Dubai, Riyadh, Qatar and Bahrain.  The organization is also working closely with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to advance the regional anti-corruption agenda and engage the private sector on this reform process.

For more information please contact Imelda Dunlop, Executive Director, Pearl Initiative.

"Women Leaders Forum: Connecting Women and Youth for Digital Development"

24 September 2012

The UN Office for Partnerships, in collaboration with the Advanced Development for Africa (ADA) Foundation, the Global Partnerships Forum and the Digital He@lth Initiative, co-hosted a major gathering of business, government, civil society and United Nations leaders at the third annual "Women Leaders Forum: Connecting Women and Youth for Digital Development". The Forum met in parallel with 67th Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Monday September 24th to debate digital inclusion for scaling-up the Millennium Development Goals and beyond as a development prerequisite.

Gender equity and youth empowerment have for too long been the missing links in the human development value chain. Yet despite the explosion in extreme innovation and extreme affordability brought on by the digital revolution, the full impact in health, energy, education and economic empowerment has only begun to be realized. With only three years to go until the MDG 2015 target date the time for collective and concerted action is now.

Speakers at the Women Leaders Forum will include Sade Baderinwa, WABC-TV News Anchor, Carol Bellamy, President, Global Partnership for Education, Cherie Blair, Founder, Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, Vinton G. Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist, Google, Becky Chidester, President, Wunderman World Health, Joan Clos, Under Secretary General & Executive Director, UN Habitat, Google, Geena Davis, Founder, Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, Yvonne MacPherson, Executive Director, BBC Media Action USA, Kevin McGovern, CEO, The Water Initiative, Carolyn S. Miles, President & CEO, Save the Children, Jay Naidoo, Chair, GAIN (Global Initiative for Improved Nutrition), Aishwary Rai, UN AIDS International Goodwill Ambassador, Jeffrey Sachs, Director, The Earth Institute at Columbia University, Michel Sidibé, Executive Director, UNAIDS, Hamadoun I. Touré, Secretary General, International Telecommunication Union, Naomi Watts, UNAIDS International Goodwill Ambassador and many more.

"Women Leaders Forum: Connecting Women and Youth for Digital Development"

22 September 2012

The UN Office for Partnerships was pleased to support the WIE Symposium New York which was held on September 22nd and 23rd at the New School, NYC. WIE is a dynamic conference designed to inspire and empower women and girls. The event brought together prominent leaders from the worlds of politics, business, fashion, philanthropy, media, entertainment and the arts, in two full days of lively panels, workshops, master-classes and an inspirational awards ceremony. WIE is a fantastic networking opportunity for women, allowing them to connect with their peers and be inspired by their mentors. This year's theme: The New Guard featured topics such as the Business of Creativity, Harnessing the Potential of E-commerce, Presentation and Pitching skills for Entrepreneurs andBody Image and the Media.

For more information, please visit their website.

Blouin Creative Leadership Summit

20th September 2012, New York

The annual Blouin Creative Leadership Summit (BCLS) will take place on Thursday, September 20 and Friday, September 21, 2012 in New York City. Since its founding in strategic partnership with the United Nations Office for Partnerships in 2006, the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit convenes an unparalleled group of world leaders from a wide array of disciplines. In a think tank discussion format, business leaders engage with directors of global agencies, leading CEOs, Nobel laureates, technology innovators and pioneering researchers. The BCLS is a platform to develop tangible solutions and build networks in order to address the challenges and opportunities presented by globalization. The Summit concludes with the Louise Blouin Foundation Awards Ceremony and Gala Dinner honoring individuals whose leadership has extended beyond national boundaries to bring about positive social, economic, scientific or cultural change.

For more information about the summit, please visit website.

Social Innovation Summit 2012

31 May 2012, New York

On May 31, The UN Office for Partnerships co-hosted, in partnership with Landmark Ventures, the Social Innovation Summit 2012.

The Summit is a private, invitation-only forum that explores “What’s Next?” in the world of Social Innovation. Tailored to executive leaders interested in discussing the strategies and business innovations effecting social transformation across the corporate, investment, government, and non-profit sectors. Participants will include hundreds of top Fortune 500 Corporate Executives, Venture Capitalists, Government Leaders, Emerging Market Investors, Foundation Heads and Social Entrepreneurs eager to discuss social challenges, analyze innovative approaches and build lasting partnerships that enable them and their organizations to affect positive social change.

Dr. Soon-Hong Choi, United Nations assistant secretary-general and chief information technology officer, announced the formation of the Foundation for a Digital United Nations. The foundation’s goal, according to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, is “to provide advice and resources that will enable the United Nations to harness the power of information and communications technology.”

This year’s themes of business innovation and social transformation converged in real world examples and discussion around new projects. The attendees represented companies committed to continued business evolution, hybrid-organizations, and non-profits working on high-impact solutions. A few in attendance included: Yoxi, Full Circle Fund, Palm Ventures, The Case Foundation, The University of Chicago, Hult Global Case Challenge and the Museum of Math. Standing out as a committed sponsor, JPMorgan Chase continued within the theme by awarding $250,000 to ten non-profit organizations.

Others prominent speakers included multi-Grammy Award recipient, Alicia Keys, Steve Gleason former defensive back with the New Orleans Saints football team diagnosed last year with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), Laura Arrillaga Andreessen, founder and chair of the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, Jeffrey Hollender, co-founder of Burlington, Vt.’s Seventh Generation, Biologist J. Craig Venter, one of the first scientists to sequence the human genome and who sequenced and made public his own genome in 2007, Director of the White House’s Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation Jonathan Greenblatt, Chief Digital Officer of Starbucks Coffee Company Adam Brotman and venture capitalist Nick Beim and Robert J. Torres, senior program officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

“The Role of Business in Empowering Women”

8 March 2012, New York

In celebration of the International Women’s Day on 8 March, the UN Office for Partnerships and the Business Civic Leadership Center of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce co-hosted the annual Women’s Forum at the UN Headquarters.

The theme of this year’s Forum was “The Role of Business in Empowering Women,” with participants ranging from leaders of Fortune 500 companies, social entrepreneurs, foundation presidents, and representatives of international organizations, and NGOs.

Opening remarks were delivered by Al Martinez-Fonts, the Executive Vice President of the US Chamber of Commerce, and Roland Rich, Officer-in-Charge of the UN Office for Partnerships. Lakshmi Puri, Assistant Secretary-General and Deputy Executive Director of UN Women delivered the keynote remarks and urged governments and businesses to work together, stressing that advances in gender equality are economically and socially advantageous for governments as well as businesses.

The Forum was built around three interactive panel discussions that allowed for in-depth and dynamic dialogues with regard to enhancing women’s financial inclusion, building enabling environments for women to thrive as entrepreneurs as well as to create opportunities for women to participate in commerce through inclusive and transparent supply chains. The panel discussions featured Pam Flaherty, CEO of the Citi Foundation & Director of Corporate Citizenship, Citi; Charlotte Oades, Global Director, Women's Economic Empowerment, The Coca-Cola Company; Renee Kuriyan, Director, Social Impact, Intel Corporation’s Corporate Responsibility Office, and other high-level representatives of the private and public sectors. The panel discussions were followed by presentations by Lauren Bush who chronicled the success of her FEED project campaign; Sheryl Wudunn, Author and Pulitzer winner; and Olivia Lazare who presented the Cartier’s Women Initiative Awards.

In parallel with the Forum, there was a press conference to launch a joint initiative of the Citi Foundation and the Calvert Foundation called the Women INvesting in Women INitiative (WIN-WIN) which will contribute a minimum of $20 million to high-impact organizations and projects worldwide which create opportunities for women lacking access to traditional credit and funding. Citi Foundation will provide a $1 million grant to support Calvert’s WIN-WIN initiative. Citi Foundation’s contribution is intended to enhance efficient deployment of funds to microfinance institutions and community development financial institutions that are investing in women-focused small businesses and critical services impacting low-income women and their families.

Finally, Dermalogica, provided participants with product samples,with each sample carrying a code which unlocks a 1$ donation to support their FITE - Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship – initiative, presented at the last year’s Forum.

For more information about the event, pls. find attached the agenda. You can also view the webcast of the Forum and the press conference at the following websites: UN Webcast Conference, UN Webcast 2, UN Webcast Press Conference, Agenda.


Partnerships For More and Better Jobs For Young People

27 February 2012, New York

The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the International Labour Organization, the UN Office for Partnerships, and Global Compact co-hosted the annual high-level meeting to highlight the International Philanthropy Day, this year focused on Partnerships For More and Better Jobs For Young People.

The conference, convened at the United Nations Headquarters, brought together leaders from the private sector and foundations, as well as government and civil society representatives to discuss lessons learned and call for action to address youth unemployment in line with the 2012 ECOSOC Annual Ministerial Review.

From technological innovations and entrepreneurship to agriculture and industrial policy, a number of ideas were presented and assessed. The event was opened by Deputy Secretary-General Dr. Asha Rose Migiro and chaired by the President of ECOSOC, H.E. Mr. Miloš Koterec. The discussion was divided in two inter-active dialogues: Innovations in Promoting Youth Employment and Building New Business Models for Youth Employment, including Ms. Roy, President and CEO of Mastercard Foundation, Mr. Rezusta, CEO of Telefonica USA and Ms. Yamaguchi, CEO and Founder of Motherhouse Company.

Mr. Badr Jafar, President of Crescent Petroleum and co-initiator of the Pearl Initiative, focused on job creation in the MENA region, highlighting that “from crisis comes opportunity […] an opportunity to re-build the Arab World”. He also stressed the importance of public-private partnerships encouraging businesses in taking “pro-active action in all three critical areas of education, employment and entrepreneurship”. For more information on Mr. Jafar's speech, please follow link.

The conference ended with Mr. David Arkless, President of Corporate and Government Affairs at Manpower Group and a moderator in the panel discussions, making a commitment to employ one-million youth by the end of the year

For more information please visit their website.

5th World Conference on Women and Sport

16 February 2012, Los Angeles

The International Olympic Committee, in coordination with the United States Olympic Committee and the Southern California Committee for the Olympic Games, held the 5th World Conference on Women and Sport on 16 February in Los Angeles.

This three day conference entitled “Together Stronger: The Future of Sport” sought to identify ways to improve and increase the participation of women in the world of sport.

Over the past twenty years, much progress has been made, to provide equal opportunities for women and girls globally. The outcome document of the conference highlights that only through collaboration and partnerships full equality can be reached.

The conference, opened by Dr. Jacques Rogge, President of the International Olympic Committee, brought together both men and women from over 130 countries.

UNDEF’s Executive Head and UNOP’s Officer in Charge, Roland Rich spoke at the plenary session on “Partnerships for Progress,” together with Pat McQuaid, IOC Member & President of UCI; Hon. Aloysia Inyumba, Rwandan Minister of Gender and Family Promotion; and Ms Gina Drosos, President of Global Personal Beauty, P&G. Other high-level speakers included Dr. Thomas H. Murray, President and CEO of the Hastings Center, as well as Ms Geena Davis, actor and activist for women’s empowerment.

The outcome of the conference was a declaration focused on two main themes: - The need to bring more women into management and leadership roles and - The need to increase collaboration and partnerships, especially with UN organisations, to promote gender equality.

The declaration focused on two main themes: - The need to bring more women into management and leadership roles - The need to increase collaboration and partnerships, especially with UN organisations, to promote gender equality. The declaration is available at the following website.

Dr. Rogge assured the conference delegates that the Olympic Movement would act on the recommendations. “I can pledge and I can promise that we will do what is needed”, he said in his closing remarks. The conference declaration acknowledged that the Olympic Movement’s steady progress towards gender equality on the field of play had not been matched in sports leadership positions. It called for more resources to support women in sports leadership roles and urged sports organisations to follow the IOC’s lead by adopting policies to advance gender equality.

For more information about the event please visit the IOC's website.

The Role of Business in Empowering Women – 8th March, UNHQ

8th March 2012, New York

The United Nations Office for Partnerships and the Business Civic Leadership Center of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, will host the high-level International Women’s Day Forum on “The Role of Business in Empowering Women”.

This high-profile discussion will enable corporate foundation presidents, emerging market investors, senior UN officials, and government partners to discuss and share lessons learned on the role of strategic partnerships to bridge the gap between women and their business opportunities.

The Forum is built around three interactive panel discussions focused on women and their impact in the following areas: Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Financial Inclusion; and Supply Chain.

Keynotes remarks will be made by Ms. Lakshmi Puri, Assistant Secretary-General and Deputy Executive Director of UN Women. Other speakers include Ms. Lauren Bush, Founder of FEED and Ms. Sheryl WuDunn, Author of Half the Sky, Ms. Charlotte Oades, Global Director for Women's Economic Empowerment of The Coca-Cola Company, Sarah Thorn, Director of International Trade at Walmart, Andrea Taylor, Director of North American Community Affairs of Microsoft Corporation and Olivia Lazare, Project Leader of Cartier Women's Initiative Awards.

For more information please contact Elena Pasqualini at For the latest agenda, please follow link.

The Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards

19 January 2012, New York

The Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards are looking for committed female entrepreneurs heading initiatives with the potential to grow significantly in the years to come. The aim of the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards is to promote female entrepreneurship through funding, sharing, coaching, fostering and networking throughout the globe. Joining forces with the Women’s Forum, INSEAD business school and McKinsey&Company, Cartier created in 2006 this annual Awards, consisting in an international business plan competition to accompany and guide initiatives by women entrepreneurs.

Every year, six female entrepreneurs, each representing a major world region, are selected among 18 finalists who are coached before the final presentations. The six Laureates are awarded US$20,000, coaching for one year, and networking and visibility opportunities. The competition is open to women entrepreneurs of any nationality who have founded a business, in any country or industry, which fulfils the eligibility and evaluation criteria. The very first Laureates were awarded in 2007. Since then, a total of 76 finalists have been supported and coached, 20 of whom have been awarded as Laureates.

To apply for the 2012 edition, fill out the application form on Application deadline: March 13, 2012 at 10am Paris time (CET).


18 January 2012, New York

TEDx was created in the spirit of TED's mission, "ideas worth spreading." The program is designed to give communities, organizations and individuals the opportunity to stimulate dialogue through TED-like experiences at the local level.

The UN Office for Partnerships was pleased to support the first TEDxUN Plaza held on January 18 at UN Headquarters in New York. The event agenda, which theme was “ Working together on development in an ever-more wireless world”, showcased a combination of screening a compelling TEDTalks video and exciting live presenters that sparked deep conversation and connections.

Investor Summit on Climate Risk & Energy Solutions

12 January 2012, New York

In partnership with Ceres and the UN Foundation, the UN Office for Partnerships co-hosted the 2012 Investor Summit on Climate Risk and Energy Solutions.

The conference, held on January 12, 2012 at UN Headquarters in New York - first major gathering of investors since the UN Global climate negotiations in Durban - comes at a moment when the need for private sector leadership to address climate change and its human, economic and material business risks has never been more pressing.

The event convened 450 global investors controlling tens of trillions in assets from four continents who understand that climate change creates enormous economic risks and also know that it represents one of the great financial opportunities of our time.

In alliance with the UN Secretary General declaring 2012 as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All ( and his call to action, the meeting focused on showcasing best examples of institutional investments in products and strategies to reach low-carbon emissions and clean-energy solutions globally as well as the latest innovations in financing mechanisms and capital commitments.

Investors ended the conference by signing onto an action plan calling for greater private investments in low-carbon technologies and tougher scrutiny of climate risks across their portfolios. They also announced new guidelines on how companies should be boosting their attention to climate risks and opportunities and promised much closer scrutiny of companies that ignore them.


1 December 2011, New York

The Coca-Cola Company today announced a multi-year partnership with (RED) to raise awareness and money for the Global Fund’s efforts to virtually eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV by 2015.

The partnership includes an initial commitment of more than $5 million USD from The Coca-Cola Company over the next four years. This commitment will fund marketing awareness campaigns activated through global Coca-Cola music initiatives and programs. As part of the $5 million USD contribution, a minimum of $3 million USD will be donated directly to The Global Fund to purchase anti-retroviral medicine and distribute literature.

This new partnership complements the work The Coca-Cola Company and The Global Fund are already partnering on in Africa. The two organizations are leveraging insights from the Coca-Cola supply chain and route-to-market system to help improve access to critical medicines.

The Coca-Cola Company operates in 206 countries and is one of the largest employers in the world. The Coca-Cola system employs nearly 70,000 people in Africa, which is home to more than 60 percent of the world’s HIV-infected population.

“The Feast Event”

16th November 2011, New York

The United Nations Office for Partnerships and “the Feast” organized an intimate event at the United Nations Headquarters on the 16th of November. As a leader in driving innovation for social change, the Feast engages partners on strategic issues and provides a platform for policy dialogue to effectively address global challenges like the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

This special meeting was held to discuss the launch of “The Feast Social Innovation Week” and opportunities for involvement and leadership in this initiative. In 2012, The Feast will be hosting the first ever Global Social Innovation Week: a multi-day event and city-wide fair across New York City which will showcase the most remarkable innovation for the creation of a more human future. UNOP and The Feast brought together a group of high-level stakeholders from private and public sector to explore potential collaboration.

For more information please visit website.

Happy Hearts Fund Hosted Land of Dreams: Haiti Gala Event

5 November, 2011, New York

The 2011 annual Happy Hearts Fund dinner raised awareness and funds to rebuild schools in post-disaster areas, including Haiti. The event awarded Renee Haugerud with “Heart of Gold” and the US actor Sean Penn for his lifetime achievement. Happy Hearts Fund is a non-profit foundation dedicated to rebuilding schools and restoring hope and opportunity in the lives of children after natural disasters. HHF concentrates its work during the period of time after emergency response is complete, implementing sustainable practices to ensure a lasting impact and is committed to help accomplish the UN’s Millennium Development Goals

Happy Hearts Fund Founder and Chairwoman, Petra Nemcova and Executive Director Phillip Caputo thanked their partners for commitment to rebuilding schools and children’s lives after natural disasters crediting the formation of strategic partnerships as the key to the organizations success. “In its first five years Happy Hearts Fund has built or rebuilt 56 schools in nine countries benefitting more than 34,000 children and 337,000 community members, ”stated Mr. Caputo.

“The goals of the night were to share the beauty, culture, art, spirit and other treasures of Haiti with our guests here in New York so they could see the many great opportunities Haiti has to offer and to raise funds so more children who are being forgotten can have new schools and a brighter future,” Ms. Nemcova stated.

Haiti Foreign Minister, Laurent Lamothe, delivered a "State of Haiti" address focused on the ‘Education for All’ program” an education program initiated by President Martelly which aims to send one million children to school for free by the end of his term. The event also featured award winning singers and songwriters Wyclef Jean and Josh Groban.

Inter American Development Bank Vice President Julie Katzman announced that “IDB has committed 200 million dollars for education initiatives in Haiti and will be rebuilding schools with Happy Hearts Fund through a flexible co-financing partnership.”

The event mobilized support for building of kindergartens and schools in Mexico, Indonesia, Haiti and Peru.  Eleven schools were pledged and the live auction portion of the night raised over one million dollars.

The United Nations Office for Partnerships has been collaborating with the Happy Hearts Fund  since 2008 to further align Fund’s initiatives with the work of the United Nations.

Dr. Lincoln Chen, UNFIP Advisory Board Member

New York, 8 November 2011

On November 8th, Dr. Lincoln Chen has finished his term as the member of the Advisory Board of the United Nations Fund for International Partnerships. The Board, established in 1998, is responsible to provide broad policy guidance to the Secretary-General and monitor operations and activities of UNFIP. The Deputy Secretary-General, Asha-Rose Migiro, who serves as a Chair of the UNFIP Advisory Board, thanked Dr. Chen for his outstanding service and commitment to the principles and ideals of the United Nations. “Your expertise in the field of global public health, along with your intimate knowledge of the philanthropic landscape, proved especially valuable to the Board’s deliberations,” Dr. Migiro wrote.

Dr. Chen is President of the China Medical Board of Cambridge, MA. endowed by John D. Rockefeller as an independent foundation that seeks to advance health in China and Asia by strengthening medical education, research, and policies. Prior to this position, Dr. Chen was the founding director of the Harvard Global Equity Initiative, the Taro Takemi Professor of International Health, and Director of the university-wide Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies.

Dr. Chen served as Executive Vice-President of the Rockefeller Foundation for five years. He was Chair of the Board of Directors of CARE/USA, one of America’s leading international relief and development organizations. He currently serves as a Board member of the Social Science Research Council, BRAC Foundation USA, the Public Health Foundation of India, the Carso Instituto de la Salud, and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. In 2004-2007, he was the Special Envoy of the WHO Director-General in Human Resources for Health, and in 2006, he was elected the first Board Chair of the Global Health Workforce Alliance, a public-private partnership based in Geneva.

He graduated from Princeton University, Harvard Medical School, and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. He was trained in internal medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

What You Wish For, a short story and poetry anthology for youth

17th October, 2011, New York

Darfur experts John Prendergast, co-founder of the Enough Project and author of Unlikely Brothers: Our Story of Adventure, Loss, and Redemption; Mohamed Yahya, co-founder of Damanga; Udo Janz, Director of UNHCR’s Executive Office in New York and Grainne O’Hara, UNHCR’s Senior Policy Advisor joined authors at the UN’s Dag Hammarskjöld Library Auditorium from 3-5 PM in celebration of the launch of What You Wish For, a short story and poetry anthology for youth.

What You Wish For is a collection of stories and poems by an all-star group of writers for youth, seven of whom were joined by two writers on Skype. Their collaboration aims to bring libraries to some of the world’s most vulnerable readers, people who fled Darfur and now live in refugee camps in eastern Chad. UNOP helped link the charity that organized What You Wish For, Book Wish Foundation, with the UN agency that manages the refugee camps, UNHCR, so that proceeds from the book’s sales can have the greatest impact on this cause. Proceeds from the book will support UNHCR in developing libraries in refugee camps in Eastern Chad. Where an estimated 285,000 Sudanese refugees live.

Authors spoke about their contributions to this book in a moderated panel discussion and Q&A. by Leonard Marcus, leading children’s book historian, contributor to the New York Times Book Review, and author of The Annotated Phantom Tollbooth. Complete List of Authors in What You Wish For: Meg Cabot, Jeanne DuPrau, Cornelia Funke, Nikki Giovanni, John Green, Karen Hesse, Ann M. Martin, Alexander McCall Smith, Marilyn Nelson, Naomi Shihab Nye, Joyce Carol Oates, Nate Powell, Sofia Quintero, Gary Soto, R.L. Stine, Francisco X. Stork, Cynthia Voigt, Jane Yolen; Foreword by Mia Farrow; Statement from UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres. Many in the audience were librarians, teachers, fans, and other readers who are very familiar with the exciting literary panel.

For more information on the book and the Book Wish Foundation, Please visit their website :

The United Nations Association of New York 2011 Annual UN Day Gala Dinner

13th October, 2011, New York

On October 13, 2011, diplomats, business leaders, local dignitaries and other distinguished guests attended the United Nations Association of New York Annual UN Day Gala. The event honored the 2011 Humanitarian of the Year Awards to Winston Chung of Winston Global Energy ; Sheri S. McCoy of Johnson & Johnson; and former Supermodel Christy Turlington Burns of Every Mother Counts. Also announced was the Inaugural Social Entrepreneur and Philanthropist of the Year Award. This annual award was initiated to commemorate Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's accomplishments and election to a second term of office.

Winston Chung was chosen as the inaugural recipient recognizing his extraordinary commitment to social entrepreneurship through clean energy generation, storage and distribution. Social entrepreneurship and a commitment environmental sustainability have been at the top of the Secretary-General's global agenda.  Sheri S. McCoy, representing Johnson & Johnson, was honored for the company's longstanding philanthropic commitments and outstanding corporate social responsibility focused on improving the health and wellbeing of women and children.  Maternal advocate Christy Turlington Burns is the founder of Every Mother Counts, an advocacy campaign to increase education and support for maternal and child health worldwide. Motivated by her own challenges during childbirth, the former supermodel and now filmmaker, has dedicated her resources to globally helping mothers have healthy childbirth experiences.

The United Nations Association of New York is host chapter of the UNA-USA. It is dedicated to supporting the principles and vital work of the United Nations, strengthening the UN system and promoting constructive US leadership. The UNA-NY UN Day Gala is held every October to celebrate the founding of the United Nations

For more information please visit UNA website.

X prize Foundation Award : Winning Teams Announced in the $1.4 Million Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup X CHALLENGE:

11 October 2011

The X PRIZE Foundation, in partnership with the philanthropist Wendy Schmidt have announced the Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup X CHALLENGE award. The winning teams were presented with a trophy and prize purse – $1 million for Elastec/American Marine and $300,000 for NOFI. The $100,000 third place prize purse was not awarded. The teams were honored for their remarkable and historic achievement for cleaning up crude oil on the ocean’s surface. The Ceremony was attended by; governments and business leaders; oil industry executives; and representatives from the 10 finalist teams.

The $1.4 million Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup X CHALLENGE is the fourth competition awarded by the X PRIZE Foundation. The award is a competition designed to inspire a new generation of innovative solutions that will speed the pace of cleaning up seawater surface oil resulting from spillage from ocean platforms, tankers, and other sources. Wendy Schmidt is President of The Schmidt Family Foundation that works to advance the development of clean energy and support the wiser use of natural resources. She is founder of the Foundation’s 11th Hour Project and of Climate Central. Eric and Wendy Schmidt created the Schmidt Ocean Institute in 2009 to provide future opportunities aboard research vessels for urgent ocean studies. For more information, visit :

The X PRIZE Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 1995 that designs and manages public competitions intended to encourage technological development that could benefit mankind. The X PRIZE Foundation mission is to bring about “radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity” through incentives competition. UNOP has collaborated with X-Prize for the past 3 years and organized and co-hosted the conference Incentive to Innovate at UNHQ in June 2009.

For further details, Please follow link for press release.

Permanent Memorial to honour the victims of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade

New York, September 30, 2011

A press conference was held Friday, 30 September 2011, at the UN Dag Hammarskjöld Building, to launch the international design competition for the permanent memorial to honour the victims of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade. The press conference was moderated by Ambassador R. Evadne Coye, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of Jamaica. Main speakers included: Ambassador Tete Antonio, African Union; Ambassador Joseph Goddard, Chair of CARICOM; Ambassador Raymond Wolfe, Chair of the Permanent Memorial Committee; and Mr. Philippe Kridelka, Director of UNESCO’s New York office. The UN Office for Partnerships, which administers the trust fund, was represented by Mr. Kris Krishnan, Chief of Operations, UNOP. For more information, and to watch the press conference, please follow link

The Permanent Memorial competition is an Open International Design Competition to be conducted in two stages. We encourage interested artists, sculptors, architects, graphic designers and other visual media experts to submit design proposals to UNESCO Headquarters in Paris no later than 19 December 2011.

For more details please visit the Permanent Memorial website.

The Africa investor (Ai) CEO Institutional Investment Summit

New York, 26 September 2011

Africa investor, in collaboration with the UN Office for Partnerships, hosts the 2011 Africa investor Index Series Summit to profile African capital market success stories. The Summit will bring together decision makers from stock markets, listed companies, fund managers, stockbrokers and analysts in Africa, and others who have an interest and follow the performance of African equities. The event will feature the Africa investor/United Nations African Heads of State Investment Dialogue and Networking Luncheon.

Following the Summit, Africa investor (Ai) will also host the prestigious Ai Index Series Awards, which are designed to recognize Africa's best performing stock exchanges, listed companies, investment banks, research teams, regulators, socially responsible companies and fund managers. It is a unique African Capital Markets Event. The winners of the 2011 Africa investor Index Series Awards will be announced at the gala ceremony.

To celebrate the occasion, African capital market leaders will ring the NYSE Closing Bell. Africa investor is a specialist investment communications firm advising governments, international organisations and businesses on communication strategies for capital market and foreign direct investments in Africa. , a leading international investment research and communications group.

For further details, please follow link to the press release: website.

Global Corporate Citizenship Conference: Adding Value in Emerging Markets and Local Communities

Washington, 5-6 October 2011

The US Chamber of Commerce Business Civic Leadership Center (BCLC) will host the “2011 Global Corporate Citizenship Conference: Adding Value in Emerging Markets and Local Communities” in Washington DC on October 5 & 6. Through interviews, plenary discussions, active audience participation, best practice models, and TED-style conversations, this unique two-day event brings together chief executives, policy makers, leaders and academics to seek solutions to current economic challenges. The agenda includes President of the Republic of Haiti Michel Martelly as the keynote speaker, along with representatives of USAID, UN Habitat, Walmart, Dow Chemical, Microsoft, DSM, Goldman Sachs, and Western Union.

For the past three years, UNOP has worked in close collaboration with BCLC to further promote partnerships and foster innovative strategies for engaging the private sector in supporting the Millennium Development Goals. As a partnership facilitator, BCLC helps businesses find highly effective ways to invest in local communities, be responsive in times of disasters, and improve lives and livelihoods across the globe.

To obtain more information about the forum and register, please click on Website.

The UN Foundation Unveils Shot@Life Campaign

19 September 2011

The United Nations Foundation today revealed Shot@Life, a new campaign to expand access to lifesaving vaccines for children in developing countries. A national grassroots movement, Shot@Life will educate, connect, and empower Americans to champion vaccines as one of the most cost-effective ways to save children’s lives around the world.

The Shot@Life campaign will support the work of the United Nations and other partners to provide vaccines to children in developing countries. Together with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, the GAVI Alliance, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Red Cross, Lions Clubs International, and ABC News, Shot@Life will work to save lives and improve the health of millions of children.

The campaign will build a grassroots constituency to advocate for and donate to expanding access to childhood vaccines in developing countries, where many children die due to the lack of lifesaving immunizations. For only $20, a child can receive lifelong protection against measles, pneumonia, diarrhea, and polio. When children are immunized, they are more likely to celebrate their fifth birthday, do well in school, and go on to be productive, healthy adults.

The UN Foundation is an advocate for the United Nations and a platform for connecting people, ideas and resources to help the United Nations solve global problems. UNOP works with the UN Foundation to support its role in funding projects of the UN.

For further details, please follow link to the press release: website.

"Sixth Annual Blouin Creative Leadership Summit ”

19-20 September 2011

The United Nations Office for Partnerships, in partnership with the Louise Blouin Foundation (LBF), is pleased to announce the sixth annual Blouin Creative Leadership Summit (BCLS), a forum that engages in dialogue and exchanges best practices to successfully confront the local and global challenges and opportunities brought about by globalization over the coming decade. From September 19 – 20, 2011, approximately 100 international heads of state, government executives, global business and financial CEOs, entrepreneurs, technology innovators, scholars, cultural influencers, artists and thought-leaders will assemble in New York to address critical issues of the 21st century surrounding economic recovery, global governance, environmental reform, foreign policy, education, health, poverty and development, cultural exchange and technology.

Roland Rich, Officer-in-Charge for the United Nations Office for Partnerships comments, "We are delighted to partner again with the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit. As in previous years, this year's summit promises to be an exciting and inspirational event that will lead to innovative ways to work together to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals." The 2011 panel discussions will include popular annual topics surrounding digital innovation and security, emerging markets and culture beyond borders.

The Louise Blouin Foundation will also host the Louise Blouin Foundation Awards Ceremony and Gala on the evening of September 19, 2011. As a celebration dedicated to honoring leaders in politics, science, business and the arts who have made extraordinary contributions on a global level, the Foundation will honor artists Ilya and Emilia Kabakov, Nobel Laureate Sir Edmund Phelps and businessman Carlos Slim

The Blouin Creative Leadership Summit has been developed with the support and expertise of the United Nations Office for Partnerships. The United Nations Office for Partnerships promotes new alliances and partnerships worldwide. Working with companies, foundations and civil society organizations, the United Nations Office for Partnerships leverages their management skills, technology, and innovative delivery systems to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. It engages partners on strategic issues and provides a platform for policy dialogue to effectively address global challenges.

For more information about the forum, please visit or contact Annette Richardson at 212 963 1000 or via email

Social Innovation Summit 2011

New York, 6 June 2011

The United Nations Office of Partnerships and Landmark Ventures co-hosted the Social Innovation Summit 2011 held Monday June 6th at the United Nations Headquarters. The Summit brought together a unique network of global Fortune 500 business, investment, foundation, and community leaders. Landmark Ventures, a leading strategic and financial advisory firm, is focused on closing the gaps that have been identified through the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.

The Summit explored several key themes including: • innovative and sustainable corporate engagement practices to have real impact and go beyond traditional corporate social responsibility; • creating socially responsible technology enterprises; • building the business case for social innovation, straight from the CEO.

Speakers included such notable figures as Arianna Huffington, Nicholas Negroponte, Barbara Bush, Jeffrey Schwartz, and Abigail Disney. The multidisciplinary exchange allowed delegates to present and discuss innovative solutions to global challenges of poverty, conflict and economic instability.

For more information please email: or please click on UNWebcast.

2011 Forum “Investing in Women and Entrepreneurship"

New York, March 8, 2011

On March 8th, United Nations Office for Partnerships and the Business Civic Leadership Center of the US Chamber of Commerce hosted the 2011 Forum on “Investing in Women and Entrepreneurship: Solutions to Addressing MDG 3”, that was held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. This high-profile Forum, marking the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day, brought together participants from corporate foundations, emerging market investment areas, corporate citizenship sectors, as well as senior UN officials, and their partners, enabling to launch a discussion on lessons learned and the role of strategic partnerships in address to the Millennium Development Goals. The Forum also provided an inter-active platform for UN top officials and business leaders to share and announce actions taken towards increasing Women’s Empowerment, as well as gave an opportunity to interested companies to connect with UN Agencies and NGOs working towards achieving the MDG 3: Promoting Gender Equality and Empower Women.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon delivered the Opening Remarks drawing special attention to the importance of providing business opportunities for investment in women. His inspiring speech was followed with remarks by Geena Davis, Academy Award Winner, Philanthropist and the Founder of Geena Davis Institute of Gender in Media, that set the tone for a great discussion.

Continuing to address the issue of Women’s Empowerment, leaders from the private sector and civil society spoke at the plenary sessions, devoted to “Increasing leadership and access to training at the workplace”, “Creating ripe environments for women to run small and medium sized businesses” and “Decreasing gender disparity in primary and secondary education”. Highlights of the discussion included a keynote speech by UN Development Program Administrator Helen Clark and inspiring remarks from Dermalogica Founder Jane Wurwand about her new campaign FITE – Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship – that is aimed to help women entrepreneurs worldwide grow their business and improve their communities.

Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro closed the Forum, summarizing the results gained and the major challenges to face the area of Women’s Empowerment. Please follow link for the DSG's speech.

For more information pls. contact Lucie Brigham at Email: To learn more about the event please visit the BCLC website.

'A watchdog for women's participation in Egypt

New York, February 11, 2011

Ensuring women's participation will be key to building a democratic and well-governed Egypt. Although women were granted full political rights more than 50 years ago, they have not achieved equal access to decision-making positions and their formal political participation has remained low at all political levels.

An initiative funded by the UN Democracy Fund aims to strengthen women’s participation, including in the elections later this year. The project, implemented by the Egyptian Center For Women’s Rights, has established a watchdog to monitor women’s political and institutional access, while training women leaders to effectively take part in electoral campaigns.

For more information, visit the UNDEF web-site: link

'Share the Story' a United Nations Volunteers' campaign

New York, December 4, 2010

This year, United Nations Volunteers (UNV) launched a campaign 'Share the Story' to commemorate the International Volunteer Day (IVD). UNV approached this project in a creative and innovative way, using social media to engage in a global online conversation focused on how volunteering contributes to meeting the Millennium Development Goals..

Close to 12,000 people contributed to the success of an online film festival to celebrate International Volunteer Day over the weekend. The festival, hosted on the United Nations Volunteers facebook page, started on Saturday, 4 December with a story about volunteer civic educators working to empower women in Fiji. From Fiji, the festival started a 24-hour journey around the world, stopping in 12 times zones along the way to see how volunteer action is helping to make the Millennium Development Goals a reality. Every two hours the festival moved to a new time zone. During the event, almost 12,000 people offered opinions, exchanged ideas, watched the films, or read the posts.

UN Secretary-General BAN Ki-moon emphasized the importance of this campaign, stating that online volunteering “connects people around the globe and provides them with opportunities to contribute to development and the work of the United Nations. Online volunteering has great potential and I encourage all partners to explore what more can be done to harness the power of the Internet this way”.

The United Nations Volunteers program is the UN organization that contributes to peace and development through volunteerism worldwide. UNV advocates for recognition of volunteers, works with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming, and mobilizes an increasing number and diversity of volunteers, including experienced UNV volunteers, throughout the world. The UN Office for Partnerships has worked with the UN Volunteers Office in New York to advise and support them on the public-private partnerships building activities.

For more information, visit the UNV web-site:

"Your World, Your Future: Voices of a New Generation”

Call for Worldwide Submissions by Young People Deadline is December 14, 2010

As part of its December Presidency of the UN Security Council, the United States will host an innovative event to bring the voices of youth directly to the Council. Young people, representing nearly 50 percent of the world’s population, have a major stake in the key decisions on global peace and security made every day at the Security Council. It is time for their voices to be heard. On December 21, the United States will chair an important Security Council Event entitled "Your World, Your Future: Voices of a New Generation” that will bring the 15 members of the Council together to debate three top ideas submitted by young people.

From now until December 14, the U.S. Mission to the UN will be accepting submissions for consideration. The question being asked is: “What is the most vital challenge to international peace and security facing your generation? Tell the UN Security Council what issue you believe deserves more attention, and explain why it is important.”

Anyone 21 or under from anywhere in the world can submit their answer to that question in a one minute video, or in written form, in 250 words or less.

The three most compelling submissions will become the topics of debate among Security Council members at an event that will be broadcast live at directly from the Security Council Chamber at UN Headquarters in New York.

The challenges we face as a global community have never been tougher, and the youth of the world have an important perspective to share. Now is your chance to be heard. Please participate by sending your best ideas..

Complete instructions as well as terms and conditions of participation are available at :

Ted Turner in NY to discuss UNF's work

New York, December 01, 2010

Ted Turner, whose one billion dollar gift established the UN Foundation in 1998, was in New York recently to discuss the work of the Foundation. Roland Rich, Officer-in-Charge of UNOP met with Mr Turner and his leadership team, UNF President Tim Wirth, UNF CEO Kathy Calvin and UNF Chief of Staff Rick Parnell to discuss UNF's forward program. As in previous years, UNF will be guided by the Secretary-General's commitment to achieving the Millennium Development Goals and will focus particular attention on MDG 3 (Promote gender equality and empower women), MDG 6 (Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases) and MDG 7 (Ensure environmental sustainability).

New report highlights business strategies for achieving the MDGs

26 October 2010

Following last month’s world leaders’ anti-poverty summit that called on the private sector to accelerate progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGS), the Business Call to Action and eight other leading business organizations today launched a report geared towards helping businesses join the fight against poverty.

The report, Delivering Results: Moving Towards Scale, highlights the best practices, lessons learnt and challenges that companies face when developing inclusive business models. The report is the result of a half-day forum at the United Nations MDG Summit in New York on September 21, 2010, which brought together more than 200 leaders from companies, governments, international organizations, aid agencies, and NGOs from around the globe.

The report identifies eight main focus areas that will prove essential in advancing the future development of Inclusive Business, including the need for experimentation and room to innovate; the imperative for understanding low-income consumers; the necessity for collaboration; the importance of the right government policies and regulations to incentivize companies to further invest; the need for practical tools and resources to support inclusive business development; the importance of leadership; the necessity for striking a balance between short and long-term business goals, and overcoming infrastructure challenges through innovative partnerships.

The report also provides concrete examples of how businesses worldwide are a catalyst for social and economic progress including The Coca-Cola Company’s efforts to enable jobs, entrepreneurship and opportunities for women through its innovative micro-distribution network across Africa while growing its business. Another example includes Diageo’s commitment to promoting the development of local sorghum supply chains in Cameroon and securing its own access to a supply of quality grain by investing in farmers.

The report is a joint effort between the by Business Action for Africa, Business Call to Action, International Business Leaders Forum, International Chamber of Commerce, United Nations Development Programme, The Global Compact, United Nations Office for Partnerships, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government’s Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative.

Reports are available for download on: website.

New Leadership for United Nations Office for Partnerships

New York, October 14 2010

The United Nations Office for Partnerships (UNOP) is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Roland Rich as its Officer-in-Charge. This follows the retirement on 30 September of the highly respected former Executive Director of the Office, Mr Amir Dossal. UNOP serves as a gateway for non-state actors to enter into partnership opportunities with the UN family.

Mr Rich is also concurrently the Executive Head of the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF), a position he has held for the past three years. UNDEF is a United Nations General Trust Fund, with the primary purpose of supporting democratization around the world by funding projects that strengthen the voice of civil society, promote human rights, and encourage the participation of all groups in democratic processes.

Mr. Rich, an Australian national, brings to the job over 30 years of experience as a diplomat, a scholar and a democracy promotion practitioner. Prior to his appointment to UNDEF, Mr. Rich was at the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies of the Australian Defence College, teaching and mentoring colonel-level officers undertaking a master’s degree in international relations. In 2005, Mr. Rich was a research Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy in Washington DC. Between 1998 and 2005, Mr. Rich was the Director of the Centre for Democratic Institutions at the Australian National University which is Australia’s democracy promotion institute undertaking projects in the Asia-Pacific region. Mr. Rich joined the Australian foreign service in 1975 and had postings in Paris, Rangoon, Manila and, from 1994-1997, as Australian Ambassador to Laos. He has also served as Legal Advisor and Assistant Secretary for International Organisations in the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Mr. Rich has also contributed to the scholarly literature on democracy and democracy promotion. In 2004, together with Edward Newman, he edited a publication entitled The UN Role in Promoting Democracy published by United Nations University Press which examined the areas of comparative advantage the UN had in this field. His most recent publication, in 2007, is Pacific Asia in Quest of Democracy published by Lynne Rienner Publishers which surveys the current state of democratic consolidation among the countries along Asia’s Pacific Rim.

GCC Countries Pledge to Enhance Accountability and Transparency Standards Over the Next Three Years

4 October 2010

As part of its launch at the United Nations last week, the Pearl Initiative, a private sector-led program in cooperation with the United Nations Office for Partnerships aimed at improving corporate governance, accountability, and smart CSR practices in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), joined the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit through the participation of Badr Jafar, Executive Director of the Crescent Petroleum Group, and co-founder of the Pearl Initiative.

This platform heralds a new era of cooperation between companies, NGOs, international organizations and governments in confronting and tackling today’s issues. Both the Pearl Initiative and the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit aim to address the opportunities and challenges of globalization and to contribute positively to the UN’s Millennium Development Goals

During the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit, Mr. Jafar said, “This summit has been an excellent opportunity to bring together some of the world’s most creative thinkers, from the private and public sectors including heads of state from over ten countries and from different industries across the globe.”

On the Pearl Initiative itself, he was equally enthused. “Building and maintaining a culture of transparency, accountability and social responsibility in the Gulf region is one of the most important aspects in developing the region and improving business confidence.” Now in its fifth year, the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit has rapidly gained international recognition as a leading think-tank addressing the most pressing social and economic questions of today. Louise Blouin, Founder and CEO of Louise Blouin Media, a global media company focused on the promotion of the arts, culture and luxury, founded the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit to bring together delegates to discuss the critical threats and opportunities presented by globalization at the local and global levels.

On the occasion of Mr. Jafar’s participation at the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit, Louise Blouin said, “We are honored to have Badr Jafar join us at the Summit and launch the important Pearl Initiative. The Summit is founded on the precept that in order for us to resolve the pressing issues of today, we must first understand cultural traditions from across the globe, while embracing the power of cultural diplomacy. The Summit was founded in order that world leaders from diverse disciplines could come together to discuss, debate and take action on issues that effect us all across borders and cultures. As such, we welcome Mr. Jafar’s essential contribution and the Pearl Initiative.”

In partnership with the United Nations Office for Partnerships, the Pearl Initiative was launched on September 20 at the UN headquarters in New York. Over 100 business and government sector leaders gathered to show their commitment to furthering business progress in the six countries which comprise the GCC – a regional organization committed to furthering scientific progress, regulations, cross-cultural exchange and cross-border trade between the six countries and the rest of the world, to the standards of international best practice. These values of social responsibility and transparency must be encouraged, which is why, according to Mr. Jafar, there is synergy between the Pearl Initiative and the Blouin Creative Leadership Summit. “Partnerships are essential when addressing issues that affect us all, and through these types of partnerships we can work to encourage social responsibility and institute good governance structures, and plan to report next year at the Summit on the important strides the Initiative has been able to take.”

For more information on the Pearl Initiative please visit their website at

Bilateral Donor’s Statement in support of Private Sector Partnerships for Development

22 September 2010

On September 22nd, eleven nations released at the United Nations a joint Bilateral Donor’s Statement in Support of Private Sector Partnerships for Development. Read into the UN record by Lars Løkke Rasmussen, Prime Minister of Denmark, this ground breaking statement recognizes the tremendous impact that private sector actors have on development and commits the donors to working together to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). "In the ten years since the MDGs were established, the international community has made great strides in developing partnerships with business and we come together renew and give greater meaning to our commitment."

The donors agreed to proactively enter into partnerships with local and international companies to achieve the MDGs by 2015. A nascent bilateral working group of the eleven nations on private sector partnerships is already in place. This group will enable the participants to share knowledge, identify opportunities and to begin to develop international cooperation on private sector partnerships.

UNOP welcomes this leadership statement by key representatives of the bilateral donor community recognizing the private sector as the primary engine of economic growth and development and commitment to working with the UN and wider international community in advancing sustainable business models and markets.

United Nations Private Sector Forum

New York, September 22, 2010

On September 22, the UN Private Sector Forum on the Millennium Development Goals was held at the UN Headquarters in the General Assembly building. The event, Chaired by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, brought together Heads of State and Government with chief executives of global business, civil society leaders and the heads of UN Agencies, discussed ways in which private sector actors can take concrete action to help close the MDG implementation gap. The Forum also provided a platform for business leaders to share and announce actions taken towards the achievement of the MDGs, communicate recommendations to Governments and highlight ways in which Government can help to facilitate business engagement for development.

The event’s opening featured remarks from Secretary General Ban-Ki Moon; H.E. Abdoulaye Wade, President of Senegal; H.E. Lars Lokke Rasmussen, Prime Minister of Denmark; and Sir Richard Branson, Founder and Chairman of The Virgin Group. Several keynote speakers, ranging from MDG advocates, specialists and advisers, followed up on these remarks, emphasizing the need for innovative efforts from the private sector to achieve the MDGs by 2015.

In keeping with those efforts, leaders from the private sector and civil society participated in roundtable discussions, during which several commitments to take action on the MDGs were announced. The roundtables identified six proven, MDG-related areas in which private sector engagement would be successful: Poverty and Hunger; Maternal and Child Health and HIV/AIDS; Access to Education through Innovative ICT; Innovations for Financial Inclusion; Empowering Women and Achieving Equality; and Green Economy.

Highlights of the roundtable discussions include the announcement of commitments from global business leaders and civil society organizations to take action in the six identified areas. Commitments ranged from Dell Inc.’s efforts to improve the quality of teaching and learning activities through the advancement of efficient, low-cost notebooks and devices to the efforts of, UNOP colleague and Founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, Cherie Blair, to work towards the empowerment and inclusion of women around the globe through public-private initiatives and internal policy reform.To learn more about the 2010 Private Sector Forum and the commitments announced at the event please find this link.

The Blouin Creative Leadership Summit

New York, September 22-24, 2010

The Louise Blouin Foundation (LBF) and the United Nations Office for Partnerships (UNOP) are hosting the fifth annual Blouin Creative Leadership Summit (BCLS) from 22-24 September at the Metropolitan Club in New York City.

LBF is an international non-profit organization which was founded in 2005 with the aim to encourage a better understanding of foreign affairs and culture across borders through international cooperation, exchange and dialogue in the 21st century.

The annual Blouin Creative Leadership Summit provides a valuable platform for Heads of state, Noble Prize recipients, and private sector leaders to address the challenges and opportunities of globalization, including education, health, and poverty.

The Summit brings together 120 leading figures in the areas of science, technology, culture, business, and politics including H.E. Urmas Paet, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Estonia; H.E. Pal Schmitt, President, Republic of Hungary; Chris Hughes, Co-founder of Facebook; Mr. Mathew Bishop, Chief U.S. Editor, The Economist; Jagdish Bhawati, Professor of Political Economy, Columbia University; and Badr Jafar, CEO, Crescent Petroleum. For further information on the Summit please visit the BCLS website.

Launch of the Pearl Initiative

New York, September 20, 2010

On September 20, 2010 close to 100 business leaders and policy makers gathered at the United Nations to introduce the Pearl Initiative, a private sector-led program aimed at improving corporate governance, accountability, and smart CSR practices of business activities across the six countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

The gathering was hosted at the UN and organized under the auspices of the United Nations Office for Partnerships, the Crescent Group of the United Arab Emirates, and the American University of Sharjah. During lunch, participants exchanged views on the linkages between a transparent business environment and sustainable economic growth with the audience that included Naqvi Arif, Vice Chairman and CEO, Abraaj Capital; Niels Christiansen, Head of Public Affairs, Nestle S.A.; Robert Dunn, President and CEO, Synergos Institute; Jim Geisel, Director, KPMG Global Grants Program & UN Desk; Raji Hattar, Chief Sustainability and Compliance Officer, Aramex; Prof. Safwan M. Masri, Director, Columbia University Middle East Research Center, Charles Moore, Executive Director, Committee to Encourage Corporate Philanthropy, and other prominent leaders from public and private sectors and civil society.

Badr Jafar, Executive Director of the Crescent Group and co-founder of the Pearl Initiative outlined the Pearl Initiative’s main areas of focus and remarked, ”The Pearl Initiative will enable and encourage private sector companies of the Gulf region, such as the Crescent Group, to work with the United Nations system and other global strategic partners, in achieving greater awareness with regard to accountability and transparency with their respective stakeholders; as well as converting their CSR commitments into action through these innovative partnerships.” To learn more please read Badr Jafar's full speech.

For more information on the Pearl Initiative please visit their website at

The arrival of the Granite Foundation Stones for the 'Franklin Delano Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park'

New York, September 13, 2010

On September 13, Governor David Paterson and New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg celebrated the arrival of the Granite Foundation Stones for the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park. The creation and design of the Park was the last work of the American architect Louis I. Kahn, widely considered to be one of the masters of 20th century pantheon architecture. Although Mr. Kahn died before he could ever see the project being built, his visionary concept now at long last shall be posthumously finished.

Amir Dossal, Executive Director of the United Nations Office for Partnerships and distinguished guest of the exercises, stressed in a dialog with Mayor Michael Bloomberg the lifework of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the importance of commemorating it with a memorial. Among other achievements when FDR was in office the United Nations were founded in 1942 and influenced the establishment of the Universal Declarations of Human Rights. Amir Dossal noted that the Four Freedoms – freedom of speech and expression, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear – are in a way more prevailing than ever.

The Park which is situated in the south of Roosevelt Island right in the middle of the East River, offers a terrific view of Manhattan and Queens including a stunning impression of the United Nations Headquarters from the riverside. The south side of the park is lined with two alleys of 144 Linden trees that will be bordered with granite parapets showing 144 engraved milestones of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s life and times as an outstanding, extraordinary American President. The highlight of the architectural ensemble is the structure named the “Room”, a squared plaza at the tip of the triangular shaped Park. It is open to the south and framed by granite columns carved with excerpts of Roosevelt’s For Freedoms speech.

For additional information and to learn more about the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park please visit their website at

For sponsorship please contact Ambassador William vanden Heuvel at 212.339.2579

Buddhist and Jewish Inter-cultural Discussion

New York, September 13, 2010

On September 13th, an inter-cultural discussion & community gathering on shared culture of kindness and tolerance took place at the Jewish Children’s Museum. The Jewish Children’s Museum is a place for children and parents to explore Jewish culture, values history, holidays and contemporary life through hands-on exhibits and multi-media technology. UNOP is glad to support this event which brought together leaders from the Sri Lankan Buddhist and Jewish communities, and representatives to the United Nations for a dialogue on a shared culture of peace and understanding. The discussion is an imperative step toward achieving Millenium Development Goals, by way of resolving peaceful inter-cultural and international relations within and beyond borders.

International Literacy Day: An Essential Foundation for Development

8 September 2010, New York

On the occasion of the International Literacy Day 2010, the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the UN Office for Partnerships (UNOP), in association with Global Wheel Houz, hosted a symposium to discuss the importance of literacy for sustainable development.

The cornerstones of this event, which was moderated by Mr. Byron Pitts, CBS correspondent, were two panel discussions which addressed the use of literacy as a tool for empowering the poor and accelerating progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) through creative partnerships. Ms. Laura Bush, Honorary Ambassador for the UN Literacy Decade spoke on the impact of women’s empowerment through education. She stated that literacy was most fundamental for education, and that educated women were invaluable to societies. Ms. Irina Bokova, Director-General, UNESCO, acknowledged the multiple benefits of literacy that empowerment of women would delay the age of marriage, improve maternal health, and eradicate child mortality.

Further panellists included Mr. Olaf Kjorven, Assistant Administrator (UNDP), Ms. Phillis Magrab, Georgetown University, Ms. Irene Pritzker, President, IDP Foundation, Ms. Mary Gordon, Founder/President, Roots of Empathy, Mr. Brian Reich, Managing Director, Little m Media, Ms. Mmantsetsa Marope, Director for Basic Education (UNESCO), HE Mr. Raff Bukun-Olu Wole Onemola, Ambassador to UN, Nigeria, Mr. Gary Knell, President and CEO, Sesame Workshop, Mr. John Bell, Managing Director of Ogilvy’s 360 Digital Influence.

Amir A. Dossal, Executive Director (UNOP), who opened the second panel, encouraged the panellists and audience to think outside the box, and he focused on finding ways to engage young people and adults in literacy. He emphasized the importance of partnerships in furthering this agenda.

The event also marks the Five Years & Counting Youth Engagement & Fundraising Campaign, a campaign intended to spur collaboration amongst the youth, the private sector, and high-profile individuals in support of the eight MDGs. For more information on the Wheelhouz Campaign please visit their website.