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UN-Business Focal Point Newsletter Issue 15 (June 2011)

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 15th issue of the UN-Business Focal Point newsletter!

New Partnership Projects

Mobile Weather Alerts: Enabling Access to Weather and Climate Services in Africa
By: Ericsson and WMO
A new partnership between the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and Ericsson, a world-leading provider of telecommunications equipment and related services aims to fill gaps in national ground-level weather observation systems and improve the availability of reliable weather information…




The En.lighten Initiative: Supporting Developing and Emerging Countries in the Shift towards Efficient Lighting
By: Laura Fuller, UNEP En.lighten initiative and Sonia Uribe, UNEP-DTIE
Activities aimed at phasing out inefficient technologies have increasingly been introduced in recent years, yet market forces alone have proven insufficient to achieve rapid transformation in the lighting market. The en.lighten initiative, created in 2009 as a partnership between the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), OSRAM GmbH and Philips Lighting, with the support of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Earth Fund, aims to fight address this need…


UNOPS Partners with Arup to Strengthen Infrastructure Capacity"
The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) has partnered with Arup in order to improve the speed, quality and sustainability of infrastructure projects.






UNHCR and Skype Partner to Bring Easier, Cheaper Communication to Ground Staff
By: Debra O’Neill, Deputy Director, Australia for UNHCR
For many UNHCR staff on the ground, part of their job involves being separated from their loved ones for months at a time. Communication is often expensive and infrequent, adding additional hardship to their work which takes place in some of the most challenging and difficult conditions in the world. Through a new global partnership with Skype, they now have a low-cost way to communicate with colleagues, friends and families…


UNDP and Partners to Increase Recycling in Armenia
By: Sevak Amalyan, UNDP Armenia
According to estimates, plastic containers, bottles and bags are one of the main pollutants of water sources in Armenia. A new public-private partnership, initiated by UNDP and USAID with Eco-Engineering Company, one of the first private recycling initiatives in Armenia, aims to address this challenge and improve solid waste management in the country…



UNDP, Western Union Join Forces to Channel Remittances for Development
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Western Union Foundation announced a US$500,000 initiative to assist Filipino and Moroccan migrants living and working abroad to contribute to sustainable local development in their home countries…


Themes and Debate

UN Private Sector Focal Points Meet, Discuss UN-Business Collaboration
Over the past decade the UN has made significant progress in establishing effective partnerships with the private sector at both the system-wide and specific entity level. The experience gained over this time has positioned UN entities to work toward a more coherent approach to partnering with the private sector…




UN Secretary-General Highlights Increased Need for Business Engagement in Least Developed Countries
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon stressed the importance of private sector engagement for the development and growth of the worlds poorest countries as he launched the largest Private Sector Track in UN conference history at the Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC-IV)…


10 Years On: The Global Compact Network in Poland
By: Magdalena Kostulska, UNDP
The Global Compact Local Network approach has proven to be an important factor in engaging businesses in socially and environmentally responsible behavior in Poland. The Local Network, coordinated the by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), is now comprised of 77 entities…


Education in Rwanda Should Be Everybodys Business
By: Darian Stibbe, IBLF
With concerns over rates of literacy, the need to switch an entire system from French into English and with skills shortages in new industries such as ICT, Rwanda is facing significant challenges to achieving its ambitious educational goals…




UNECE to Open an International Centre of Excellence on Public Private Partnerships in Geneva
A new UNECE International Centre of Excellence on Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) will be opened within the UNECE in Geneva, with affiliated PPP specialist centers hosted by various countries…


Employing More Women Good for Business, But Faster Change Needed
More than 160 CEOs Support UNs Womens Empowerment Principles
Declaring that gender equality in the private sector is good for business, 167 chief executives from around the world have signed the Womens Empowerment PrinciplesEquality Means Business…


Advancing the MDGs, Global Compact Principles and CSR through Training
By: Jocelyn Fenard, UNITAR
UNITAR, the Flemish Government, the City of Antwerp and the diamond and jewelry industry partner to establish Antwerp International Training Center on Corporate Opportunities…


Private Sector Committed to Supporting New Positive Vision towards Better Cities
A UN-HABITAT Private Sector Strategy Meeting, held on 14 April 2011, gathered about twenty representatives of the private sector to discuss urbanization challenges…


UN Office for Partnerships Hosts Investing in Women and Entrepreneurship Forum and 2011 Kairos Global Summit
By: Katya Kucheriavenko, UN Office for Partnerships
The United Nations Office for Partnerships hosted the 2011 forum on Investing in Women and Entrepreneurship: Solutions to Addressing MDG 3 and the 2011 Kairos Global Summit… 





Meet a Focal Point

Meet a UN Private Sector Focal Point: Barbara Kreissler, UNIDO
Barbara Kreissler is currently an Industrial Development Officer in the Business, Investment and Technology Services Branch of the United Nations Industrial Development Office (UNIDO)…







Meet a Private Sector Focal Point: Gib Bulloch, Accenture Development Partnerships

First, a disclaimer: Labeling Gib Bulloch, Founder and Executive Director of Accenture Development Partnerships (ADP), as a private sector focal point is slightly misleading…







Tools and Resources

Presenting WeFeedback: A New Social Media Fundraising Platform from the World Food Programme
By: Silke Buhr, WFP
An innovative new social media engagement platform launched by the United Nations World Food Programme is using the power of social media to raise funds to feed hungry children around the world. But it wasnt an easy ride to get there…


Mitigating Partnership Risks: Developing New Tools for Due Diligence Screening
By: Ursula Wynhoven, UN Global Compact Office
While the United Nations has much to gain from partnering with the private sector, it is crucial to protect the reputation and credibility of the Organization by ensuring that the operations and actions of potential business partners do not undermine the values of the United Nations. Five processes the United Nations has undertaken for both defining exclusionary criteria as well as harmonizing approaches for partner screening are described here…


Africa Progress Report Singles out Importance of Transformative Power of Partnerships
The Africa Progress Report 2011 reviews the continents progress over the past year, and looks at the year ahead to identify key trends, opportunities and obstacles. The report focuses heavily on the transformative power of partnerships to drive sustained social and economic development…







UNDP Develops New Measurement Tools for Corporate Social Responsibility
By: Magdalena Kostulska, UNDP
As a result of the regional project Enhancing Transparency and Credibility of CSR Practices through Establishment of CSR Performance Assessment and Monitoring Systems in new EU Member States, UNDP has developed a practical methodology and two tools for measuring CSR excellence. These tools will serve to build monitoring capacities at country level and enhance companies capacity to apply performance indicators and conduct self-assessments…


Making It Magazine: Stimulating Debate on Global Industrial Development Issues
By: Charles Arthur, UNIDO
The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) has recently published the fifth issue of Making It, a bi-monthly magazine that aims to stimulate debate about global industrial development issues. Making It discusses the role of industry as a driver of wealth creation and development, while highlighting the need for productive activities to be environmentally and socially sustainable…