DESA NGO News — 31 October 2016

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17 October - 4 November: Human Rights Committee (International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights), 118th Session
The Committee will consider the following State reports during the session: Azerbaijan, Colombia, Morocco, Poland, Republic of Moldova, Slovakia

Country Report Task Forces will consider and adopt list of issues on the following countries: Honduras, Liechtenstein, Madagascar, Mongolia, Pakistan

Task Forces will consider and adopt list of issues on reports submitted by the countries listed below (Optional Reporting Procedure - focused reports based on replies to lists of issues prior to reporting): Paraguay, Togo

24 October - 18 November: 65th session of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), and pre-sessional working group for the 67th session
65th session (24 October – 18 November 2016) and
Pre-sessional Working Group for the 67th session (21-25 November 2016)
Geneva, Palais des Nations, Room XVI, A Building.

The Committee will examine the reports of the following countries during its 65th session: Antigua and Barbuda (in the absence of a report), Argentina, Armenia, Bangladesh, Belarus, Bhutan, Burundi, Canada, Estonia, Honduras, Netherlands, Switzerland.

The pre-sessional working group will convene in closed meeting and prepare lists of issues for the following States parties that are scheduled to be considered at the 67th session: Barbados, Costa Rica, Italy, Montenegro, Niger, Nigeria, Thailand.

In addition, it will prepare a list of issues prior to reporting for Luxembourg under the new simplified reporting.

2 November: Second Meeting to Provide Updates on the 71st GA's 2nd and 3rd Committees for Stakeholders
DESA/DSD is convening another meeting to share updates on the 2nd and 3rd Committees with Stakeholders. The WebEx meeting will be held November 2, 2016 at 9:30 AM New York Time.

The Agenda is as follows:

Joop Theunissen, DESA/OESCSC/PCB: Updates from 2nd Committee
Federica Pietracci, DESA/DSD: Introduction and Report on 2nd Committee agenda item 2 Sustainable Development
Wenyan Yang, DESA/DSPD/SPDB: Updates from 3rd Committee
Yongyi Min, DESA/SSB: Updates on the development of indicators for the SDGs
Anjali Rangaswami FFDO: Financing for Development Updates

The WebEx call in details are below so you may join remotely.
Meeting number: 796 138 100
Meeting password: Meet1234
Click here to join the WebEx meeting

26 - 27 November: Global Sustainable Transport Conference, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will convene the first-ever Global Sustainable Transport Conference from 26-27 November 2016 in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.

The Conference will be held at the highest level and will bring together key stakeholders from Governments, the private sector, and civil society to engage in dialogue that emphasizes the integrated and cross-cutting nature of sustainable transport. All modes of transport - road, rail, aviation and maritime - will be addressed as well as transport both in urban and rural areas, energy and transport, public transport, countries in special situations, road safety, and financing for sustainable transport, as well as finding a new paradigm for transport sustainability.

NGO representatives will be able to attend conference plenaries, intervene in the round tables, subject to the availability of time, and organise side events.
Pre-registration is required and will be open for NGOs in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council from 19 September - 31 October 2016. Registration is non-transferrable.

To register:

More information:

3 December: International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD)
Since 1992, the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) has been commemorated annually on 3 December around the world. The theme for this year’s International Day is “Achieving 17 Goals for the Future We Want”. This theme notes the recent adoption of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the UN General Assembly, and the role of these goals in building a more inclusive and equitable world for persons with disabilities. Tell us how you are commemorating IDPD in your part of the world (email: Find out more about IDPD 2016 at:

1 - 10 February: 55th Session of the Commission for Social Development (CSocD55)
The CSocD55 will take place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 1 to 10 February 2017. The priority theme for the 2017-2018 review and policy cycle would be “Strategies for the eradication of poverty to achieve sustainable development for all”. From 30-31 January 2017, a Civil Society Forum will be convened at UN Headquarters. The Forum is hosted jointly by UNDESA-DSPD, the NGO Committee for Social Development and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung.

Online Registration: The deadline is 20 January 2017.
    • The CSocD55 is only open to NGOs in Consultative Status with ECOSOC
    • NGOs can register up to 10 Representatives
Online Application Form for Side Events: The deadline is 2 December 2016.
    • A list of all confirmed side-events will be posted online on the website of CSocd55 by 16 December 2016.
Requests to make oral presentations: Coming Soon

To learn more about NGO Participation at CSocD55, please visit:


Join Facebook chat: How can climate change resilience bring opportunities to reduce inequalities?
As the Paris Agreement on climate change is about to enter into force on 4 November 2016, don't miss the opportunity to discuss climate change resilience and how this can help reduce inequalities in the world, in a Facebook chat on 3 November from 10 am to 11 am EDT.

UN DESA’s Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development, Lenni Montiel, and the team of authors behind the World Economic and Social Survey 2016: “Climate Change Resilience – An opportunity for reducing inequalities” in UN DESA’s Development Policy and Analysis Division, will be on UN DESA’s Facebook page to discuss the findings of this survey and answer your questions.

- Find out how governments can play a vital role in reducing the risks of climate change to vulnerable populations;
- Deepen your understanding about the links between climate and development;
- Learn what type of policies would address root causes of inequalities and build climate change resilience.

Join here on 3 November at 10 am EDT:

Questions can be shared on the Facebook page in advance of the chat. To share comments and questions via Twitter, use the hashtag #WESSchat. For more information and to access the World Economic and Social Survey 2016: Watch the promotional video for the WESS 2016 and the Facebook chat:

Call for films for the UN Enable Film Festival 2016
The United Nations Enable Film Festival (UNEFF) includes short disabilty-related films selected on the basis of their content and message that can help raise awareness of disability issues and further promote the full and effective participation of persons with disabilities in society. Deadline: 20 November. Films are screened at UN Headquarters on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Find out more about submitting your film for the Festival:

Send in your photographs for the UN Enable Photograph Exhibition 2016
The UN Enable Photograph Exhibition held at UN Headquarters on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities works towards the full integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of the lives of their communities – political, social, economic and cultural, and on an equal basis with others. The photographs selected aim to raise awareness about disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities. In light of the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention, this year the UNEPE will highlight the positive ways in which the Convention has impacted the lives of people around the world. Deadline: 20 November. Find out more about submitting photographs for the Exhibition:

Call for Submissions for the CSocD55 Photo Exhibition: Deadline: 21 November 2016
For 2017, the 55th session of the Commission for Social Development (CSocD55) has selected the following priority theme: “Strategies for the eradication of poverty to achieve sustainable development for all”. As part of its activities for CSocD55, the UNDESA’s Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) is hosting a photo exhibition at United Nations Headquarters in New York City from 1-10 February 2017, during the Commission. Photos selected for the exhibition will be viewed by the many visitors to the UN, including government officials, experts, and NGO representatives during this important event, and will be included in an online exhibition brochure distributed to key partners and stakeholders. Learn more:

Pre-registration for the fiftieth session of the Commission on Population and Development
NGOs in Consultative Status with ECOSOC are invited to pre-register for the fiftieth session of the Commission on Population and Development. The fiftieth Session will take place at United Nations Headquarters in New York from 3 to 7 April 2017. The priority theme of the Session is “Changing population age structures and sustainable development.” Online pre-registration will run from November 2016 to March 2017. Due to space constraints, a maximum of 5 representatives of each organization is permitted to attend.

NGOs may also submit statements to be circulated as official documents for consideration of the Commission. Written statements may be submitted between 1 November and 1 December 2016. Only the first twenty statements received by 1 December 2016 will be processed by the UN Secretariat and published as formal documents that will be posted on the Session’s website.

Please visit the website of the Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs for more information on NGO participation in the 2017 Session of the Commission:

Role of Governance and All Stakeholders in Mobilizing ICTs for Sustainable Development
Panelists from the World Bank, Columbia University, Microsoft, Artificial Intelligence in Medical Epidemiology (AIME) and Socrata came together for a Second Committee side event on 13 October organized by UN DESA’s Division for Public Administration and Development Management, to discuss the role ICTs can play for achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Speakers underlined that ICTs have a huge potential to help accelerate progress towards the SDGs, even though they are not a shortcut to development. ICTs can allow reliable service delivery as well as lower transaction costs. At the same time, while digital technologies have spread rapidly across the globe, the broader development benefits from using these technologies have lagged behind. The World Bank explained that to get the most out of the digital revolution, countries need to work not only through ICT policies, but also by targeting “analog complements”. Those include strengthening regulations that ensure competition among businesses, adapting workers’ skills to the demands of the new economy, and ensuring that institutions are accountable.

Civil society participants recommended considering access to information and Internet privacy as “analog complements”. Panelists highlighted other important factors, such as investment friendly environment for public private partnerships, effective regulation policies, developing citizens’ skills including digital literacy, and overcoming social challenges such as fear of technology.

DESA Publications

World Economic and Social Survey (WESS) 2016
The World Economic and Social Survey, launched on 3 October 2016, advances our understanding of the climate and development nexus, particularly as it relates to challenges for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It builds upon the recognition that climate change and inequalities are locked in a vicious cycle: climate change triggers hazards which put at greatest risk the poor, the vulnerable and the marginalized—population groups already excluded from socioeconomic progress. While there is considerable anecdotal evidence that the poor and the vulnerable suffer greater harm from climate-related disasters, the report determined that much of the harm is not by accident, but that it is due to the failure of governments to close the development gaps that leave large population groups at risk. The Survey found that governments can play a significant role in reducing the risks of climate change to vulnerable populations. Through transformative policies, the report shows that governments could address the root causes of inequalities and build climate change resilience.



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