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Expert suggestions for the UN on UN Day

Patricia O’Donovan, former ILO Assist. Sec. General, and the Hertie School’s Nina Hall on UN Day 2016.

Patricia O’Donovan offered four points for the new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to promote gender equality in the UN during a recent discussion at the Hertie School.

Four points for promoting gender equality in the United Nations

Point #1: The four UN grades to be 50% women by the end of Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ first term

Point #2: Earmark a budget for training and career development of women managers and leaders

Point #3: Create UN forum for women leaders

Point #4: Strengthen accountability framework established by UN Women

The full discussion on women in leadership can be found here:

Nina Hall, Hertie School Fellow, offers four concise reforms for the UN on UN Day 2016.

Four reforms for the UN on global migration and refugee governance

Global migration and refugee governance is at a critical turning point. We need the UN to step-up and take a leading role in this debate. We saw some promising potential at the UN high level summit on migration and refugees in September, and the resulting New York Declaration.  There are four priorities for the new leadership of UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres:

1: UN should promote migration as beneficial for societies.

The UN has not been a strong advocate for migration, and it receives only one mention in the UN Sustainable development goal. It should be given top priority under the new UNSG.

2: The UN should protect vulnerable migrants

While we have strong international law to protect refugees, there are many people who are fleeing violence, natural disasters or state collapse and don’t receive international protection as they are not refugees. The UN should work with states to ensure these people are offered protection and assistance.

3: The UN should ensure refugees are not stuck in camps for decades

Many refugees are forced to live in camps for years, waiting for resettlement. The UN should work with all states to ensure a fairer distribution of refugees internationally as the majority of the world’s refugees are in the Global South.

4: Lobby states to end earmarked financing of the UN

Donor states are increasingly earmarking their funding for multilateral organizations, and determining exactly what these organizations should do. This is a problem for multilateral governance, as our global institutions should reflect all member states, not just donor interests’.

More about the author

  • Nina Hall is a Fellow at the Hertie School.