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The contribution of the United Nations to the development of population policy in developing countries.
[Unpublished] 1988. 13 p.The UN has been actively engaged in population questions--including policy issues--from its very beginning. In 1946, the UN's Economic and Social Council established the Population Commission to arrange for studies and advise on the size and structure of populations, the interplay of demographic and socioeconomic factors, and policy. The UN has 3 leading functions that it carries out in relation to population questions: 1) the formulation of population policies and recommendations for action as agreed to by the community of nations, 2) organizing and maintaining a flow of resources and technical assistance, and 3) assembling, analyzing, and disseminating research findings that contribute to effective policy formulation. Although the population policies adopted by the UN are not treaties and lack the force of law, the existence of an international consensus can serve to help legitimate a policy at the national level as well as giving governments an incentive to formulate their own position. International policy formulation can also guide the financial support, technical assistance, and research activities of the UN system. 2 risks that must be overcome for the effective use of intergovernmental fora to arrive at population policies are 1) the risk that population issues may become politicized, and 2) the risk that attempting to define policies acceptable to all nations will result in a policy so general that it loses all impact. The leading role in the promotion of population programs of the UN system was given to the UN Fund for Population Activities in 1967. To implement its broad and flexible mandate, the Fund has developed a core program covering 1) family planning, 2) population education, 3) basic data collection, 4) population dynamics, and 5) population policy. The leading questions facing the UN now as it seeks to continue its contribution to population policy at the national level are 1) the possibility of holding a 3rd international conference on population in 1994, 2) continuing high rates of fertility and growth in Sub-Saharan Africa, 3) near or below replacement fertility in some countries, 4) changes in the structure and the roles of women, 5) the AIDS epidemic, 6) urban growth and rural decline, and 7) the residual effects of past international migration.
Population and the new international economic order, a statement made at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 12 January 1977.
New York, N,Y. UNFPA, . 13 p.A serious attack on the problem of rapid population growth is clearly a priority with most governments of the developing world. Since 1974, there has been little substantive discussion of population as part of the New International Economic Order debates. Most governments have accepted the view that in their own nations there is a negative correlation between population growth and development; and that a long-term strategy of reducing the birth rate is not only prudent but a necessary part of economic and social programs. There is a consensus on population among developing nations. There is international consensus, but few internationally accepted quantitative goals. It is difficult to imagine a New International Order such as the 3rd world countries seek without some recognition of the importance of population issues. Agreement may be achieved, because many of the staunchest supporters of the New International Economic Order are now also the most effective practitioners of a policy of limiting population growth. Many countries are contemplating stronger measures to slow population growth. Acceptance of sterilization has increased recently. The effect of increasing emphasis among developing countries on population programs can be seen in increasing demand for the UNFPA's services. One general principle guiding the allocation of the Fund's resources is to aid countries with particularly urgent population problems. The problem now facing 3rd world countries is how to convey these population problems to the people who will make the ultimate decisions on population. There is a new spirit abroad--"meeting basic needs." This is part of what the New International Economic Order is all about--an internal restructuring and redistribution within developing countries, a direct attack on poverty and its causes.
Report to ECOSOC on the work of the UNFPA, statement made to the Economic and Social Council at its Second Regular Session of 1982, United Nations, Geneva, 8 July 1982.
New York, N.Y., UNFPA, . 12 p. (Speech Series No. 76)This statement reviews the state of world population for the year 1982, the UNFPA programs, and discusses preliminary activities for the International Conference on Population. Most of the countries which have experienced the largest decline in birth rate are in the Asian region. The smallest decline in birth rates is noticeable in the African continent. About 80% of the total population of the developing world lives in countries which consider their levels of fertility too high. The UNFPA has adversely been affected by the decline in the value of many currencies. Part of the reassessment of the UNFPA programs was the establishment of a system of priority countries, determined by 4 demographic and 1 economic indicators. The program priorities are family planning, population education, communication and motivation, data collection, population dynamics, and formulation, implementation and evaluation of population policy. Activities and plans for the International Conference on Population are discussed in regard to the problems, achievements and prospects in the following areas: fertility, mortality and health, population distribution and interrelationships among population.