SDG16+ — December 2018


Welcome to your monthly roundup of 16+ news and views from the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies.

We would like to take this opportunity to wish you all Happy Holidays and a peaceful New Year, and look forward to working with and updating you on the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies throughout 2019.

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1. Building Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies Amid a World on Fire

2018 marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. However, violent conflicts continue to cause unacceptable levels of civilian casualties, atrocities and abuses in fragile states. The most unequal societies are often the most violent. Weak institutions, rampant corruption, and high levels of exclusion fuel insecurity and damage communities and economies. More than half of the world’s poorest people are projected to live in fragile states by 2030.

On January 9, 2019 at USIP in Washington D.C., you can join the Pathfinders, the Carnegie Mellon’s Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy, and the U.S. Institute of Peace for a lively panel discussion on how to mobilize behind a roadmap that will put peace at the heart of the 2030 Agenda.

Speakers include Laura E. Bailey, Ambassador Sarah Mendelson, Daniel Nagin, Maria Stephan, David Steven, and moderator Nancy Lindborg.

This event has been rescheduled from December to January 9, 2019. To attend, RSVP here.

2. 41st KOICA Development Cooperation Forum

David Steven was a keynote speaker at the 41st Development Cooperation Forum, hosted by the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) under the theme A Global, Inclusive Partnership towards Sustaining Peace.

  • KOICA President, Mi Kyung Lee, has made peace the theme of her presidency. KOICA is developing a new vision and strategy for how it can promote peace through its development cooperation program.
  • David presented a new paper — “The Challenge of SDG16.1 — can we halve global violence?” — which is published in the KOICA Journal of International Development Cooperation.
  • In his talk, he called for accelerated action to build a movement that is inspired by the potential of SDG16.1’s promise to significantly reduce all forms of violence everywhere.
  • He proposed that SDG16.1 should be at the heart of the global appeal for peace which will be issued at the PyeongChang Global Peace Forum in February.

You can download the presentation here.

3. The Future of Well-being

Also in Korea, the Pathfinders participated in a panel as part of the 6th OECD World Forum on Statistics, Knowledge and Policy.

  • We are collaborating with OECD as part of the grand challenge on exclusion and inequality, as OECD continues to develop its Inclusive Growth Initiative.
  • Among the speakers, Dr Jacob Hacker, who has been tracking the great risk shift from governments and businesses to families and workers.
  • We presented emerging themes from our work, including the need for new forms of support for workers in the gig economy, strategies to tackle growing political polarization, and the role of monopolies and concentrations of market power in deepening inequality and exclusion.

4. Launch of Joint OECD/OSJI Guide on Legal Needs Surveys and Access to Justice

This month, OECD and the Open Society Justice Initiative published a guide to “Legal Needs Surveys and Access to Justice.”

The guide helps countries understand people’s everyday justice problems and experiences with the justice system. It provides a “framework for the conceptualisation, implementation and analysis of legal needs surveys and is informed by analysis of a wide range of national surveys conducted over the last 25 years.”

The guide, which can be read here, is an empirical tool to support countries and national statistics offices that are planning to research the legal needs of their populations.

5. Civil society achievements in Sierra Leone

In Freetown, Sierra Leone, as part of the SDG16+ Forum last October, Task Force members heard presentations from three civil society organizations. Lilian Morsay of the Peace Mothers noted in her welcome remarks that the people of Sierra Leone had been through an 11-year war, a devastating mudslide, and an Ebola outbreak, but had come through it, thanks in large part to its vibrant civil society.

  • Sahr Kendema of the Campaign for Good Governance described his organization as a watchdog which tries to ensure that government entities such as the Legal Aid Board, Anti-Corruption Commission, and the Law Reform Commission are carrying out their mandates.
  • The West African Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) is a peace and security organization whose mandate is early warning and the promotion of peaceful resolution to conflicts. Dr. Isata Mahon, explained that WANEP deploys monitors in communities who use an online platform to report in real time on indications of possible conflict so that remedial action can be taken before violence flares up.
  • John Caulker of Fambul Tuk explained that its mission is to create space for communities to find answers to their problems. After the civil war, it worked on community reconciliation programs, and during the Ebola epidemic it worked with women to stem the spread of the disease through soap distribution campaigns.

6. News on inequality

New developments are shaping the conversation on ways to tackle inequality. Here are some key recent publications and events:

There has been a gap between international declarations made by countries and actual action. Oxfam international has recently launched The Commitment to Reducing Inequality Index. This new dataset offers an insight into who is walking the walk.

Framing the perception of equality as an identity politics issue is a visible trend. A brand-new report by the World Bank states the following:

  • “It is persistent unfairness and growing inequality between groups — rather than individuals — that are insidiously corroding social cohesion. Tensions between workers, between generations, and between regions have been increasing.”
  • This creates a differentiation between objectively measured inequality and its perception, which depends on group identity.

The recent mid-terms in the US brought a blue wave of Democratic gains. They also brought to life a new housing policy experiment in California. The sunny state voted in a ballot proposition to have the authorities issue bonds for construction of affordable housing. The bonds will be collateralized by the raised buildings and will help ease the housing tension. NYU CIC is currently working on a research paper analyzing the connection between housing shortage and political instability around the world. Stay tuned for updates.

7. Third meeting of the Task Force on Justice in The Hague

H.E. Sigrid Kaag, the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation of the Netherlands, and co-chair of the Task Force on Justice, will host the third and last meeting of the Task Force in The Hague from 6–8 February.

  • In that same week, The Netherlands, in cooperation with the Task Force, is organizing a series of events in the Hague, to mark the start of 2019 as a year for justice.
  • Events include the Justice Partners Forum, ministerial meetings, and a number of working sessions and side events of related justice organizations. Our website will have all the event information as it becomes available over the coming weeks.
  • In the Hague during the same week, HiiL hosts the Innovating Justice Forum from Justice Innovation to Scale.

8. The new Ebola outbreak and indirect deaths from conflict

In August, The Lancet published a study estimating that violent conflicts in Africa have been responsible for the deaths of 5 million children over the past 20 years. The vast majority of the deaths were due to the indirect consequences of conflict, such as the destruction of health and sanitation facilities, an increase in preventable diseases, and insecurity limiting access of medical personnel.

On December 5, the World Health Organization released its External Situation Report regarding the Ebola outbreak in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The outbreak is now the second largest in history, and curtailing it has been made more difficult by conflict and instability in the region. Addressing the outbreak is a coalition of health workers, government leaders, UN peacekeepers and national security personnel. A string of attacks against these responders prompted the UN Security Council to adopt a resolution in October calling for a halt to attacks by armed groups.

The current Ebola outbreak is an acute demonstration of the broader take-aways in The Lancet report. Addressing all forms of violence everywhere — the call of SDG16.1 — requires an appreciation of the insidious nature of violence. It also requires an appreciation of collaborative prevention strategies that protect civilians from both direct and indirect consequences of violence.

9. World Justice Forum in The Hague

Mark your calendar for April 29-May 2, 2019 and join us at the World Justice Forum in The Hague, convened in the run-up to the HLPF.

The Forum will focus on research and data that make the case for justice as critical to sustainable development; successful approaches to increasing access to justice; and mobilizing government, civil society and private sector actors to commit to increasing access to justice.

The World Justice Forum is organized by the World Justice Project and the following justice partners: Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law; HiiL; Netherlands MFA; Open Society Justice Initiative; OECD; and the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies.

10. Women Delivering Justice Report

On November 20, IDLO launched a new report — Women Delivering Justice: Contributions, Barriers, Pathways. The report calls for greater participation and leadership of women in the justice sector, which has been proven to promote public trust in systems and increase their effectiveness.

Noting that only 26% of Chief Justices worldwide and 34% of Supreme Court judges are women, IDLO urges countries to “take concrete measures to address gender inequality and discrimination in the justice sector, both through the identification and the removal of legal and practical barriers to women’s equal participation, and through proactive steps to actively encourage and advance women’s equal representation.”

The report can be read here

11. Increase in intimate partner and family violence against women and girls

Last month, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime released its Global Study on Homicide: Gender-Related Killing of Women and Girls. The report observes that no tangible progress has been made in protecting female victims of violence perpetrated by intimate partners and family members, despite a plethora programs designed to do just that.

Women who are killed by their partners have typically suffered years of abuse. More proactive efforts to stem this violence at an early stage can therefore significantly reduce killings by intimate partners.

The report contains the following key findings:

  • 87,000 women were intentionally killed in 2017.
  • 58% of those were killed by intimate partners or family members, with the majority of femicides committed by intimate partners.
  • 137 women are killed by an intimate partner or member of their own family, every day.
  • The proportion of femicides that are committed by intimate partners or family members increased from 47% in 2012 to 58% in 2017.
  • The highest number of such killings occurs in Asia, although the highest rate as a proportion of the population is found in Africa.

12. 2018 round up — peace

2018 was a year of increasing focus on SDG16.1, which commits to significantly reducing all forms of violence everywhere:

  • The UN and World Bank’s Pathways for Peace report, launched earlier this year, argued that, “to address the complex and integrated nature of contemporary conflict-related risks, prevention must be sustained, inclusive, and targeted.” SDG16+ is the key to this approach.
  • Also in 2018, the UN Secretary-General released his report on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace. The report and the corresponding resolutions call for increased attention to “preventing the outbreak, escalation, continuation and recurrence of conflict.”
  • Pathfinders participated in various global forums — Solutions Summit, Forum on Peace and Development, FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum, and others — to bring together the many communities working to prevent different forms of violence.
  • With the International Peace Institute, Pathfinders co-hosted the Twice the Peace by 2030 panel discussion at Geneva Peace Week. The event showcased the power of joining evidence with leadership to reduce violence, using examples from Latin America.
  • Pathfinders will harness these knowledge and practice partnerships as we move into the new year, laying a strong foundation for a decade of committed action to enhanced peace.

13. 2018 round up — justice

We are making 2019 the year for justice, but 2018 was a pretty good precursor:

  • In February, the Task Force on Justice was launched in Buenos Aires (watch the video). H.E. Germán Carlos Garavano, Minister of Justice and Human Rights in Argentina presented his three takeaways from the week: Delivering Justice for All.
  • Work got underway, and heading into the summer it was clear that there was Growing Momentum on Justice for All.
  • The Justice 2030 event during UNGA in September in New York showed a high level of political interest and engagement.
  • During the Task Force meeting in Freetown, H.E. Priscilla Schwartz, Sierra Leone’s Attorney General and Minister of Justice, challenged those working to expand and strengthen justice systems to broaden their conception of justice: Justice for All
  • From the Big Think on Justice to the Think Justice consultation, as well as all the research carried out in the workstreams, the number of justice partners contributing to the work of the Task Force on Justice has increased throughout the year.

14. 2018 round up — inclusion

Three major events marked the highlights of the inclusion Grand Challenge in 2018:

  • In March, the Pathfinders contributed to a breakfast meeting ahead of the 2018 ECOSOC Special Meeting. Read our six priorities for gathering the evidence needed to underpin greater inclusion and participation through the 2030 Agenda. The President of ECOSOC, Her Excellency Marie Chatardová, has made “fostering sustainable, resilient and inclusive societies through participation of all” the priority of her Czech Presidency.
  • July saw the release of the report on the 16+ Forum held in Georgia in 2017. Key takeaways included “the need for inclusion in process, policy and practice; the importance of national and local ownership; a call to identify what already works and increase coordination across ministries and stakeholders; the critical value of partnerships and meaningful engagement with all segments of society.”
  • And in September, ministers met for a Pathfinders’ dinner during UNGA to explore new ways to combat inequality and exclusion. This was followed by a two-day retreat that opened a new grand challenge bridging SDG16 (peace, justice and inclusion) and SDG10 (inequality within and between countries).

15. For your diaries in the next month

Jan: Asia Access to Justice Week, Chiang Mai

Jan 9: Building Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies Amid a World on Fire, Washington DC — Pathfinders event co-hosted with USIP and Carnegie Mellon University Heinz College — rescheduled event

Jan 14–17: International Water Summit, Abu Dhabi

Jan 22–25: World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, Davos

16. SDG16+ round up

  • Apply for V-Dem’s Visiting Scholar Program
  • Explore the UN Country Team toolkit for monitoring and reporting SDGs
  • Join ID4D’s Mission Billion Challenge
  • Watch #FightInequality’s video from their event in Oslo
  • Explore the World Bank’s new WDI website
  • Last chance to give your input to the Task Force on Justice report
  • Read our review of our Geneva Peace Week event
  • Discover Gallup’s Migration Research Center
  • Watch Santa work his way around the world on Christmas Eve….ho, ho, ho!!

Plus 16 things we’re reading

WeProtect Global Threat Assessment ▪ V-Dem’s Measures of Democratizationin Scandinavia ▪ Blood on the Doorstep#SafeHeroes stories from Together for Girls ▪ Connecting universities with the SDGs ▪ Streamlining UNGA’s workfor emerging threats and challenges ▪ Declaration from the Paris Peace Forum▪ Tokyo 2020 Olympics to support the SDGs ▪ The women killed in one day ▪ Perspectives on Global Development 2019 ▪ Evaluation of Cure Violence in Trinidad & Tobago ▪ Rome Declaration on Reducing Risk of Disasters ▪ End Violence report on ensuring non-violent childhoods ▪ New Global Task Force on Digital Financing for SDGs ▪ Can cities help achieve the SDGs? ▪ OECD’s Towards a New Pact on Multilateralism