In Advance of UNGA 72, Reports Consider Globalization and 2030 Agenda; Technology and Innovation; Water and Sanitation
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In preparation for UNGA 72, the UN Secretary-General has released a report on the role of the UN in promoting development in the context of globalization and interdependence.

The report discusses three globalization megatrends and the impact of each of these trends on rising inequalities.

The report underscores the role of the UN system in providing targeted policy support to Member States to implement the SDGs and urges multilateral cooperation to achieve the sustainable development and peace agendas.

Additional reports released for UNGA 72 address science, technology and innovation for development and human rights to safe drinking water and sanitation.

September 2017: In advance of the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA), the UN Secretary-General has released a report on the role of the UN in promoting development in the context of globalization and interdependence. The report recommends a coherent, integrated multilateral response to globalization challenges, emphasizing the role of inclusive sustainable development to prevent conflict and sustain peace. Additional reports released for UNGA 72 address science, technology and innovation for development and human rights to safe drinking water and sanitation.

The report titled, ‘Fulfilling the promise of globalization: advancing sustainable development in an interconnected world (A/72/301),’ presents three globalization megatrends, with a focus on their impact on advancing sustainable development. These trends are: shifts in production and labour markets; rapid technological advances; and climate change. The report finds that changes in production affecting labour markets has contributed to higher rates of income inequality and recommends addressing the root causes of inequality. Second, the report cautions that rapid advances in technology, including a persistent digital divide in access to information and communications technology (ICT) between and within countries, will leave behind countries and people that are structurally disadvantaged, reinforcing inequalities at the national and global levels. On climate change, the report presents evidence that globalization and related trends, such as transportation and urbanization, contributes to climate change and environmental degradation.

The report argues that ensuring globalization is a positive force is a key condition for achieving the 2030 Agenda.

The report stresses that ensuring globalization is “a positive force for all countries and people” is a key condition for achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The report suggests global momentum to implement the 2030 Agenda “represents a new frontier of international cooperation” and that implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) can help to holistically address normative and institutional shortcomings and ensure more even distribution of globalization benefits, therefore contributing to efforts to leave no one behind.

The report stresses that the UN system and other international institutions can play a key role in ensuring that globalization works for all and in providing support for Member States to achieve the SDGs. The report also discusses policy frameworks related to globalization, including on climate change, employment, international tax cooperation, migration, and trade, among others. The report further highlights the relationships between sustainable development and peace and security, underscoring the need for equitable, sustainable globalization to ensure no one is left behind.

Also on globalization and interdependence, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) released a report titled, ‘Science, technology and innovation for development (A/72/127)’. The report summarizes the impacts of new and emerging technologies on sustainable development, shares lessons learned on strengthening capacities for science, technology and innovation in developing countries and highlights initiatives to strengthen the science-policy interface within the UN, among other topics.

Also in preparation for UNGA 72, the Special Rapporteur on the human rights to safe drinking water and sanitation, Léo Heller, submitted his report. Titled ‘Human rights to safe drinking water and sanitation (A/72/127),’ the report uses six case studies to examine how funders contribute to human rights to water and sanitation, including an analysis of rights implementation in project selection, design, implementation, assessment and monitoring. The six case studies described in the report are: France; Japan; the European Union (EU); World Bank; Inter-American Development Bank (IDB); and UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

UNGA 71 will formally close on 11 September. UNGA 72 will open on 12 September. The General Debate will open on 19 September, with a focus on the theme, ‘Focusing on people: striving for peace and a decent life for all on a sustainable planet.’ [A/72/301] [A/72/127] [A/72/257] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on UNGA 72 Documents on Trade, Gender, Human Development] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on UNGA 72 Documents on Education, Environmental Conventions, Social Development]


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