Further reading

UN-Business Focal Point Newsletter Issue 20 (Mar 2014)

The Information Bulletin for UN Private Sector Focal Points.

From the Global Compact

Letter From the Global Compact
By: Georg Kell, UN Global Compact Office
Welcome to the 20th issue of the UN-Business Focal Point newsletter!

Thematic Focus: Public-Private Partnerships in Humanitarian Response

The Changing Humanitarian Landscape and the Role of the Private Sector
By: Charlotta Benedek, OCHA
The size and number of humanitarian emergencies across the world continues to grow, testing our capacity and ability to respond effectively. From the Sahel to Syria, from South Sudan to South Central Somalia, from Typhoon Bopha to Typhoon Yolanda, from renewed conflict in Myanmar to deepening instability in the DRC, needs associated with disasters and conflicts continue to grow year after year.


The GoHelp Initiative of Deutsche Post DHL and UN OCHA
By: Isabelle de Muyser-Boucher, UN OCHA
Year after year, the world is confronted with the havoc wreaked by earthquakes, hurricanes and floods. The Haiti earthquake in 2010, the earthquake and tsunami in Japan last year or, more recently, Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines demonstrate just how helpless mankind is in the face of natural disasters, and how life-shattering they can be.

New Partnership Projects

UNIDO and DNV GL to Cooperate on Sustainable Business Performance
By: Rana Fakhoury, Programme Specialist, Partnerships with Private Sector, UNIDO
In December 2013, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and DNV GL – Business Assurance have joined efforts in a strategic partnership to cooperate around water footprint measurements and capacity building for sustainable supply chains.


New IKEA Campaign to Bring Sustainable Lighting and Energy to UNHCR Refugees Camps
By: Jeremy Sprigge, Private Sector Partnership Unit, UNHCR

On Monday 3 February 2014, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) and its largest corporate donor, the IKEA Foundation launched a two-month global cause campaign to bring sustainable lighting and energy to refugees living in camps in Ethiopia, Chad, Jordan and Bangladesh.


The Guardian Weekly Focuses on Giving a Voice to Children in Business
By: Ida Hyllested, UNICEF
Building on what it means for businesses to respect and support children’s rights, the Guardian Sustainable Business section, in collaboration with UNICEF, dedicated an entire week to the theme “Giving Children a Voice in Business”. The topic was chosen in order to generate ideas and input towards the development of a tool for business on engaging children and young people as stakeholders in 2014.


UNICEF and Olympiacos FC Partner to Raise Awareness Funds for the 100% Campaign
One and a half million children around the world are still dying every year from diseases that could have been prevented by vaccinations. That is one child every 20 seconds. Nearly 20 per cent of all children do not receive the basic vaccinations. This is because poverty, conflict, poor infrastructure or weak governance makes it difficult to reach them. The 100% Campaign aims to make sure that all unreached children receive these life-saving vaccines.


Department of Public Information Partners with Google and UN Women to promote the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
By: Web Services Section, Department of Public Information, United Nations
Launched in 2009 by UN Women, the “Say NO — UNiTE to End Violence against Women” campaign showcases advocacy efforts around the world for preventing violence against women and girls and engages people from all walks of life, both online and on the ground, to play a role.


Department of Public Information partners with Royal Air Maroc to spread UN messages
By: Partnerships Unit, United Nations Department of Public Information (DPI)
In June 2013, the UN Department of Public Information (DPI) signed an agreement with the inter-continental Moroccan airline Royal Air Maroc (RAM) to offer UNTV, UN Radio and UN Photo products on the airline’s in-flight entertainment system and in-flight magazine, as well as at the airline’s terminals, lounges, and displays.

Themes and Debate

The UNECE International Centre of Excellence on Public Private Partnerships
By: Katia Adamo, UNECE
Fueled by the financial crisis which has constrained governments’ ability to finance critical infrastructure or social service projects, PPPs attract considerable interest from developing countries and transition economies. However governments face barriers in identifying, designing, financing and implementing projects that add value and meet social, economic and environmental goals.


Green Industry Platform Focuses on Private Sector Collaboration in 2014
By: Heinz Leuenberger, Director, Environmental Management Branch, UNIDO
The UNIDO-UNEP Green Industry Platform, launched at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in June 2012, has so far attracted nearly 200 high-level government, business and civil society representatives to sign its “Statement of Support”, promoting a cleaner and greener model of global industrial production and development.


Business Scales Up Action to Combat Global Malnutrition
Announced at the 2014 World Economic Forum in Davos, forty global companies have joined together to take global action against malnutrition. These companies are committed to reaching over 127 million women and children with improved nutrition every year by 2020. Additionally, the group has committed to targeting 99 members by 2015 – ranging from global multinationals to local companies in SUN member countries.


UN Mobilizes Innovative Partnerships to Achieve Global Anti-Poverty Goals
At a high-level event entitled “MDG Success: Accelerating Action and Partnering for Impact”, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon showcased the power of new types of partnerships to change the development landscape and mobilize finance, expertise and knowledge to further the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).


Children’s Rights and Business Workshop for Consultancies
By: Ida Hyllested, UNICEF
As part of UNICEF’s ongoing advocacy and awareness raising around the Children’s Rights and Business Principles, the CSR Unit within UNICEF hosted a one-day workshop for consultancies, advisory services organizations and other human rights practitioners to engage in in-depth discussions around children’s rights related to business.


UN Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative Reflects on 2013, Prepares for 2014 Global Dialogue
By: Anthony Miller and Susan Tart, UNCTAD
The United Nations Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) Initiative finished 2013 strongly with the addition of three member stock exchanges: the Warsaw Stock Exchange, the Nigerian Stock Exchange, and the NYSE EURONEXT. With the addition of the NYSE EURONEXT in July 2013, the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commended the stock exchange for its commitment to improving corporate behavior and promoting sustainable investment.


Good Education Means Good Business: Working Together to Support Global Education Goals
By: Estelle Langlais-Al Mahdawi, UNICEF
On 20 September 2013, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched a framework for business to engage in education at the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit in New York. Developed by UNESCO, UNICEF, the UN Special Envoy for Global Education, and the UN Global Compact, “The Smartest Investment: A Framework for Business Engagement in Education” makes the case that education is not only good for society, but also good for business.


Enhancing the Global Visibility of Chemical Leasing and Acknowledging Best Practices of Companies and Individuals
By: Akilnathan Logeswaran, UNIDO Environmental Management Branch, HQ Vienna
For the third time, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) joins hands with various governments to acknowledge best practices of the Chemical Leasing service-based business concept. Chemical Leasing is part of UNIDO’s Green Industry strategy and encourages the international community to commit to sound chemicals management and resource efficiency.

Meet a UN Focal Point

Meet a UN Focal Point: Katia Adamo, Associate Economic Affairs Officer, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe

Katia Adamo is an Associate Economic Affairs Officer at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) International Centre of Excellence on Public – Private partnerships (ICoE). In this position, Katia is assisting governments, together with the ICoE Specialist Centres and the UNECE Business Advisory Board, to develop international best practices and standards on PPPs which are inspired by the Millennium Development Goals and the objectives of the post-2015 United Nation Development Agenda.

Tools and Resources

Demystifying the Connection between Children’s Rights and Business
By: Ida Hyllested, UNICEF
UNICEF has released a set of tools for companies that provide practical guidance on how to integrate child rights considerations into broader risk management processes. The tools have been designed to ‘demystify’ the connection between children’s rights and business. They explain in plain language what children’s rights mean for business and how companies can respect and support children’s rights in their decisions, activities and relationships.


UN Global Compact Launches Business Guide on Rights of Indigenous Peoples
By: Michelle Lau, UN Global Compact and Arturo Requesens, Secretariat of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
The UN Global Compact released A Business Reference Guide to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as part of the second annual United Nations Forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva. The Guide aims to help business understand the rights of indigenous peoples and recommends practical actions to respect and support these rights.


Report on “Save Food Partnership Event for the Private Sector and Civil Society” Released
One hundred and sixty seven participants from 40 countries participated in the first “Save Food Partnership Event” to learn more about the initiative and to find more ways of working together to reduce food loss and waste reduction.


UN Global Compact and RICS Developing Best Practice Toolkit for Land, Real Estate and Construction Sector
To improve responsible business practices in the land, real estate and construction industry, the United Nations Global Compact and RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) are jointly developing a best practice toolkit for the sector. The collaboration marks the UN Global Compact’s first initiative to address corporate sustainability in a specific sector following the recent launch of its Post-2015 Business Engagement Architecture.