DESA NGO News — 31 March 2016

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EVENTS

31 March - 2 April: The Asia-Pacific Civil Society Forum on Sustainable Development
DESA/Division for Sustainable Development will be co-organising and co-funding the Asia-Pacific Civil Society Forum on Sustainable Development in Bangkok, convened by ESCAP in collaboration with Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD) on behalf of Asia Pacific Regional CSO Engagement Mechanism (AP-RCEM) as a preparatory event for the Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development.

The Asia Pacific Civil Society Forum on Sustainable Development will aim to:
- Inform and build the capacity of civil society participants to engage in sustainable development processes at the global and regional levels,
- Agree on joint actions and follow up to civil society positions adopted,
- Provide a space for civil society to dialogue on, and prepare strategies for engaging in the APFSD and upcoming regional events and influence decision-making process, and
- Strengthen the outreach and effectiveness of the Asia Pacific Regional CSO Engagement Mechanisms (AP-RCEM)
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=340&type=13&menu=14

11 - 15 April: 49th session of the Commission on Population and Development
The 49th session of the Commission on Population and Development will take place from 11 to 15 April 2016 at United Nations Headquarters in New York. The special theme of the session is "Strengthening the demographic evidence base for the post-2015 development agenda". Reliable and timely demographic information and data will be essential for effective review and follow-up to the Goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. During the upcoming session, Member States will also review the functioning of the methods of work of the Commission. The purpose of the review is to enhance the impact of the work of the Commission and its contribution to the Economic and Social Council. The Commission welcomes the active participation of NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC, including in the plenary or in side events, and their support for the upcoming session.
Online pre-registration using the United Nations Civil Society Network (CSO Net) is now open and will close on Thursday, 31 March 2016. For further information, please visit: http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/population/commission. NGOs can also follow the Commission through social media channels, such as #CPD49 and #UNPopulation and the UN webcast of the sessions via UN Web TV.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=337&type=13&menu=14

18 - 22 April: 15th Session of the Committee of Experts on Public Administration (CEPA)
The 15th session of the Committee of Experts on Public Administration of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) will be held from 18 to 22 April 2016 at the United Nations Headquarters, in New York, United States of America.

As approved by ECOSOC, the main issue for discussion will be “Moving from commitments to results: transforming public institutions to facilitate inclusive policy formulation and integration in the implementation and monitoring of the sustainable development goals” The five sub-issues will be:

  1. Ensuring prioritization and decision-making that is fair, responsive, inclusive, participatory and accountable at all levels;
  2. Improving engagement and communication between Governments and stakeholders, including through access to information, open government and electronic and mobile solutions;
  3. Ensuring effective and innovative implementation, monitoring and impact evaluation of the policies identified in support of the sustainable development goals;
  4. Strengthening the confidence of citizens in the effectiveness, validity and integrity of public administration through enhanced, targeted efforts to use good governance to prevent, expose and deal with corruption;
  5. Developing transformative leadership and enhancing relevant competencies of public servants.

For those unable to attend in person, live and on-demand webcast coverage of this event will be available in six languages (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish) at http://webtv.un.org
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=320&type=13&menu=14

18 April: Civil Society Forum in preparation for the UN General Assembly Special Session on Drugs

The Civil Society Task Force (CSTF) for UNGASS 2016 will hold a Civil Society Forum on 18 April 2016 at United Nations Headquarters in the margins of the Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly on the World Drug Problem. The goal of the hearing is to (1) present the findings of the CSTF global consultations leading up to UNGASS, (2) provide valuable input on priorities and recommendations from civil society, as well as to (3) present the "Market Place" project, a collaboration between Vienna NGO Committee on Drugs and UNODC (see agenda).
To apply for a speaker role at the Civil Society Forum, please fill out the form available at http://goo.gl/forms/UowypVqpSi until midnight EST on 1 April 2016.

Kindly note that the CSTF will not be in a position to cover any related travel and accommodation costs. Applicants also need to make their own visa arrangements, if applicable. For this purpose, the CSTF will provide invitation letters.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=335&type=13&menu=14

18 -20 April: ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development
The inaugural ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development follow-up will be held from 18 to 20 April 2016 in the Trusteeship Council Chamber at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The Forum will include the Special high-level meeting of the Council with the Bretton Woods institutions, the World Trade Organization and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

The theme of the Forum will be "Financing for sustainable development: follow-up to the Addis Ababa Action Agenda." According to its mandate, the Forum will address the follow-up and review of the Financing for Development outcomes and the means of implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The modalities of participation will be those utilized at the international conferences on financing for development.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=341&type=13&menu=14

19 April: Expert Group Meeting on "Shaping the reporting by Major Groups and Other Stakeholders on their contribution to the implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda"
UN DESA Division for Sustainable Development will organize an Expert Group Meeting (EGM) on 19 April 2016 in New York to provide an opportunity for Major Groups and other Stakeholders (MGoS), along with invited experts, to discuss how to ensure their effective participation and contribution to the review and implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda in the High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), building on the extensive provisions contained in resolution 67/290. In particular, the EGM will focus on discussing strategies and approaches for operationalizing the reporting by the MGoS to the HLPF on their contribution to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as called for in paragraph 89 of the 2030 Agenda. A detailed draft concept note will be made available shortly at sustainabledevelopment.un.org.

Stakeholders are invited to express their interest to attend the meeting by filling out this form no later than 13 April 2016. Space is limited and accepted participants will be notified prior to the event.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=339&type=13&menu=14

19 - 21 April: Special Session of the General Assembly on the World Drug Problem (UNGASS 2016)
The General Assembly, in its resolution 70/181 of 17 December 2015, decided that the special session of the General Assembly on the world drug problem shall be convened for three days, from 19 to 21 April 2016, at United Nations Headquarters in New York, following the fifty-ninth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, scheduled to be held in March 2016.

Furthermore, the General Assembly decided that representatives of non-governmental organizations in consultative status with ECOSOC are invited to participate in the special session and representatives of civil society and the scientific community, academia, youth groups and other relevant stakeholders may participate in the special session, in accordance with the rules of procedure and established practice of the General Assembly.

To that end, registration is now open for representatives of organizations actively working on drug-related matters from ECOSOC and non-ECOSOC accredited NGOs, civil society, the scientific and academic communities, youth groups and other relevant stakeholders.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=327&type=13&menu=14

21 April: High-level Thematic Debate on Achieving the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
The President of the United Nations General Assembly will convene, on 21 April 2016, a High-level Thematic Debate on Achieving the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The event will bring together political, business and civil society leaders to focus on kick-starting SDGs implementation.

Registration is now open for all relevant stakeholders, including civil society, private sector and academia from the following categories:
• Non-governmental organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council
• Organizations accredited to the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit 2015
• Organizations accredited to the Financing for Development (FfD) process
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=326&type=13&menu=14

2 - 4 May: 2016 ECOSOC Integration Segment
The 2016 Integration Segment of the Economic and Social Council, to be held from 2 to 4 May 2016, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, will be chaired by His Excellency Sven Jürgenson, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Estonia to the United Nations and Vice-President of ECOSOC, and will address the theme "Implementing the 2030 Agenda through Policy Innovation and Integration". The Integration Segment will bring together high-level representatives of the Member States, including Heads of State and Government, ministers and mayors, agencies of the United Nations system and civil society actors, including non-governmental organizations, academia and the private sector. The meeting will feature various interactive panel discussions and dialogues, providing a platform to identify opportunities and challenges in developing integrated and innovative policy tools to implement the 2030 Agenda. The Segment will consider lessons learned and recommendations for the way forward at the national, regional and international levels, including specific contribution from the UN system.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=338&type=13&menu=14

30 May - 1 June: 66th UN DPI/NGO Conference, "Education for Global Citizenship: Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals Together"
Organized in cooperation with the NGO/DPI Executive Committee, the NGO community, the Government of the Republic of Korea and the National Organizing Committee of Korea, the 66th UN DPI/NGO Conference will be held under the theme "Education for Global Citizenship: Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals Together", in Gyeongju, Republic of Korea.

The purpose of this Conference, rooted in Sustainable Development Goal number 4, is to harness strategies, expertise and resources across the widest spectrum of civil society to unleash a range of education initiatives that ensure inclusive, safe and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

In this 66th UN DPI/NGO Conference, NGOs are encouraged to support participation by their own representatives, including youth representatives, and also to support the participation of NGO representatives and voices from vulnerable communities most affected by poverty, inequality, injustice and climate change to contribute to and benefit from the gathering.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=336&type=13&menu=14

14 - 16 June: Ninth session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was adopted by the General Assembly by its resolution 61/106 of 13 December 2006. It came into force on 3 May 2008 upon the 20th ratification. Article 40 of the Convention stipulates that "The States Parties shall meet regularly in a Conference of States Parties in order to consider any matter with regard to the implementation of the present Convention." Since 2008, eight sessions of the Conference of States Parties have been held at United Nations Headquarters, New York.

The 9th session will take place at the United Nations Headquarters from 14 to 16 June 2016. This year’s session will include Elections for nine members of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
http://csonet.org/index.php?page=view&nr=325&type=13&menu=14

NEWS

Commission on the Status of Women Agrees on Approach for Gender-Responsive Implementation of Sustainable Development Agenda
The Commission on the Status of Women, closing its sixtieth session, approved a robust set of Agreed Conclusions intended to pave the way for a gender-responsive implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The Agreed Conclusions highlight the education, health, humanitarian and economic needs of women, with all those linked to the 2030 Agenda and its importance for women and girls. The document also makes reference to indigenous women, women with disabilities, rural women and youth, which underscored the importance of recognizing the intersecting challenges that millions of women and girls face.

By the terms of the Agreed Conclusions, which were presented in an informal paper, the Commission reaffirmed the importance of significantly increased investment to close resource gaps for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls. That included the mobilization of financial resources from all sources — including domestic and international — and the full implementation of official development assistance (ODA), as well as strengthened international cooperation through North-South, South-South and triangular models.

Also by the text, the Commission urged Governments to ensure the promotion and protection of the human rights of all women and their sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights. It urged them to adopt, review and ensure the accelerated and effective implementation of laws that criminalized violence against women and girls, as well as comprehensive, multidisciplinary and gender-sensitive preventive, protective and prosecutorial measures and services.
http://www.unwomen.org/en/csw/csw60-2016

Global follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
The HLPF will have a central role in overseeing a network of follow-up and review processes at the global level, working coherently with the General Assembly, ECOSOC and other relevant organs and forums, in accordance with existing mandates. It will facilitate sharing of experiences, including successes, challenges and lessons learned, and provide political leadership, guidance and recommendations for follow-up. It will promote system-wide coherence and coordination of sustainable development policies. It should ensure that the Agenda remains relevant and ambitious and should focus on the assessment of progress, achievements and challenges faced by developed and developing countries as well as new and emerging issues. Effective linkages will be made with the follow-up and review arrangements of all relevant UN Conferences and processes, including on LDCs, SIDS and LLDCs.

Paragraph 90 of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda requested the Secretary-General, in consultation with Member States, to prepare a report for consideration at the current 70th session of the General Assembly in preparation for the 2016 meeting of the HLPF which outlines critical milestones towards coherent, efficient and inclusive follow-up and review at the global level.

A/70/684 - Critical milestones towards coherent, efficient and inclusive follow-up and review at the global level
[Arabic] [Chinese] [English] [French] [Russian] [Spanish]

- Letter by co-facilitators Belize and Denmark on the process to take decisions on critical issues addressed in the report of the Secretary-General (14 March 2016)
- Letter from the President of the General Assembly on the Secretary-General Report (3 March 2016)
- 2030 SD agenda: roadmap proposed by two co-facilitators (Belize and Denmark) on process to take decisions on critical issues addressed in the report of the Secretary-General

India-Based Software Engineer Wins First Prize in United Nations #LinksSDGs Data Visualization Challenge
Mr. Abdulqadir Rashik, a software engineer, entrepreneur and founder of India-based Miavy Systems, was awarded the Unite Ideas #LinksSDGs Data Visualization Challenge's top prize for his submission "Links to Sustainable Cities", an interactive visualization that identifies and maps the links between Sustainable Development Goal 11, Sustainable Cities and Communities, and the other 16 Goals.

The project was a collaboration between the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs' Division for Sustainable Development and the Office of Information and Communications Technology. The global data science competition aimed to engage the public in sharing ideas about how to visualize the interlinkages between the Sustainable Development Goals, a set of 17 global goals and 169 targets that form the basis of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

By identifying the number, type and directionality of links, the tool identifies which goals would most likely create opportunities for, or barriers to, the development of cities and communities that are inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. These include ensuring decent work and economic growth, facilitating industry innovation and building resilient infrastructure, encouraging responsible consumption and production, and reducing income inequality.

#LinksSDGs is the third challenge issued by Unite Ideas, a big data crowdsourcing platform developed by the Office of Information and Communications Technology to facilitate collaboration among academia, civil society and United Nations offices, and to mobilize data scientists and software developers worldwide to help tackle the complex issues faced by the Organization and its Member States though the creation of open source solutions. To date, academia, the general public and private companies have responded to the Unite Ideas challenges with more than 35 open source solutions, many of which will be used by the United Nations or shared with Member States.

The winning #LinksSDGs solution, along with other finalist submissions, can be viewed at unite.un.org/ideas.

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