In the heart of The Gambia, an intrepid young woman called Fatou Juka Darbor is blazing a trail for women fuelled by her fiery passion for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
Two big facts are impressive enough: plants are the source of 80% of all food, and as much as 98% of all oxygen. Logically, it would be taken for granted that human beings would do whatever is needed to protect this essential source of life. But do they?
India’s population has just reached 1.4 billion
people, surpassing China
as the world’s most populous nation four years earlier than projected. Spurring this growth is a traditional patriarchal culture
in which women’s identity is constrained by the social expectation they bear children.
A new report
reveals that from 2000 to 2015, the global maternal mortality ratio (MMR) fell by 33%, and by more than 50% in 58 countries that had the highest rates of women dying during pregnancy or up to 42 days after delivery. But from 2016 to 2020, maternal mortality barely changed. In 2020, roughly 287,000 women globally died from a maternal cause, which is almost 800 maternal deaths daily, and about one every two minutes.
Parliamentarians from more than 30 countries agreed to send a strong message to the G7 Hiroshima Summit in Japan later this year, focusing on human security and support of vulnerable communities, including women, girls, youth, aging people, migrants, and indigenous people, among others.
The Ukraine crisis, which in addition to bringing devastation to the people of that country has had severe impacts on a global scale—even giving rise to the specter of nuclear weapons use—has entered its second year. Against this backdrop and amid urgent calls for its resolution, the G7 Summit of leading industrial nations will be held in Hiroshima, Japan, from May 19 to 21.
This week, the United Nations will host two days (May 8-9) of preliminary talks to plan a larger conference on tuberculosis (TB) in September. These preliminary talks will be held in New York City, the epicenter of the last significant surge of TB cases in the United States (U.S.) thirty years ago.
The world is in permanent crisis mode. In addition to the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and the triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution, the war in Ukraine and other violent conflicts, a worldwide cost of living crisis and an intensified debt crisis in more and more countries of the global South are affecting large parts of humanity.
The finance sector’s role in the current global crises – notably climate, biodiversity, and food security – is significant.
Polluting activities and environmentally-destructive practices for short-term economic gains have catapulted us to our current untenable situation. We're ‘sawing off the branch we’re sitting on’ by sacrificing life-giving ecosystem services for profit, and that branch is sagging and splitting under our weight.
While there is no established causal relationship between climate change and tuberculosis (TB), studies have begun to highlight the potential impact its effects could have on the spread of the disease.
Freedom of the press is the cornerstone of democratic society. Without a debate of ideas, without verified facts, without diversity of perspectives, democracy is a shadow of itself; and World Press Freedom Day was established to remind us of this.
The United Nations has consistently been a vociferous advocate of freedom of the press – and, most importantly, the right of journalists to report without fear of reprisals.
But regrettably, the UN is also one of most opaque institutions where transparency is never the norm.
Peak oil was first up, followed by peak gas, gold and others, as if the world was draining natural resources like toilet roll panic buying in a lockdown supermarket. But should we now be worried about Peak Press?
Crises may be a centuries-old phenomenon, but so too is human resilience.
Over the last decades, the global share of women among teaching staff in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) has increased from nearly 35% in 1990 to close to 45% in 2020.
In today's world, human rights defenders face immense challenges, with threats, attacks, and repression being rampant in many countries. According to the latest report by Front Line Defenders, killings of rights defenders increased in 2022, with a total of 401 deaths across 26 different countries
. Despite the adoption of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders 25 years ago, the threats faced by defenders persist globally.
The Minamata Convention on Mercury, a stellar success story to date, has been favorably compared to the prototype success story for a treaty on toxins: the Montreal Protocol. Both had a single focused mission; both gained universal support across the globe; both matched technological innovation with environmental science to discard old polluting methods.
Several years ago, on a visit to a village in rural Zimbabwe, I met a small group of women with a story to share.
Having participated in a UNDP-supported adaptation project – including drought-resistant seeds and education in climate-smart agricultural practices – the women had significantly increased the productiveness of their home gardens.
The United Nations has warned that the February 2022 Rusian invasion of Ukraine has threatened to force up to 1.7 billion people — over one-fifth of humanity — into poverty, destitution and hunger.
Long before the war, Ukraine and Russia provided about 30 per cent of the world’s wheat and barley, one-fifth of its maize, and over half of its sunflower oil. But the ongoing 14th-month-old war has undermined-- and cut-off-- most of these supplies.
The world is becoming increasingly coexistent with crises. A pandemic, the Ukraine-Russia war, and cost-of-living crisis are only a few of the ordeals we’ve seen in just the last two years.
As 2022 came to a close, ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot, became the fastest-growing app in history, reaching an estimated 123 million users less than three months after its launch.