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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Global Identity Principles (ID4D)

15 global organizations issue new principles for inclusive, secure identification in the developing world



In its ongoing effort to fight poverty, the World Bank has joined with a number of international partners, issuing a list of 10 key principles to ensure proper identification for citizens in the developing world, particularly with the aid of modern technology.

Entitled Principles on Identification for Sustainable Development: Towards a Digital Age, the new guidelines have been endorsed by a range of organizations from varying industries, including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the United Nations Children’s Fund, and Mastercard.

The newly announced principles are part of a global effort to enable more inclusive and robust identification systems. The United Nations have targeted to provide legal identity for all, including birth registration, by 2030, and the guidelines look to help organizations do their part to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal.

“Given the size and complexity of the global identification gap, no single country, international organization, NGO, or private sector partner can surmount this challenge by working alone — coordination is needed at global, regional and national levels,” Vyjayanti Desai, ID4D program manager at World Bank Group, told One World Identity. “This effort is one step towards shaping a shared vision to advance progress globally.”


The list of 10 principles are broken in to three larger categories:
  • Inclusion, with the goal of universal coverage and accessibility
  • Design, aiming for robust, secure, responsive and sustainable methods of identity
  • Governance, building trust by protecting privacy and user rights
The principles were drawn up with the belief that every person has the right to participate fully in their society and economy. But full participation can be difficult without any verifiable proof of identity.
“No one should face the indignity of exclusion, nor be denied the opportunity to realize their full potential, exercise their rights, or share in progress,” the guidelines state. “No one should be left behind.”

Full details can be found in the full report, but the short list of 10 guiding principles are as follows:
  • Inclusion:
    • 1. Ensuring universal coverage for individuals from birth to death, free from discrimination.
    • 2. Removing barriers to access and usage and disparities in the availability of information and technology.
  • Design:
    • 3. Establishing a robust — unique, secure, and accurate — identity.
    • 4. Creating a platform that is inter-operable and responsive
      to the needs of various users.
    • 5. Using open standards and ensuring vendor and technology neutrality.
    • 6. Protecting user privacy and control through system design.
    • 7. Planning for financial and operational sustainability
      without compromising accessibility.
  • Governance:
    • 8. Safeguarding data privacy, security, and user rights through a comprehensive legal and regulatory framework.
    • 9. Establishing clear institutional mandates and accountability.
    • 10. Enforcing legal and trust frameworks though independent oversight and adjudication of grievances.
Republished from One World Identity (OWI) blog.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Indigenous Lands: Most Valuable Property on the Planet

Indigenous Peoples Lands Guard 80 Percent of World’s Biodiversity

Baher Kamal - Inter Press Service

They are more than 370 million self-identified peoples in some 70 countries around the world. In Latin America alone there are over 400 groups, each with a distinct language and culture, though the biggest concentration is in Asia and the Pacific– with an estimated 70 per cent. And their traditional lands guard over 80 per cent of the planet’s biodiversity.

Download Report from the World Bank
They are the indigenous peoples.

They have rich and ancient cultures and view their social, economic, environmental and spiritual systems as interdependent. And they make valuable contributions to the world’s heritage thanks to their traditional knowledge and their understanding of ecosystem management.

“But they are also among the world’s most vulnerable, marginalized and disadvantaged groups. And they have in-depth, varied and locally rooted knowledge of the natural world, “says the Rome-based International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD).

“Unfortunately, indigenous peoples too often pay a price for being different and far too frequently face discrimination,” the Fund, which hosts on Feb 10 and 13 on Rome the Global Meeting of the Indigenous People Forum in the Italian capital.

During this biennial meeting, the United Nations specialized agency will bring together representatives of Indigenous Peoples’ Organizations from across the world, as well as leaders of partner bodies to engage in a direct dialogue and improve participation of indigenous peoples in the Fund’s country programs.

Over the centuries, the Indigenous peoples “have been dispossessed of their lands, territories and resources and, as a consequence, have often lost control over their own way of life. Worldwide, they account for 5 per cent of the population, but represent 15 per cent of those living in poverty.”

One of the most effective ways to enable indigenous peoples to overcome poverty, it adds, is to support their efforts to shape and direct their own destinies, and to ensure that they are the co-creators and co-managers of development initiatives.

Rights of Indigenous Peoples

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, adopted by the General Assembly on Sep. 13, 2007, establishes a universal framework of minimum standards for the survival, dignity, well-being and rights of the world’s indigenous peoples.

The Declaration addresses individual and collective rights; cultural rights and identity; and rights to education, health, employment and language. And it outlaws discrimination against indigenous peoples and promotes their full and effective participation in all matters that concern them.

It also ensures their right to remain distinct and to pursue their own priorities in economic, social and cultural development. The International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples is observed on Aug. 9 every year.
Announcing the Forum, IFAD noted that it has more than 30 years of experience working with indigenous peoples. In fact, since 2003, an average of about 22 per cent of the Fund’s annual lending has supported initiatives for indigenous peoples, mainly in Asia and Latin America.

Since 2007, it has administered the Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility (IPAF). Through small grants of up to 50,000 dollars, it supports the aspirations of indigenous peoples by funding micro-projects that strengthen their culture, identity, knowledge, natural resources, and intellectual-property and human rights.

To help translate policy commitments into action, it has established an Indigenous Peoples’ Forum that promotes a process of dialogue and consultation among indigenous peoples’ organizations, IFAD staff and member states.

The Fund empowers communities to participate fully in determining strategies for their development and to pursue their own goals and visions by strengthening grass-roots organizations and local governance.

Land is not only crucial to the survival of indigenous peoples, as it is for most poor rural people – it is central to their identities, the Fund reports. “They have a deep spiritual relationship to their ancestral territories. Moreover, when they have secure access to land, they also have a firm base from which to improve their livelihoods.”

According to this international Fund, indigenous peoples and their knowledge systems have a special role to play in the conservation and sustainable management of natural resources.

Indigenous Women’s Untapped Potential

Also named “bank of the poorest” as it provides grants and low-interest credits to the poorest rural communities, recognises indigenous women’s untapped potential as stewards of natural resources and biodiversity, as guardians of cultural diversity, and as peace brokers in conflict mitigation.

Nonetheless, it says, indigenous women are often the most disadvantaged members of their communities because of their limited access to education, assets and credit, and their exclusion from decision-making processes.

This ‘bank of the poorest’ is a specialised agency of the United Nations, which was established as an international financial institution in 1977, being one of the major outcomes of the 1974 World Food Conference, which was organised in response to the food crises of the early 1970s that primarily affected the Sahelian countries of Africa.

That world conference resolved that “an International Fund for Agricultural Development should be established immediately to finance agricultural development projects primarily for food production in the developing countries.”

One of the most important insights emerging from the Conference was that the causes of food insecurity and famine were not so much failures in food production but structural problems relating to poverty, and to the fact that the majority of the developing world’s poor populations were concentrated in rural areas.

Since its creation, IFAD invested 18.4 billion dollars to help 464 million rural poor people.

Republished from Morung Express

Sunday, February 12, 2017

United Nations Global Citizen Essay Contest

UN launches Many Languages for 2017, One World Student Essay Contest

Win a 10 day Expense Paid Trip to New York and meet the Secretary General


Minsk, 7 February (Belarus News) – The United Nations has launched the fourth edition of the Many Languages, One World Student Essay Contest, BelTA learned from the United Nations Department of Public Information in Belarus.

The United Nations Academic Impact, a program of the Outreach Division of the Department of Public Information, and ELS Educational Services invite full-time college and university students 18 years of age or older to take part in the fourth Many Languages, One World Student Essay Contest.

The essay must be 2,000 words or fewer and written in one of the official languages of the United Nations (English, Arabic, Spanish, Chinese, Russian, or French). It must discuss global citizenship and cultural understanding, and the role that multilingual ability can play in fostering these. The essay submission deadline is 16 March.

The winners will be invited to attend the 2017 Many Languages, One World Global Youth Forum to be hosted by Northeastern University. They will be awarded with an all-expense paid trip to Boston and New York City between 15-26 July 2017. The forum participants will present their views at the UN Headquarters in New York and create action plans related to the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

New UN Manual Empowers Indigenous Peoples

Empowerment through Sustainability

This is an important article for us to share with our readers because it creates international participatory engagement with potentially independent cultures and offers indigenous nations authority and rights over their territories. The problem we have detected is that indigenous peoples who fail to take up their rights and become sustainable through active stakeholder participation in the United Nations SDGs and Agenda 2030 risk being left behind and having their nation-state control their territories and operate in the stead of territorial concessions. Learn more about becoming a stakeholder in the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development by becoming a member with Globcal International.

A new UN manual gives more say to indigenous peoples in development projects that affect them.

Download the UN Manual

10 October 2016 – The United Nations agricultural agency today unveiled a new manual that seeks to ensure that indigenous peoples, custodians of more than 80 per cent of global biodiversity, are able to freely give or deny their consent in development interventions that affect their natural resources or their way of life.

The UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) Manual on Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) outlines essential steps that should be followed so that Indigenous Peoples are able to participate in a manner that is free of coercion and with the necessary information in a development project – from its design to sharing its achievements after it has been completed – prior to any decisions having been made.

“None of us would allow someone to come to our home and start any activity of any kind without our agreement,” said Marcela Villarreal, Director of FAO Office for Partnerships, Advocacy and Capacity Building, in a news release today, explaining the concept of FPIC.

“It is shocking that in the 21st century, [there is an] underlying understanding that there are different rights for different human beings. […] This is de facto marginalization by dividing rights for first and second class citizens,” she added.

According to FAO, there are about 370 million indigenous individuals living in more than 90 countries, estimated to make up 75 percent of the world's cultural diversity and speaking well over half of the world's 7,000 surviving languages.

However, over the past decades, they have been facing mounting challenges related to their livelihoods, respect for their rights and spiritual beliefs, and access to lands, natural resources and territories.

Furthermore, mounting pressures from some extraction industries in some parts of the world are placing them at great peril.

FAO said today that a constant variable in all the actions that lead to forced displacement and destruction of their natural resources is the lack of respect for their FPIC right.

Datu Rico Pedecio, head of the Manobo Tribe in Leyte, Philippines. Following the devastation of typhoon Haiyan, the Manobo replanted valuable forest areas and gardens destroyed by the storms. Photo: FAO/Rommel Cabrera


The right of Indigenous Peoples to FPIC has also been acknowledged in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, adopted by the General Assembly in September 2007.

Indigenous knowledge vital for sustainable development

The importance of indigenous peoples' traditional knowledge systems and their contributions to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as well as in combatting climate change is receiving greater attention.

This point was noted by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in his address to the Arctic Circle Assembly this weekend. FAO also highlighted this importance.

In today's news release, speaking specifically on food security and combatting malnutrition, the agency noted: “Indigenous Peoples' food systems can help the rest of humanity expand its narrow food base, currently reliant on only a small set of staple crops.”

“Additionally, by protecting forest resources, many indigenous communities help mitigate the negative impacts of climate change,” it added.

Publisher's Note: This article was published from the United Nations News Center to inform our members of current activities and opportunities with the United Nations. The information in the article presented may not be valid for all indigenous nations or tribes because of current government or state treaties with some tribes as dependents, it may be necessary for those who are subject citizens or national residents to organize cooperative businesses that can enable them to operate independently to overcome their nation or state with understanding. Those interested in developing balanced international authority and claiming their international rights under the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples should contact Globcal International to learn how to become more autonomous and sovereign to represent themselves better within the international theater.
  

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

New Partnership Financing for SDGs

UN leader announces launch of new partnership platform to support financing for the Sustainable Development Goals

At UN Headquarters, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the High-level meeting on Financial Solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). UN Photo/Amanda Voisard

10 October 2016 – Announcing the launch today of a new platform for scaling up innovative finance solutions to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the initiative can help in identifying and piloting innovative finance instruments that can drive investment and support well thought-out SDG interventions.


“Financial actors and institutions are already beginning to develop solutions for attracting private capital in support of the 2030 Agenda [for Sustainable Development],” Mr. Ban told a meeting with high-level officials from Ministries of finance and foreign affairs, together with leaders from major global financial institutions at UN Headquarters today.

Titled 'Financial solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),' the gathering showcased the initiatives and examples from around the world on how best business and the financial services sector can engage in the SDG process and transform markets.

Mr. Ban said that the proposed multi-stakeholder Financial Innovation Platform would support the identification and piloting of innovative finance instruments, and would engage key development actors, including Governments, civil society, philanthropic organizations, entrepreneurs, institutional investors, banks, project developers and development finance institutions.


Mr. Ban, who will step down as the top UN official when his tenure ends on 31 December, expressed hope that the Platform will provide the best possible know-how to support the efforts by the incoming Secretary-General.

“Sustainability and stability of the financial system are mutually reinforcing,” he said, emphasizing the importance of reorienting existing financial flows to sustainable objectives so that investors will reap the benefits in the form of secure markets and thriving consumers.

That is why Governments, gathering in Addis Ababa in July 2015, adopted an an action agenda aimed at creating policy and regulatory environments that provide incentives for long-term and sustainable investments, he added.


According to Mr. Ban, the financial sector, spearheaded by companies such as Aviva, is promoting the creation of international benchmarks while the World Bank Treasury Office is issuing innovative financial instruments that are generating new investment opportunities.

Efforts are now needed to build on these initiatives, and the United Nations can play “a catalytic role” and intends to create a venue where leaders from all sectors, including government, can join forces, learn from each other and align their actions for greater collective effect, the Secretary-General said.

Many new ideas and solutions are already in play. International Housing Solutions, a global private equity investor, is using both catalytic and commercial capital investors to make green homes affordable to a wide population in Sub-Saharan Africa. CEO Michael Falcone said at the meeting that the creation of a UN platform will help to expand affordable green homes across the region.

“We are engaged in nothing less than the transformation of global capital markets,” said Mark Wilson, Group CEO of Aviva, an international insurance and investment company. “That demands major change. “If business isn't sustainable then society is at risk and if society isn't sustainable then business is at risk. So it's just enlightened self-interest for business to support the SDGs,” he said.


"While there are many pathways forward to achieve the SDGs, one thing is clear: business as usual is not an option to close the $2.5 trillion annual funding gap in developing countries alone," said Judith Rodin, President, The Rockefeller Foundation. "To realize the SDGs we need to foster a new era of collaboration and coordination, and the UN Secretary-General has unprecedented convening power to do this by bringing together leaders from different sectors,” she stressed.

The concept of a new multi-stakeholder forum to help finance progress on the Goals emerged following the 2015 Financing for Development Conference that took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. At that Conference, world leaders called for creative and innovative solutions by the private sector to scale-up investments in activities that contribute to the sustainable development.

It is now clear to many in the finance sector, that there are new demands of the marketplace as well as shareholders seeking sustainable investments. This is why a new framework for sustainable investing is needed. The know-how that is being made available within the finance sector will be shared and made accessible: the platform will accelerate solutions and encourage scale up.

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