The multiple crises faced by the world today threaten to spread and impact negatively not only on the growth prospects of all economies, global trade and the availability of jobs, but also the ability of governments to allocate requisite resources for investment into the social sectors, including education, science, health, culture and communication and information. In that regard, the World Bank has projected a finance gap of up to $700 billion in developing countries. Over 100 million people are expected to be pushed into extreme poverty each year for the duration of the crisis.
Last April, the G-20 leaders pledged to restore growth and jobs, promote trade and shun protectionism, strengthen the global financial institutions, and ensure a fair and sustainable recovery for all. The United Nations system, at the recent Chief Executives Board (CEB) meeting in Paris, has committed to nine specific joint initiatives through which developing countries in particular shall be assisted to tackle the crisis and promote recovery, social protection and prosperity.
The multi-dimensional nature of the crisis – financial, economic, social, environmental and humanitarian – has emphasized the need for global interdependence. Gauging the impacts and responding to the foreboding challenges will require multilateral action through which countries can come together and build jointly a coherent and comprehensive roadmap to overcome a looming meltdown.
In the aftermath of the G-20 Summits and the CEB, what are the challenges and prospects for recovery? Since no country or institution can respond on its own to this multifaceted crisis, what are the prospects for agreeing to joint action and implementing it efficiently? What is the role and contribution the UN system as a whole and what contribution can UNESCO in particular make, drawing on its comparative advantages in its five domains?
Mr Kemal Derviş, UNDP Administrator and Chair of the UN Development Group (UNDG) from 2005-2009, who, following his departure from UNDP served as advisor to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for the G-20 London Summit, will address these issues at the very first UNESCO Future Lecture on 18 June 2009 in Room IV at 10:30 a.m.
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- Biography of Mr Kemal Dervis