Stage at Global Citizen Live Paris Copyright - Katre Olmez

World Leaders Pledge to Save the Planet at Global Citizen

$100B Climate Pledge, $6B for Famine Relief, and Vaccine Justice at Global Citizen Live!

Official partner of Global Citizen through a joint program Elevating Agricultural Adaptation the BKMC attended Global Citizen Live in Paris. The 24-hour broadcasted festival spanning seven continents and bringing together over 70 artists, activists, and leaders raised more than US$1.1B, 157M trees, and over 60M COVID-19 vaccines.

While calling for leaders to make financial and political commitments to agricultural adaptation, the BKMC calls to direct such resources to CGIAR. At Global Citizen Live, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced a €140 million pledge while Mark Rutte, Prime Minister of the Netherlands, announced a €75 million pledge, and Meryame Kitir, Belgian Minister of Development Cooperation and Major Cities Policy, announced a €6 million pledge to CGIAR.

The BKMC is strongly advocating for more attention to the most vulnerable in the world, supporting smallholder farmers and climate change adaptation. Thanks to all joint efforts, several world leaders made pledges to commit to vaccine distribution, fighting hunger, education for all as well as battling the impacts of climate change.

Under the leadership of Co-chair Ban Ki-moon, the BKMC thanks Ursula Von Der Leyen, President of the European Commission, Prime Minister Mark Rutte of Netherlands, Minister of International Development Dag Inge Ulstein of Norway and Meryame Kitir Minister of Development Cooperation of Belgium and so many more for their commitments to the most vulnerable in our world.

Check out Global Citizen’s impact report here to find out about the details. 


Coldplay Supports the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s Call for Climate Action

Coldplay’s call to action echoed the urging of Indonesian climate advocates, who co-signed a letter to President Joko Widodo, widely known throughout the country as Jokowi, to reaffirm Indonesia’s commitments to protecting rainforests from deforestation, investing in renewable energy, and achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre is an official partner of Global Citizen through a joint program Elevating Agricultural Adaptation and will be attending Global Citizen Live in Paris, where we will see a massive call to action, spanning seven continents and bringing together over 70 artists, activists, and leaders in our push for an equitable end to the COVID-19 pandemic, relief for the hunger crisis, protecting the environment, and more. 

Join us to advocate for the climate resilience of smallholder farmers around the world by championing them and calling on world leaders to strengthen food security. Check out this link for actions you can take! 

Watch the livestream here:

Co-chair Ban Ki-moon Visits Vienna

On September 7 – 9, 2021 – Vienna, Co-chair of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens (BKMC), Ban Ki-moon and his wife Madam Yoo Soon-taek along with Former South Korean Ambassador to the United Nations Kim Sook arrived in Vienna, Austria. During the two-day visit former UN Secretary-General Ban attended many bilateral meetings, visited the UN Headquarters in Vienna as well as the BKMC office. BKMC board member H.E. Ambassador Sadiq Marafi of Kuwait hosted an amazing welcome dinner inviting several high-level guests including H.E. Marzouq Al Ghanim, Speaker of Kuwait’s Parliament, BKMC Co-chair Heinz Fischer, IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi. The dinner provided the Co-chairs and H.E. Ambassador Marafi an opportunity to discuss the collaboration between the Embassy of Kuwait and the BKMC.

The second day started with the former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon revisiting the United Nations Headquarters in Vienna. At the Vienna International Centre, he met with UNODC Director General Ghada Fathi Waly, International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi, UNIDO Director General Li Yong as well as Martin Nesirky Director of the United Nations Information Service. The discussions focused on the current and future collaborations between the agencies and the BKMC regarding the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, Rule of Law, climate change and empowering young people.

BK Kurz trifft Ban Ki Moon im BKA. 08.09.2021, Foto: Dragan Tatic

In the afternoon, former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had bilateral meetings with the Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg and the Mayor of Vienna, Michael Ludwig taking the opportunity to talk about, the situation in Afghanistan, the pandemic, and climate change. BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon also presented the government leaders with signed copies of his new memoir “Resolved” underlining the importance of multilateralism in a divided world.

On his final day Co-chair Ban visited the offices of the BKMC in Vienna and took the chance to catch up with the team and the BKMC’s activities. Following the visit, Co-chair Ban’s final stop was a farewell lunch hosted by H.E. Ambassador Shin of Korea to discuss the UN’s history and anti-corruption efforts with IACA Dean Thomas Stelzer.


Access the photo album below:

BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon Visit Vienna 2021  

How Funding for Farmers Can Help End Hunger and Poverty

Guest Blog

By Joe McCarthy

Globally, there are over 500 million smallholder farms, working on which are over a billion people who cultivate fruits and vegetables and raise animals to create the food that ends up providing half of the world’s calories.

By preventing hunger and generating economic activity, these farmers create the conditions for communities to thrive. But farming is an arduous profession made even more challenging by the worsening effects of climate change.

The world is at a crossroads — now is the time to put the full weight of global development behind the people who put food on all of our tables.  Read our new content piece with Global Citizen HERE and find out why funding farmers is the biggest step in fighting poverty and hunger around the world. 


Roundtable on Effective Women Leadership – Women’s Empowerment Programme Latin America

On the 19th of August 2021, the Roundtable on Effective Women Leadership took place as part of the Women’s Empowerment Programme Latin America. The aim of this Roundtable was to foster an impactful and personal exchange of experiences, ideas, and advice, inspiring both, the aspiring leaders and the high-level leaders. 

The Roundtable was moderated by Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens (BKMC) CEO Monika Froehler. 

H.E. Maria Fernanda EspinosaPresident of the 73rd UN General Assembly, quoted the words of her role model, her own mother, who said: “No one is going to come, knock on your door and tell you that you have your opportunity.” She highlighted the importance of crafting one’s own future and taking quick action in the position of leadership.

Dr. Irina Bokova, former Director-General at UNESCOhighlighted that leadership for her means to lead by example, to honor your values and believes, to take responsibility for your own decisions and to encourage your teamsShe concluded by emphasizing that women should support women.

María Elena AgüeroSecretary-General of Club de Madrid, gave prominence to the importance of commitment, solidarity, and necessity of networking. Furthermore, she accentuated the relevance of spreading awareness about gender equality to boys and men.

Natalie Deacon, Executive Director Corporate Affairs and Sustainability, President Avon Foundation for Women, highlighted the importance of role models, as “you cannot be what you cannot see”. Additionally, she pointed out the significance of creating the right environment for women to thrive as well as looking beyond gender to achieve more inclusivity.

Following the inspirational talks by these four senior-level women leaders, our Global Citizen Fellows (GC Fellows) took the lessons learned from the Roundtable and came up with 5 guiding principles on Effective Women Leadership. These guiding principles will be combined to form a “Manifesto on Women Leadership” that our GC Fellows can look back to in the future. 

Joining forces with CARE Nederland

In the second half of 2021, the Ban Ki-moon Centre and CARE Nederland – CARE Climate Change and Resilience Platform signed a Memorandum of Understanding. This new and exciting collaboration aims to strengthen women leadership to combat the effects of climate change. Stay tuned to find out how we will join our forces to advance climate adaptation.


Founded in 1945, CARE International works around the globe to save lives, defeat poverty and achieve social justice. We put women and girls in the centre because we know that we cannot overcome poverty until all people have equal rights and opportunities. CARE International works in 100 countries to assist more than 68 million people to improve basic health and education, fight hunger, increase access to clean water and sanitation, expand economic opportunity, confront climate change and recover from disasters. More than 70% of those helped are women.

Education 4 Justice Roundtable of the Women’s Empowerment Programme Latin America

On the 22nd of July 2021, the Roundtable on Education 4 Justice (E4J) took place as part of the Women’s Empowerment Programme Latin America The aim of this Roundtable was to foster a thorough understanding of E4J and motivate the young women to become active agents for E4J. The E4J initiative – under the Global Programme for the Implementation of the Doha Declaration – seeks to prevent crime and promote a culture of lawfulness through education activities designed for primary, secondary and tertiary levels. 

Speakers Incentive Talks

The Roundtable was moderated by United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime E4J Coordinator Lulua Asaad. 

The first speaker, Ambassador Miguel Ruiz Cabañas, Mexican Foreign Service, Coordinator of SDG Initiative at the Monterrey Institute of Technology  and Higher Education (ITESM), informed the Global Citizen Fellows about the high number of forced marriages of women under the age of 18 years, which leads to a severe lack of education. His message to our GC Fellows was: “We have to change cultural patterns”. 

Mr. Serge Brammertz, Chief Prosecutor, International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, used his talk to highlight that justice is not only about the court, but about our understanding of justice in the private sphere. 

Hon. Vanessa Ruiz, Senior Judge for the Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia, United States of America and the former President of the  International Association of Women Judges, followed with her statement that the citizenry must realize what the rule of law is and why it matters. Furthermore, Hon. Ruiz emphasized, that young-aged girls must be educated about their fundamental rights and freedoms.

The last speaker of the Roundtable was Ms. Luciana Asper y Valdez (Public Prosecutor, Brazil; E4J Champion and UNODC/UNESCO Policy Guides Contributor). In her incentive talk, she highlighted that the GC Fellows should maintain the focus on their core values and become an ambassador for them. 

As the next step of our Women Empowerment Programme Latin America, we look forward to our GC Fellows to turn ideas into action and tackle the Global Goals in their communities and address Education 4 Justice (E4J) challenges.

SDG Dialogueforum Austria “Building forward better with Agenda 2030”

SDG Dialogueforum Austria “Building forward better with Agenda 2030″ on the theme ‘Together for sustainable development after Covid-19’ is an event co-hosted by the Ban Ki-moon Centre, SDG Watch Austria and the Austrian inter-ministerial Working Party on Agenda 2030. It will discuss the implementation of the Agenda 2030 in Austria, as well as putting emphasis on four focus areas with Innovation pools on “Digitalization”, “Women, youth and ‘leaving no one behind’”, climate action and adaptation to climate change, and Austria in the global context. 

The public livestream will start on September 28 at 14.30 PM. 

Date: 28 September 2021, Closed Session 12.30 – 14.30 PM CET, Public Livestream 14.30 -17.30 PM CET 

Location: Hybrid – Virtual/Museum of Natural History Vienna

Please note that this event will be held in GERMAN.

Das SDG Dialogforum Österreich “Building forward better mit der Agenda 2030” wird unter dem Thema ‘Gemeinsam für eine nachhaltige Entwicklung nach Covid-19’ von der Bundesverwaltung sowie Vertreterinnen und Vertretern der Zivilgesellschaft gemeinsam veranstaltet. Es geht darum, die konkrete Umsetzung der Agenda 2030 und der 17 Ziele für Nachhaltige Entwicklung (SDGs) in Österreich zu diskutieren – mit einem besonderen Schwerpunkt auf entsprechende Innovationen.

Wie im SDG 17 „Partnerschaften zur Erreichung der Ziele” vorgesehen, wollen wir mit jährlichen SDG-Dialogforen Multi-Stakeholder-Partnerschaften fördern. Diese sollen dazu beitragen, Wissen und Expertise zu mobilisieren und so die politische Kohärenz für nachhaltige Entwicklung zu steigern.

In neuartigen Innovationspools werden relevante Fragen für die SDG-Zielerreichung behandelt, um die Ergebnisse anschließend in die weitere Arbeit zur Umsetzung in Österreich einfließen zu lassen. Beim ersten Dialogforum konzentrieren wir uns auf die Herausforderungen und Möglichkeiten beim Weg aus der COVID-19-Pandemie. Die Innovationspools sind zugänglich für geladene Gäste aus dem öffentlicher und privater Sektor, Zivilgesellschaft und Wissenschaft, und werden zeitgerecht ausgesendet. 

Wir danken Ihnen schon jetzt, dass Sie sich diese Veranstaltung vormerken und freuen uns, Sie im September beim SDG Dialogforum Österreich begrüßen zu dürfen!

Bitte beachten Sie, dass am 28. September von 12.30 – 14.30 Uhr eine geschlossene Sitzung stattfinden wird, welche nur für TeilnehmerInnen der Innovationspools gedacht ist.

Der öffentliche Livestream wird am 28. September um 14.30 Uhr beginnen. 

Datum: 28 September 2021, Geschlossene Sitzung 12.30 – 14.30 Uhr, öffentlicher Livestream 14.30 -17.30 Uhr

Ort:  Hybrides Event: teils physisch auf Einladung/Naturhistorisches Museum Wien

Zur Registrierung 

Weitere Informationen zum Dialogforum

Ban Ki-moon Calls on Countries to Invest in Climate Adaptation


Global Citizen, 22 April 2021

“Only through such solidarity can we limit climate risks.” 

Countries must use this Earth Day as an opportunity to invest in climate adaptation measures, Ban Ki-moon, the former United Nations secretary-general, said in a statement on Wednesday

The veteran diplomat said that climate change already poses “risks to lives and livelihoods,” and that these consequences will only multiply in the decades to come. Countries have to rapidly accelerate their climate commitments to prevent further environmental decline.

“No nation or community is immune from the impact of climate change, but the vulnerable are feeling the effects first and worst,” Ban said.

Climate change is a neutral force, but it’s happening to societies rife with inequalities. As a result, people living in poverty are more likely to be impacted by climate change. Women are also more impacted than men, and Black people, Indigneous people, and people of color (BIPOC) are disproportionately harmed. The intersectional nature of climate impacts means that all efforts to protect the planet must prioritize climate justice.

This means that at-risk communities must receive the resources they need to prepare for and adapt to climate shocks, setting them up for a resilient future. 

The world’s smallholder farmers, in particular, need urgent assistance. In many agricultural hotspots, climate change is making it harder to grow crops. Farmers who tend small plots of land are both losing their sources of income and food in the process. Without money to recover and adapt, these farmers are often forced to sell their livestock and land to avoid hunger.

Supporting farmers means first and foremost reducing greenhouse gas emissions to prevent catastrophic global warming. In material terms, it also means providing them with the technology, seeds, and market access that will allow them to withstand climate impacts. Facilitating farmer cooperatives can help farmers build local networks of power and resources.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens is joined by Global Citizen for its advocacy around this cause and overall climate action.

Supporting smallholder farmers would have benefits beyond local harvests and individual income levels. It would also reduce global hunger at a time when hunger is on the rise, bolster local and national economies, support broader community welfare, and mitigate the factors that lead to conflict.

More than 40 leaders are attending the US Leaders Summit on Climate on Earth Day. While they’ll primarily focus on how to align policy with the Paris climate agreement, they can also carve out space to collaborate on global adaptation efforts, Ban said.

“Only through such solidarity can we limit climate risks and build a world of peace, dignity, and prosperity on a healthy planet — leaving no one behind.”


The Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens is excited to announce that it will fund 10 stipends for the Ghent University 2021 Summer School Program in cooperation with the Ghent University, Faculty of Medicine and Health SciencesANSER Network & BeMSA Ghent


Applicants can choose to apply for a stipend for one or both of the programs in “Sexual & Reproductive Health & Rights” and “Health & Globalization”. 

The Ghent University student to student-led Summer School is taking place virtually, from July 4-14, 2021. Students enrolled in health sciences, humanities, medical and social sciences have the opportunity to attend online lectures taught by prominent professors and renowned international experts in the fields of human rights, health inequalities, migration, infectious diseases and more.  

What awaits you? 

Who can apply? 

  • People between the age of 18 and 35 

  • Enrolled in a Bachelor’s degree or higher 

  • Multidisciplinary academic and professional background 

  • Minimum level of English language skills B2 

  • Africa, Eastern Europe, and Middle East

How to apply? 

Please send your application by 1 May 2021 to: with the subject line “BKMC STIPEND GHENT SUMMER SCHOOL”: 

  • Curriculum Vitae in English 

  • 500-word motivation letter 

  • Knowledge about the SDGs is an asset 

  • Name of the desired program(s) in email text

Read our leaflet for more information!