UN75 Global Governance Forum Partnerships

The Stimson Center, One Earth Future Foundation, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung New York Office, Global Challenges Foundation, and Global Governance Philanthropy Network convened on September 16 and 17, 2020 the UN75 Global Governance Forum.

Held immediately prior to the September 21, 2020 gathering of world leaders to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, the forum brought together thousands of leaders worldwide from governments, global civil society, and the technology, business, and philanthropic communities to foster new kinds of innovative partnerships with the United Nations system to better address global peace and security, sustainable development, human rights, and humanitarian action, and climate governance challenges.

Below is a selection of the partnerships showcased at the Forum:

“540 organizations participated in the Innovation and Partnership tracks and were given the space and methodology to find solutions and next steps through dialogue and discussion. This convergence has developed the Roadmap to give voice and action to what people want and expect from the United Nations we need.”

– Juan Fernando Lucio
Director, PASO Colombia / One Earth Future

Peace and Security

Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace
Lead: French Foreign Ministry for European Affairs
The Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace brings together more than 1,000 governments, companies, and civil society organizations, which implement the Call’s principles in a collaborative manner to ensure peace and stability in cyberspace.

Participating organizations: Access Now, European Cyber Security Organisation, French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Internet Freedom Foundation, IPANDETEC, Manchester International Law Center, Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Zimbabwe, Microsoft, MISA Zimbabwe, Thai Netizen Network (Foundation for Internet and Civic Culture)

Overview: New and dangerous practices are developing in cyberspace: cybercrime, information manipulation, political or economic espionage, attacks on critical infrastructure or individuals, theft of personal information or confidential data, and compromise of information and communications systems used by citizens, companies and agencies. These attacks can come from State or non-State groups that respect no borders. The goal of the Paris Call is to constitute a community of supporters from all sectors–public sector, private sector, civil society–that unite around, promote, and implement a common set of values and principles in order to increase trust and security in cyberspace. Next steps include setting up working groups to develop concrete tools and solutions to improve global security in cyberspace.

New Alliances to Curb Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems (LAWS)
Lead: Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung New York Office
Foster a coalition between UN Member States, civil society organizations, and private businesses to better address technological challenges and to come to more legally binding international agreements.

Participating Organizations: University of California, Berkeley, Clearpath Robotics, Federal Foreign Office, Germany, Friedrich-EbertStiftung, George Mason University, International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC), Pace University, Permanent Mission of Indonesia to the UN, Scientists Against Inhumane Weapons (SAIWE), Future of Life Institute, UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UN ODA)

Overview: The security landscape will become more challenging with emerging technologies, such as Artificial intelligence (AI) and new weapons technologies. Lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS) that could take autonomous decisions about deadly interventions are already conceivable. The project seeks to move from the recently adopted 11 Guiding Principles on LAWS to the next level of international legal regulation. Next steps consist of developing positive obligations for meaningful human control of LAWS that can be included in legally binding international agreements.

The Promise of Youth as Peacebuilders: Making the Case for Partnership & Investment
Lead: Search for Common Ground
Highlight Social Return on Investment (SROI) of young peacebuilders in their countries alongside strengthening political commitment by developing guidance for member states to invest in young people as partners in peace and security. This will include strengthening youth leadership and financing that leadership in an effort to catalyze the global youth, peace and security movement.

Participating Organizations: Africa Europe Alliance, African Union, Alliance for Peacebuilding, Commonwealth Secretariat, Stimson Center, UCLA, UN, UN Peacebuilding Support Office and Peacebuilding Fund, United Network of Young peacebuilders, USAID, World Bank

Overview: Our initiative intends to transform social norms about young people to strengthen a range of institutional capacities to support young people’s agency, voice and leadership at the front lines of violent conflict, and to improve investments that support youth-led action for creating more just and peaceful societies. To pursue these long-term goals, we are focusing on four mutually reinforcing areas of work, including understanding SROI, building high-level political buy-in for supporting youth-led peacebuilding, investing in youth leadership, and investing in prevention through a global multi-partner fund on Youth, Peace, and Security. Next steps consist of defining efficient methodologies and processes for undertaking the necessary research and analysis for increased investments in youth, creating a task force to spearhead an inclusive process, identify potential funders and partners, and gather existing data.

Women ART Peace Programme
Lead: The Centre for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies
A project-based programme that adopts an organic and holistic approach through the 3D mission of advocacy, research, and training (ART)

Participating Organizations: Center for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies, Center for Peace Studies and Gender Unit – University of Khortoum, Furkhunda Trust for Afghan Women Education, Hunt Alternatives, Institute of Economics and Peace; Belgium, Peace Against Violence Organization (PAVO), Smash Strategies, Tamkeen Organisation, The Campaign School at Yale University.

Overview: The active representation and participation of women in mediation, negotiation, and policymaking remain low, despite evidence showing the unique contributions of women in preventing violence and ending conflict. This project will work with local, regional, and international partnerships to achieve a visible quantitative and qualitative representation of women in sustainable peacebuilding and recovery at grassroots and policy levels. Next steps consist of bringing together local, regional and international representatives to develop advocacy, research, and training, including on organic peace-making efforts, mediation, policy engagement, and response to humanitarian crises in Afghanistan, Yemen, Libya, and Sudan.

Building a Network of Peace
Lead: PASO Colombia, One Earth Future Foundation
Build a coalition of funders, government, UN agencies, and NGO partners to scale-up a new system of governance for peace, agricultural, and inclusive development in rural Colombia.

Participating Organizations: Acumen Fund, Colombia Peace Fund, Ford Foundation, Former Senior Advisor to the President of Colombia, Inter-American Development Bank, International Youth Foundation, Management Systems International, Organization of American States, Peace Direct, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Swedish Development Corp., United Nations, University of Notre Dame

Overview: The partnership will address chronic violence, illicit crops, and the migration crisis with innovations in the key axes of Colombia’s rural governance, productivity, and  conservation. In seeking to boost local, national, and international efforts to consolidate peace and security, PASO is creating a “Network for Peace” that will: i) establish a platform for effective advocacy on behalf of conflict-affected communities across Colombia; ii) build capacity at the grassroots and leadership levels in the areas of negotiation, mediation, and networking; iii) further enhance the skills of female high school and university graduates to prepare for grassroots and higher-level leadership roles; and to iv) advance women’s economic and business management skills. Identified next steps for the project include: the development of a work plan on designing and implementing solutions to address chronic violence in a select Colombian target communities; mobilizing sufficient financial resources; scaling-up the “Network for Peace”; and monitoring and evaluating progress.

Sustainable Development

“These partnerships are good examples of the thousands of initiatives like these that the world now needs. All major issues are cross-sectorial and cannot be addressed in silos. They need to involve critical partnerships locally, regionally and globally across governing bodies, local actors, business and finance.”

– Gro Harlem Brundtland
Member of the Elders, former Prime Minister of Norway,
and former Director-General of the World Health Organization

Good Global Citizens: A Dialogue on Wealth Transparency and Responsible Tax Behavior for a more Fair Global Economy
Lead: Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung New York Office, in close cooperation with the Independent Commission for International Corporate Taxation (ICRICT) and Fair Tax Marke
Explore a global campaign to tackle two critical drivers of inequality, hidden wealth and tax evasion and avoidance, as a necessary step to lay the groundwork for a more fair economic system that delivers for people at all income levels of society.

Participating Organizations: Bridging Ventures, Epworth Investment Management, Fair Tax Mark, UN DESA, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, ICRICT, International Monetary Fund, Jawaharlal Nehru University- Centre for Economic Studies and Planning of Social Sciences, Oxfam, Pennon Group PLC, Principles for Responsible Investment, Public Services International, Tax Justice Network, Transparency and Accountability International, UNCTAD

Overview: This partnership will explore a global campaign to tackle two critical drivers of inequality, hidden wealth and tax evasion and avoidance, as a necessary step to lay the groundwork for a more fair economic system that delivers for people at all income levels of society. Recovery from the COVID pandemic offers the opportunity, and also the responsibility, to embrace far-reaching reforms for greater transparency, democratic oversight, and fair taxation of wealth and profits in national and global tax systems. In this way, the burden of recovery can be shared, so that those who benefit most from the economy in good times are given the honor and responsibility to give back in order to help everyone in difficult times.

Cold Catch – Developing Cold Chain Infrastructure for the Somali Fishing Industry
Lead: Secure Fisheries, One Earth Future Foundation
To bring about an innovative, multi-disciplinary solution in partnership with the Global Cold Chain Alliance, to develop cold chain infrastructure in Somalia that meets the needs of fishing communities while creating standards that ensure sustainability and long-term success.

Participating Organizations: The Somali Federal Government’s Ministry of Fisheries and Marine
Resources, The Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources for the State of Puntland, The Italian Agency for Development Cooperation, Global Cold Chain Alliance, Somalia Seafood Export Association, and Secure Fisheries, a program of One Earth Future.

Overview: Somalia’s coastal cold chain infrastructure is challenged by limited electrical capacity, poor road conditions, and limited technical equipment and expertise. Facilitating public-private partnerships to invest in the Somali cold chain will help develop universal standards for future cold chain projects and produce context-specific training programs for pilot projects. Next steps include preparing guidelines for cold chain projects across Somalia, identifying companies and fishing communities that could benefit from training programs, collecting data for business plans and value chain assessment, and reaching new industry partners to promote infrastructure.

The International Municipal Investment FundTechnical Assistance Facility (IMIF-TAF)
Lead: United Nations Capital Development Fund
An investment fund and technical assistance partnership to enable access to capital markets for cities and local governments, particularly in developing nations and least developed countries, to support impactful projects that will accelerate SDGs achievement.

Overview: According to United Cities and Local Governments, 65% of SDGs targets cannot be achieved without the participation of local governments. Yet, many local governments are unable to access international capital markets to finance projects that will achieve sustainable development, particularly in the world’s least developed countries. The International Municipal Investment Fund and Technical Assistance Facility (IMIF-TAF) is a unique, bespoke fund designed to focus exclusively on SDGs-positive projects sponsored by cities and local governments, particularly in developing countries and least developed countries. Development finance institutions and NGOs have signaled their interest in capitalizing the IMIF-TAF, which will provide municipal government technical support for the financing of prospective IMIF supported projects. Pilot projects were recently selected for initial IMIF investment.

UNDP Accelerator Labs: Accelerate Progress Towards the Sustainable Development Goals
Lead: United Nations Development Programme
The UNDP Accelerator Labs, co-built as a joint venture with the Qatar Fund for Development and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany, is set to become the world’s largest and fastest learning network on sustainable development challenges. The network is composed of 60 Lab teams covering 78 countries.

Overview: In this time of planetary crisis, best practices do not always exist. We need to learn what works and what does not for tackling sustainable development problems in a matter of weeks, not years. By tapping into local innovations, the UNDP Accelerator Labs create actionable insights and reimagine–with policymakers, local communities, and social innovators–sustainable development for the 21st century. As the network is expanded with 30 new Accelerator Labs, partnerships will be pursued with governments, businesses, and academia to join us and to navigate a course beyond recovery, towards 2030, with the Sustainable Development Goals as our compass.

The Purpose First Economy
Lead: Leaders on Purpose
Create a leadership coalition of business and cross-sectoral organizations to advance the purpose first economy, which creates value by contributing to society and the planet.

Overview: The partnership will address critical systemic issues, such as climate change and water scarcity, the widening gap between rich and poor, and cultural conflicts. Through coordinated, long-term collaboration across business and other sectors, it will chart tangible solutions to these challenges and encourage the emergence of the purpose first sector. Next steps will focus on further cross-sector dialogues to build greater understanding and overcome the barriers to enhanced collaboration across sectors.

Human Rights, Humanitarian Action & Inclusive Governance

“This partnership track is extremely important – we have to make these partnerships work, we don’t have a choice. We need inclusive governance reform and systems reform through cooperation, co-creation and co-leadership.”

– Aya Chebbi
African Union Envoy on Youth

Mental Wellness for the World’s Growing Refugees, Migrants, and Disenfranchised Peoples
Lead: Tesseract Group and Epiphany Film Foundation
The initiative is designed to bring mental wellness programming and education to people worldwide with a primary focus on the world’s refugee population.

Participating Organizations: Singularity University, OpenExO, a global transformation ecosystem, BrainBreaks HOPSport, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), Future Life, Inc., Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Humanity Crew, ICMHD, Omega Healthcare, Pythia International, Scalabrini International Migration Network (SIMN), Tesseract Group, The Office of Nick Kho, Tulane University School of Medicine, Udarta Consulting, LLC, United Nations Population Fund

Overview: UNHCR estimates that 65.6 million people are forcibly displaced worldwide. The challenging conditions faced by those uprooted have led to intensified and long-lasting mental health and wellness disorders. This partnership’s objective is to undertake a promotional campaign that brings to the world’s refugee population proven mental wellness methodologies, psychological healing, education, and support for their personal and interpersonal resilience. Next steps include standing-up a project that deploys the values of empowered narrative therapy as its foundational basis.

Partnership to Support the Implementation of the UN Data Strategy
Leads: Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining, UN University, Global Information Management Working Group
Convene Information Management stakeholders and thought leaders from across the UN, the civil sector, academia, the private sector and the donor community to discuss the establishment of a global partnership platform to implement the UN Data Strategy, in support of the Sustainable Development Goals and emergency response.

Participating Organizations: Columbia University, ECLAC, Esri, Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining, Global Registry of Violent Deaths, SIPRI, Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, United Nations

Overview: Over the last two decades, the humanitarian, development and peace sectors have developed information management standards, methods and tools in support of global agendas, such as the Sustainable Development Goals. Challenges remain, however, in the consistent transformation of raw data into actionable information across the triple nexus. The proposed mission of this multi-stakeholder global platform is to ensure that the goals, objectives, and principles of the UN Secretary-General’s Data Strategy are translated into concrete standards, methods, and tools developed by and for actors across the triple nexus. Next steps include the establishment of a task-team working closely with the Executive Office of the Secretary-General to further refine, fund, and establish this platform.

Digital Identity for the Next Generation
Lead: Association for Computing Machinery’s Future of Computing Academy
The Digital Identity Project is an outreach and communication project with the goal of engaging the next generation of stakeholders on issues related to digital identity (DI).

Participating Organizations: Institute for Accountability in the Digital Age, 5th Element Group, IQVIA, BridgingTheGap Ventures, Million Peacemakers

Overview: The partnership aims to address the challenge of including younger stakeholders, both in computing and outside of it, in the policy debates around DI, such as invasion of privacy, proper regulation, and the impact of computing on society. The project will develop a comprehensive community of stakeholders to create an outreach and communication platform. We will also look into developing an accessible nonpartisan technical assessment that bridges technology and policy domain knowledge. Our end goal is to help people make informed decisions on the impact of digital identity technology and technology policy in their lives. Next steps include developing pathways to youth engagement, building on existing stakeholders, and developing a project plan for a 2021 launch.

Enhancing Civil Society Space at the United Nations
Lead: UN2020, Together First, and The Stimson Center
Expand and ensure active, inclusive, equal, effective, well-coordinated and sustainable participation of civil society actors in programmatic processes and decision-making across the United Nations system.

Participating Organizations: Access Now, Amnesty, Article 19, CIVICUS, Crisis Group, DESA, DGC, EOSG, GCAP, HRW, Igarape Institute, Int’l Women’s Alliance, International Rescue Committee, ISHR, NGO Committee on Sustainable Development, OHCHR, Oxfam, Stimson Center, UN, Universal Rights Group, WFM Canada

Overview: Despite their many contributions to global governance, civil society groups face repeated challenges in securing space at the global decision-making table. This partnership seeks to interrogate the efficacy of establishing a dedicated high-level focal point at the UN to be appointed by the Secretary-General that would facilitate and implement a system-wide strategy to protect and enhance civil society space and participation at the UN. The publication of a public-facing expert report outlining key principles of the proposal and including an endorsement statement for CSOs will be produced as a next step in organizing a public campaign in support of the appointment of a high-level champion for civil society.

Accelerating Digital Connectivity in the Wake of COVID-19
Lead: International Telecommunication Union Foundation 
Bring key stakeholders to work together to make humanity safer, stronger, and more connected in the wake of COVID-19 by accelerating access to broadband.

Participating Organizations: EMEA Satellite Operators Association (ESOA), Facebook, GSMA, International Telecommunication Union, Loon, an Alphabet company, Microsoft, SpaceX, UN Global Compact, UNICEF, World Economic Forum

Overview: Despite the importance of digital economies and broadband, 3.6 billion people are not fully participating online due to lack of access to high-speed internet or a compatible device, affordability of both, or the relevant skills or content. This partnership aims to accelerate digital connectivity and promote “building back better with broadband” as a key strategy in immediate response to and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Next steps consist of developing a repository of good practices and case studies that amplify best practices solutions, and good policy, as well as encouraging implementation of the UN Secretary General’s Roadmap for Digital Cooperation.

Climate Governance

Climate Governance Commission: 21st Century Governance Driving Exponential Climate Action
Lead: Climate Governance Commission and Global Challenges Foundation
Confront the global climate emergency by innovating and proposing feasible high impact global governance solutions for urgent, exponential climate action, to limit global temperature rise to or below 1.5°C

Participating Organizations: Climate Governance Commission, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), Exponential Roadmap, Global Challenges Foundation, Harvard Law School, International Peace Institute, Just Jobs Network, Kiribati Aotearoa Diaspora Directorate Charitable Trust, Mission 2020, NOW Partners, One Earth One Future, Plataforma CIPÓ (Brazil), Republic of Korea, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Swedish Wind Energy Association, The Elders Foundation, UN SG Youth advisory group on climate change, UNFCCC, Word Bank, World Resources Institute, WWF

Overview: The global governance response to the planetary climate/nature emergency has to date been insufficient to confront the scale, gravity, urgency and unprecedented nature of the problem. The Commission aims to fill a crucial gap in confronting the global climate emergency, by innovating and proposing feasible high impact global governance solutions for urgent, exponential climate action, to limit global temperature rise to or below 1.5°C. The partners will i). continue their policy dialogue for high impact proposals, ii). develop a communications strategy and narratives of opportunity connected to exponential climate action, iii). build youth advisory capacity to spur intergenerational dialogue, iv). roll-out proposals to policymakers of influence, and v). collaborate on joint events with various stand-out states, business leaders, and other key stakeholders.

One Earth System, One Common Heritage, One Global Pact
Lead: Common Home of Humanity
Work towards the establishment of the Common Home of Humanity initiative as the Operational Design of the United Nations’ proposed Global Pact for the Environment.

Participating Organizations: Ageas Foundation, Association des Femmes Peules Autochtones du Tchad, BPI, Instituto Internacional de Derecho y Medio Ambiente (IIDMA), Environmental Commission of the Club de Jurists, Global Voice, Global Pact for the Environment, Indigenous Peoples Major Group on Sustainable Development, Rockefeller Philanthropy, Our Common Future, Progressio Foundation, UNGA, Vodafone Portugal Foundation

Overview: Despite various multilateral negotiations on climate and the adoption of the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015, the international community did not identify yet a legal regime for the Earth System. This partnership aims to introduce the principle of integrity and unity of the Earth System through legal recognition of the Earth System as a Common Heritage of Humankind, which could form the framework for an ambitious new global pact with cascading effects on social justice, health and the economy. Next steps include developing a steering committee to recruit key supporters from member states, NGOs, the business sector, and foundations; organizing educational and advocacy events; developing cultural and political inflection point strategies and timelines; and establishing eConsultation Working Groups on different issue areas.

Countering Future Ecological Threats: A Multi-stakeholder Partnership Built around the Ecological Threat Register
Lead: Institute for Economics and Peace

Inform innovative, comprehensive, and evidence-based policy recommendations, especially for countries with high levels of environmental vulnerability.

Participating Organizations: Alliance for Peacebuilding, Chemonics International, Ford Foundation, International Crisis Group, International Peace Institute, MSI Worldwide, Office of the Secretary of Defense for Policy (OSDP), Renewable Energy Association of Zimbabwe (REAZ) and Zimbabwe Wildlife Conservators (ZWC), Risk Management Solutions, Solidaridad, UN -PBSO/ PBF, UN -PBSO/ PBF, US AID, Zimbabwe Ministry of Environment, Water & Climate

Overview: Global warming, extreme weather events, and rising sea levels are already adversely affecting food and water security throughout the world. A more accurate measurement of levels of exposure to tomorrow’s ecological threats is key to helping UN member states prepare and mitigate today. The project aims to inform the actions of a broader multi-stakeholder partnership dedicated to providing innovative, comprehensive, and evidence-based policy recommendations for countries with high levels of environmental vulnerability. Next steps include the development and promotion of specific policy recommendations, building on the experience and expertise of the partners and countries involved.

Amazon Rainforest Investor Coalition
Lead: Global Governance Philanthropy Network
Build on the momentum of the 2014 COP and Initiative 20×20 to prioritize market-based mechanisms for rainforest conservation through greater alignment between Wall Street investors and climate-concerned countries.

Participating Organizations: Brazilian Congress / Centro de Lideranca Publica, Cadasta, CaliforniaAir Resources Board, Climate Bonds Initiative, ClimateWorks, Conexsus US, Earth  Innovation Institute, Environmental Defense Fund, GCF Task Force, Global Wildlife Conservation, Impacta Advocacy, Initiative 20×20, Instituto Clima e Sociedade, Legal com a Amazonia, Martin Family Foundation / Mongabay, Milken Institute, Nia Tero, Pachama, Palladium Group, Partnerships for Forests, Sitawi Finance for Good, Sun Valley Institute, Synovia Capital, Teece Consulting, USAID Brazil, World Economic Forum, Xprize

Overview: Many scientists assert that the Amazon rainforest is the center of the global water cycle, helping to propagate rainfall and other climate patterns globally. In recent years, studies have shown that excessive Amazon deforestation disrupts rain patterns in the U.S. and elsewhere, leading to unprecedented droughts and wildfires in various regions of the hemisphere. The partnership aims to ensure that the business models, valuations, and governance frameworks of any given acre of the Amazon support keeping the forest standing, rather than cutting it for soy or cattle production. Next steps consist of launching carbon market and ecosystem service payment innovations and creating a global philanthropy and investor education campaign about Amazon rainforest needs and opportunities.

Powering Peace: Transitioning to Renewable Energy in United Nations Peace Operations
Lead: Stimson Center and Powering Peace Energy Peace Partners

This partnership envisions a broad shift within the UN system and among member states to adopt greater use of renewable energy in peace operations to strengthen missions and integrate effective peacebuilding and climate solutions in conflict-affected areas.

Overview: The initiative examines how peace operations can meet their goals for effectiveness, mandate delivery, safety and security, and climate action by leveraging renewable energy capacity, and potentially support peacebuilding in fragile communities. This work seeks to complement current policies and goals being led by the UN and embraced by member states and the international community.

“Digital Technology is transformative across politics, conflict, and human rights, but we need better steerage of both the promise and containment of the perils. Coming to grips with technology will determine the relevance of the United Nations moving forward and the degree to which we achieve success.”

– Fabrizio Hochschild
Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser to
the Secretary-General for the Commemoration of the United Nations 75th Anniversary

Updated as of September 23, 2020

The UN75 Global Governance Forum seeks to promote a more inclusive and effective United Nations through dialogue and recommendations that better harness the ideas, capabilities, and networks of both state and non-state actors for achieving the UN’s commitment to peace, sustainable development, human rights, and a stable climate.