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UNRIC Library Newsletter - February 2014

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UNRIC Library Newsletter - February 2014
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New Websites within the UN System

UN in General

2014 Calendar of conferences and meetings
The 2014 calendar of conferences and meetings is available and posted on the Department for General Assembly and Conference Management (DGACM) website.

68th General Assembly: upcoming Special Events and Debates

Highlights of Security Council Practice 2013

SC Highlights 2013The “Highlights of Security Council Practice 2013” paper provides a brief overview of Security Council proceedings in 2013. This overview focuses on five core aspects of Council activities: meetings, missions, agenda, decisions and subsidiary bodies. The paper shows comparative data of Security Council practices over the past 5 years for its meetings and missions. With regards to agenda, it provides analysis on frequency of discussion of country - specific/regional situations and thematic and other issues. In terms of decisions, the paper covers voting and resolutions adopted under Chapter VII. Lastly, it highlights newly established subsidiary bodies and those which went through significant changes in mandate or composition.

The Scientific Advisory Board of the United Nations Secretary-General
English: http://en.unesco.org/themes/science-sustainable-future/scientific-advisory-board-united-nations-secretary-general
French: http://fr.unesco.org/conseil-consultatif-scientifique-aupr%C3%A8s-du-secr%C3%A9taire-g%C3%A9n%C3%A9ral-nations-unies
Inaugural Meeting: http://www.sab-2014-berlin.de/
The United Nations must use science and technology to strengthen its policy-making on sustainable development, reducing inequality and eradicating extreme poverty, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on 30 January 2014 launching his advisory board of scientists.
Composed of 26 eminent scientists in varied natural, social and human disciplines, the Board is meant to strengthen ties between the UN and the global scientific community so that science can be more effectively integrated in policy-making processes.

Dag Hammarskjöld Library Research Guide: “Water, Sanitation and Sustainable Energy”
This new research guide highlights both UN and non-UN resources.

UNRIC Library Backgrounder: Civil Society
English - html: http://archive.unric.org/en/unric-library/29050
English - pdf: http://archive.unric.org/html/english/library/backgrounders/civilsociety.pdf

UNRIC Library Backgrounder: Transitional Justice
English - html: http://archive.unric.org/en/unric-library/29036
English - pdf: http://archive.unric.org/html/english/library/backgrounders/transitionaljustice.pdf


Peace and Security

The European Union and the Arms Trade Treaty: An Analysis of the EU’s Effectiveness in Multilateral Security Governance
(Bruges Regional Integration & Global Governance Papers 3 / 2013)
This paper – part of the Joint working paper series of the EU International Relations and Diplomacy Studies Department at the College of Europe and the United Nations University Institute on Comparative Regional Integration Studies (UNU-CRIS), Bruges - examines the participation of the European Union (EU) in the multilateral negotiations of the UN Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). Given the EU’s declared commitment to effective multilateralism and dedication to act as a global security provider, the paper analyses to what extent the EU can be seen as an effective actor in supporting and promoting the ATT. It is argued that overall the EU was an effective player during the multilateral negotiations on the ATT, but the degree of its effectiveness varied along different dimensions. The EU was relatively successful in the achievement of its goals and in maintaining external cohesion during the negotiations, but it scored relatively low in its efforts to commit other major players to sign up to the ATT. The high level of institutional cooperation and the convergence of EU member states’ interests facilitated the EU’s effectiveness in the ATT negotiations, whereas the international context proved to be the major constraining factor.

Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic (S/2014/31, 27 January 2014)
English, French & Spanish: http://undocs.org/S/2014/31
Syrian children have been subjected to “unspeakable” suffering in the nearly three years of civil war, with the Government and allied militia responsible for countless killings, maiming and torture, and the opposition for recruiting youngsters for combat and using terror tactics in civilian areas, according to the first United Nations report on the issue. The report, covering the period from 1 March 2011 to 15 November 2013, lists a raft of horrors that Syria’s children have suffered since the opposition first sought to oust President Bashar al-Assad, ranging from direct commission of abuse, including sexual violence, to more general violation of their rights from school closures and denial of access to humanitarian aid.

Security Council Concept Note:  Security Council Briefing on "War, its lessons and the search for a permanent peace" (29 January 2014)
English, French & Spanish: http://undocs.org/S/2014/30
The Security Council held an open /briefing debate entitled "War, its lessons and the search for a permanent peace" on 29 January 2014. For the debate, Jordan had prepared this concept note.

Security Council Concept Note:  Open debate on the “Protection of civilians in armed conflict” (12 February 2014)
English, French & Spanish: http://undocs.org/S/2014/74
The Security Council held an open debate on the subject "Protection of civilians in armed conflict" on 12 February 2014. In order to help steer the discussion on the subject, Lithuania has prepared this concept note.

Security Council Concept Note:  Open Debate on the promotion and strengthening of the rule of law in the maintenance of international peace and security (19 February 2014)
English, French & Spanish: http://undocs.org/S/2014/75  
The Security Council held an open debate on the promotion and strengthening of the rule of law in the maintenance of international peace and security on 19 February 2014. In order to help steer the discussion on the subject, Lithuania has prepared this concept note.

United Nations Peacekeeping Operations – Fact Sheet: 31 December 2013 (DPI/1634/Rev.152, January 2014)
English: http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/resources/statistics/factsheet.shtml
French: http://www.un.org/fr/peacekeeping/resources/statistics/factsheet.shtml
Spanish: http://www.un.org/es/peacekeeping/resources/statistics/factsheet.shtml
German: http://archive.unric.org/html/german/dpi1634dt.pdf

United Nations Political and Peacebuilding Missions – Fact Sheet: 31 December 2013 (DPI/2166/Rev.126, January 2014)
English: http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/documents/ppbm.pdf
French: http://www.un.org/fr/peacekeeping/documents/ppbmf.pdf
German: http://archive.unric.org/html/german/dpi2166dt.pdf


Economic & Social Development

Achieving sustainable development: the energy investment challenge (UN/DESA Policy Brief No. 43)
This paper talks about how transforming the world energy system calls for strong leadership, carefully designed policies, behavioural changes and large investments, both in developed and developing countries.

Assessing Global Land Use: Balancing Consumption with Sustainable Supply (UNEP / IRP)
Report, Summary & Fact Sheet in English: http://www.unep.org/resourcepanel/Publications/AreasofAssessment/AssessingGlobalLandUseBalancingConsumptionw/tabid/132063/Default.aspx
If demand for new land on which to grow food continues at the current rate, by 2050, high-end estimates are that area nearly the size of Brazil could be ruined, with vital forests, savannahs and grassland lost, the United Nations warned in a new report published on 24 January 2014. Up to 849 million hectares of natural land may be degraded, according to report produced by the International Resource Panel, a consortium of 27 internationally renowned resource scientists, 33 national Governments and other groups, hosted by the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP).

Education for All Global Monitoring Report 2013/4: Teaching and learning - Achieving quality for all (UNESCO)
English: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/education/themes/leading-the-international-agenda/efareport/
French: http://www.unesco.org/new/fr/education/themes/leading-the-international-agenda/efareport/
Spanish: http://www.unesco.org/new/es/education/themes/leading-the-international-agenda/efareport/
The 11th EFA Global Monitoring Report reveals that a global learning crisis is costing governments $129 billion a year. Ten per cent of global spending on primary education is being lost on poor quality education that is failing to ensure that children learn. This situation leaves one in four young people in poor countries unable to read a single sentence.  The Report concludes that good teachers are the key to improvement and calls on governments to provide the best in the profession to those who need them most.

Fifth Assessment Report (WGI AR5) - "Climate Change 2013: the Physical Science Basis" (IPCC / WMO / UNEP)
Report in English, Summary for Policy Makers in English, French & Spanish: http://ipcc.ch/report/ar5/wg1/#.Uu-XCrQm_To
Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, human influence on the climate system is clear, and limiting climate change will require substantial and sustained reductions of greenhouse gas emissions. These are the key conclusions from an assessment by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that was released on 30 January 2014 in its full and finalized form.

Global Atlas of palliative care at the end of life (WHO / WPCA)
Only 1 in 10 people who need palliative care - that is medical care to relieve the pain, symptoms and stress of serious illness - is currently receiving it. This unmet need is mapped for the first time in the "Global atlas of palliative care at the end of life", published jointly by the WHO and the Worldwide Palliative Care Alliance (WPCA).

Humanity Divided: Confronting Inequality in Developing Countries (UNDP)
Report in English, Overview in English, French & Spanish: http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/librarypage/poverty-reduction/humanity-divided--confronting-inequality-in-developing-countries.html
The report revisits the concepts of inequalities in 15 countries, makes the basic point that in spite of the impressive progress humanity has made on many fronts over the decades, it still remains deeply divided. In that context, it is intended to help development actors, citizens, and policy makers contribute to global dialogues and initiate conversations in their own countries about the drivers and extent of inequalities, their impact, and the ways in which they can be curbed.

Inequality Matters: Report on the World Social Situation 2013
rwss2013coverThe Report examines recent inequality trends and analyses their social, economic and political impacts, highlighting new developments and paying particular attention to the situation of disadvantaged social groups. It shows that inequality not only matters to people living in poverty, but also for the overall well-being of society. The Report illustrates that growing inequalities can be arrested by integrated policies that are universal in principle yet pay particular attention to the needs of disadvantaged and marginalized populations. It reminds world leaders that, in addressing inequalities, policy matters.

The New Aid Paradigm: A case of policy incoherence (DESA Working Paper No. 128, December 2013)
From around 2000 onward, donors and recipient governments embarked upon a new aid paradigm. The most important elements include increased selectivity in the aid allocation, more ownership of recipient countries based on nationally elaborated PRSPs, and more donor alignment and harmonization via program-based approaches such as budget support. The paper assesses the theoretical merits of this new paradigm, identifying some contradictions and limitations, and then examines its implementation over the past decade and its results. The empirical results largely confirm the earlier identified weaknesses and limitations. The paper concludes with some suggestions for improving aid practices.

A Post-2015 Development Agenda: Lessons from Governance of HIV Responses in Asia and the Pacific (UNDP)
Many of the policies and approaches used to reduce new HIV infections in Asia and the Pacific could be effective in stemming the growing threat of diseases like cancer, heart disease, diabetes and other emerging development issue. The number of new HIV infections declined by 20 percent on average over the last decade in the region, and by more than 50 percent in five countries – India, Myanmar, Nepal, Papua New Guinea and Thailand – that account for substantial numbers of people living with HIV. The report describes examples of new governance approaches to health issues.

The State of the World’s Children 2014 In Numbers: Every Child Counts - Revealing disparities, advancing children’s rights (UNICEF)
English, French & Spanish: http://www.unicef.org/sowc2014/numbers/
Declaring that 'every child counts', UNICEF urged on 30 January 2014 greater effort and innovation to identify and address the gaps that prevent the most disadvantaged of the world's 2.2 billion children from enjoying their rights. This report highlights the importance of data in making progress for children and exposing the unequal access to services and protections that mars the lives of so many.

Towards a Life of Dignity for All – 10 Years of UNDP-EU Strategic Partnership
cq5dam.web.220.124The first-ever report on the partnership between UNDP and the EU was launched on 19 February 2014. Taking a ten-year perspective, the report presents the context, rationale and added value of the partnership; takes stock of achievements in the last decade (2004-2013); and discusses the opportunities and challenges for the partnership in the future, framed in the context of a changing world. The reason for it being published now is that 2014 marks the 10th anniversary of the “Strategic Partnership Agreement” between UNDP and the European Commission, which was jointly signed in 2004.    

United Nations World Youth Report: Youth and Migration
wyr logoThe United Nations 2013 World Youth Report offers a broad understanding of the situation of young migrants from the perspective of young migrants themselves. The report highlights some of the concerns, challenges and successes experienced by young migrants based on their own lives and told in their own voices. The report focuses largely on the phenomena of international migration which increasingly has a significant impact on the origin, transit and destination countries and communities. The consequences are complex, context-specific and subject to change over time. The Report has been drafted in an interactive manner, allowing you to navigate chapters individually.


Human Rights

Living under siege - UN human rights paper details devastating impact of sieges in Syria (OHCHR)
Sieges imposed by Syrian Government forces and pro-Government militias, as well as by armed opposition groups, have resulted in severe hardship, suffering and deaths of civilians, in clear breach of the obligations imposed by international human rights law and international humanitarian law, a UN paper issued on 19 February 2014 warns.
The analysis is based on information collected by the UN Human Rights Office between April 2013 and 20 January 2014. Comments provided by the Permanent Mission of the Syrian Arab Republic, in a note verbale dated 19 February 2014, are available at http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Countries/SY/SyrianCommentsPaperOnSiege.pdf.

Report of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
A wide array of crimes against humanity, arising from “policies established at the highest level of State,” have been committed and continue to take place in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, according to a UN report released on 17 February 2014, which also calls for urgent action by the international community to address the human rights situation in the country, including referral to the International Criminal Court.
In a 400-page set of linked reports and supporting documents, based on first-hand testimony from victims and witnesses, the UN Commission of Inquiry on human rights in the DPRK has documented in great detail the “unspeakable atrocities” committed in the country.


Humanitarian Affairs

A Year in Review 2013: UNHCR in Syria
UNHCR started its operations in Syria with the first Iraqi war in the early nineties and expanded its operation exponentially with the massive influx of Iraqi refugees in the middle of the last decade. In 2012 in the context of the Syrian crisis, UNHCR expanded its operations to support the increasing number of internally displaced Syrians.

"No Lost Generation: Protecting the futures of children affected by the crisis in Syria" - Strategic Overview (UNHCR)
As the crisis in Syria rages on, approaching its fourth terrible year, an entire generation of children is being shaped by violence, displacement, and a persistent lack of opportunity – and could be lost forever, with profound long-term consequences for Syria, the region, and beyond.
The "No Lost Generation" strategy proposes practical ways to avoid this harsh possibility, showing the impact that could be achieved with a critical investment today of $1 billion focused on expanding access to learning and psychosocial support, strengthening social cohesion and peacebuilding efforts, and restoring hope for the future to millions of children.

Sahel Humanitarian Response Plan 2014-2016
English: http://unocha.org/cap/appeals/sahel-humanitarian-response-plan-2014-2016
French: https://docs.unocha.org/sites/dms/CAP/SRP_2014-2016_Sahel_FR.docx
The Sahel – a region that stretches across southern fringe of the Sahara desert– is home to some of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people. In 2011 and 2012, a combination of fierce drought and conflict meant millions of children, women and men were in need of aid simply to survive. The international community rallied, and a large-scale catastrophe was averted. But the factors that drove this vulnerability remain unchecked. The situation for countless communities across the region – including across Senegal, the Gambia, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Chad, northern Nigeria and Cameroon – is still desperate.
On 4 February 2014, at an event in Rome, Italy, the UN and its global humanitarian partners launched a new, three-year plan for the Sahel.