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UNESCO lays the groundwork for closer collaboration with Ho Chi Minh City

Unesco Most Programme - Sat, 08/26/2017 - 22:22
dg_vietnam3_800px.jpg © UNESCO

Vietnam’s largest city requires more skilled human resources and creativity to move towards a knowledge-based economy, asserted Mr Nguyen Thin Nhan, Member of the Politburo and Secretary of Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee, during a meeting with UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova on 26 August 2017.

Thanking the Director-General for UNESCO’s strong support to the development of Viet Nam, Mr Nhan evoked some of the social challenges that have accompanied the rapid economic growth of this city of 9 million people, ranging from the provision of education and healthcare services to air and water pollution.  The meeting explored opportunities for strengthened collaboration around education and skills, cultural industries and climate change mitigation. 

“Human resources have been key to our development. Now our focus is on building the capacity to become a knowledge-based economy and to catch up with the region in terms of our labour force, “ said Mr Nhan, referring to the forthcoming adoption of a Smart City Project that will promote connectivity, online education and citizen participation. 

Having visited several emblematic historical sites in and around Ho Chi Minh City prior to the meeting, the Director-General expressed praise for “the passionate dedication of the Vietnamese people for independence against aggression and their incredible will to move towards prosperity, growth and inclusion.” She concurred that innovation, creativity and the development of human capital were key to building knowledge societies. 

In the light of  the National Strategy for the Development of Cultural Industries in Viêt Nam toward 2020, Ms Bokova also encouraged Ho Chi Minh City to consider joining the UNESCO’s Creative Cities Network, noting the contribution of culture to social cohesion, development and job creation. Mr Nanh warmly welcomed the suggestion, noting the ambition to learn from other cities and to share expertise. 

In response to concerns expressed by Mr Nanh on the rising sea level and water salination in Ho Chi Minh City, the Director-General pledged to mobilize UNESCO’s expertise and platforms, noting the potential for expanded collaboration in this area.   Mr Nanh also conveyed the city’s pride to count the nearby Can Gio as one of Viet Nam’s nine biosphere reserves, and assured of his resolve to comply with UNESCO’s practices for its sustainable management. 

Prior to the meeting, Ms Bokova toured the extensive complex of Cu Chi Tunnels that is a lasting symbol of Viêt Nam’s determination and resilience during times of struggle for national independence and reunification. She also visited both the Reunification Palace and the Ho Chi Minh Museum, where she paid tribute to the remarkable achievements of the founding father of modern Viêt Nam, whose birth centenary was celebrated by UNESCO in 1990 with a special resolution.

Categories: News

A strong call for enhanced cooperation to support Viet Nam’s development

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 08/25/2017 - 19:07
dg_vietnam_2_800px.jpg © UNESCO

Reaffirming the strong ties that bind UNESCO and Viet Nam, Director-General Irina Bokova reviewed the scope of cooperation and opportunities for scaling up cooperation in a series of high-level meetings in Ha Noi on 24 and 25 August.

In discussions with the Director-General, Ms Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, the first woman (President?) Chair of Viet Nam's National Assembly, called for strengthened cooperation with UNESCO to advance socio-economic development and implement the SDGs. 

"Cooperation between UNESCO and Viet Nam directly benefits our people, with programmes having far-reaching influence in their lives," she said. "Our five-year socio-economic development programme integrates the SDGs and takes a multi-dimensional and people-centered approach, with education, science and access to information being key to improving lives."  

Chairperson Kim Ngan drew attention to the impact of UNESCO's expertise and technical assistance, from setting norms to encouraging recognition of cultural and natural heritage. "Through this, our citizens have come to realize how valuable these assets are, noting that the protection of cultural heritage, as well as the quality of education and the promotion of science and technology for innovation, are issues now commonly discussed in the Assembly. She also affirmed the Assembly’s commitment to mainstream gender equality in all draft laws, encourage female leadership and combat stereotypes of all sorts. 

The country’s priorities were further detailed by the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the National Commission for UNESCO, Mr Le Hoai Trung, who gathered a wide cross-section of senior representatives from government and academia representing the breadth of the Organization’s programmes. 

“Viet Nam has benefited from UNESCO in terms of ideas, policies, practices, norm-setting and projects in all our areas of competence,” he stated in opening remarks. “This has contributed to the development of Viet Nam and our integration at regional and global level.” 

The Director-General commended the country’s impressive transformation and clear development strategy linking economic growth, social inclusion and investment in people through education, scientific innovation as well as the promotion of culture and creative industries. 

From sustained high investment in education and active support to science to deep respect for tangible and cultural heritage, Ms Bokova noted that Viet Nam’s partnership with UNESCO is based on a shared belief in soft power as the foundation for building more inclusive and sustainable societies. 

“Viet Nam takes a very proactive approach – you were a pioneer in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals and now you are moving forward on the 2030 Agenda. You have a vision and a strategy, and we are here to accompany you,“ she stated, referring to the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the Organization and Viet Nam for the 2016-2020 period. 

Highlighting UNESCO’s advocacy for culture as a development driver, she commended the launch in September 2016 of the National Strategy for the Development of Cultural Industries in Viet Nam towards 2020. 

To cope with new development challenges, the Vice Minister indicated interest in stronger cooperation to implement the 2030 Agenda and the Memorandum of Understanding. His remarks were complemented by interventions from various ministries. The Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Ms Dang Thi Bich Lien (spelling?), described the positive impact of World Heritage Sites on tourism, noting that last year these cultural assets attracted more than 16 million visitors, of whom 4.5 million were from abroad.  The Vice Minister of Education and Training, Ms Nguyen Thi Nghia, noted the priority placed on reviewing textbooks to remove gender prejudice while the Vice Minister of Communications, Mr Phan Tam, noted the need to improve the capacity to access information on the Internet. 

Hosting a dinner in honour of the Director-General’s visit, the Minister of Education Mr Phung Xuan Nha, referred to the “clear relevance of UNESCO in the 2030 Agenda”, noting the Organization’s impact on Viet Nam’s socio-economic development. While Viet Nam places high value on education, issues of quality, teaching and learning styles, he stated that curriculum reform pertaining to learning in the classroom and disconnects between the education sector and the labour market remain persistent policy challenges, and areas where the Organization’s assistance would be welcome. 

The Director-General also noted that more integrated and strategic cooperation with development partners has been enhanced through UNESCO’s recent move to join other UN agencies, funds and programmes at the Green One UN House, which she toured with the UN Resident Coordinator, Mr Kamal Malhotra. 

During her stay in Ha Noi, the Director-General laid a wreath at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and visited the Trang An Landscape Complex World Heritage Site, inscribed in 2014 as the country’s first mixed property. She praised the authorities of Ninh Binh province for their efforts to abide by UNESCO’s criteria to protect the cultural and natural beauty of the site for present and future generations. 

The Director-General expressed hope that Viet Nam would send a high ranking representative to the Leaders’ Forum of UNESCO’s General Conference in November 2017 to share the country’s experience in promoting economic development, inclusion, innovation and resilience in partnership with UNESCO.

Categories: News

A strong call for enhanced cooperation to support Viet Nam’s development

Unesco Most Programme - Fri, 08/25/2017 - 19:07
dg_vietnam_2_800px.jpg © UNESCO

Reaffirming the strong ties that bind UNESCO and Viet Nam, Director-General Irina Bokova reviewed the scope of cooperation and opportunities for scaling up cooperation in a series of high-level meetings in Ha Noi on 24 and 25 August.

In discussions with the Director-General, Ms Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, the first woman (President?) Chair of Viet Nam's National Assembly, called for strengthened cooperation with UNESCO to advance socio-economic development and implement the SDGs. 

"Cooperation between UNESCO and Viet Nam directly benefits our people, with programmes having far-reaching influence in their lives," she said. "Our five-year socio-economic development programme integrates the SDGs and takes a multi-dimensional and people-centered approach, with education, science and access to information being key to improving lives."  

Chairperson Kim Ngan drew attention to the impact of UNESCO's expertise and technical assistance, from setting norms to encouraging recognition of cultural and natural heritage. "Through this, our citizens have come to realize how valuable these assets are, noting that the protection of cultural heritage, as well as the quality of education and the promotion of science and technology for innovation, are issues now commonly discussed in the Assembly. She also affirmed the Assembly’s commitment to mainstream gender equality in all draft laws, encourage female leadership and combat stereotypes of all sorts. 

The country’s priorities were further detailed by the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the National Commission for UNESCO, Mr Le Hoai Trung, who gathered a wide cross-section of senior representatives from government and academia representing the breadth of the Organization’s programmes. 

“Viet Nam has benefited from UNESCO in terms of ideas, policies, practices, norm-setting and projects in all our areas of competence,” he stated in opening remarks. “This has contributed to the development of Viet Nam and our integration at regional and global level.” 

The Director-General commended the country’s impressive transformation and clear development strategy linking economic growth, social inclusion and investment in people through education, scientific innovation as well as the promotion of culture and creative industries. 

From sustained high investment in education and active support to science to deep respect for tangible and cultural heritage, Ms Bokova noted that Viet Nam’s partnership with UNESCO is based on a shared belief in soft power as the foundation for building more inclusive and sustainable societies. 

“Viet Nam takes a very proactive approach – you were a pioneer in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals and now you are moving forward on the 2030 Agenda. You have a vision and a strategy, and we are here to accompany you,“ she stated, referring to the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the Organization and Viet Nam for the 2016-2020 period. 

Highlighting UNESCO’s advocacy for culture as a development driver, she commended the launch in September 2016 of the National Strategy for the Development of Cultural Industries in Viet Nam towards 2020. 

To cope with new development challenges, the Vice Minister indicated interest in stronger cooperation to implement the 2030 Agenda and the Memorandum of Understanding. His remarks were complemented by interventions from various ministries. The Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Ms Dang Thi Bich Lien (spelling?), described the positive impact of World Heritage Sites on tourism, noting that last year these cultural assets attracted more than 16 million visitors, of whom 4.5 million were from abroad.  The Vice Minister of Education and Training, Ms Nguyen Thi Nghia, noted the priority placed on reviewing textbooks to remove gender prejudice while the Vice Minister of Communications, Mr Phan Tam, noted the need to improve the capacity to access information on the Internet. 

Hosting a dinner in honour of the Director-General’s visit, the Minister of Education Mr Phung Xuan Nha, referred to the “clear relevance of UNESCO in the 2030 Agenda”, noting the Organization’s impact on Viet Nam’s socio-economic development. While Viet Nam places high value on education, issues of quality, teaching and learning styles, he stated that curriculum reform pertaining to learning in the classroom and disconnects between the education sector and the labour market remain persistent policy challenges, and areas where the Organization’s assistance would be welcome. 

The Director-General also noted that more integrated and strategic cooperation with development partners has been enhanced through UNESCO’s recent move to join other UN agencies, funds and programmes at the Green One UN House, which she toured with the UN Resident Coordinator, Mr Kamal Malhotra. 

During her stay in Ha Noi, the Director-General laid a wreath at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and visited the Trang An Landscape Complex World Heritage Site, inscribed in 2014 as the country’s first mixed property. She praised the authorities of Ninh Binh province for their efforts to abide by UNESCO’s criteria to protect the cultural and natural beauty of the site for present and future generations. 

The Director-General expressed hope that Viet Nam would send a high ranking representative to the Leaders’ Forum of UNESCO’s General Conference in November 2017 to share the country’s experience in promoting economic development, inclusion, innovation and resilience in partnership with UNESCO.

Categories: News

Viet Nam Celebrates Science With Two Centres under UNESCO Auspices

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 18:32
dg_vietnam_800px_1.jpg © UNESCO

On 24 August 2017, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova and Viet Nam’s Minister for Science and Technology, Mr Chu Ngoc Anh, signed agreements to establish the country’s first two Centres under the auspices of UNESCO, harnessing the power of science for sustainable development.

The International Centre of Research and Postgraduate Training in Mathematics, and the International Centre of Physics will strengthen science, technology and innovation in Viet Nam and across the ASEAN region, encouraging knowledge sharing , capacity building as well as collaboration with Africa. Established as Category Two Centres, they join a wide international UNESCO network. 

Praising Viet Nam for its National Action Plan to Implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Irina Bokova affirmed that science, technology and innovation stand at its core “because it is vital for the creation of knowledge, the sustainability of oceans, water management, inclusive economic growth. For this we need the right ecosystem, to bridge knowledge divides inside countries and across the world.” 

She recalled that Professor Ngo Bao Chau, the first Vietnamese born to receive the Fields Medal, wrote to her in 2015 expressing support for these two new centres, which will play a pivotal role in strengthening research and innovation capacities in the ASEAN region and for African researchers.  

“Vietnam has made the clear choice to invest massively in education, in scientific cooperation and research, to participate fully in the rise of new knowledge economies and societies – and these goals are embodied in our Memorandum of Understanding 2016-2020,” said Ms Bokova. 

Minister Chu Ngoc Anh, expressed confidence that “the Centres will contribute to the development of basic science in the region and beyond and enable Vietnamese scientists to work in closer collaboration with scientists around the world.” 

In an exchange with the Director-General, the Minister underscored that the promotion of science and technology is a central feature of Vietnam’s 2035 Action Plan, stressing that basic and applied science are vital to progress in such areas as agriculture and health as well as to tackle climate change and rising sea levels.  To promote innovation, research and development, he said that the stronger links had to be forged between government, institutes, universities and business. Trial projects are also underway to promote young scientific talent, by twinning with the Vietnamese diaspora. 

The two Centres, which also have the potential to act as hubs for sharing expertise, will be hosted by the Viet Nam Academy of Science and Technology, a government agency established in 1975, and nurtured by the national and regional community of researchers in physics and mathematics.

Categories: News

Viet Nam Celebrates Science With Two Centres under UNESCO Auspices

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 18:32
dg_vietnam_800px_1.jpg © UNESCO

On 24 August 2017, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova and Viet Nam’s Minister for Science and Technology, Mr Chu Ngoc Anh, signed agreements to establish the country’s first two Centres under the auspices of UNESCO, harnessing the power of science for sustainable development.

The International Centre of Research and Postgraduate Training in Mathematics, and the International Centre of Physics will strengthen science, technology and innovation in Viet Nam and across the ASEAN region, encouraging knowledge sharing , capacity building as well as collaboration with Africa. Established as Category Two Centres, they join a wide international UNESCO network. 

Praising Viet Nam for its National Action Plan to Implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Irina Bokova affirmed that science, technology and innovation stand at its core “because it is vital for the creation of knowledge, the sustainability of oceans, water management, inclusive economic growth. For this we need the right ecosystem, to bridge knowledge divides inside countries and across the world.” 

She recalled that Professor Ngo Bao Chau, the first Vietnamese born to receive the Fields Medal, wrote to her in 2015 expressing support for these two new centres, which will play a pivotal role in strengthening research and innovation capacities in the ASEAN region and for African researchers.  

“Vietnam has made the clear choice to invest massively in education, in scientific cooperation and research, to participate fully in the rise of new knowledge economies and societies – and these goals are embodied in our Memorandum of Understanding 2016-2020,” said Ms Bokova. 

Minister Chu Ngoc Anh, expressed confidence that “the Centres will contribute to the development of basic science in the region and beyond and enable Vietnamese scientists to work in closer collaboration with scientists around the world.” 

In an exchange with the Director-General, the Minister underscored that the promotion of science and technology is a central feature of Vietnam’s 2035 Action Plan, stressing that basic and applied science are vital to progress in such areas as agriculture and health as well as to tackle climate change and rising sea levels.  To promote innovation, research and development, he said that the stronger links had to be forged between government, institutes, universities and business. Trial projects are also underway to promote young scientific talent, by twinning with the Vietnamese diaspora. 

The two Centres, which also have the potential to act as hubs for sharing expertise, will be hosted by the Viet Nam Academy of Science and Technology, a government agency established in 1975, and nurtured by the national and regional community of researchers in physics and mathematics.

Categories: News

Science for Global Understanding

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 16:08
focus_science_education_shutterstock_631246475.jpg © Shutterstock.com 24 August 2017

“Science for Global Understanding” is the theme for the 2017 World Science Day for Peace and Development. This theme is judicious as it is key for promoting peace and sustainable development. The 2030 Agenda, adopted in 2015 by the United Nations, represents a significant step forward in terms of recognizing science, technology, and innovation (STI) as driving forces for sustainable development’s three pillars: environmental, social, and economic. To achieve the ambitious goals set forth by the entire international community, it is very important to promote the science-policy interface. In its report to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, his Scientific Advisory Board wrote explicitly “Science without policy can be scattered and often fruitless. Policy without science usually fails to accomplish the immediate goal, and undermines confidence that the next policy will be any better. When science and policy unite, the chances of success increase greatly.” Added to that, we should add a third essential component in this global response to global challenges, society at large, including a diversity of stakeholders, like civil society, business and industry, workers and trade unions, indigenous people and local communities, and academia. Therefore, we should speak of a science-policy-society interface as a new paradigm towards sustainable development.

It is clear that good science and good policy will achieve their goals only if individuals and communities are implementing them, if there is a change of behavior in the everyday life of the people. Global understanding should promote the effective translation of knowledge into action and behavioral change. Science & technology centres play an important role in this crucial goal of reducing the gap between knowledge and action. By connecting people with science, by giving science a presence in the community, by engaging with all of their members, science & technology centres are a key element in connecting local actions and global challenges, which is at the heart of the global understanding project.

This echoes very much with the expertise and core values of UNESCO, the only UN agency with a clear, universal mandate to promote natural and social sciences for peace and sustainable development. The global challenges faced by all humanity require the integration of academic knowledge from all disciplines, open data, inclusion of all types of knowledge, while recognizing culturally different paths to global sustainability. UNESCO has been at the forefront, constantly fostering a transdisciplinary approach and promoting indigenous and local knowledge.

Another important contribution that UNESCO and science & technology centres can bring to global understanding is the unique opportunity to combine global sustainability and local action. The dialogue among science, policy, and everyday lives should be constant and multidirectional. Global sustainability can learn so much from best practices and success stories. UNESCO and ASTC have a precious network, worldwide in its geographic scope and local in its anchorage. It is important to motivate all these stakeholders, like the UNESCO Chairs, the biosphere reserves, the Geoparks, the UNITWIN networks, the science & technology centres, to perceive themselves as a part of the global solution, to encourage them to be proud to share their knowledge. In the 2030 Agenda, no one should be left behind, and that means it is the responsibility of everyone to contribute to global solutions.

We invite you all to celebrate the 2017 World Science Day for Peace and Development contributing to global understanding.

Flavia Schlegel
Assistant Director-General for the Natural Sciences, UNESCO

 

This text was origianally published on the International Science Center & Science Museum Day's Website

Categories: News

Science for Global Understanding

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 16:08
focus_science_education_shutterstock_631246475.jpg © Shutterstock.com 24 August 2017

“Science for Global Understanding” is the theme for the 2017 World Science Day for Peace and Development. This theme is judicious as it is key for promoting peace and sustainable development. The 2030 Agenda, adopted in 2015 by the United Nations, represents a significant step forward in terms of recognizing science, technology, and innovation (STI) as driving forces for sustainable development’s three pillars: environmental, social, and economic. To achieve the ambitious goals set forth by the entire international community, it is very important to promote the science-policy interface. In its report to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, his Scientific Advisory Board wrote explicitly “Science without policy can be scattered and often fruitless. Policy without science usually fails to accomplish the immediate goal, and undermines confidence that the next policy will be any better. When science and policy unite, the chances of success increase greatly.” Added to that, we should add a third essential component in this global response to global challenges, society at large, including a diversity of stakeholders, like civil society, business and industry, workers and trade unions, indigenous people and local communities, and academia. Therefore, we should speak of a science-policy-society interface as a new paradigm towards sustainable development.

It is clear that good science and good policy will achieve their goals only if individuals and communities are implementing them, if there is a change of behavior in the everyday life of the people. Global understanding should promote the effective translation of knowledge into action and behavioral change. Science & technology centres play an important role in this crucial goal of reducing the gap between knowledge and action. By connecting people with science, by giving science a presence in the community, by engaging with all of their members, science & technology centres are a key element in connecting local actions and global challenges, which is at the heart of the global understanding project.

This echoes very much with the expertise and core values of UNESCO, the only UN agency with a clear, universal mandate to promote natural and social sciences for peace and sustainable development. The global challenges faced by all humanity require the integration of academic knowledge from all disciplines, open data, inclusion of all types of knowledge, while recognizing culturally different paths to global sustainability. UNESCO has been at the forefront, constantly fostering a transdisciplinary approach and promoting indigenous and local knowledge.

Another important contribution that UNESCO and science & technology centres can bring to global understanding is the unique opportunity to combine global sustainability and local action. The dialogue among science, policy, and everyday lives should be constant and multidirectional. Global sustainability can learn so much from best practices and success stories. UNESCO and ASTC have a precious network, worldwide in its geographic scope and local in its anchorage. It is important to motivate all these stakeholders, like the UNESCO Chairs, the biosphere reserves, the Geoparks, the UNITWIN networks, the science & technology centres, to perceive themselves as a part of the global solution, to encourage them to be proud to share their knowledge. In the 2030 Agenda, no one should be left behind, and that means it is the responsibility of everyone to contribute to global solutions.

We invite you all to celebrate the 2017 World Science Day for Peace and Development contributing to global understanding.

Flavia Schlegel
Assistant Director-General for the Natural Sciences, UNESCO

 

This text was origianally published on the International Science Center & Science Museum Day's Website

Categories: News

Prize for innovative use of ICTs for quality education accepting candidatures

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 13:11
ict_education.jpg © UNESCO

UNESCO is calling for candidatures for the 2017 edition of the UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa Prize for the Use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in Education. Since 2005, the Prize has recognized innovations in teaching and learning that leverage technology to improve educational outcomes.

The theme for the 2017 Edition of the Prize is the use of ICTs to increase access to quality education and lifelong learning opportunities. It will reward organizations and individuals carrying out innovative practices to leverage ICTs for out-of-school children and youth, internally displaced persons and refugees, persons with disabilities, illiterate populations, adults who cannot access relevant skills development or higher education opportunities, and other socio-economic disadvantaged groups. The winning project should also promote the values and attitudes that underlie Education 2030 and the broader Sustainable Development Agenda.

The Prize aims to contribute to the advancement of equity and quality in Education, a key guiding principle of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4) for Education 2030. The Education 2030 agenda promotes education systems that combine increased and expanded access, inclusion and equity, quality and learning outcomes at all levels, within a lifelong learning approach. It calls on the international community to develop innovations to address all forms of exclusion and marginalization, disparities and inequalities in access, participation and learning outcomes, in all settings and at all levels of education.

The increasingly powerful capacities and lower price of ICTs has enabled a rapid diffusion of digital devices and applications as well as freely accessible digital content, and has made ICTs more affordable, notably in low-income countries, to close gaps of access and quality in education. Recognizing quality-assured online courses or other digital learning programmes as an alternative or complementary mode to face-to-face programmes of study, represents one of the innovations to accelerate the achievement of the SDG 4.

Two prizewinners will be designated by UNESCO’s Director-General based on the recommendations of an international jury. Each winner will receive a monetary award (USD 25,000) and a diploma. Winners of the 2017 Prize will be announced during a ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris in early 2018.

How to submit applications and nominations

Nominations for the Prize should be submitted no later than 20 October 2017 by filling out the online submission form in English or French: www.unesco.org/ict-ed-prize/register

National Commissions of the Member States of UNESCO and International Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) maintaining official relations with UNESCO are invited to solicit, nominate and submit up to three candidatures for the Prize. Self-nominations without an endorsement letter from a National Commissions or an International Non-Governmental Organizations in official partnership with UNESCO will not be allowed.

The  application  will  automatically  be  submitted  to  the  Secretariat  for  the UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for the Use of ICTs in Education, located in the Unit for ICT in Education of the Division for Policies and Lifelong Learning Systems within the Education Sector. Publications, videos or other supporting materials of major importance may be submitted as attached documents to the online application. 

Lean more about the Prize: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco/themes/icts/ict-in-education-prize/

Categories: News

Prize for innovative use of ICTs for quality education accepting candidatures

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 13:11
ict_education.jpg © UNESCO

UNESCO is calling for candidatures for the 2017 edition of the UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa Prize for the Use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in Education. Since 2005, the Prize has recognized innovations in teaching and learning that leverage technology to improve educational outcomes.

The theme for the 2017 Edition of the Prize is the use of ICTs to increase access to quality education and lifelong learning opportunities. It will reward organizations and individuals carrying out innovative practices to leverage ICTs for out-of-school children and youth, internally displaced persons and refugees, persons with disabilities, illiterate populations, adults who cannot access relevant skills development or higher education opportunities, and other socio-economic disadvantaged groups. The winning project should also promote the values and attitudes that underlie Education 2030 and the broader Sustainable Development Agenda.

The Prize aims to contribute to the advancement of equity and quality in Education, a key guiding principle of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4) for Education 2030. The Education 2030 agenda promotes education systems that combine increased and expanded access, inclusion and equity, quality and learning outcomes at all levels, within a lifelong learning approach. It calls on the international community to develop innovations to address all forms of exclusion and marginalization, disparities and inequalities in access, participation and learning outcomes, in all settings and at all levels of education.

The increasingly powerful capacities and lower price of ICTs has enabled a rapid diffusion of digital devices and applications as well as freely accessible digital content, and has made ICTs more affordable, notably in low-income countries, to close gaps of access and quality in education. Recognizing quality-assured online courses or other digital learning programmes as an alternative or complementary mode to face-to-face programmes of study, represents one of the innovations to accelerate the achievement of the SDG 4.

Two prizewinners will be designated by UNESCO’s Director-General based on the recommendations of an international jury. Each winner will receive a monetary award (USD 25,000) and a diploma. Winners of the 2017 Prize will be announced during a ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris in early 2018.

How to submit applications and nominations

Nominations for the Prize should be submitted no later than 20 October 2017 by filling out the online submission form in English or French: www.unesco.org/ict-ed-prize/register

National Commissions of the Member States of UNESCO and International Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) maintaining official relations with UNESCO are invited to solicit, nominate and submit up to three candidatures for the Prize. Self-nominations without an endorsement letter from a National Commissions or an International Non-Governmental Organizations in official partnership with UNESCO will not be allowed.

The  application  will  automatically  be  submitted  to  the  Secretariat  for  the UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for the Use of ICTs in Education, located in the Unit for ICT in Education of the Division for Policies and Lifelong Learning Systems within the Education Sector. Publications, videos or other supporting materials of major importance may be submitted as attached documents to the online application. 

Lean more about the Prize: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco/themes/icts/ict-in-education-prize/

Categories: News

Director-General welcomes investigation into death of journalist Kim Wall in Denmark

Unesco Most Programme - Thu, 08/24/2017 - 12:23
24 August 2017

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, has welcomed the investigation into the death of Swedish journalist Kim Wall who went missing on 10 August in Denmark while working on a story about a Danish inventor and entrepreneur.

“I am deeply saddened by the death of journalist Kim Wall” said the Director-General. “I welcome the immediate efforts of the Danish authorities to investigate the circumstances of her death and to shed light on this case.”

Swedish freelance journalist Kim Wall disappeared while researching a feature about Peter Madsen, inventor of the largest home-made submarine, the UC3 Nautilus. Her body was found in waters off Denmark on 21 August and has now been formally identified. Kim Wall had written for several publications including daily newspapers The New York Times (USA), The Guardian (UK), and Libération (France).

The Director-General of UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.” These statements are posted on a dedicated webpage, UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists

****

Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray@unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12

UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”

 

Categories: News

Director-General Pays Official Visit to Viet Nam

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 08/23/2017 - 22:51

From 24 to 27 August 2017, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova will pay an official visit to the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to take stock of expanding cooperation in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, further to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for the period 2016-2020.

Starting the visit in Hanoi, she will sign with the Minister of Science and Technology, Mr Chu Ngoc Anh, the agreements to establish the International Centre of Research and Postgraduate Training in Mathematics and the International Centre of Physics as Category 2 centres under the auspices of UNESCO. Both Centres are hosted by the Viet Nam Academy of Science and Technology. This be the occasion to highlight the importance of science, technology and innovation for the sustainability of all development. 

In meetings foreseen with the President of the National Assembly, H.E. Ms Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, the Deputy Prime Minister, H.E. Mr Dr Vu Duc Dam; and the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the Viet Nam National Commission for UNESCO H.E. Mr Le Hoai Trung , the Director-General will emphasize that UNESCO’s fruitful partnership with Viet Nam is built on the convergence between the Organization’s soft power agenda and the country’s longstanding tradition of investing in education, science, culture and communication as powerful tools for inclusive sustainable development. 

She will witness the ancestral connections between nature and culture during a visit foreseen to Trang An Landscape Complex, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2014, a property where archaeological excavations testify to continued human settlement spanning more than 30,000 years. 

In Ho Chi Minh City, she is expected to meet with H.E. Professor Dr Nguyen Thien Nhan, Member of the Politburo and Secretary of the Party Committee of the city. Southeast of the city, she will visit the Can Gio Mangrove forest, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve since 2000, which holds the highest diversity of mangrove plant species in the sub-region. 

Viet Nam, a member of UNESCO’s Executive Board, is home to 8 World Heritages sites, 9 Biosphere Reserves, 11 inscriptions on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage, and 2 UNECO University Chairs.

Categories: News

Official recognition of the National Autonomous University of Mexico’s efforts to promote UNESCO Global Geoparks

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 08/23/2017 - 18:46
focus_cmg-1_prismas_basalticos_csecretaria_de_turismo_y_cultura_de_hidalgo_dpl.jpg © Secretaría de Turismo y Cultura de Hidalgo 23 August 2017

The Permanent Committee of the Mexican Congress held a ceremony to acknowledge the efforts of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) to promote UNESCO Global Geoparks in Mexico. Representatives of various parliamentarian groups presented this recognition to the Rector of UNAM, Enrique Graue Wiechers, and gave certificates to UNAM’s institutes of Geography and Geophysics, promoting the two recently designated Mexican UNESCO Global Geoparks: Mixteca Alta, Oaxaca and Comarca Minera, Hidalgo. These areas were the first to be recognized as geoparks in Mexico, a decision that was approved by UNESCO’s Executive Board during its 201st session, in May 2017. Held on 26 July, the event was also attended by local and indigenous representatives of both Geoparks, who symbolically gave staffs of command to the Rector of UNAM.

“With regards to geodiversity, the absence of Mexico on the UNESCO Global Geoparks world map was quite surprising” said Rector Graue Wiechers. “Comarca Minera and Mixteca Alta are the first two, but we know that there will be many more, given that Mexico’s territory is lavishly endowed by a rich nature.” He also highlighted UNAM’s actions to benefit Mexican people, and recognized that among these, supporting Geopark initiatives has become a priority. Speaking before the Congress delegates, he acknowledged the efforts of the researchers and students of the Geophysics and Geography institutes in preparing the successful applications of both Geoparks.

The rector took the opportunity to ask to the plenary for a greater commitment with this highly regarded university. UNAM conducts nation-wide activities like earthquake and sea level monitoring, surveying territorial waters and Mexico’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ). It also hosts the national Library and Newspaper Archive, and now also supports Geoparks. The Rector argued that Mexico needs a strong University, with strong support.

UNESCO Global Geoparks are territories that promote geodiversity through community-led initiatives to enhance regional sustainable development. They help monitor and promote awareness of climate change and natural disasters and many of them help local communities prepare disaster mitigation strategies.

Categories: News

Closing the global gender gap in STEM education

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 08/23/2017 - 18:38
rocketgirl_drupal.jpg © Andrew Rich/ istockphoto.com

Categories: News

Empowering Yemeni women journalists in Mukalla

Unesco Most Programme - Wed, 08/23/2017 - 14:40
yemen_mukallawomenjournaliststraining.jpg © UNESCO

Within the framework of UNESCO’s efforts to promote freedom of expression and media development, UNESCO Cluster Office for Yemen and the GCC organized a training for women journalists based in Mukalla, Hadhramaut governorate, Yemen from 13 to 24 August 2017.

UNESCO undertook this initiative as part of its efforts to support Yemeni media in promoting peace and dialogue and based on gaps identified by local partners in assisting the media sector in times of crisis, including the need for capacity-building opportunities to respond to the lack of representation of women journalists in the newsroom in certain areas of Yemen and the lack of representation of women's stories and voices in local and foreign media content

The training was led by Saeed Al-Batati, freelance journalist based in Mukalla and regular contributor to foreign media including Gulf News, Al Jazeera English, New York Times, the Guardian and Foreign Policy, and implemented by the Hadhramout Establishment for Human Development (HEHD), a local non-profit organization.

Commenting on the workshop, Sarah Ba-Gubair, who was among the group of trainees, said she learned a lot from this capacity-building opportunity including on “visual journalism, the importance of analysis, gathering facts and pitching new ideas to editors and foreign media outlets". "We definitely need more Yemeni women journalists in the media sector because it is so important to highlight women's stories and show the rest of the world what we are currently going through," she added.

Saeed Al Batati, the lead trainer for the workshop said: "Despite the significant demand for news and updates from southern Yemen, no single bilingual female journalists works as a reporter for local and foreign media outlets. Highly qualified English speaking women have the potential to fill this gap in reporting provided they are equipped with advanced skills in journalism".

Shaim bin Othman, who was also trained over the past ten days, stressed the importance of the workshop given the present context and said it opened her eyes to new possibilities for her future. "I have now more  knowledge to write news and produce quality reports that will allow me to keep up with the situation in the country and report information to people living in Mukalla," she said.

Dr. Saleh Aram, Chairman of HEHD, added: "There is a huge gap in local English-language media, especially, in the number of female journalists in the newsroom. We hope this workshop can contribute to providing the media sector with equipped journalists to contribute to its development". 

The training focused on advanced journalism skills such as media ethics, safety guidelines and digital safety (using UNESCO Reporters Without Borders Safety Guide for Journalists), thematic sessions on lifeline programming, writing on cultural heritage but also on techniques to increase their visibility and pitch stories to foreign editors. The trainees were also asked to conduct practical exercises by conducting interviews and write stories based on the information collected. 

Categories: News

Women quench their fellow villagers' thirst

Europaid - Wed, 08/23/2017 - 13:37
Categories: News

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