How a little app is making a huge difference in our Nepal earthquake response

08 Dec 2015 by Kamal Raj Sigdel, UNDP Nepal

Nepal earthquake response app Within the first three months, with the help of this app, UNDP assessed, demolished and removed debris from over 3,000 houses, employing over 3,500 local people and benefiting around 17,000 community members.
Within the first three months, with the help of this app, UNDP assessed, demolished and removed debris from over 3,000 houses, employing over 3,500 local people and benefiting around 17,000 community members. … Read more

Paris and what it means for our future

03 Dec 2015 by Mariana Simões

Though historically not a major contributor to climate change, Viet Nam is disproportionately affected by its impacts and is considered an extreme risk country.
While many of us feel that the Conference of Parties (COP) to the UN Climate Change meeting in Paris will not affect us directly, the decisions made over the next couple of weeks will actually impact us all – these decisions will influence the future of economic growth and human development. In Asia, increasing temperatures and variability in rainfall are resulting in floods and droughts, impacting crop yield. Rising sea level and increased incidence of extreme events are damaging assets and disrupting economic activity.  The cost of responding to these climate change impacts is formidable.  Developing countries especially struggle with these costs, as they must balance the immediate needs of disaster response with the longer term investments of sustainable development, such as health and education.          In 2009, the COP recognized this challenge and agreed to mobilize $100 billion per year by 2020 to support the response to climate change. This finance would be a “balanced allocation between adaptation and mitigation”, with funding for adaptation to be “prioritized for the most vulnerable developing countries.”  Mitigation refers to reducing or avoiding greenhouse gas emissions.  Adaptation refers to taking measures to strengthen resilience, to impacts of climate change which are already occurring and … Read more

'Imagine all the people, living life in peace'

25 Sep 2015 by Nguyen Viet Lan

Vietnam, Mong woman and childSung – a member of the Mong tribe – had given birth to her child at home, with the help of her husband. A month after the delivery, she was back tilling the fields with her baby tied behind her back. UNDP Photo
Can an 18-year-old living in one of the world’s most remote places have a say in how the world is shaped? I met Sung Thi My during a field visit to the mountainous province of Yen Bai, where we were surveying people about the world they want in 2015 and beyond. The UN’s MY World survey is aimed at capturing people’s voices, views and priorities so world leaders can be informed, as they define the next set of global goals. … Read more

Romancing with Electronics: Love, Loss and Recycling E-waste in China

23 Sep 2015 by Louise Xi Li

Typical E-waste dismantling operation in Guiyu, China. Photo by baselactionnetwork, CC BY-ND 2.0
When I was a kid there was a black and white TV in my house – I vividly remember the good times I spent by that TV, watching cartoons and shows that made me happy and informed my perceptions and knowledge about the world. This TV became my best friend until one day my parents brought home a big, new color TV. I wasn’t thrilled at first, as I was concerned about what would happen to my old friend – my father simply said someone would take care of it. One day an old man came to our house and took it away, and I said goodbye to my first TV. It was always a mystery to me where my old friend went – until I saw this picture in a newspaper. … Read more

In Paris this year, remember Vienna 1985

16 Sep 2015 by Tomoko Furusawa

South BeachThinking of the ozone layer as the the planet's sunscreen is a good illustration of how it protects the web of life. Photo by Thomas Hawk, licensed under CC2.0.
On September 16th this year, the world should take a bow. It was thirty years ago, on this day that the international community gathered in Vienna to agree on a common course of action to eliminate the industrial use of chemicals that were depleting the earth’s ozone layer. The Vienna Convention has since emerged as one of the most successful global treaties of all time. … Read more