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Director-General denounces murder of journalists Ueliton Bayer Brizon and Jefferson Pureza Lopes in Brazil

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 01/26/2018 - 16:41
26 January 2018

The Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, has called for an investigation into the killing of two journalists in separate incidents in Brazil last week: online journalist Ueliton Bayer Brizon, shot in the State of Rondônia on 16 January, and Jefferson Pureza Lopes, assassinated on 17 January in the state of Goiás.

“I condemn the murder of Jefferson Pureza Lopes and Ueliton Bayer Brizon,” said the Director-General. “Independent media play an indispensable role in fostering transparency, accountability and rule of law. It is therefore essential that these two tragic murders be investigated thoroughly and prosecuted.”

Both journalists were outspoken in their criticism of local developments, Ueliton Bayer Brizon on his news website Jornal de Rondônia, and Jefferson Pureza Lopes in his programe, Voz de Povo, on local radio station Beira Rio FM. Pureza Lopes is reported to have received repeated death threats in relation to his work over the past year.

These are the first killings of journalists in Brazil that the Director-General of UNESCO has condemned this year.


Media contact: Sylvie Coudray,, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12

See also: UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists.



Categories: News

Director-General condemns killing of photographer Mohammad al-Qadasi in Yemen

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 01/26/2018 - 16:35
26 January 2018

The Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, today urged all parties in Yemen to protect the safety of journalists in the country, following the death of photographer Mohammad al-Qadasi on 22 January.

“I condemn the killing of Mohammad al-Qadasi,” said the Director-General. “Journalists working in Yemen are taking tremendous risks to perform their professional duties, often providing civilians with information that is vital for their survival. I therefore call on all parties to ensure the safety of reporters and respect their civilian status in line with the Geneva Conventions.”

Mohammad al-Qadasi was killed on 22 January in the Khayami area of Yemen’s southwestern province of Taiz while working for the privately owned broadcaster Belquees TV.



Media contact: Sylvie Coudray,, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12

See also: UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists.

Categories: News

European Educational Area: an ambition for Europe and the World

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 01/26/2018 - 10:58
dg-aa-brussels-ed-summit.jpg © UNESCO 25 January 2018

On the occasion of the first European Education Summit, organized by the European Commission today in Brussels (Belgium), the Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, expressed the Organization’s support to the creation of a European Educational Area.

The Summit brought together some 20 education ministers and 500 participants, to lay the foundations for this common space by 2025, focusing on innovation, inclusion and education based on common values.

The Director-General welcomed Europe’s "political reinvestment" in education.

In the face of rising inequalities, Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Culture, Education, Youth and Citizenship stressed the need for a strong political commitment to education to build more resilient and inclusive societies and announced the next summit in 2019.

From the adaptation of educational content and the acquisition of digital skills to the transmission of values, the Director-General outlined the shape of an educational revolution, saying "the Union’s strongest foundation will always be culture and knowledge."

Ms Azoulay underlined the importance of the role of the European Union not only in Europe but also on a global scale as a force for progress. "Europe carries the diversity of the world and has an extraordinary role to play in this globalized world," she said.

The creation of a European Educational Area was approved at the meeting of European Heads of State and Government in Gothenburg (Sweden) last November, building on the belief that education can be an important part of the solution in tackling the challenges of today's world and fostering a greater sense of belonging in face of populism and xenophobia.




Categories: News

Director-General’s meetings with European Commissioners

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 01/24/2018 - 14:34
dg-aa-brussels-mogherini.jpg © European Union/Mauro Bottaro 24 January 2018

During her first visit to Brussels from 24 to 25 January, UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay held bilateral meetings with several European Commissioners, notably Ms Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the Commission.

Categories: News

Oil spills: Improving emergency responses through ocean observing systems

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 01/24/2018 - 13:00

On 6 January 2018, the collision in the East China Sea between a freighter and an oil tanker carrying 136,000 tons of “gas condensate”, a particularly explosive type of oil, caused a major spill of potentially dangerous proportions. As authorities scramble to solve a growing environmental crisis, they turn to ocean observations for crucial monitoring and forecast information needed to contain the damages to marine biodiversity.

Directly involved in monitoring oil spills in the Mediterranean, Professor Nadia Pinardi from the University of Bologna and the Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change (CMCC), tells us how ocean observing systems are helping manage and potentially contain such disasters.

How can ocean observing systems help manage or prevent oil spills?

Management of oil spill emergencies at sea means:

      a) having the correct governmental and legal framework to react to the emergency: coast guards, civil protection connected to related Ministries and operational monitoring systems, etc.;

      b) having operational oceanographic monitoring and forecasting systems to provide a forecast of the path and impact of the spill on the coast.

An operational ocean forecasting system is composed of numerical ocean and oil spill models. The numerical ocean model uses at its heart observations of the ocean (currents, chemistry, etc.) to forecast how the oil spill is likely to behave. How fast and how big will it get? Which ocean and coastal areas might be potentially damaged? Strong ocean observations reduce uncertainty in the forecasts, help provide the forecasts in the first place, and to verify and correct the forecast models we gather more data from continuous observation.

Could you give us a concrete example of how the Mediterranean oil spill alert system operates?

An example of an operational warning and monitoring system is the Mediterranean Decision Support System for Marine Safety, dedicated to maritime risk prevention and strengthening of maritime safety related to oil spill pollution in the region.

At the same time, the Mediterranean Operational Network for the Global Ocean Observing System (MONGOOS) has developed an exchange platform that shares data and model outputs between national systems, as well as a basin-scale model that is now part of the Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service.

Furthermore, MONGOOS has been engaged for many years with the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC) to offer technical support to Mediterranean countries in case of accidents. MONGOOS oceanographic centers provide assistance to REMPEC, which has the legal responsibility to respond to emergencies in coordination with the countries.

The European project AtlantOS is developing another piece of the puzzle: coastal oil spill hazard mapping. Scenarios are pre-computed and made available to users for a quick look at the likely path of the oil spill, based on the source of oil. This system will help in case of emergencies where information is needed in less than one hour.

Are similar alert systems available in other areas of the world – in particular in the East China Sea?

Many systems are in place for forecasting oil spill movement in support of emergency management. They are hosted by national weather services and use the operational forecasting currents from oceanographic operational modelling centers.

In the East China Sea, the National Marine Environmental Forecaster Center (NMEFC) of China’s State Oceanic Administration (located in Beijing) is fully equipped with ocean forecasts and oil spill models to provide, within hours, projections of the oil spill track and act in support of coast guards.

In the Republic of Korea, the Korea Meteorological Administration is developing an oceanographic forecasting system and oil spill models but the system is not operational yet.

How can observing systems be strengthened to more effectively support emergency response to oil spills?

There are several major observational and modelling gaps to fill to better inform emergency fighters and reduce impacts of oil spills. In terms of information, we need more and better data on vulnerability and human activity, such as the extent of habitats, socio-economic activities along the coasts, maritime traffic routes, etc.

In terms of technology, we should be developing satellite monitoring systems (SAR) with short revisit time that can follow the slick movement of oil.

Finally, in terms of models, we need to develop coastal forecasting models at 100-10 meters resolution along the coasts, but for this we’re back to the question of data. These models require particularly detailed bathymetry data – the depth of the ocean floor – and coastal observations to work properly.


Nadia Pinardi holds a Ph.D. in Applied Physics from Harvard University, and is an Associate Professor of Oceanography at the University of Bologna, Italy. She is also member of the Strategic Council of the Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change (CMCC).

Her interests include ocean numerical modelling and forecasting, development of marine biogeochemical models, and oil spill numerical modelling coupled to operational oceanographic forecasts.

She has coordinated, since the middle of the nineties, the development and implementation of operational oceanography in the Mediterranean Sea. Prof Pinardi is now co-president of the Joint Committee for Oceanography and Marine Meteorology (JCOMM), a UNESCO-IOC and WMO coordinating group. She was awarded in 2007 the European Geosciences Union (EGU) Fridtjof Nansen Medal for Oceanography, and in June 2008 the IOC Roger Revelle Medal.

For more information about ocean observing systems, please contact:

Albert Fischer (a.fischer(at)

Categories: News

UNESCO-Japan Prize 2018 calls for outstanding projects in Education for Sustainable Development

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 01/24/2018 - 09:33
esd_prize_call_for_nominations-c-zikra_for_popular_learning-news.jpg © Zikra for Popular Learning 24 January 2018

Paris, 29 January 2018 - UNESCO has launched the fourth edition of the UNESCO-Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). Funded by the Government of Japan, the Prize annually rewards three outstanding ESD projects and programmes with US$ 50,000 each.

Governments of all Member States as well as non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in official partnership with UNESCO are now invited to nominate up to three individuals, institutions or organizations engaged in ESD for the 2018 edition.

Nominations must be written in English or French and need to focus on a specific ESD project or programme of the nominee. They will be assessed by an independent jury of five international experts on the basis of their potential for transformation, integration and innovation. Projects must have been running for at least four years, already show evidence of a high impact, be easily replicable and scalable and contribute to one or more of the five Priority Action Areas of the Global Action Programme on ESD (GAP). Self-nominations are not accepted. Interested candidates are advised to contact the National Commission for UNESCO in their country, or an NGO in official partnership with UNESCO.

The deadline for submission is 3 May 2018 (midnight, Paris time). Nominations must be submitted at this link, only accessible to UNESCO Member States and NGOs in official partnership. User guides for the online nomination platform as well as replies to Frequently Asked Questions can be found on the Prize website.

The UNESCO-Japan Prize was established in 2014 in the framework of the GAP, and was awarded for the first time in 2015. The Director-General of UNESCO will announce this year’s winners in September 2018.

Categories: News

Sustainable local development in Colombia

Europaid - Wed, 01/24/2018 - 01:16
Categories: News

Déplacement de la Directrice générale à Bruxelles pour le premier Sommet européen de l’Education

Unesco Most Programme - Tue, 01/23/2018 - 10:38
dg-aa-portrait-drupal.jpg © UNESCO/Christelle ALIX 23 January 2018

La Directrice générale de l’UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, se rendra à Bruxelles (Belgique) les 24 et 25 janvier prochains à l’occasion du premier Sommet européen de l’Education, organisé par la Commission européenne.

Ce Sommet a pour ambition de poser les fondements de l’espace européen de l'éducation d’ici 2025, adopté en novembre dernier, en mettant l'accent sur l’innovation, l’inclusion et l’éducation basée sur des valeurs. Réuni pour la première fois depuis novembre, il rassemblera des ministres européens de l’Education et des intervenants du monde de l’éducation.

La Directrice générale s’exprimera en ouverture de ce sommet sur les synergies entre les ambitions européennes et l’Objectif du développement durable 4, pour lequel l’UNESCO est en première ligne dans sa mise en œuvre au niveau mondial.

Ce premier déplacement à Bruxelles sera aussi l’occasion de rencontres bilatérales entre la Directrice générale et plusieurs Commissaires européens et notamment Mme Federica Mogherini, Haute représentante de l'Union européenne pour les affaires étrangères et la politique de sécurité et Vice-Présidente de la Commission européenne.

Programme prévisionnel                               

Mercredi 24 janvier

13h30            Réunion bilatérale avec Mme Federica Mogherini, Haute représentante de l'Union européenne pour les affaires étrangères et la politique de sécurité et Vice- présidente de la Commission européenne

                        Commission européenne / Berlaymont

17h45            Réunion bilatérale avec M. Christos Stylianides, Commissaire européen chargé de l'aide humanitaire et de la gestion des crises

                        Commission européenne / Berlaymont

Jeudi 25 janvier

08h30             Réunion bilatérale avec M. Neven Mimica, Commissaire européen pour la coopération internationale et le développement
Commission européenne / Berlaymont

09h15             Premier Sommet Européen de l’Education
                        The Square, Monts des Arts

Accueil par M. Tibor Navracsics, Commissaire européen à l’éducation, la culture, la jeunesse et le sport

Vers 9h45      Intervention d’Audrey Azoulay

Categories: News

You and your biosphere reserve can contribute to the SDGs!

Unesco Most Programme - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 17:17
sector_sc_mab_new_sdg_en.png © UNESCO

This year, the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme and its World Network of Biosphere Reserve (WNBR) will be involved in several events that form an important part of the international biodiversity agenda and help implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The MAB programme will contribute to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Youth Forum (30-31 January 2018), the multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism (5-6 June 2018) and the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) in July 2018, under the theme ‘Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies’.

Participation in these events provides the UNESCO MAB World Network with a significant opportunity to share our collective impact and demonstrate how biosphere reserves play a unique role in tackling the SDGs.

With the support of the UNESCO Liaison Office in New York, the MAB Programme is planning to organize a series of briefing and side events. We would like to ask you to participate.

How can you contribute?
1)    You can submit case study(ies) from your country/biosphere reserve(s) demonstrating how your biosphere reserve(s) are working to implement the SDGs. Please use the format indicated in the form below and send us your submissions by 15 April 2018.

2)    You can produce and send us a 60-second film on how biosphere reserves are uniquely tackling the Sustainable Development Goals (guidelines below). The best movies will be presented at the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) in New York and at the MAB Council session and will be hosted on the MAB and UNESCO social media pages. The MAB Secretariat will organize a webinar to guide you through the creative process on Thursday, 1 February 2018. These will take place at 10 am Paris time (English), 3 pm (French) and 5 pm (Spanish). If you wish to participate in one of these sessions, please contact us at: MAB.circular.letters(at)

3)    You can send us scientific and communication material such as leaflets, publications and posters on the implementation of SDGs within biosphere reserves that we can display and share during the side events to be organized at the HLPF in New York, and at the MAB Council 2018 session.

4)    You can inform and mobilize your delegations in New York, contribute to the country voluntary report, and make explicit references to MAB and the WNBR.

5)    You can write to us and indicate your interest in providing support and participating.

We hope to make a decisive impact in 2018 with our presence at these events, write an international MAB success story based on your unique and diverse contributions and share collectively the benefits of our increased visibility and credibility, as well as engage with new stakeholders through the side events, sharing of communication material and use of social media.

Categories: News

Where does respect for others begin? Launch of the manual « Writing Peace »

Unesco Most Programme - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 16:19
infocus_writing_peace.jpg © UNESCO 22 January 2018

"Writing Peace" is a manual that invites young audiences to discover contemporary writings by introducing them to a sample of them. Its goal is to make the world appear a little closer and a little more familiar. "Writing Peace" encourages children (aged 8 to 14) to become aware of the interdependence of cultures through familiarization with contemporary writing systems, their history, and their borrowings.

The manual contains 24 activity sheets. Each section presents the characters of a writing system, an introductory text and historical background, the word “peace” and the word “hello,” the language(s) attached to the system(s), and an activity whose answers appear at the end of manual.

6,000 years after the advent of writing, what do we know about others, their systems of thought, and the transcriptions of their writing systems? How can different writing systems contribute to a better understanding of the world and our place within it? By beginning to learn about these writings and their fascinating beauty, the manual connects children to diversity, thus opening their eyes to the concept of peace and our awareness of it.


Following the release of the manual, the book is proposed to schools for experimentation for a fixed period, with the help of teachers and pilot facilitators. The objective of these pilot tests will be to demonstrate the impact on children's perception of cultural diversity and of the nature of cultures intrinsically linked to each other. A training series is planned with the network of UNESCO Offices and their local partners.

The first training session will be held in February 2018 in Rabat, Morocco, with support of the National Council for Human Rights, as intercultural dialogue cannot take place without respect for human rights and dignity. Several human rights clubs in Moroccan schools will be involved in an experimentation protocol conducted over several weeks.

The results will be assessed at the mid-term conference of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022) scheduled for late 2018.

"Writing Peace" is currently available in French, Arabic and English.


About the author:

Eric Cattelain provided scientific coordination of both the book and the catalog of the exhibition. He has a PhD in Linguistics, Language and Culture expert - Semio.logics and is an Associate Professor in Bordeaux’s Department of Multimedia and Internet (MMI).  He is also behind the panthopie project. He edited the French manual, along with Michel Lafon, which then served as the basis for English and Arabic adaptations.


Contact: Amina Hamshari, UNESCO,

Categories: News

Ground Source Heat Exchangers innovative solution for sustainable energy soon to be applied in Croatia

Unesco Most Programme - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 16:17
zagweb.jpg © UNESCO

The Technical Museum Nikola Tesla in Zagreb, Croatia, will be the beneficiary of an upcoming innovative shallow geothermal system, sponsored by the H2020 project Cheap-GSHPs - Cheap and Efficient Application of reliable Ground Source Heat Exchangers and Pumps. The management authorities of the museum, in cooperation with the municipality of Zagreb, are committed to replacing the heating system based on highly consuming, undersized and expensive electric heaters and strengthening the educational capacity on sustainable energy of the museum.

UNESCO believes that museums are places for the transmission of scientific knowledge, the development of educational policy, and laboratories of self-sustainability in line with the “Recommendation concerning the Protection and the Promotion of Museums and Collections, their Diversity and their Role in Society”, approved by the UNESCO General Conference on 20 November 2015.

In this context, the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe is participating in the European Union H2020 project entitled Cheap-GSHPs (Cheap and Efficient Application of reliable Ground Source Heat Exchangers), altogether with the Italian National Research Council, the Institute of Atmosphere Sciences and Climate and other partners.

The project benefits from the strong support (including financial) of the Technical Museum Nikola Tesla in Zagreb (Croatia), the chosen demonstration site and from the assistance of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture at the University of Zagreb.

The project has progressed from the preliminary assessment and planning phase to a full-fledged operationalisation. The main goal is to show how sustainable energy based on an innovative shallow geothermal power system is applicable to listed buildings, case in point the large exposition room of the Technical Museum Nikola Tesla of Zagreb. 

Additional important targets are the lowering of heating and cooling costs, curbing CO2 emissions, promoting education for sustainable development towards a broad public of visitors, in particular youngsters. The latter are the most frequent visitors since their teachers of scientific disciplines organise regularly educational visits to the museum’s technological collection.

Thanks to the Cheap-GSHPs project, the museum will be able to display its geothermal system, along with all its main components as one additional and running piece of the collection, becoming a structural component of the educational/awareness activities in the section devoted to renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Its educational function will be further enhanced by the permanent presence of the geothermal installation control room, currently under construction, located in the main yard. The room’s concept is in line with the overall architectural style of the museum premises and inspired by relevant models of reference from the 40s of architects such as Mies Van Der Rohe and Philip Johnson.

The entire geothermal facility, whose launch is foreseen in March 2018, will hopefully build awareness to sustainable energy and a renewed interest to natural sciences and their societal applications in the mind of the young generations of visitors.

* * * * *

UNESCO, through its Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy), joined a consortium of partners coordinated by the Italian National Research Council (CNR-ISAC) for the project “Cheap and Efficient Application of reliable Ground Source Heat exchangers and Pumps” (Cheap-GSHPs).

The Cheap-GSHPs project is funded by the European Union in the framework of “Horizon 2020”, call LCE-03-2014, under the technology-specific challenges in demonstrating renewable electricity and heating/cooling technologies. The lifetime of the project is 4 years, up to June 2019.

Categories: News

UNESCO and CNRS launch InsSciDE project for EuropeanScience Diplomacy

Unesco Most Programme - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 15:31
22 January 2018

France’s National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), in partnership with UNESCO, will host a conference on 26 January to launch the InsSciDE project, which aims to lay the foundations for a European-wide science diplomacy. The initiative is funded by the European Commission for a period of four years.

Coordinated by Pascal Griset, Professor of contemporary history at Paris-Sorbonne University and director of the Institute of Science Communication of the CNRS, InsSciDE will bring together 14 research and training institutes from 11 European countries, as well as UNESCO.

Organized by the CNRS at the French Academy of Medicine in Paris, the conference will be attended by stakeholders and members of the Scientific Advisory Board of InsSciDE including:

  • Catherine Bréchignac, Ambassador of France for Sciences and Permanent Secretary of the country’s Académie des Sciences,
  • Edgar Morin, philosopher and sociologist, President of the Scientific Advisory Board of France’s Institute of Science and Communication,
  • Thierry Courvoisier, President of the European Academies of the Science Advisory Council (EASAC).

The InsSciDE project aims to engage scientists, diplomats, science historians, strategy experts and decision-makers to establish the origins of European scientific diplomacy and develop its conceptual basis.

UNESCO, one of the main partners in the project, plays an important role in science diplomacy. The Organization has fostered major international scientific undertakings which gave birth to, for example, the International Centre for Theoretical Physics, the International Hydrological Programme; the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), and most recently the Synchrotron Radiation for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East (SESAME), inaugurated last year in Allan (Jordan).


For accreditation contact:

UNESCO contact: Casimiro Vizzini, Natural Sciences Sector,

Categories: News

Good or poor quality education: who is accountable?

Europaid - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 14:49
Categories: News

The importance of teaching and learning about the Holocaust

Unesco Most Programme - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 14:44
why_teach_holocaust-c-florence_brochoire.jpg © Florence Brochoire 22 January 2018

On the occasion of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, commemorated each year on 27 January, UNESCO pays tribute to the memory of the victims of the Holocaust and reaffirms its commitment to counter antisemitism, racism, and other forms of intolerance that may lead to group-targeted violence.

Last year, UNESCO released a policy guide on Education about the Holocaust and preventing genocide, to provide effective responses and a wealth of recommendations for education stakeholders.

What is education about the Holocaust?

Education about the Holocaust is primarily the historical study of the systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of six million Jews by Nazi Germany and its collaborators.

It also provides a starting point to examine warning signs that can indicate the potential for mass atrocity. This study raises questions about human behaviour and our capacity to succumb to scapegoating or simple answers to complex problems in the face of vexing societal challenges. The Holocaust illustrates the dangers of prejudice, discrimination, antisemitism and dehumanization. It also reveals the full range of human responses - raising important considerations about societal and individual motivations and pressures that lead people to act as they do - or to not act at all.

Why teach about the Holocaust?

Education stakeholders can build on a series of rationales when engaging with this subject, in ways that can relate to a variety of contexts and histories throughout the world. The guide lists some of the main reasons why it is universally relevant to engage with such education.

Teaching and learning about the Holocaust:

  • Demonstrates the fragility of all societies and of the institutions that are supposed to protect the security and rights of all. It shows how these institutions can be turned against a segment of society. This emphasizes the need for all, especially those in leadership positions, to reinforce humanistic values that protect and preserve free and just societies.
  • Highlights aspects of human behaviour that affect all societies, such as the susceptibility to scapegoating and the desire for simple answers to complex problems; the potential for extreme violence and the abuse of power; and the roles that fear, peer pressure, indifference, greed and resentment can play in social and political relations.
  • Demonstrates the dangers of prejudice, discrimination and dehumanization, be it the antisemitism that fueled the Holocaust or other forms of racism and intolerance.
  • Deepens reflection about contemporary issues that affect societies around the world, such as the power of extremist ideologies, propaganda, the abuse of official power, and group-targeted hate and violence.
  • Teaches about human possibilities in extreme and desperate situations, by considering the actions of perpetrators and victims as well as other people who, due to various motivations, may tolerate, ignore or act against hatred and violence. This can develop an awareness not only of how hate and violence take hold but also of the power of resistance, resilience and solidarity in local, national, and global contexts.
  • Draws attention to the international institutions and norms developed in reaction to the Second World War and the Holocaust. This includes the United Nations and its international agreements for promoting and encouraging respect for human rights; promoting individual rights and equal treatment under the law; protecting civilians in any form of armed conflict; and protecting individuals who have fled countries because of a fear of persecution. This can help build a culture of respect for these institutions and norms, as well as national constitutional norms that are drawn from them.
  • Highlights the efforts of the international community to respond to modern genocide. The Military Tribunal at Nuremberg was the first tribunal to prosecute “crimes against humanity”, and it laid the foundations of modern international criminal justice. The Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, under which countries agree to prevent and punish the crime of genocide, is another example of direct response to crimes perpetrated by Nazi Germany. Educating about the Holocaust can lead to a reflection on the recurrence of such crimes and the role of the international community.

What are the teaching and learning goals?

Understanding how and why the Holocaust occurred can inform broader understandings of mass violence globally, as well as highlight the value of promoting human rights, ethics, and civic engagement that bolsters human solidarity. Studying this history can prompt discussion of the societal contexts that enable exclusionary policies to divide communities and promote environments that make genocide possible. It is a powerful tool to engage learners on discussions pertaining to the emergence and the promotion of human rights; on the nature and dynamics of atrocity crimes and how they can be prevented; as well as on how to deal with traumatic pasts through education.

Such education creates multiple opportunities for learners to reflect on their role as global citizens. The guide explores for example how education about the Holocaust can advance the learning objectives sought by Global Citizenship Education (GCED), a pillar of the Education 2030 Agenda. It proposes topics and activities that can help develop students to be informed and critically literate; socially connected, respectful of diversity; and ethically responsible and engaged.

What are the main areas of implementation?

Every country has a distinct context and different capacities. The guide covers all the areas policy-makers should take into consideration when engaging with education about the Holocaust and, possibly, education about genocide and mass atrocities.  It also provides precise guidelines for each of these areas. This comprises for example curricula and textbooks, including how the Holocaust can be integrated across different subjects, for what ages, and how to make sure textbooks and curricula are historically accurate.  The guide also covers teacher training, classroom practices and appropriate pedagogies, higher learning institutions. It also provides important recommendations on how to improve interactions with the non-formal sector of education, through adult education, partnerships with museums and memorials, study-trips, and the implementation of international remembrance days.

Learn more about UNESCO’s on Education about the Holocaust.

Categories: News

Girls Can Code: UNESCO’s Information for All Programme launches a new project in Ghana

Unesco Most Programme - Mon, 01/22/2018 - 12:17
news_220118_ghana.jpg © UNESCO 22 January 2018The First Lady of Ghana Ms Rebecca Akufo-Addo launched last week in Accra a UNESCO/IFAP project on empowering women and girls through ICT, under which about 300 junior high school students will be trained in the development of codes and applications.

Entitled “Girls Can Code”, the project aims at training teenagers between the ages of 11 and 14 from ten schools across the ten regions of the country. It has been designed under UNESCO’s Information for All Programme (IFAP) and is intended to bring equity and narrow the gap between men and women in the use of information and communication technologies (ICT).

At the ceremony that took place on 17 January 2018, Ms Akufo-Addo emphasized the role of technology in our rapidly evolving world, stating that it could be used to improve women’s economic outlook while addressing the gender gap. “As more and more women understand the value of ICT in terms of sustainable livelihoods, they will improve their quality of life and become more productive members of the society. Ultimately, we would be helping young girls to become critical thinkers and creators of technologies,” she said.

According to Ms Melody Boateng, National Programme Officer for Natural Sciences in UNESCO’s Accra Office, young girls selected for the project have a unique opportunity to contribute to the development of the country. She, therefore, urged them to take advantage of this. She commended the First Lady for her support and paid tribute to Ambassador Johanna Odonkor Swankier for her tireless effort in initiating the project.

The Founder and President of Heritage and Cultural Society of Africa (HACSA), Ms Johanna Odonkor Svanikier, the former Ambassador of Ghana to France and former Permanent Delegate of Ghana to UNESCO, under whose tenure the project was initiated, chaired the event.

“Girls Can Code” will be implemented by UNESCO, is collaborating with Advance Information Technology Institute-Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT (AITI-KACE), Ghana Education Service (GES), Heritage and Cultural Society of Africa (HACSA), DreamOval and Soronko Solution.

The Information for All Programme (IFAP) was established in 2001 to provide a platform for international cooperation in the area of access to information and knowledge for the participation of all in the knowledge societies. IFAP is a unique UNESCO intergovernmental programme that focuses on ensuring that all people have access to information they can use to improve their lives.

Categories: News

Advocacy for Quality Education for All in Africa

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 01/19/2018 - 23:26
dg-aa-afd.jpg © UNESCO/Christelle ALIX 19 January 2018

UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, advocated for education as a priority investment for sustainable development at a conference organized by the French Development Agency (AFD) in Paris on 19 January 2018.

During a round table with the Ministers of Education of Senegal, Serigne Mbaye Thiam, and France, Jean-Michel Blanquer, as well as the CEO of the Global Partnership for Education, Alice Patricia Albright, the Director-General outlined priorities to meet the challenges of educational access and quality in a region that still counts 32 million out-of-school children and faces advancing urbanization as well as conflict and crises situations.

To implement the 2030 Education Agenda, the Director-General outlined three priorities for Africa. First, the relevance of teaching and learning, right through to higher education. This involves adapting curricula and pedagogies, training teachers and drawing on new knowledge from the field of cognitive sciences.

The second priority is to better articulate education, health and employment policies, while the third priority focuses on the transmission of values for responsible citizenship and peace education. In this regard, the Director-General shared UNESCO's initiative, led with with African Ministers of Education, to develop educational content based on the ten volumes of The General History of Africa.

In all of these dimensions, the Director-General stressed that priority attention should be given to gender equality, in particular to the education of young adolescent girls.

"The challenges are immense and we must all contribute through our mandates. UNESCO coordinates Sustainable Development Goal 4 and focuses on its added value: supporting public policies, sharing innovation and research, collecting statistical data and monitoring results," concluded the Director-General.

The event, opened by the Director- General of the French Development Agency, Rémi Rioux, was held in preparation for the Global Partnership for Education’s Replenishment Conference, to be co-hosted by France and Senegal, in Dakar on 1 and 2 February, in which UNESCO will participate. This conference is a unique opportunity to increase international mobilization and aid to education, which has been steadily decreasing since 2009.

Categories: News

Protecting biodiversity at the heart of UNESCO’s action

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 01/19/2018 - 21:08
dg-aa-jane-goodall.jpg © UNESCO/Christelle ALIX 19 January 2018

On the occasion of the screening of Brett Morgen's film "Jane" at UNESCO Headquarters on 19 January 2018, in the presence of Dr Jane Goodall, primatologist, anthropologist, anthropologist, the Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, issued a powerful call for the protection of biodiversity.

"All great ape species are now threatened with extinction, said the Director-General, even as the work of Dr Jane Goodall has taught us how close we are to them. This is why UNESCO is committed to the protection of biodiversity."

This film, produced by National Geographic and directed by Brett Morgen, pays tribute to a lifetime’s work of an exceptional woman, Dr Jane Goodall, who devoted more than 50 years to the study and protection of great apes.

Jane Goodall is a laureate of the UNESCO 60 Years Gold Medal.


Categories: News