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    4. Science for and with Society in dealing with the global pandemic

      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.
      Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General (left), meets the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari in the capital, Abuja.

      UN deputy chief conducts solidarity visit to West Africa and the Sahel

      9 November 2020 — The UN Deputy Secretary-General is on a two-week solidarity visit to West Africa and the Sahel to underscore the Organization’s support to countries during the COVID-19 pandemic...

      UN chief stresses need for greater speed to achieve carbon neutrality

      9 November 2020 — Although more Governments and businesses are committing to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, the world is still falling far short of that goal, UN Secretary-General António...

      WHO’s?Tedros?says it is time for the world to heal,?pushing back on ‘misguided nationalism’?

      9 November 2020 — World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told Member States on Monday that efforts to tackle climate change and poverty had been set back by a...

      UN Sustainable Development Goals

      17 Goals to transform our world

      The Sustainable Development Goals are a call for action by all countries — poor, rich and middle-income — to promote prosperity while protecting the planet.

      Act Now

      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.

      Decade of Action

      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.

      Thomas the Tank engine

      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.

      Goal 2: Zero Hunger
      Zero Hunger

      End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.

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      United Nations

      Featured stories from across the United Nations and our world-wide family of agencies, funds, and programmes.


      What you need to know about a COVID-19 vaccine

      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.

      money transfer in Zambia

      COVID-19: Remittance Flows to Shrink

      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.

      colored pencils, one of them with a worried face

      Stop violence and bullying at school

      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.

      Climate Action Super Hero

      Climate change is a menace to our world. Our league of superheroes are taking action now and they want YOU to join them!

      Space, shelter and scarce resources

      As the pandemic surges, data visualization shows how displaced people have to contend with extreme overcrowding and limited access to basics such as soap and water.

      Response to Typhoon Goni

      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.

      What’s on stage tonight?

      Today, the works of almost no living composers are performed on global opera stages. Is granting exclusive rights to new opera works actually excluding them from the stage?

      ginger root

      Banding together to re-root the Jamaican ginger industry

      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.

      doctor's office

      A tale of two Jamaican clinics during COVID-19

      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.

      Bees in a honey comb.

      Betting on the untapped potential of Angolan honey

      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.

      A woman wearing a facemask sits behind a sewing machine.

      Fundamental rights at work to build back better

      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 ILO Issue 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.

      What we do

      Due to the powers vested in its Charter and its unique international character, the United Nations can take action on the issues confronting humanity in the 21st century, including:

      Structure of the
      United Nations

      The main parts of the UN structure are the General Assembly, the
      Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Trusteeship Council, the International Court of Justice, and the UN Secretariat. All were established in 1945 when the UN was founded.

      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.

      Learn more

      The Middelgrunden Off Shore Windturbines located in the ?resund Straight separating Denmark and Sweden. UN Photo

      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 at UN CSW63 Side Event - “Take the Hot Seat”. Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

      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.

      UN Secretary-General António Guterres is greeted on his visit to the Central African Republic

      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.

      young children smiling at camera

      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

      Did you know?

      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.

      Watch and Listen

      Video and audio from across the United Nations and our world-wide family of agencies, funds, and programmes.

      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.

      UN Podcasts

      Women sit with children on their laps and raise their hands.

      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.

      Latest Audio from UN News

      The United Nations in Pictures

      Images from across the United Nations and our world-wide family of agencies, funds, and programmes.

      A woman sits inside a makeshift shelter.
      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.


      A boy at the shore looks at boats full of people.
      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.

      An older woman holds the hand of a girl wearing a hijab while walking on the seashore.
      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.

      Woman wearing a facemask works on a sewing machine from a rooftop.
      Photo:UNDP Nepal / Laxmi Pd Ngakhusi

      Masked opportunities

      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.