The Ban Ki-moon Centre signs MoU with IACA

During European Forum Alpbach 2018, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens (BKMC) and the International Anti-Corruption Academy (IACA) signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Sunday, August 26, 2018.

The MoU was signed by BKMC Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer and Martin Kreutner, Dean and Executive Secretary of IACA. Upon the agreement, both parties will cooperate to provide a framework to fight against corruption and work together for empowering women and youth towards the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

BKMC Co-chair Ban commented:

“Educating global citizens to help make the world safer and more sustainable for current and future generations is a vital part of the Centre’s mission. I am confident that our new partnership with IACA, a global hub for anti-corruption education, will make an important contribution in this regard.”

BKMC Co-chair Fischer continued:

“Major global challenges such as corruption require us all to work together to seek solutions. Today’s agreement, between two Austria-based organizations with a shared global outlook, represents a significant further commitment to this inclusive approach.”

IACA Dean/Executive Secretary Kreutner concluded:

“Investing in anti-corruption education and empowerment is essential if we are to realize the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. IACA is extremely pleased to be joining forces with the Ban Ki-moon Centre, and we look forward to working together to prevent and fight corruption across the globe.”

Source: https://www.iaca.int/1088-iaca-and-ban-ki-moon-centre-join-forces-against-corruption.html

 

BKM Centre Board members featured at breakout sessions during EFA 2018

Some of the Board members of the Ban Ki-moon Centre were featured with other world leaders and experts at different breakout sessions of the political symposium during European Forum Alpbach 2018 on August 26, 2018.

A session co-hosted by the Centre and Austrian Development Agency (ADA) had a discussion focused on “Women and Youth Empowerment – the Sustainable Development Goals in Practice.” The featured panelists were:

  • Márcia Balisciano, Director of Corporate Responsibility, RELX Group in London
  • Michael Sheldrick, Global Director of Policy and Advocacy, Global Poverty Project, Global Citizen in New York
  • Karin Kneissl, Austrian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Österreichisches Außenministerium
  • Martin Ledolter, Managing Director, ADA
  • Nour Barakeh, a youth representative

Other youth representatives including a Syrian refugee, Doaa Al Zamel, also presented their thoughts during the panel discussion. The panelists listened to their concerns and ideas regarding various social issues and proactively shared their expertise.

The live-streamed videos of this session can be found on the Centre’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Another breakout session was hosted by Bertelsmann Stiftung and Environment Agency Austria with the topic on “Implementing the SDGs: the challenges countries face and the solutions they offer.” During this session, BKM Centre Co-chair Ban Ki-moon gave comments and the featured panelists were:

  • Aart Jan De Geus, Chairman and CEO, Bertelsmann Stiftung in Gütersloh
  • Christian Kroll, Senior Expert, Bertelsmann Stiftung in Gütersloh
  • Susan Myers, Senior Vice President, UN Foundation in New York
  • Monika Mörth, Managing Director, Environment Agency Austria in Vienna
  • Herbert Ritsch, Director of Business Ethics, Bankhaus Schelhammer & Schattera AG in Vienna
  • Jeffrey Sachs, Director of SDSN and the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University, Professor of Economics; Special Adviser to the UNSG on SDGs; Bestselling Author; Syndicated Columnist based in New York

 

 

Ban Ki-moon speech at the EFA 2018 Opening Session

Your Excellency President Van der Bellen,
Your Excellency President Pahor
Your Excelleny President Vučić,
Your Excellency President Thaci,
Your Excellency President Fischler,
Your Excellency Commissioner Hahn,
Your Excellency Minister Kneissl,
Your Excellency Minister Köstinger,
Dear Heinz,
Distinguished Guests,
Dear Global Citizens,
Gruess Gott! Good Afternoon!

I am pleased to join you today on the occasion of the opening of the Political Symposium of the European Forum Alpbach 2018.
This year marks the third time I have had the pleasure to be part of the vibrant and truly global atmosphere which everyone can experience year after year in Alpbach. In fact, this should be my 4th time, had I not cancelled my participation in 2013 because of the Syrian Crisis. Now, I am here to pay my overdue

Today, the values of mutual understanding and tolerance – so deeply embedded in the United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – celebrating its 70th Anniversary this Year – are facing profound tests around the world.
Diversity in the form of an open and inclusive society continues to be challenged by walls, closed doors, prejudice and fear. People are targeted because of their origins, culture, faiths and traditions.
Today, too many decision makers and politicians use cynical math and biased messaging to steer fear.

In times of fear and growing hate and discrimination towards people of different beliefs, nationalities, and sexual orientations, promoting tolerance through diversity and resilience should be of fundamental importance for decision-makers worldwide.
Therefore, resilient and thus more inclusive and diverse societies that can draw on the ideas, creative energy and talents of each of their members, are profoundly encouraged by tolerance, acting as a lever for sustainable development.

Already as Secretary-General of the United Nations I underlined that the Sustainable Development Goals are our only chance to put our planet on the right path. We do not have a Plan B or a Planet B – we only have one world and one plan. The SDGs are the people’s agenda, a plan of action for putting social conflicts to a rest, for reaching equality in all its dimensions, irreversibly, globally.
The SDGs and the Paris Climate agreement need to be our guiding principles to leave no one behind. We owe this to the billions of children, women and men who, through their courage, vitality, dreams and engagement help make our global society a more prosperous, resilient and diverse one.

Ladies and gentlemen,
I have special ties to Austria. As many of you know I have opened a small humble Centre for Global Citizens in Vienna in January this year and I am leading it together with my dear friend, Heinz Fischer. Thanks to you, President Van der Bellen, Chancellor Kurz and the whole Austrian government and many others who supported us on this journey so far.

Since the beginning of this year, we have worked to build the Cente up. It is still a small start- up enterprise. We created it to help to continue to address some of the challenges the world faces today. The Centre is just a small contribution to the worldwide ongoing efforts and we are still in the process of raising adequate funding for putting our plans into practice. We cannot do this alone, so we need all your help.

Let us act as Global Citizens. Let us look beyond national borders and empower each other to thrive in a peaceful and prosperous world. For the first time in history we can end poverty, for the first time in history we are all interconnected and have the knowledge of humankind at our fingertips. We have more tools at hand than ever before. Particularly the young need to be given the right opportunities to build “their tomorrow.”

Let us therefore see the world and all its possibilities through the prism of “we the people” and let us – at the same time – reject the failed mindset of “us” versus “them.”
We are all in this together.

I believe in a world of justice and peace for all. A world where girls can grow up free of fear of abuse. A world where human rights are respected, and women are treated with the respect and dignity. A world where poverty is eradicated. A world where economic growth and sustainable development are not mutually contradictory. A world where young people have a voice and a chance for a prosperous tomorrow.

Ladies and gentlemen,
As the leaders of tomorrow, I urge you all to remain engaged, not only during this year’s European Forum Alpbach, but also beyond: You have the passion and energy and commitment to make a difference. Exchange experiences and lessons learned and encourage each other to go faster and further. Have a global vision. Go beyond your country; go beyond your national boundaries and act as a truly Global Citizen.
We can build this world – together – to leave no one behind.
Thank you.

Ban Ki-moon Urged the Implementation of LDN at the First Global Land Neutrality Degradation Forum

Ban Ki-moon Centre’s Co-chairman Ban Ki-moon, who is also the Assembly President and Council Chair of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), urged global efforts on Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN) and support for the Peace Forest Initiative at the first Global LDN Forum.

This two-day forum was co-hosted by the Korea Forest Service (KFS) and the UNCCD in Seoul, Korea, having the attendance of more than 200 participants from both the public and the private sector as well as international organizations, NGOs, and academia.

LDN is defined as “a state whereby the amount and quality of land resources necessary to support ecosystem functions and services and enhance food security remain stable or increase within specified temporal and spatial scales and ecosystems” by the Parties to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

The gathered participants and the entities took the opportunity to discuss experiences and ideas on how the international community can cooperate and best practice the implementation of LDN.

Ban said, “With growing pressures on our lands, we – as both the caretakers and offenders of our planet – need to prevent future losses in social, natural and economic capital through the development and implementation of land degradation neutrality.”

During the forum, a high-level inter-Korean dialogue also took place, which was to call for cooperation for implementing the Peace Forest Initiative with North Korea.

“Just a short drive due north from here, there exists one of the gravest environmental situations,” said Ban. He shared his hope that “based on KFS’ successful experiences on the forestry sector, GGGI, UNCCD, and other international partners can play a key role in supporting the momentum.”

 

Source:
GGGI – http://gggi.org/gggis-assembly-president-and-council-chair-ban-ki-moon-urges-global-efforts-on-land-degradation-neutrality-and-supports-the-inter-korean-peace-forest-initiative/
UNCCD – https://www.unccd.int/actions/achieving-land-degradation-neutrality

Photo: Korea Forest Service

Ban Ki-moon Centre Hosts the Second Breakfast Hub for Youth-led and Youth-focused Organizations

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens invited young leaders and representatives from varied organizations that work with and for youth and their empowerment. To achieve the goals as a global citizen the participants shared their ideas on how they are connected to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the UN Agenda 2030.

The two keynote guest speakers were Billy Batware from the UNODC, who is Co-founder of Regional Academy on United Nations (RAUN), United for Education and Sustainable Futures (UESF), Youth Education Ambassadors (YEA), and Forum for Young Internationalists (FYI), and Katarina Eric, who is President of AIESEC in Austria.

“As you know, global citizenship requires strong networks, partnerships,” said Batware. He emphasized, “during this network event, probably, get to know others and do something together”

and ended his speech with a quote from Ban Ki-moon:

“Be a global citizen. Act with passion and compassion. Help us make this world safer and more sustainable today and for the generations that will follow us. That is our moral responsibility.”

Katarina said she strongly believes that “in order to create a better future, we need to unlock potential in youth.” She said, “a whole point of activating youth is actually creating a change agent” and that being a global citizen for her is “actually believing that you can make a change.”

The participants actively engaged in networking and workshop session by discussing what needs to be improved in the field of youth empowerment to achieve global goals. For one-on-one interviews that the Centre conducted, each of them picked their favorite SDG and explained what they have done and what they will do as a global citizen in order to achieve the goal.

The participants’ organizations are:

AIESEC in Austria, CISV Austria, Erasmus Mundus Global Studies MA Dual Degree Program (EMGS), European Youth Parliament Austria, Interact Club Austria, International Anti-Corruption Academy (IACA), Regional Academy on the United Nations (RAUN), Students Impact Initiative, Umweltbundesamt, Civil Society Team of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), WWF Generation Earth, and HeForShe in Graz/Vienna.

Ban Ki-moon Centre Hosts the First Breakfast Hub for Women Organizations

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens invited women leaders and change makers from international organizations and NGOs in Austria to the Centre’s first breakfast hub. The breakfast hub was intended to create a network among like-minded people and to seek for ways to empower women and to reach gender equality, also in the light of Sustainable Development Goal 5 of the United Nations.

The CEO of the Ban Ki-moon Centre Monika Froehler gave welcome remarks and a brief overview of the Centre´s activities. She was followed by two keynote speakers on “women empowerment”, Mrs. Désirée Schweitzer, the President of the UN Women National Committee Austria and the Director General of the Department for International Development at the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Mrs. Lilly Sucharipa, the former President of the UN Women National Committee Austria.

Schweitzer highlighted how many women and girls are experiencing domestic violence and sexual harassment as well as forced childhood marriage.

Furthermore, she argued that “women provide 2.6 times more unpaid care and domestic work than men. Women still hold a mere 23.7% of parliamentry seats” and that “in the private sector, women globally occupy less than a third of senior and middle-management positions.” Schweitzer urged that “we have to work together to change this step by step.”

Sucharipa also emphasized that “not only the SDG 5, but all the other SDGs are important in connection with lives of women.” “If it is clean water or affordable energy; if it is health or economic empowerment, extremely important, and the most important education,” she said that “all these goals play into women’s lives and have to be considered when you talk about women.”

During the networking and brainstorming session, the participants actively shared the challenges and ideas for women empowerment in all national, regional, and global levels and how the solutions can be connected to the concept of global citizenship.

Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development Opened in Kazakhstan

At the Global Challenges Summit 2018 (former Astana Economic Forum), the opening of the Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development was announced on May 17th, 2018. The institute was agreed to be established at the Al-Farabi Kazakh National University in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Al-Farabi KazNU is one of the 10 global hubs of the UN Academic Impact Program, and it has largely contributed to the implementation of the SDGs.

“It is a great honor for me to work together with such University as Al-Farabi KazNU. Its best practices as a world coordinator of the academic community on sustainable development are effective, sought-after and highly valued in the UN. It is a recognized leader in promoting the UN initiatives aimed at meeting the challenges of the millennium. And the fact that his authority to head the global hub has been extended until 2020 demonstrates the great confidence of the UN,” said Ban Ki-moon.

 

“We are glad that the Institute for Sustainable Development opened in Kazakhstan and in the leading university – Al-Farabi KazNU. Our cooperation goes on to a qualitatively new high level, and it fully meets the interests of the UN and the international community in solving world problems of mankind,” said Myong-Sei Son, Director General of the Institute for Global Engagement & Empowerment of Yonsei University, said Myongsei Sohn, the Executive General of the IGEE at Yonsei University.

Source: http://www.kaznu.kz/en/3/news/one/13754/
Photo: Al-Farabi Kazakh National University

CEO Monika Froehler Conducts Workshop at the Regional Academy on the United Nations 2018

CEO Monika Froehler of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens was invited to give a lecture-workshop at the Regional Academy on the United Nations (RAUN) held at the Vienna International Centre today. RAUN is an international and multi-disciplinary program that allows youth to discuss issues related to the UN and international affairs. Participants are Master and PhD students who get to conduct group research projects in close cooperation with an international organization like UNDP, UNODC, UNIDO, UNEP, IOM, OSCE etc. This year’s theme is “Innovations for Development: Towards Peaceful, Sustainable and Inclusive Societies.”

During the workshop, 48 students learned about the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s vision and work and participated in group works on the topic of global citizenship. The students were split into working groups to brainstorm and exchange ideas about the concept of global citizenship and how to effectively promote it. One speaker of each group presented on the outcomes of their discussion. The winner team was awarded the Ban Ki-moon Centre pin.

The first sessions of this year´s RAUN class were held in Bratislava and Vienna from May 9-11. The RAUN scholars will continue their journey to Budapest in September and come back to Vienna from 15-18 in January 2019. The academic responsibility for the program is carried by the RAUN project manager headquartered in Vienna.

With assistance from mentors, UN practitioners and guest lecturers, the participants will write research papers which will be published through RAUN. Their research will result in the students developing their knowledge in respective areas, integrate theoretical knowledge on policy situations, advance practical thinking, obtain methodological tools for research, and advance their competence to analyze.

Source: http://www.ra-un.org/

Ban Ki-moon Speaks about the Importance of Youth Leadership for Sustainable Development

As the Honororay Chair of the IGEE, Ban Ki-moon gave a speech about the “Importance of the Youth Leadership for Sustainable Development” at Yonsei University Wonju campus. The lecture was given on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the campus’ founding, and about 700 students and general public attended the lecture. Among the attendees, there were foreign students from developing countries, who were selected for the KOICA’s master’s scholarship program to study at Yonsei University.

With focus on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN as well as visions of global citizenship, Ban’s words inspired aspiring leaders and youth to actively engage themselves to be part of making changes for co-development of global village. Ban emphasized on the need of youth leadership in rapid growth of the world and encouraged the young generation to grow as talented global citizens that contribute to the world’s peace and prosperity of all mankind.

Photo: Yonsei University Wonju Campus

International Women’s Day 2018

March 8th is the International Women’s Day (IWD), a day to celebrate and empower women by reflecting on progress made in education, economics, politics, business, and many other aspects of society and calling for more changes to take a bigger step closer to gender parity. The Ban Ki-moon Centre works for empowering women as global citizens within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals.

“Women hold up more than half the sky and represent much of the world’s unrealized potential. They are the educators. They raise the children. They hold families together and increasingly drive economies. They are natural leaders. We need their full engagement … in government, business and civil society,” said former UNSG Ban Ki-moon.

Though there have been significant improvements achieved, unequal treatments and norms against women in different places still continue to exist. Such restrictions emasculate women, and it requires efforts from all people regardless of their gender and synergy from varied organizations, institutes, governments, and media to make further changes. It is not solely women’s or a single entity’s responsibility to make a progress, but everyone’s as a world-renowned feminist journalist and social and political activist

Gloria Steinem points out, “The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights.”

Following the #PressforProgress campaign by the IWD, Women at the UN – Accountability Buddy Network (WUNABN) hosted a conference in Vienna, Austria today to actively engage women in exchanging their experiences of achieving gender parity and to give out practical know-hows on job applications, interviews, and how to find the right path in their career plan. Find more information on their website: https://wunabn.org/womens-day-2018/conference

The IWD thus brings everyone, every entity, and every country together to celebrate the day and to make a progress from individual level to governmental and from local level to global. As the world has witnessed empowerment being contagious with butterfly effect for the past century, one can hope that soon the IWD will be celebrated with reflections on achievements without any need for a call to action. Watch the UN Women’s inspirational video on International Women’s Day 2018: “The Time is Now” here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sXCnHvQzoOU

Source: https://www.internationalwomensday.com/

Photo: UN Photo by Ky Chung