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Note presented by the Director-General of UNESCO. United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, HABITAT II City Summit, Istanbul, 3-14 June 1996.
[Paris, France], UNESCO, 1996. 23 p. (SHS-96/WS/4)The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Director-General presented this paper at the 1996 UN Conference on Human Settlements held in Istanbul on June 3-14, 1996. Chapter 1 focuses on the diagnosis and prospects of cities in the 21st century, wherein cities are regarded as the focal point of social transformations. Urban revolution is also bringing about a qualitative shift, which can link to the globalization of the economy and technologies, and this in turn, makes far-reaching transformations whose consequences remain to be gauged. Chapter 2 describes the role played by UNESCO in the construction of the city of the 21st century, particularly on two fronts: knowledge and action in the field. Humanizing the city is the ethical message of UNESCO. The major aim is to provide shelter for every citizen, wherein homes are built by recognizing the right of every citizen to adequate housing. Chapter 3 discusses the directions and modalities of action undertaken by UNESCO. UNESCO will make every effort to ensure that the Habitat II Global Plan of Action will be implemented by adopting a partnership approach that involves nongovernmental organizations, cities and local authorities, universities and the world of research. The capacity for contribution, innovation, and action must be supported and enhanced through education, training, information, and communication. UNESCO has already undertaken this crucial mission by getting involved in the training of city technicians and decision-makers, setting up information networks and data banks, and communication activities designed for the media.
HABITAT DEBATE. 1996 Mar; 2(1):18.In Ghana, 11 communities are participating in a Community Management Program (CMP) sponsored by the UN Centre for Human Settlements/Danida and jointly implemented with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development. The main goal of the program is to reduce poverty by strengthening district- and community-level capacity to improve living and working conditions in low-income settlements. Currently, the CMP is operating training programs in 1) community participation and management, 2) technical skills, 3) income generation and business management, and 4) family life and health education. The community participation and management training includes strategies for problem-solving, identifying the steps of participatory planning, and negotiating project funding. Technical assistance is also given during project implementation. Technical skills training in carpentry, masonry, and painting allows selected community members to assist in the construction and maintenance of a community facility as part of their training. Income generation and business management training is offered to women organized in solidarity groups. Family life and health education involves training community mobilizers in family planning, oral rehydration, child health, and environmental health. The training materials developed for each program will soon be incorporated in the curriculum of a new Local Government Training Institute. The CMP has already sparked a range of related initiatives and has built the capacity for local communities to demand involvement in planning of initiatives that will affect their lives.
FINANCE AND DEVELOPMENT. 1996 Dec; 8-11.Within 30 years the world will be supplying food for an additional 2.5 billion people, most of whom will live in developing countries. Developing countries in meeting future challenges will need to implement sound and stable macroeconomic and sector policies. The World Bank is providing analysis, policy dialogue, and financial support in specific countries for opening up agricultural markets globally. Developing countries need to enhance food supplies by encouraging rapid technological change, increasing the efficiency of irrigation, and improving natural resource management. Agricultural and income growth in developing countries is dependent upon transfer of the breakthroughs in agricultural technology to the millions of small farms in the developing world. People currently use about 70% of available fresh water for irrigation, and competition for water resources with urban and industrial users has increased. Agriculture and other sectors must increase the efficiency of water use. Natural resource planning and comprehensive water and natural resource management that rely on a community-based approach have proven successful. Developing countries need to improve access to food by strengthening markets and agribusinesses, providing education and health services to both boys and girls, investing in infrastructure, and fostering broad participation. The major challenge ahead is to ensure food security for the hundreds of millions of families living in poverty. This large and complex task involves increasing agricultural output worldwide, reducing poverty, and improving health and nutrition. Progress has been made in the past 25 years in improving living conditions, but not everyone has benefitted. Almost 75% of the poor live in rural areas without access to land, and 25% are urban poor without jobs. Most of the poor live in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. The World Bank mandate is to reduce poverty and hunger through revitalized rural development.
UNFPA COUNTRY SUPPORT TEAM FOR EAST AND SOUTH-EAST ASIA NEWSLETTER. 1996 Aug; 4(2):11-2.This news brief identifies workshops and meetings related to the implementation of the ICPD Program of Action in Thailand and some changes in Thai policy and program direction. The 8th National Economic and Social Development Plan for 1997-2001 uses a people-centered human development approach. The Plan emphasizes extending compulsory primary education to 9 years for all children initially and eventually to 12 years. The second major change is to accelerate the extension of primary health care in rural areas and to carry out a Five-Year National AIDS Prevention and Control plan. The new Plan aims to promote family planning in target groups with high fertility, to improve the quality of family planning methods and services, to promote small family size among target groups, to improve quality of life and community self-sufficiency, to promote family planning as a means of ensuring healthy children and improved quality of life, and to promote the development of agricultural industry in rural areas. The government priority will be to develop rural areas, the skills of rural residents, and small and medium sized cities, in order to slow the flow of migration from rural to large urban areas. Local administration will be upgraded and directed to solving environmental problems. The Plan aims to expand social services and to train rural people to meet the needs of the labor market. Several workshops and seminars were conducted during 1995 and 1996 that related to reproductive health and reproductive rights. In 1994, and shortly following the ICPD, Thailand government officials, members of nongovernmental groups, UN representatives, and media staff participated in seminars on the implementation of the ICPD Plan of Action in Thailand and seminars on Thailand's population and development program.