World Science Day for Peace and Development (10 November) highlights the important role of science in society and the need to engage the wider public in debates on emerging scientific issues. It also underlines the importance and relevance of science in our daily lives. At a time when the global COVID-19 pandemic further demonstrates the critical role of science in addressing global challenges, the focus of the World Science Day is on Science for and with Society. To celebrate the 2020 World Science Day, UNESCO organized an online roundtable on the theme of “Science for and with Society in dealing with COVID-19.
By linking science more closely with society, World Science Day for Peace and Development aims to ensure that citizens are kept informed of developments in science.
The ActNow campaign aims to trigger individual action on the defining issue of our time. People around the world have joined to make a difference in all facets of their lives, from the food they eat to the clothes they wear.
With just 10 years to go, an ambitious global effort is underway to deliver the 2030 promise—by mobilizing more governments, civil society, businesses and calling on all people to make the Global Goals their own.
Learn more about the Sustainable Development Goals! On our student resources page you will find plenty of materials for young people and adults alike. Share with your family and friends to help achieve a better world for all.
A vaccine for COVID-19 will be a critical tool for helping bring the pandemic under control when combined with effective testing and existing prevention measures. Experts around the world are working hard to accelerate the development and manufacturing of a safe and effective vaccine. Here are answers to some of the most common questions: When will a COVID-19 vaccine be ready? How is the COVID-19 vaccine being developed? Will a coronavirus vaccine be safe? Get the answers to these and more.
As the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis continues to spread, the amount of money migrant workers send home is projected to decline 14 percent by 2021 compared to the pre COVID-19 levels in 2019, according to the latest estimates published in the World Bank’s Migration and Development Brief. The foremost factors driving the decline in remittances include weak economic growth and employment levels in migrant-hosting countries, weak oil prices; and depreciation of the currencies of remittance-source countries against the US dollar.
School violence and bullying including cyberbullying is widespread and affects a significant number of children and adolescents. Almost one in three students has been bullied by their peers at school at least once in the last month and a similar proportion were affected by physical violence. UNESCO has declared 5 November the first annual International day against violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying, recognizing that school-related violence in all its forms is an infringement of children and adolescents’ rights to education and to health and well-being.
Typhoon Goni left several towns inaccessible and destroyed thousands of homes in the Philippines. WFP is working with UN sister agencies to gauge the food, shelter, electricity and emergency telecommunication requirements of survivors.
For many, Jamaican ginger beer, ginger tea or ginger biscuits are a household staple. This Caribbean island has long had a global reputation for its excellent ginger, known for its potency and pungency – but the industry is being threatened. However, a band of public and private sector food heroes called the Ginger Working Group have been working together to revitalise the industry and return Jamaican ginger to prominence on the global market.
HIV service providers in Jamaica have been challenged this year with responding both to new challenges caused by COVID-19 and long-standing service delivery stumbling blocks. CHARES had been used to writing three-month prescriptions for stable clients, but since COVID-19, state-run pharmacies have been dispensing only a one-month supply. The Comprehensive Health Centre serves a number of people living with HIV alongside those infected with other sexually transmitted infections. Here, too, multimonth dispensing has not been possible during COVID-19.
The government sees honey as a product that could help diversify the country’s oil-dependent economy and is working with UNCTAD and the European Union to improve production and boost exports. Angola currently produces 90 tons of honey each year, but an UNCTAD analysis showed that Angola’s 100,000 or so beekeepers – mostly small entrepreneurs – could easily more than double production to 200 tons. It’s possible to produce honey in every region.
Fundamental rights at work can play a vital role in building effective, consensus-based responses towards the recovery from the COVID-19 crisis and build back a better, more just world of work, according to the ILOIssue paper on COVID-19 and fundamental principles and rights at work. However, the paper also warns that the crisis has placed these freedoms and rights at work at risk, as countries face increases in poverty, inequality and vulnerability.
The United Nations came into being in 1945, following the?devastation of the Second World War, with one central mission:?the maintenance of international peace and security. The UN?does this by working to prevent conflict; helping parties in?conflict make peace; peacekeeping; and creating the conditions?to allow peace to hold and flourish.?These activities often overlap and should reinforce one another, to be effective. The UN Security Council has the primary responsibility for international peace and security. The General Assembly and the Secretary-General play major, important, and complementary roles, along with other UN offices and bodies.
Protect Human Rights
The term “human rights” was mentioned seven times in the UN's founding Charter, making the promotion and protection of human rights a key purpose and guiding principle of the Organization. ?In 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights brought human rights into the realm of international law. ?Since then, the Organization has diligently protected human rights through legal instruments and on-the-ground activities.
Deliver Humanitarian Aid
One of the purposes of the United Nations, as stated in its Charter, is "to achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character." ?The UN first did this in the aftermath of the Second World War on the devastated continent of Europe, which it helped to rebuild.? The Organization is now relied upon by the international community to coordinate humanitarian relief operations due to natural and man-made disasters in areas beyond the relief capacity of national authorities alone.
Promote Sustainable Development
From the start in 1945, one of the main priorities of the United Nations was to “achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion.”? Improving people’s well-being continues to be one of the main focuses of the UN. The global understanding of development has changed over the years, and countries now have agreed that sustainable development offers the best path forward for improving the lives of people everywhere.
Uphold International Law
The UN Charter, in its?Preamble, set an objective: "to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained."??Ever since, the development of, and respect for international law has been a key part of the work of the Organization.? This work is carried out in many ways - by courts, tribunals, multilateral treaties - and by the Security Council, which can approve peacekeeping missions, impose sanctions, or authorize the use of force when there is a threat to international peace and security, if it deems this necessary.? These powers are given to it by the UN Charter, which is considered an international treaty.? As such, it is an instrument of international law, and UN Member States are bound by it.? The UN Charter codifies the major principles of international relations, from sovereign equality of States to the prohibition of the use of force in international relations.
The General Assembly is the main deliberative,?policymaking and representative organ of the UN. All?193 Member States of the UN are represented in the?General Assembly, making it the only UN body with?universal representation.
The Security Council has primary responsibility, under?the UN Charter, for the maintenance of international?peace and security. It has 15 Members (5 permanent?and 10 non-permanent members). Each Member has?one vote. Under the Charter, all Member States are?obligated to comply with Council decisions.
The Economic and Social Council is the principal body?for coordination, policy review, policy dialogue and?recommendations on economic, social and?environmental issues, as well as implementation of?internationally agreed development goals.
The Trusteeship Council was established in 1945 by the?UN Charter, under Chapter XIII, to provide international?supervision for 11 Trust Territories that had been placed?under the administration of seven Member States, and?ensure that adequate steps were taken to prepare the?Territories for self-government and independence.
The International Court of Justice is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. Its seat is at the Peace Palace in the Hague (Netherlands). It is the only one of the six principal organs of the United Nations not located in New York (United States of America).
The Secretariat comprises the Secretary-General and?tens of thousands of international UN staff members?who carry out the day-to-day work of the UN as?mandated by the General Assembly and the?Organization's other principal organs.
Climate change is the defining issue of our time and now is the defining moment to do something about it. There is still time to tackle climate change, but it will require an unprecedented effort from all sectors of society.
Women and girls represent half of the world’s population and, therefore, also half of its potential. Gender equality, besides being a fundamental human right, is essential to achieve peaceful societies, with full human potential and sustainable development.
While global poverty rates have been cut by more than half since 2000, one in ten people in developing regions still lives on less than US$1.90 a day — the internationally agreed poverty line, and millions of others live on slightly more than this daily amount.
In 2020, the United Nations turns 75. UN75 aims to build a global vision for the year 2045, the UN's centenary; to increase understanding of the threats to that future; and to drive collective action to realize that vision.? #Join the Conversation #Be the Change
As the world’s only truly universal global organization, the United Nations has become the foremost forum to address issues that transcend national boundaries and cannot be resolved by any one country acting alone.
Video and audio from across the United Nations and our world-wide family of agencies, funds, and programmes.
Keep soil alive, protect soil biodiversity
This FAO animation gives a brief introduction on the main drivers, the key functions and challenges of soil biodiversity loss, indicating possible ways to enhance soil biodiversity as a nature-based solution.
#TheWorldWeWant is a special collection of 75 photos, curated from more than 50,000 images crowdsourced from over 100 countries to celebrate the United Nations 75th Anniversary. It is a creative response to the UN Secretary-General’s call to hear directly from the peoples of the world about their future. #TheWorldWeWant illustrates that we all share similar hopes and dreams for the future.
2020 UN Woman Police Officer of the Year
Chief Inspector Doreen Malambo from Zambia, who serves as the Gender Adviser at the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), has won 2020 UN Woman Police Officer of the Year Award, in honour of her work supporting vulnerable groups, such as women, girls, children, and people with disabilities. Learn more about UN Police and the uniformed women who serve in peacekeeping.
Recovery, rebuilding, resilience under COVID-19
In this month’s programme, we have the latest on COVID-19 from IFAD’s Associate Vice-President Donal Brown; news on nutrition from the Lao People’s Democratic Republic; and a report on getting youth issues right in development activities. We also speak with Marco Minciaroni, a leader in Italy’s agro-ecological movement.
Plus – lights, camera, action – we hear from IFAD’s Director for the Near East, North Africa and Europe Division about her recent move into the film business. We’ve also got the next in our Meet the Experts series – this time with Mattia Prayer Galletti, our expert on Indigenous Peoples. And we rejoin our Recipes for Change Chef Carlo Cracco – this time, on top of a Himalayan foothill in Bhutan. Wrapping up, we’ve got a feature with Leo Espinosa, our newest Recipes for Change chef, who speaks with us from Colombia.
Images from across the United Nations and our world-wide family of agencies, funds, and programmes.
Photo:UNOCHA / Michele Cattani
Humans of Sahel
Violence, insecurity and extreme weather have impacted millions of people in the Central Sahel, a region comprising Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. This is now one of the world’s fastest-growing emergencies. More than 13 million people, including 7 million children, require urgent humanitarian assistance. Over 1.5 million people are displaced—a twentyfold increase from 70,000 people two years ago. And the COVID-19 pandemic has made the situation even worse. UN OCHA brings us the individual stories behind the statistics.
Photo:WFP / Sean Rajman
Mozambique: Assistance for families fleeing conflict in Cabo Delgado
In Cabo Delgado, in North Mozambique, a humanitarian crisis, receiving little global attention, is unfolding. As a result of a low-level insurgency, more than 2,000 people have reportedly been killed since October 2017 and the number of people driven from their homes has increased fourfold since February. Throughout last year, as the country reeled from the impact of two cyclones, the violence has only escalated. Around 390,000 people have been displaced in Cabo Delgado, many of whom depend on WFP for food assistance.
Photo:UNHCR / Andrew McConnell
Ties that Bind: Community Sponsorship in the UK
UNHCR presents the Community Sponsorship initiative, which enables communities throughout the UK to welcome refugees who have arrived with government approval via resettlement. In Britain alone, there are around 90 projects with more in the pipeline. Faith groups, businesses and others are all involved. There are also initiatives in Canada, Spain, Ireland and elsewhere. Groups help the participants as they learn English and they settle. The sponsors gain something too: new friends and a chance to make a difference.
Photo:UNDP Nepal / Laxmi Pd Ngakhusi
At a time when businesses are seeing dark days due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a few organizations in Nepal have been helping women make steady incomes by producing masks. UNDP has been supporting the Nepal government in its effort to contain the coronavirus. As part of the response, UNDP bought more than 40,000 locally produced masks for the army, who distributed them to returnee migrants. The use of the local masks has not only developed local entrepreneurship but also contributed to the protection of the environment.