A selection of UN TV programmes, webcasts and video clips on issues in the news

Thursday, 29 October 2015

World Cities Day 2015, October 31

World Cities Day‬,‪ ‎31 October‬‬. ‪‎
Día Mundial de las Ciudades‬, ‪‎31 de octubre‬.
Всемирный день городов‬, ‪31 октября‬. ‪‎
Journée mondiale des villes‬, ‪‎31 octobre‬.
يوم مدن العالم، 31 أكتوبر.

Better City, Better Life, Designed to live together.

2015年主题:城市,让生活更美好 城市设计,共创宜居
Tema de 2015 : Mejor ciudad. Mejor vida Diseñadas para convivir.
Тема 2015: Лчше город — лучше жизнь. Спроектирован для совместного проживания.
Thème 2015: Meilleure ville, meilleure vie, conçu pour vivre ensemble.
موضوع عام 2015: حياة أفضل في مدينة أفضل صُممت لكي نعيش معا

 United Nations Secretary-General's message for the World Cities Day 2015.

The theme of this year’s observance of World Cities Day -- ‘Designed to Live Together’ -- highlights the key role of urban design in building sustainable, socially integrated and prosperous urban environments.
Good design can help tackle climate change. It reduces the impacts of disaster. 
It can help make our cities safer, cleaner, and more equal and integrative.  It promotes equal access to services, jobs and opportunities, and fosters contentment.
The challenges of rapid urbanization figure prominently in the newly adopted 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.  Goal 11 embodies a commitment to “make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”.  And as part of an integrated agenda, cities and human settlements have an important role to play across the 17-goal spectrum.
The United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development, Habitat III, to be held in Quito, Ecuador in October 2016, is an opportunity to discuss
a New Urban Agenda that can harness the power and forces behind urbanization and mobilize them for the common good.

Cities and human settlements are places we live, share, create, build and dream together.  Let us use good design to make them sustainable, inclusive and prosperous
for all.

 Ban Ki-moon, United Nations

  Statement by Dr. Joan Clos, UN-Habitat Executive Director, on World Cities Day 2015.

Cities are one of the most complex human creations. They are the places we design to live together. This year the World Cities Day focuses on the capacity that urban design has to affect how we live, how we move around, how our neighbourhoods look like and how safe we feel on the streets.
Urban form is the combination of streets, building typologies and networks of public spaces. They form the underlying structure of the city, a skeleton around which people’s lives are built and activities carried out.
Good design contributes to social integration, equality and diversity. Planning residential areas with different possibilities in terms of typology and price enables residents from different backgrounds and income levels to live together, prevents the creation of isolated ghettos or gated communities, fights segregation and discrimination. Good design gives space for different cultures, ethnicities and lifestyles to mix and come together.
Good design fosters sustainable use of shared resources. Planning compact, denser cities reduces the overexploitation of natural resources, and facilitates common living by enabling equal access to land, food and water for all.
Good design inspires lively neighborhoods. Designed public spaces, parks, playgrounds, streets and squares filled with activities help create a vibrant public life for all residents.
Good design can make cities safer. Neighbourhoods that remain active and lively at night, with commercial activities on the ground floors, pedestrian friendly well-lit streets and public spaces mean increased personal safety and security.
Good design fosters proximity to jobs and services. With good infrastructure and public transport, higher building density and mixed use neighbourhoods, jobs, markets, schools and recreation are closer to people’s homes and are easily accessible by foot, bike or public transport.
Good design helps to create clean, healthy cities. Denser cities and proximity to jobs and services mean reduced need for car use, less congestion and less pollution, as well as more sustainable usage of land and preservation of the natural and green areas.
Good design anticipates climate change and reduces the impacts of disasters. Planning with sensitivity to the surrounding nature, avoiding development in risky zones, planning natural buffers and prevention systems in flood or earthquake prone areas builds resilient settlements and safe communities.
How we all ensure good design is part of the planning and managing process of a city is key for our urban future. The Agenda 2030 recognizes in SDG 11 the importance of “making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”. The New Urban Agenda to be adopted at the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development – Habitat III-next October 2016 will be a key milestone to achieve an effective implementation of a transformative urban agenda.

Dr. Joan Clos

 Statement of the United Cities and Local Governments on World Cities Day 2015.

FORUM :  World Cities Day - October 31.

  • Planned not only to generate jobs and opportunities, but also help build socially integrated, livable, open neighborhoods.
  • Planning residential areas with different possibilities in terms of typology and price enables residents from different backgrounds and income levels to live together.
  • Designing through participative processes helps people come together around shared goals and visions, and promotes everyone’s equal access to services, jobs and opportunities.
  • Designing compact, denser cities reduces the over exploitation of natural resources, and facilitates common living by enabling equal access to land, food and water for all.
  • Designing public spaces, parks, playgrounds, streets with pedestrian space and commercial activities help create a vibrant public life for all residents.

Planned urbanization maximizes the capacity of cities to generate employment and wealth, and to foster diversity and social cohesion between different classes, cultures, ethnicities and religions. Cities designed to live together create opportunities, enable connection and interaction, and facilitate sustainable use of shared resources.
The theme of 2015 World Cities Day promotes togetherness and harmony, making our cities and neighbourhoods inclusive and livable.

Towards Habitat III : World Cities at a crossroads.
The United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development - Quito, Ecuador.

Toward Habitat III

Design Competition : 
Highlighting and recognizing designs and designers that will best depict the state of our towns and cities today. World Cities Day 2015, Design competition.

Urban Nights :
 An initiative for an outdoor, picnic style screening to: bring people together, promote local talent and utilize open spaces. Urban Nights 2015.

City 'Liveability' index 

WHILE residents of Melbourne enjoy another year in the world’s most liveable city, according to the 2015 Global Liveability Ranking from our corporate cousin the Economist Intelligence Unit, spare a thought for those who live in the 57 cities that have steadily deteriorated over the last five years.

Change in city score 2010-2015
City 'Liveability' index
Best Cities - 2015, based on liveability index

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

World Day for Audiovisual Heritage 2015, October 27.

Archives at Risk : Protecting the world's Identities.

"Archives at risk: Protecting the world’s identities.”

Audiovisual heritage, such as films, radio and television programmes and audio and video recordings, reflects our history and offers a unique account of our societies and the diversity of world cultures. This heritage is an incomparable source for understanding the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. It reflects the identity of peoples and demonstrates the richness of national cultures through their various traditions and languages. Its capacity to instantly summon up sounds and pictures, often from well beyond local borders and language barriers, makes this heritage an essential complement to more traditional archives and documents.
This audiovisual heritage must be accessible to one and all. Yet audiovisual documents are both living things and delicate and vulnerable. A large share of the world’s audiovisual heritage has already been lost forever through negligence, destruction, bad luck or a lack of appropriate resources, competencies and structures, thereby depleting the memory of humanity. That vulnerability is especially acute in conflict situations. Its disappearance can also sometimes deprive us of a subtle grasp of the nature of societies and their peoples. We have 10 to 15 years left to transfer available audiovisual recordings to digital media and prevent their loss. We need to join forces to change the situation – for it is of the utmost importance that this recent history be understood and shared not only for issues of identity and affiliation but also for a clearer grasp of relationships and challenges in contemporary societies.
UNESCO’s Memory of the World Programme is participating in this effort and every single inscription reflects a collective memory rooted in the archives and documents left by past generations. The fact is that “safeguarding for safeguarding’s sake” is not enough: the individual also needs to be able to put the documents in perspective so as to shed light on their meaning today, as well as to understand what they mean to individual societies and what they can tell us about our common humanity. The audiovisual heritage plays a key role in this work to promote what unites us and not what divides us. In so doing it can help to nurture universal values and to build a culture of tolerance and peace.
In that spirit, for this world day, I am asking all Member States, the producers and consumers of sounds and pictures, and the institutions in charge of safeguarding them to join forces to protect and share our common audiovisual wealth.
Irina Bokova

UNESCO's audiovisual heritage includes over 

  • 30,000 audio recordings: UNESCO Radio reports and interviews and other recordings from the 1940s to the 1980s
  • 3,500 films and videos on UNESCO activities.
  • 170,000 photos, including negatives and slides, documenting UNESCO's actions from 1945 to the present day.

United Kingdom historic ethnographic recordings

When, local time: Tuesday, 27 October 2015 - 9:00am to 6:00pm
Where: France
Type of Event: Special event
Contact: Iskra Panevska (
The World Day for Audiovisual Heritage is a commemoration of the adoption, in 1980 by the 21st General Conference, of the Recommendation for the Safeguarding and Preservation of Moving Images. The World Day provides an occasion to raise general awareness of the need to take urgent measures and to acknowledge the importance of audiovisual documents. "Archives at risk: protecting the world's identities" is the slogan of this year's celebration of the World Day for Audiovisual Heritage (27 October).
 Resources :

Significant AV Heritage List
  1. Original Negative of the Noticiero ICAIC Lationamericano
  2. José Maceda Collection
  3. Brahms Collection
  4. The Appeal of 18 June 1940
  5. Collection of Jewish Musical Folklore (1912-1947)
  6. Radio Broadcast of the Philippine People Power Revolution
  7. Dainu Skapis - Cabinet of Folksongs
  8. Kalman Tihanyi's 1926 Patent Application "Radioskop"
  9. The Historical Collections (1889-1955) of St. Petersburg Phonogram Archives
  10. Early cylinder recordings of the world's musical traditions (1893-1952) in the Berlin Phonogramm-Archiv
  11. The Historical Collections (1899-1950) of the Vienna Phonogrammarchiv
  12. The Masterpieces of Fryderyk Chopin
  13. Traditional Music Sound Archives
  14. Arnold Schönberg Estate (2011)
  15. Desmet Collection (2011)
  16. Historic Ethnographic Recordings (1898-1951) at the British Library (2011)
  1. Neighbours, animated, directed and produced by Norman McLaren in 1952
  2. UNRWA Photo and Film Archives of Palestinian Refugees
  3. The Story of the Kelly Gang (1906)
  4. The Wizard of Oz (Victor Fleming 1939), produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
  5. The Battle of the Somme
  6. "METROPOLIS" -Sicherungsstück Nr. 1: Negative of the restored and reconstructed version 2001
  7. John Marshall Ju/'hoan Bushman Film and Video Collection, 1950-2000
  8. Audiovisual documents of the International antinuclear movement "Nevada-Semipalatinsk"

Thursday, 22 October 2015

United Nations Day 2015, October 24.

день Организация Объединенных Наций, 24 октября.
United Nations Day, October 24. 
 Día de las Naciones Unidas, 24 de octubre.
联合国日, 10月24日.
Journée des Nations Unies, 24 Octobre.
 يوم الأمم المتحدة، 24 أكتوبر

National flags are a mark of pride and patriotism in every country around the world.  But there is only one flag that belongs to all of us. That blue flag of the United Nations was a banner of hope for me growing up in wartime Korea.
Seven decades after its founding, the United Nations remains a beacon for all humanity.
Every day, the United Nations feeds the hungry and shelters those driven from their homes.
The United Nations vaccinates children who would otherwise die from preventable diseases.
The United Nations defends human rights for all, regardless of race, religion, nationality, gender or sexual orientation.
Our peacekeepers are on the frontlines of conflict; our mediators bring warriors to the peace table; our relief workers brave treacherous environments to deliver life-saving assistance.The United Nations works for the entire human family of seven billion people, and cares for the earth, our one and only home.
And it is the diverse and talented staff of the United Nations who help bring the Charter to life.
The 70th anniversary is a moment to recognize their dedication – and to honour the many who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
The world faces many crises, and the limits of collective international action are painfully clear.  Yet no single country or organization can address today’s challenges alone.
The timeless values of the UN Charter must remain our guide.  Our shared duty is to “unite our strength” to serve “we the peoples”.
To mark this anniversary, monuments and buildings across the world are being illuminated in UN blue.  As we shine a light on this milestone anniversary, let us reaffirm our commitment to a better and brighter future for all.

Ban Ki-moon

Others Messages on the Seventy Anniversary of the United Nations.

  United Nations 70th Anniversary Messages : Achim Steiner - Facing new Challenges, UNEP

  United Nations 70th Anniversary Messages : Margaret Chan - Uplifting values, World Health Organization (WHO)



EVENTS :  70th Anniversary United Nations Day Concert

Press Release pdficon
Date: Friday, 23 October 2015, 6:30 p.m.
Location: General Assembly Hall, New York Headquarters

The proclamation of 24 October as United Nations Day is an acknowledgment of the global efforts and achievements of the Organization since its creation in 1945. The observance serves as an occasion to highlight, celebrate and reflect on the work of the United Nations and its family of agencies through the universal language of music.
A concert will take place in the General Assembly featuring the Korean Broadcasting System Traditional Music Orchestra. Special Guests will include United Nations Messenger of Pace Lang Lang, K-pop duo Davichi, Gayageum Master Kim Hae-sook and the world famous Harlem Gospel Choir.
The concert is organized by the Department of Public Information in cooperation with the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations and the Korean Broadcasting System.
Head for Communications and Public Information, Ms. Cristina Gallach will deliver a speech, followed by the Secretary-General,Mr. Ban Ki-moon, and the President of the 70th session of the General Assembly, Mr. Mogens Lykketoft.
KBS anchor, Ms. Yoon Su-young, and the Director of the Department of Public Information Outreach Division, Mr. Maher Nasser, will introduce musicians.
As a backdrop to the event, the United Nations General Assembly Hall and Secretariat Building will be awash in blue, as part of the “Turn the World UN Blue” campaign. Almost 200 iconic buildings across the globe will participate in the campaign, organized to unite global citizens and promote the message of peace, development and human rights.

The United Nations 70th Anniversary Special Edition

FORUM : United Nations Day - 24 October

 70 Ways the UN Makes A Difference

 UN Day marks the anniversary of the entry into force in 1945 of the UN Charter. With the ratification of this founding document by the majority of its signatories the United Nations officially came into being.  This year, under the campaign 'Turn the World UN Blue', iconic monuments, buildings, statues, bridges, and other landmarks across the world will be lit up blue to help unite global citizens and promote the message of peace, development and human rights.

70-я годовщина Организации Объединенных Наций.
 70th anniversary of the United Nations.
 70 aniversario de las Naciones Unidas.
 70ème anniversaire des Nations Unies.
 الذكرى ال70 للأمم المتحدة
Turn the world #UNBLUE


Geneva (Palais des Nations Unies)
 New York (United States)

United Nations Monuments

To help celebrate the UN’s 70th anniversary, more than 200 iconic monuments monuments, buildings, statues, bridges, and other landmarks in more than 60 countries around the world will be lit up blue on UN Day, 24 October, as part of an exciting new global campaign which helps unite global citizens and promote the message of peace, development and human rights.

Is your country participating?

World famous landmarks from Australia’s Sydney Opera House to the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt, from the Statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro to the Empire State Building in New York, will be lit blue. Other participants include Russia’s Государственный Эрмитаж. The State Hermitage museum. Official page. Museum, the ancient PETRA - City of Mysteries in Jordan, the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy, Edinburgh Castle and Westminster Hall in the United Kingdom, Japan’s Skytree Tower, Baalbeck in Lebanon and the Alhambra in Spain, among many others.

See also: A full list of landmarks which will be ‪#‎UNBlue‬ on 24 October (as at 22 October 2015)
- See more at:


Tuesday, 20 October 2015

World Statistics Day 2015, October 20.

Better Data, Better Lives - World Statistics Day 2015

 El tema de 2015 es: Datos mejores. Vidas mejores.

Good  data and  statistics are indispensable for informed decision - making by all actors in society.   This was  explicitly acknowledged in 2014, when the United Nations General Assembly adopted the  Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics to promote citizen’s entitleme nt to public information. As  countries and organizations  embark on implement ing the ambitious 2030 Agenda for  Sustainable Development,  r eliable and timely statistics and indicators are more important than ever.  For  that reason,  World Statistics Day  this  year is being observed under  the  theme  “Better data, better lives.”  W e need to  en sure that everyone is counted, especially the most poor and vulnerable.  No child’s  birth shall remain unregistered . No incidence of disease , no matter how remote  the  locat ion , shall  remain un recorded .  We need local statistics to ensure that every child has access to education and we  need global statistics to monitor the overall effects of climate change. Over the past 15 years , many countries have made considerable effort s to strengthen their  national statistical capacity under the leadership of their national statistical offices.  The 2010 Population  and Housing Census Round, numerous national survey programmes, as well as administrative data, have  contributed around the  world to improving the information base for monitoring progress towards the  Millennium Development Goals , and have contributed significantly to the ir success. At the United Nations , the Statistical Commission has for almost 70 years led the global  statist ical system.  Through its standards and guidelines, the Commission  has  created a language which  enables us to communicate data and to share practical experiences globally.  Today,  the Commission  stands ready to play a key role in developing and implementin g a solid global measurement process for  the Sustainable Development Goals . However, the monitoring requirements  for the success of the  Sustainable Development Goals pose a significant challenge to even the most developed countries.  We need a data revolu tion.  We need  to strengthen statistical capacity and tap into the potential of new technology.  We need the contributions  and expertise of data producers and users, academia,  the  private sector and civil society.   On this  World Statistics Day , I  urge all partners and stakeholders to work together  to ensur e that  the necessary investments are made, adequate technical capacity is built, new data sources are explored  and innovative processes are applied to give all countries the comprehensive information s ystems they  need to achieve sustainable development.
Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General.

United Nations Headquarters, New York, 20 October 2015  
Distinguished colleagues around the world,           

Today we are celebrating World Statistics Day 2015! And I would like to thank y ou for  inviting me to join your special celebration for a few minutes. Today we are  united as a global  professional community and as a global statistical family – in deliveri ng an important message:  better statistics bring better lives. The fundamental importance of  statistics has never had a stronger  recognition than it is receiving today. The call for better data for sustai nable development resonates  strongly with all of us.  During our working days we are bound by a shared professional ethos and  today on this da y  of celebration we are rightfully bound by a shared sense of professional  pride, conscious that what  we do every day has an impact on people’s life. Whether we work on a census or on a sur vey or on  administrative records; Whether we focus on collecting, processing or ma king data available to all;  Whether we double, triple or quadruple check data......
This day is for us – for each and ever y  statistician around the world. And the celebrations take many different forms : from seminars to  panel discussions, from creative competitions to songs; and it is generally a hap py affair – and  rightly so - appropriately symbolized by our little blue friend - the smiling statistician.          
We are living in a fast-evolving world. Our last World Statistics Day was  only 5 years ago,  but just consider how much has happened and changed since then: Let me highlight just  a few  milestones: 
• 2010 – the most successful and comprehensive Global Census round ever is conducted; 
• 2011 – the United Nations launches a programme on Global Geospatial Informa tion  Management, studying, among other things, the integration of statistical an d geospatial  information; 
• 2013 – the Statistical Commission launches a Global Working Group on Big Data for Official Statistics; 
• 2014 – the UN General Assembly adopts the Fundamental Principles of Offic ial Statistics at  the highest political level;  • 2014 again – the UN Secretary General commissions a report on “Data Revolution for  Sustainable Development”; 
• 2015 – the last Millennium Development Goal indicator report is released, comp leting an  extra-ordinary chapter of global cooperation in statistics, led by t he Inter-Agency and Expert  Group on MDG indicators, delivering annually, not only to the policy makers but als o to the  2 public, the best available data sets to monitor progress towards the Mil lennium Development  Goals. 
• And this year again  – for the first time in history the Chair of the UN Statistic al  Commission addresses the UN General Assembly, to obtain the technical ma ndate to  formulate the new indicator framework for the newly adopted United Nations 2030  Sustainable Development Agenda.  And during that same 5-year period, at national level, many of you were exper iencing on the one  side the opportunities provided by fascinating ICT developments, but on t he other side the twin  pressures of ever-increasing user-demands paired with often decreasin g resources. Many national  statistical offices responded with a mixture of rationalization and moderniza tion to these new  challenges. 
The  2030  Sustainable  Development  Agenda  epitomizes  the  challenges  but  also  the  opportunities  ahead  of  us:  The  agenda  itself  recognizes  the  centr ality  of  statistics  and  data  to  development.  The  formulation  of  a  new,  global,  regional  and  nation al  indicator  architecture,  provides high visibility for our profession and uniquely opens the door f or an inter-active dialogue  with policy decision makers at all levels. We need to provide our  best professional advice: it is clear  that  the  significantly  broader  development  agenda  with  a  higher   focus  on  disaggregation  will  require  more  resources,  new  methodological  developments,  integrat ion  of  new  data  sources  with  traditional ones, the building of partnerships and increased cooperat ion within and across countries.  
To  put  it  in  my  simple  favourite  phrase  these  days:  Sustainabl e  Development  will  need  to  be  supported by Sustainable Statistics.   Therefore, our joint project for the future is to continue to buil d strong National Statistical  Systems,  National  Information  Systems,  under  the  leadership  of  the   National  Statistical  Offices.  This can only be successful if the statistical community has s trong support and full political backing  from  the  highest  national  authorities.  In  this  context  this  World  Statistics  Day  is  an  excellent  opportunity to start a conversation between users and producers of s tatistics and data at all levels. It  is  an  opportunity  to  showcase  our  achievements  centred  around  the  key   concepts  of  quality  and  sustainability,  and  to  demonstrate  our  unique  position  as  official  sta tisticians  to  contribute  to  improving the lives of many through our products – living up to our vis ion statement: Better Data.  Better Lives. 
Dear colleagues,  You will not be surprised, if I tell you that I am a firm bel iever in sub-regional, regional and  global  cooperation,  where  we  can  effectively  connect  and  share  knowledge  through  the  development of standards, which is the essence of our internationa l work. With the UN Statistical  Commission  we  have  a  powerful  platform  to  build  on  our  past  accomp lishments  and  to  prepare  jointly for future challenges. We at the UN Statistics Division are f ully committed to supporting you  and the Statistical Commission and we are already looking forwar d to seeing many of you here next  year in March. 
Thank you very much for your attention – and Happy World Statistics
Mr Stefan Schweinfest, UN Statistics Division.

 Official statistics help decision makers develop informed policies that impact millions of people. Improved data sources, sound statistical methods, new technologies and strengthened statistical systems enable better decisions that eventually result in better lives for all of us.

On 20 October 2015, the global statistical community will showcase their achievements and their ongoing work to help this vision come true. Tweet #StatsDay15

United Nations Statistics Division at a Glance 2015 - Better Data. Better Lives.

A Message from the UNSD Director

I am pleased to present the newly-designed overview of the United Nations Statistics Division’s work: Statistics Division at a Glance . The objective of this document is to inform our stakeholders – delegates, Chief Statisticians, colleagues from national, regional and international statistical agencies - about the work programme and achievements of the Statistics Division in the 2014. 
The recent year saw continued work in our regular work program as well as initiatives in some new and exciting topics. In the area of technical assistance, in the year 2014 the Division organized 43 workshops, expert group meetings and seminars at which a total of 2,878 professionals exchanged experience and received training. 96 individual fellowships were awarded to statisticians from developing countries to attend 19 regional and international meetings. The Division’s three Inter -regional Advisors conducted 11 advisory missions. 
One quarter of these events was organized under the regular programme for technical cooperation, the rest under the various multi - year capacity building trust funds and ongoing development account projects. In terms of substantive areas, the organized events covered demographic and social statistics (9); economic statistics, such as international trade, economic globalization, tourism, energy and industrial statistics and national accounts (22); environment statistics and environmental - economic accounting (6); and geospatial information management (6). In 2014 also UNSD released 19 publications (En glish and Bilingual) and 12 in languages (other than English) and one white cover draft publication. The prevalence of the use of electronic devices and the generation of digital information has caused a fundamental change to the nature of data. 
The statistical community is recognizing the potential offered by Big Data sources for Official Statistics and for the monitoring of the Sustainable Development Goals. However, the statistical iii community is conscious of the fact that in order to take advantage of the various Big Data sources, it needs to adequately address issues pertaining to methodology, quality, technology, legislation, privacy, management and finance. The United Nations Statistics Division is also supporting the United Nations Statistical Commission (UNSC) and its Friends of the Chair Group on broader measures of progress in the activities related to the development and implementation of a monitoring framework for the post-2015 development agenda. One important task is to provide statistical support to the intergovernmental process towards the post-2015 development agenda in order to ensure the measurability of goals and targets and that a robust measurement approach is incorporated from the onset. As always, we look forward to working with all of you this year to further strengthen the global statistical system in general and National Statistical Offices in particular. To reflect this goal as well as the upcoming challenge of the Sustainable Development Goals, we have adopted a new motto for the Statistics Division: Better Data, Better Lives .

Stefan Schweinfest Director
United Nations Statistics Division


United Nations Statistical Commission

 The 47th Session of the Statistical Commission will be held 8-11 March 2016 in New York.


Today 20 October 2015 the United Nations Statistical Division joins statistical offices, universities, international organisations, the private sector and Statisticians worldwide in celebrating the second Word Statistical Day, promoting the invaluable importance of data in the uplifting of lives, “Better Data Better Lives”.

For more information on planned activities and supporting resources, please visit the World Statistics Day 2015 website.

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2015, October 17

Тема Дня 2015 года: Построение устойчивого будущего: сообща покончить с бедностью и дискриминацией.
Thème 2015 : Construire un avenir durable : S’unir pour mettre fin à la pauvreté et à la discrimination.
موضوع عام 2015 — بناء مستقبل مستدام: العمل معا من أجل إنهاء الفقر والتمييز
2015 Theme: Building a sustainable future: Coming together to end poverty and discrimination.
 Tema de 2015: Construir un futuro sostenible: unirnos para poner fin a la pobreza y la discriminación.

This year’s observance of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty falls as the world embarks on a bold new path towards a future of dignity for all guided by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
This year’s theme -- “Building a sustainable future: Coming together to end poverty and discrimination” -- highlights the need to focus greater attention on the excluded and marginalized members of the human family.
Spurred on by the global mobilization behind the Millennium Development Goals, the world has made extraordinary progress in reducing extreme poverty. Over the past 25 years, more than one billion people have been lifted above the poverty threshold.
Yet these gains have not reached everyone.  More than 800 million people continue to live in extreme poverty, and many more are at risk.  Climate change, violent conflict and other disasters threaten to undo many of our gains.
In adopting the 2030 Agenda, world leaders made a time-bound commitment to end poverty in all its forms, everywhere.  Our ability to meet this call requires us to address discrimination in all its forms.
Leaving no one behind means ending the discrimination and abuse targeted at one half of humankind – the world’s women and girls.  It means combatting overt discrimination against minorities, migrants and others – as well as the more insidious neglect of the disadvantaged, especially children.   And it means ensuring access to the rule of law and protecting the human rights of all. 
The 2030 Agenda emerged from the most inclusive process in United Nations history.  Member states, millions of young people and thousands of non-governmental organizations, business-people and others were part of the discussions.  As we look now to translate the 17 Sustainable Development Goals into meaningful action on the ground, we must sustain this spirit.
Ours can be the first generation to witness a world without extreme poverty, where all people – not only the powerful and the privileged -- can participate and contribute equally, free of discrimination and want. 
Ban Ki-moon

Four charts that illustrate the extent of world poverty

Four charts that illustrate the extent of world poverty
A new report details where poverty persists and how social protection programs can help alleviate it.

FORUM : International Day for the Eradication of Poverty - 17 October

The 2015 observance of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is a special one, as it comes on the heels of the adoption of Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Agenda, which succeeds the Millennium Development Goals, contains 17 new and ambitious goals – foremost among them, to “end poverty in all its forms everywhere".


Building a sustainable future:
Coming together to end poverty and discrimination

Friday, 16 October 2015
1:15 – 2:30 p.m.
Conference Room 2, United Nations Conference Building, New York

Welcome from the Masters of Ceremony, Ms. Emma Speaks and Ms. Maryann Broxton
Message on behalf of Mr. Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General
Collective message presented by Ms. Zina Grimes and Mr. Henri Yamasheta Wilson
Video message from Ms. Eden Mañalac - Manila, Philippines
Message from the Hyde Leadership Charter School, New York
Video message from Ms. Karina Onbrados Solorzano - Escuintla, Guatemala
Collective message from children presented by Jazmine Holloway and Lawrence Rikie
Video message from Ms. Betza Orozco - Guatemala City, Guatemala
Message from H.E. Mr. François Delattre, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations
Message from H.E. Mr. Simplice Honoré Guibila, Ambassador, Chargé d’Affaires, Permanent
Mission of Burkina Faso to the United Nations
Musical performance by Bárbara Martínez, singer and Cristian Pui, guitarist
Message from Mr. Donald Lee, International Committee for October 17

Closing by the Masters of Ceremony
Download the programme pdf document

Building a sustainable future: Coming together to end poverty and discrimination





Wednesday, 14 October 2015

World Food Day 2015, October 17.

 Всемирный день продовольствия, 17 октября.
World Food Day, 17 October.
Día Mundial de la Alimentación, 17 de octubre.
 Journée mondiale de l'alimentation, le 17 Octobre.
 وم الأغذية العالمي، 17 تشرين الأول.

The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015

Global Food Security Index 2015- The Economist

 In recent years, around 150 million people have overcome extreme poverty thanks to social protection programmes.Through cash transfers, vouchers, insurances and in-kind contributions, social protection programmes enhance the incomes of poor and vulnerable people. But how does this work?

The 2015 World Food Day theme is
Social Protection and agriculture: breaking the cycle of rural poverty

The official celebration of World Food Day this year at Expo Milano 2015 is promising to be one of the World Exposition’s biggest events.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Director-General of FAO will be joined by the President of the Republic of Italy and the Italian Ministers for Agriculture and Foreign Affairs for the opening ceremony.
Falling in an opportune moment, just after the Summit in September 2015 and before the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COPI), World Food Day will be a unique opportunity to send a strong message to young people – the Zero Hunger Generation – on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and to engage them in the challenge of sustainably eradicating hunger and poverty over the next 15 years.
The official ceremony will commemorate FAO’s 70th Anniversary and address the theme for World Food Day 2015, “Social Protection and Agriculture: Breaking the Cycle of Rural Poverty”, and how this links with the UN theme for Expo 2015, “The Zero Hunger Challenge · United for a sustainable world”. Representatives of FAO member countries, Expo country commissioners, representatives of the Italian Government and other partners have been invited to this high-level event.
Highlights of the ceremony will include the official presentation of the Milan Charter to the UN Secretary-General, a manifesto that engages all citizens in the fight against undernourishment, malnutrition and waste, while promoting equal access to natural resources and sustainability. The Urban Food Policy Pact, where Mayors worldwide commit to coordinating international food policies, is another important legacy document that will be presented. In addition to the keynote speakers, the Heads of IFAD and WFP will deliver statements during the ceremony and a few words will be heard from Pope Francis.

Other World Food Day events on 16 October, with the participation of the UN Secretary-General and FAO Director-General, include “Zero Hunger Generation”, an interactive question and answer session with students exploring the crucial role that young people will play in achieving the newly adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and “Finance for Food”, organised by the Italian Ministry of Economy and IFAD. 

Events of the week (October 12-18, 2015)

October 13: “The future of global food security”: “What can a better understanding of risk do to ensure future global food security?” - A panel discussion around this question, hosted by the UK Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Professor Sir Mark Walport, and organized by he UK Science and Innovation Network (SIN) will be held on Tuesday 13th October 2015 at 2.30 pm at the Biodiversity park of Expo Milano 2015. In the spirit of the theme of this year’s Expo: “Feeding the Planet”, the panel will consider how societal, cultural and political perceptions of risk shape our potential to attain future global food security.
Adolfo Brizzi, Associate Vice-President a.i., IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development) will be part of the panel, together with  other international experts in risk, innovation and food security including Professor Sir Mark Walport, UK Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser; Professor Tim Benton, UK Global Food Security Champion, University of Leeds; Professor Mario Calderini, Chief Adviser for Innovation, Italian Ministry of Research and Mr David Wilkinson, Director of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability of the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission and EU Commissioner General for Expo 2015.

October 13: A Meeting of female Parliamentarians, co-hosted by the Women in Parliaments Global Forum (WIP) together with the Italian Senate and the Italian Chamber of Deputies, will be held at the Expo Centre on 13 October. The meeting will focus on topics such as ‘Women in agriculture and development’, ‘Fight against food waste’ and ‘Nutrition and wealth’, all main topics of Expo Milano 2015. FAO will be represented at this event. More infor available here.

October 14: Conference on women economic empowerment in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, The State of Palestine and Tunisia - Conference organized at Expo Milano 2015 by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO); No Peace Without Justice; Women for Expo; and six national MENA business women associations on October 14 in the Expo Media Centre, from 10.30 am to 6 pm.
This conference is an important part of the activities undertaken within UNIDO's project titled “Promoting Women Empowerment for Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID) in the Middle-East and North Africa (MENA) region”. The aim of this event is to establish a policy dialogue, identify recommendations and share good practices on relevant topics for the development of women entrepreneurship.
The event will bring together representatives of governments and the Women's Business Associations of Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, the State of Palestine and Tunisia. UNIDO is also working to involve women entrepreneurs, international finance institutions, non-governmental organizations, and representatives of the private sector. Two round tables will be organized, one on policy and legal reforms to promote women empowerment in the MENA region, and another on the importance of national, regional and international networks to enhance women entrepreneurship.” More info available here.

October 14 - 16: Ministerial Meeting on Food Security and Climate Adaptation in Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) at Expo Milano 2015, co-organized by the Government of Italy, the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). FAO Director-General, José Graziano da Silva, and Deputy Director-General Maria Helena M.Q. Semedo will participate. Delegates will attend the celebrations of the World Food Day 2015 at Expo Milan on the 16th of October. More info available here.

October 14 - 16: The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) second Scientific Conference, with the theme “Shaping the future of food safety, together” will be held at the Congress centre Stella Polare, next to the site of Expo Milano 2015. Dr Angelika Tritscher of the World Health Organization, will chair the session on “Open Risk Assessment: Data”, in the morning of October 15 while Dr Gina Kennedy, Bioversity International, will discuss “Using agro-biodiversity for healthier diets within sustainable food systems” in the parallel session on “Nutrition challenges ahead”. Dr Katinka de Balogh, Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), Rome, will participate as a rapporteur in the session “Drivers for emerging issues in animal and plant health” in the morning of October 16. More info available here.

October 15: Kapuscinski Development Lecture on Financing for Rural Development will be held at the University Politecnico of Milan (Aula BL 27.03, Via Lambruschini 4), at 4.30 pm. “As the gap between rural and urban continues to grow, are there safeguards we can put in place to promote equal opportunities for children, women and men everywhere? The president of IFAD Kanayo F. Nawanze will present his argument for rural development.
The series “Kapuscinski Development lectures”, named after Ryszard Kapuscinski, a Polish reporter and writer who covered developing countries, is organized jointly by the European Commission, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and partner universities and development think-tanks. Since 2009, over 60 lectures gathered over 20,000 participants.” More info available here. To watch live the confererece, click here.

October 15: "Seeds, the solution to current and future food challenges" - International conference organized by the French national inter-professional group on seeds (GNIS) with the support of the French Pavilion and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).  The conference will be held at the French Pavilion from 10 am to 5 pm. William Murray, Deputy Director of the Plant Production and Protection Division of FAO will deliver an opening speech and Samuel Kugbei, Seed Policy Specialist of the same division will present the “FAO Guide on seed policies” and participate in the panel debate “The role of seeds in food safety”. For more info, download the concept note and the programme.

October 15: Signing Ceremony of the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact: The Urban Food Policy Pact is expected to be one of the most important legacies of Expo 2015. Milan is advocating an international protocol, engaging the largest number of world cities for the development of food systems, based on the principles of sustainability and social justice. This commitment for the coordination of international food policies will be subscribed by mayors from all over the world on the occasion of a major event during our Universal Exposition.

On October 15, mayors from attending cities will take part in a Mayors Summit at the Royal Palace of Milan and will each deliver key statements on the topics of urban food systems and the Urban Food Policy Pact process. The debate will be followed by the official signing ceremony of the Pact at the presence of the highest international representatives and the press.”  The Director-General of FAO José Graziano da Silva will deliver a key-note speech. Bioversity International has actively contributed to drafting the Pact and the Director General, M. Ann Tutwiler is a member of the Advisory Board of the initiative.
On October 16, the mayors will attend the official ceremony for the World Food Day at Expo Milano 2015, where they will present the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact to the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon.For more info, visit the UFPP official website.

October 15: "Human rights, right to food and land rights: What's missing?” - Roundtable panelis organized by the European Parliament’s Committee for Development at the EU Pavilion from 4 pm. Javier Molina, Senior Land Tenure Officer of the Climate, Energy and Tenure Division, FAO, will give a presentation on “The State of Food Insecurity and the land nexus”.

October 15: Fight Food Waste, Feed the Planet", public conference organized by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Health and Food Safety will be held from 10.45 am. Eugenia Serova, Director of the Rural Infrastructure and Agro-Industries Division of FAO, will deliver a key-note speech, while James Lomax, Food and Agriculture Programme Officer of UNEP, will participate in the session “Institutional perspectives”. The conference “aims to contribute to the setting of EU and global directions for food waste prevention, focusing in particular on the importance of effective inter-sector co-operation from farm to fork. The conference will gather EU and international policy makers as well as all stakeholders involved in the food chain – from industry to non-governmental organizations, the scientific community and consumers – in order to share achievements to date and foster an open and action-oriented debate.” Programme of the conference available here.

October 15: Enhancing the role of women in the agro-food security industry in Ethiopia - Conference organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) at “ME and WE – Women for Expo” space (North-West Cardo, 1st floor) in EXPO Milano 2015 starting at 11 am.
Bringing together themes regarding the potential of the agro food sector in Ethiopia and the aim of creating inclusive and sustainable industrial development, the event will debate stories of successful women who could overcome the key obstacles that usually prevent them from becoming entrepreneurs. In particular, the issues which will be discussed are access to finance, technology in food security, the lack of policy guidelines to reduce gender inequality in the private sector, the poor data collection of local enterprises, and the lack of skilled staff. These topics are crucial to foster the socio-economic development of the country, create more jobs and contribute to diversification of the economy. Furthermore, it is important to consider that women tend to have a smaller ecological footprint than men because their production and consumption patterns are often more resource-efficient. These matters are of primary importance for the promotion of sustainable development in Ethiopia.

October 15: "Food moves the world" - Concert organized by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in partnership with the European Commission, and with the support of FAO, Azione contro la Fame (ACF International) and the Italian-Latin America Institute (IILA). More info available here.

October 15-16: Improving Financial Inclusion for Smallholder Farmers, conference organized by Fondazione Giordano Dell’Amore with the support of Compagnia di San Paolo, Fondazione Cariplo, Fondazione CRT and IFAD, will be held at the Cariplo Foundation Conference Center in Milan. The conference is presented as an important moment of reflection and discussion with international experts on the development of microfinance solutions for smallholder farmers through plenary sessions and parallel workshops. The event is associated to the Giordano Dell’Amore Microfinance Best Practices International Award.
UN speakers include: Emily Coleman, Project Officer, IFAD;  Beatrice Gerli, Gender and Targeting Specialist, IFAD; Frédéric Ponsot, Remittances and Financial Inclusion Specialist, Financial Facility for Remittances, Policy and Technical Advisory Division, IFAD and  Pranav Prashad, Technical Officer, Impact Insurance Facility, ILO. More info on the speakers available here.  More info available here.

October 16: World Food Day official celebrations at Expo Milano 2015, organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), which this year celebrates the 70th anniversary of its foundation.  The official ceremony at the Auditorium will  include the participation of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon; the President of the Republic of Italy Sergio Mattarella; FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva; IFAD President Kanayo F. Nwanze; WFP Executive Director Ertharin Cousin; the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs Paolo Gentiloni; and the Italian Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies Maurizio Martina. 

Side events of the celebrations include: “Finance for Food: Investing in agriculture for a sustainable future”, organized by the Ministry of Economy and Finance of Italy and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), with the participation of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon; the President of the Republic of Italy Sergio Mattarella; FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva; IFAD President Kanayo F. Nwanze; and the Italian Minister of Economy and Finance, Pier Carlo Padoan; and the TV show “Zero Hunger Generation”, by RAI Expo, will see the participation of the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, and FAO Director-General, José Graziano da Silva. More information on the World Food Day celebrations at Expo 2015, available here

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World Food Day 2015 Conference.

Theme: Social Protection and Agriculture: breaking the cycle of rural poverty. Co-organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Food Program (WFP), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the International Labour Organization (ILO).