“Do not erect walls; build bridges!” Ban Ki-moon urges at the 4th International Growth in Transition Conference

“Sustainable development must become the hallmark of this era,”

claimed BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon at the “4th International Growth in Transition Conference” hosted by Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2018 at the Austria Center Vienna on November 14th, 2018. This year, the conference focused on topic of ‘Europe’s Transformation: Where People Matter.’

The conference was facilitated by Mr. Peter Woodward, Co-Founder and Director of Quest Associates, and featured Minister Elisabeth Koestinger of the Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism of Austria and Deputy Director-General Wolfgang Burtscher of the Research and Innovation Department at the European Commission.

The participants actively participated in discussing sustainability and were given time to introduce their work to each other.

During the moderated discussion session, Co-chair Ban said that “there is no country in the world that can solve the global issues alone no matter how powerful a country may be” and stressed that global citizenship should be fostered among people.

Ban also emphasized the importance of advancing the SDGs during his keynote speech. The implementation of the SDGs, he said, should be done in the effort of finding #challenges that the world faces. Doing so, Co-chair Ban stressed that empowering youth and women should be the priority. During his tenure as the UN Secretary-General, Ban has established UN Women and UN Youth Envoy.

During the press conference with Minister Koestinger, Ban shared his deep concerns that multilateralism is now under attack. He urged world leaders to be more united to better cooperate and address global challenges together.

“So many people are with passion, and not enough with compassion,”

Ban stressed the importance of tackling global problems with compassion and moral attitude.

“Do not erect walls; build bridges!”

 

Watch the live-streamed video of the conference here:

4th International Growth in Transition Conference: ‘Europe’s Transformation: Where People Matter’- Opening- Key Conference Challenges- Keynote – Sustainable Development: The Pathway To The Future- Political Panel: "Politics, People And Transition" – Introduction to the "Call To Action" Challenge

Gepostet von Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2018 am Mittwoch, 14. November 2018

 

Watch the live-streamed press conference here:

Jetzt live: Pressekonferenz anlässlich der 4. Internationalen Wachstum im Wandel-Konferenz mit Nachhaltigkeitsministerin Elisabeth Köstinger und Ban Ki-Moon (ehemaliger Generalsekretär der Vereinten Nationen und Vorsitzender des Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens)

Gepostet von Für ein nachhaltiges Österreich am Mittwoch, 14. November 2018

“Are International Treaties in Jeopardy?”

The Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens and the Austrian Federal Ministry of Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs (BMEIA) co-organized a forum titled “Are International Treaties in Jeopardy?” in Vienna, Austria on November 13th, 2018.

Prior to the forum, BKMC Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer and CEO Monika Froehler had a meeting with Minister Karin Kneissl, Ambassador Andreas Riecken, Cabinet Karl Ehrlich of the Minister, and Deputy Spokesperson Peter Guschelbauer at the Ministry.

The forum facilitated discussions on international treaties and rapidly changing status quo of the global society to seek for global solutions for global challenges impacting international relations. Both Co-chairs of the Centre delivered a keynote.

Co-chair Fischer, former Austrian President, said that

“The commitment solves challenges and problems like migration through cooperation.”

He continued,

“there is still a long way to go, and we have learned that we must work this way together, respecting each other, compromising our own national benefit in order to sustainably pursue this project of humankind.”

Co-chair Ban, former United Nations Secretary-General, highly criticized that Austria has recently withdrawn from the global compact on migration.

“Ever since the Vienna Convention on the law of treaties was signed almost fifty years ago,” Ban said, “commitments are eroding, treaties are disrespected, and agreements are ignored.”

He emphasized that political leaders should approach global issues with moral perspective rather than following their political will.

“World leaders, they led global visions, global citizenship; they always speak loud and clearly that “I work for humanity.” But, when they go back to national governments, they all become national leaders. That is why I really want to foster global citizenship. We need to work together. Nothing can be done alone.”

In order to solve the global issues, Ban said that it is important for the states to advance the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that must be owned by the member states who should prioritize supporting “women, young people, and the least advantaged.”

During the panel discussion, Co-chair Fischer also pointed out that the international rule of law should be the final goal for a state to reach and that one has to rely on international treaties and agreements.

Minister Kneissl, Deputy Spokesperson Guschelbauer, and Head Thomas Hajnoczi of Disarmament Department of the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs were also featured on the panel as well as Ms. Mona Ali Khalil, former Senior Legal Officer with the UN Office of the Legal Counsel, and Professor Gerhard Hafner for International Law at the University of Vienna.

Watch Co-chair Ban Ki-moon’s keynote: https://youtu.be/dNlaAP0nP2s
Watch Co-chair Heinz Fischer’s keynote: https://youtu.be/JqaFieHNevM

Photo: Ashraf Mahmoud / BMEIA

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens at the 2018 Future Consensus Forum

“2018 Future Consensus Forum: Next Civilized City and Sustainable Development” was co-organized by BKMC partners Yeosijae (Future Consensus Institute)Tsinghua University, and Institute for Global Engagement and Empowerment (IGEE) in Beijing, China on November 3-5th, 2018.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens’ Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a keynote at the opening session of the forum, highlighting the importance of sustainable cities both as the greatest inter-connected challenge and the key enabler of the SDGs. It was received with strong endorsement by the audience which included parliamentarians, mayors and academicians from across the world. Ban also addressed the issues and solutions during media interviews.

A special discussion hosted by the Centre was moderated by Ambassador Kim Won-soo, who is former UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs and a Board Member of the Centre. Featured speakers of the discussion included:

  • Jean Todt: President of FIA; BKMC Board Member
  • Irina Bokova: former Director General of UNESCO; BKMC Board Member
  • Wu Hongbo: Co-director of the Institute for Sustainable Development Goals of Tsinghua University (TUSDG); former United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs
  • Liu Song: Vice President of Alibaba Group

Professor Myongsei Sohn of Yonsei University, who serves as Executive Director of IGEE, also participated in a panel discussion during the second plenary session focusing on the digital era and the next civilized city. The audience actively engaged in the discussions on topics including transportation in smart cities and the reinforcement of road safety, the importance of education in the field of sustainable city planning, policy decision and solidarity, and the role of technology needed for sustainable city.

The Future Consensus Forum aims to
– seek for ways to make the development of future cities sustainable by analyzing the issues modern cities face;
– share the importance of developing a city centered around small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and venture businesses using creativity;
– share the images of a newly civilized city that will realize sustainable society led by digital advancement.

Watch live-streamed video of the forum this year: https://zhibo.ifeng.com/video.html?liveid=122854&fbclid=IwAR0Hx99TMWhomj6Dkd3Z0nmJyVzHiDBMZoO-3gE56BfYayRkc6hPLGOvstU
Videos of the previous forums can be found on the YouTube channel of Yeosijae: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCr8DHn5gQVeJvlOkaaFWnDg

Photo: Yeosijae

BKMC features at the partnership fair of the “SDG Inspiration Day”

“SDG Inspiration Day: The Power of Partnerships to advance the SDGs” was hosted by BKMC partner RELX Group in Zaandam near Amsterdam, the Netherlands on November 6th, 2018. The Centre’s Board Member Márcia Balisciano, who is Director of Corporate Responsibility at RELX, delivered welcome remarks at the opening session.

During the event, the Centre participated in the partnership fair, introducing the vision, mission, and work of the Centre to the participants of the event and potential partners. During the Expert Cafe workout session, people went around the round tables to exchange ideas on how to advance the SDGs. Some of the discussion topics included, but were not limited to, dealing with cultural gaps, addressing the importance of education, building an effective partnership, and empowering the young generation in Africa.

Since RELX Group launched SDG Resource Center to provide a free, interactive education platform curating content related to sustainability research in June 2017, the group has also organized “SDG Inspiration Day” events to inspire more people with the goals and to help them inspire others. As an early signatory of the UN Global Compact (UNGC), RELX uses the SDGs to chart the participation of businesses in achieving the goals.

For more information on the “SDG Inspiration Day” in Amsterdam 2018, visit the event website: https://info.relxgroup.com/nl-sdg-event-2018/index.html
The “SDG Inspiration Day” previously held in San Francisco can be watched on RELX Group’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/REEnvChallenge

The Ban Ki-moon Centre Hosts Workshop on “The Global Citizen Mindset” at JCI World Congress in Goa, India

On November 1st, 2018, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens hosted and facilitated a workshop at Junior Chamber International’s (JCI) World Congress in Goa, India.

The session was entitled “The Global Citizen Mindset.” It focused on advocacy and included examples of best practices which were featured on the panel. Besides sharing best practices, the session helped participants learn more about opportunities to engage in advocacy both through JCI-led initiatives and other global initiatives.

The first part of the session included an introduction of advocacy, global citizenship, and the Ban Ki-moon Centre as well as a short presentation by the Kofi Annan Foundation’s Extremely Together initiative working to combat violent extremism. In addition to receiving an overview of the initiative, a representative from Extremely Together, Hassan Ndugwa from Uganda, shared his personal experience with violent extremism with the participants.

After this, a panel was invited to the stage to share their insights. The panel included Maud Roure from Extremely Together and the Kofi Annan Foundation, Adetola Juyitan from I am Africa Nigera, Pascal Dike from Peace is Possible, Kevin Hin from Step Up  For Europe, and Heidi Solba from Let’s Do it World and World Cleanup Day.

During the panel, the panelists were asked about the challenges young people face in building and growing movements and what it takes for movements to have sustainable societal and political impact.

Following the Q&A, participants split up into groups with the panelists for round-table discussions. During the round-table discussions, participants considered the challenges as well as the solutions they have encountered in their own work or in the work of other initiatives. They also discussed which community stake-holders must be engaged in order to address issues in a powerful and meaningful way.

After the round-table discussions, the facilitator shared the different ways to get involved with the initiatives spotlighted at the session and encouraged those present to engage as advocates with a “global citizen mindset.”

The Ban Ki-moon Centre looks forward to partnership with JCI on more exciting events in the future. Learn more about the initiatives mentioned and find out ways to get involved by clicking on the names that are linked to their websites.

Ban Ki-moon Centre Presents at JCI World Congress in Goa

Last week, the Ban Ki-moon Centre participated in its partner Junior Chamber International’s (JCI)‘s World Congress in Goa, India. The Centre was introduced to the JCI community at the General Assembly during which a video greeting from Co-chair Heinz Fischer was also screened and shared with the audience from all over the world.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre also hosted a workshop “The Global Citizen Mindset” and featured advocacy specialists. The workshop aimed to help participants understand the concept of advocacy and the role young people can play in advocating for causes they care about. It also emphasized different opportunities to engage with advocacy globally.

JCI is non-profit organization for young active citizens between the ages of 18-40 committed to creating positive impact in their communities. JCI has members around the world and seeks to help them in developing the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to make informed decisions, and most importantly, to take action for positive change.

 

JCI’s mission is:

“To provide development opportunities that empower young people to create positive change”

Every year, JCI holds a week-long World Congress including trainings, workshops, social and networking events, and meetings with its leadership and General Assembly. As JCI is a valued partner of the Ban Ki-moon Centre that promotes the notion of global citizenship and the importance of youth empowerment, Secretary-General Arrey Obenson of JCI is on the Board of the Centre.

During the opening ceremony of the world congress, national presidents took to the stage while displaying their countries’ flags and inciting cheers from the audience. However, as much as national pride was celebrated, the collective mission of JCI and its members was the overarching theme.

Learn more about the JCIWC: http://www.jciwc2018.com/

The Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens partners with UNESCO APCEIU to collaborate on GCED

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens and UNESCO APCEIU (Asia-Pacific Centre of Education for International Understanding under the auspices of UNESCO) signed an MOU on October 19th, 2018.

Both Centres aim to promote global citizenship through education to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The APCEIU organizes annual international conference on Global Citizenship Education (GCED) and provides online courses, workshops, and various other platforms to share their expertise and knowledge on GCED.

Last month, the Ban Ki-moon Centre participated in the APCEIU’s 3rd International Conference on GCED; Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered congratulatory remarks and CEO Monika Froehler moderated a session on “GCED Talks.” The conference provided “an active platform to promote dialogue and share up-to-date issues and good practices of global citizenship education,” said APCEIU Director Utak Chung.

As Co-chair Ban emphasized that “nothing can be done without good education,” both institutions will cooperate to provide quality education on global citizenship. Scholarships, fellowships, workshops, and other academic programs will be jointly initiated to spread the notion of global citizenship with a focus on empowering women and youth across the world.

Photo: UNESCO APCEIU

António Guterres holds a meeting with Ban Ki-moon at the UN headquarters in New York

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens’ Co-founder and Co-chair Ban Ki-moon served as the 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN) from 2007 to 2016. Last week, he revisited the headquarters of the UN in New York, US and was greeted by current Secretary-General António Guterres and Deputy SG Amina Mohammed. Guterres invited Ban to have a bilateral meeting in his office, and the two world leaders openly discussed the status quo of the global issues.

Before his tenure as the 9th UNSG, Guterres served as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees between 2005 and 2015, during most of which period Ban served as SG. Guterres was the Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002 and was elected President of Socialist International in 1999. He held both posts until his resignation from the latter.

Chelsea Clinton and Susan Blaustein receive the ‘Ban Ki-moon Award for Women’s Empowerment’

At the 17th Annual Asia Initiatives Gala on October 18th, 2018 in New York, US, Vice President Chelsea Clinton of Clinton Foundation and Susan Blaustein, Founder and Executive Director of WomenStrong International were conferred the ‘Ban Ki-moon Award for Women’s Empowerment’ created in recognition of Ban Ki-moon’s leadership in support of women’s rights and gender equity. As the award’s first honoree, BKMC Co-chair Ban’s vision led to the creation of UN Women and its HeForShe Campaign, the first High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment, and to his appointment of the first UN female force commander to head peacekeeping operations and the employment of increased number of women at the UN system.

“It is such an honor for me to be able to properly recognize these amazing women. During my tenure as Secretary-General, I always worked to make women’s empowerment a top priority, and I can see that Asia Initiatives is carrying on that legacy,” said Ban.

Asia Initiatives is an international non-profit organization that leverages social capital to promote sustainable development and has annually held the gala to recognize women for their work advocating for women and girls. Women empowerment is an important asset to achieving the SDG 5: Gender Equality.

To empower women and girls, Clinton has endeavored to provide them with more opportunities to be engaged in society. She has written a couple of books as a series titled She Persisted to share the stories of empowered women to help children cultivate new perspectives on women’s role and gender equality. Susan Blaustein works to catalyze women-led initiatives around the world, including those in Ghana, Kenya, Haiti, India, and the United States. She has also worked on solving poverty problems.

“Empowering women and girls worldwide is key to peace, to eliminating all forms of violence, and to enabling families, communities, and nations to thrive,” said Blaustein. “Asia Initiatives’ Ban Ki-moon Award is such an honor and such an important recognition of the brilliance and hard work of women and girls everywhere, who know best what they need to succeed and whose truthful, clarion voices deserve to be heard, now more than ever.”

Source: https://bit.ly/2AmRkNs
Source: http://asiainitiatives.org/

University of Groningen awards Honorary Doctorate to Co-chair Ban Ki-moon

University of Groningen in Groningen, the Netherlands awarded Co-chair Ban Ki-moon with Honorary Doctorate to recognize his contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and to the climate change.

“All our behaviors, all our business operations, all civil societies, life style should be geared to climate resilient and reducing greenhouse gas emissions as much as possible meeting the standard 1.5 degrees Celsius,” said Ban at the ceremony.

He emphasized the mission of the SDGs together with the Paris Climate Agreement:

“Let us work together, ladies and gentleman, to make sure that we live in a sustainable world where everybody will be healthier, everybody’s human rights, whatever the status may be, will be respected.”

Groningen is a city that hosted the opening ceremony of the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) and laboratory as well as the launch of the Global Commission on Adaptation that is led by Co-chair Ban. On the margins of the various events, Ban also met with Prime Minister Mark Rutte and His Excellency King Willem-Alexander and Her Excellency Queen Máxima Zorreguieta Cerruti of the Netherlands.

Watch Ban Ki-moon’s remarks at the degree ceremony: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_B4v1FppOHY