The 2003 Report on the World Social Situation is the sixteenth in a series of reports on the subject dating back to 1952. It is available as a United Nations sales publication. Its main theme is ” Social vulnerability”. The present Report is the first produced on a biennial basis. This is not, however, the only change to the Report. Its content should be seen as part of the new initiatives put forward by the Secretary-General in his quest to renew the capacity of the Organization to provide a space for genuine dialogue and to serve as a catalyst for effective action.
There are two new main features in the 2003 RWSS compared to previous reports. First, by taking a thematic approach as its starting point, the 2003 RWSS addresses in depth one priority theme: the issue of social vulnerability. The objective of the Report is to develop a frame of reference for identifying the sources of social vulnerabilities as well as discussing strategies to reduce vulnerabilities of selected social groups.
The second new feature of the 2003 RWSS is an attempt to increase its policy relevance, putting forward explicit policy recommendations. Every effort has been made to address these issues in a concise way, making the RWSS a more readable, shorter and better focused document.