28.01.2010 - ODG

UNESCO’s Call to Action in Davos

UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova

Education, science and culture must have a place on the governance agenda. This is the message the Director-General has taken to the 40th World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, which brings together 2,500 leaders from business, government and civil society in the Swiss resort this week.

“We have to broaden the governance agenda. Without this, there can be no sustainable development, no road out of the crisis and no credible future for global governance”, commented Irina Bokova. She intends to make this her call to action for the decision-makers attending the event.

There has to be stronger political commitment to and advocacy for education in particular”, continued the Director-General. “Education is a cause that must be taken up by the G8, the G20, the international financial institutions. We have to provide quality education and reach those who are most marginalized. This is about governance for development”.

Ms Bokova emphasised that the governance debate comes at the right time for the multilateral system, as it drives forward its “One UN” approach. “Restructuring within the UN has to take an inclusive approach. Prioritising gender is important. We need to reach out more to civil society, NGOs, the private sector and youth.”

During her visit to Davos, the Director-General takes part Thursday in a session on the changing nature of governance and its impact on international organizations. On Friday, she participates in workshops on the question of ‘what values for the future?’ and on setting the global education agenda for the 21st century. On Saturday, UNESCO’s message will be brought to the fore once again in a session entitled: Rebuilding education for the 21st century.

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