List of 2023 Lecture Series
- International Migration and the SDGs
- Climate Change and the Future of the Paris Agreement
- Introduction to Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea: Key Concepts and Processes
- Introduction to the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement and Related Processes
- Columbia Law School Series: Conflict Resolution, Mediation and Negotiation
International Migration and the SDGs
The orderly and humane governance of international migration is widely recognized as essential for States as for the persons affected. In pursuing this objective, States of destination and origin have the responsibility to protect the human rights of migrants and nationals, and to take into consideration the interests of both, within the parameters set by international principles, standards and norms (globally referred to as International Migration Law or “IML”). What is more, the significance of migration to furthering development goals is well reflected in the SDGs whose targets include promoting better migration governance, protecting the rights of migrant workers, countering human trafficking, and reducing migration costs, to name a few.
This seminar’s objectives are two-fold: first, to improve participants’ understanding of international migration law; and second, to glean the legal, policy and programmatic implications of migration as a motor for development in the context of implementing the SDGs.
Duration: 1/2 day
- Learn about the root causes of displacement and migration;
- Discuss the interplay between state sovereignty issues and humanitarian crises in migration;
- Prepare to create a framework to aid and care for future displaces people.
REGISTRATION COMING SOON
Climate Change and the Future of the Paris Agreement
In December 2015, countries adopted the Paris Agreement on climate change. For the first time, 195 Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) pledged to curb emissions, strengthen resilience and joined to take common climate action. This followed two weeks of negotiations at the United Nations climate change conference.
Overall, this lecture aims to discuss the implications of the agreement made in Paris. What impact this new agreement will have in the achievement of the SDGs? What challenges rise ahead for the implementation of the new climate change commitments? What efforts do countries have to face in order to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change? Also, the treaty frameworks required to successfully implement and track adherence to stated goals will be discussed.
Duration: 1/2 day
- Discuss the impact of the climate deal and its meaning for the world;
- Reflect on the necessary efforts countries will need to take to achieve the commitments;
- Deliberate on the financial frameworks needed to implement the agreement in developing and developing countries;
- Consider the share of responsibility between developed and developing countries to implement all the commitments made in the climate change agreement;
- Analyze the importance of this agreement for the achievement of the rest of the goals in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Introduction to Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea: Key Concepts and Processes
The work of the General Assembly on oceans and the law of the sea is conceptually and procedurally complex, presenting a challenge for delegates with limited background in the field. This course aims at enhancing the capacity of delegates, in particular delegates from developing States, delegates from small delegations and new delegates, to participate more effectively in relevant work of the General Assembly on ocean-related matters by providing an overview of the legal framework for oceans and law of the sea and a detailed introduction to the work of the General Assembly in this field.
In particular, the course will strengthen participants understanding of the legal framework for oceans and law of the sea set out in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and related instruments. The Convention, often called the “constitution for the oceans”, provides an effective, comprehensive and overarching international legal framework for the oceans and seas. The course will also provide delegations with key information and insights regarding the work of various processes under the Convention and the General Assembly on oceans and the law of the sea. It will cover ocean-related processes of the General Assembly in detail, including the annual resolutions on Oceans and the Law of the Sea and Sustainable Fisheries.
Duration: 1/2 day in March and 1/2 day in October
Enhance understanding of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and its implementing Agreement;
Describe the various ocean- related General Assembly processes, including their scope, objectives and current areas of focus;
Expand knowledge on ocean affairs within the United Nations System, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Introduction to the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement and Related Processes
Introduction to the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement and related processes
The 1995 United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement (UNFSA) is an implementing agreement to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that aims at ensuring the long-term conservation and sustainable use of straddling fish stocks and highly migratory fish stocks. It provides an international legally binding framework for the conservation and management of the world’s most commercially significant high seas fish stocks, including through regional fisheries management organizations. The full and effective implementation of this Agreement is thus vital to achieving the fisheries-related commitments undertaken in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and addressing illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.
The seminar will serve to inform participants about the international legal framework for sustainable fisheries in UNCLOS and UNFSA, including the role of flag States, coastal States and regional fisheries management organizations. Detailed information will also beprovided regarding the various fisheries related processes at United Nations Headquarters, including the Informal Consultations of States Parties to the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement, the Review Conference on the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement and the informal consultations on the draft General Assembly resolution on sustainable fisheries.
Duration: 1/2 day in March and 1/2 day in October
Enhance understanding of the key provisions of UNCLOS and UNFSA for the conservation and management of marine living resources;
Draw attention to the fisheries- related commitments of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;
Facilitate engagement with the United Nations processes on sustainable fisheries.
Columbia 2023 Law School Series: Conflict Resolution, Mediation and Negotiation
This groundbreaking series, taking place every Spring and Fall since 2016, UNITAR-NYO and the Columbia Law School Mediation Program, with the full backing of Columbia Law School and Columbia University, provide rigorous, intellectually engaging, interactive, custom programming delivered to United Nations diplomats and change agents around the world. Our individual, day-long courses leverage Columbia’s unparalleled strength in the area of conflict resolution, weaving it in with skills-building programming that acknowledges the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals. Participants in these individual, day-long programs receive Certificates of Attendance signed by top-level officials at Columbia University, Columbia Law School, and UNITAR. The programs are designed for delegates at any level who wish to achieve mastery of negotiation, mediation, and multilateral conflict resolution processes, and implement them toward solving the world’s most difficult problems.
Each series, UNITAR–Columbia Programs are comprised of three one-day modules. Participants are encouraged to enroll in the entire series of training programs; those who do will be given the opportunity to come to a special invitation-only seminar, with no additional cost, at the Law School with leading conflict resolution, human rights, and other academics. Enrollment in individual modules is also available. The workshops deliver rigorous, intellectually engaging, interactive, custom programming for United Nations diplomats.
Past Lecture Series
DEMOCRATIC GOVERNANCE AND DEVELOPMENT (DEMOCRACY BUILDING) - Seminar Course
This seminar aims at producing critical thinking on the role of the United Nations system in the area of democracy building. Recent negotiations on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the United Nations have shown the sensitivities expressed by Member States with respect to such issues as democracy, human rights and the rule of law in the face of old and new threats to peace & security and development alike, as developments over the last few years have testified to an increasingly complicated situation for democracy building. The seminar will focus on policy guidance adopted by the UN and its impact on the ground. Beside the analysis of relevant UN resolutions and declarations, the seminar will assess how UN action is influenced and shaped by the main priority areas of the broad field of democracy building like electoral assistance, constitutional reforms, the strengthening of the judiciary, parliaments, political parties and civil society actors, the role of the media, the political participation representation of women, the engagement of the youth and the measures aimed at addressing all forms of exclusion.
Duration: 1 day
- Gain an in-depth understanding of the potential and challenges of UN’s engagement and action in the field of democracy assistance;
- Clearly articulate the main democracy-related policy issues emerging in current UN mandates and policy debates;
- Critically assess recent analyses produced by social scientists and practitioners, and to reflect on the main lessons drawn from selected case studies of UN action on the ground
BEHAVIORAL INSIGHTS - Seminar
In January 2016, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon engaged the first-ever Behavioral Science Advisor to the United Nations as a way to bring together behavioral science insights to the forefront of policymaking and programming. The UN Secretariat and the United Nations Development Programme Innovation Facility launched a small team of behavioral science experts known as the UN Behavioral Initiative. By translation and application of behavioral science insights, the United Nations Behavioral Initiative is improving performance management to be more effective and efficient, significantly impacting programme outcomes. The purpose of this lecture aims for a better understanding in achieving better outcomes when approaching development challenges with behavioral insights. Behavioral Insights lead to better diagnoses of problems and to better-designed solutions through research findings from psychology, economics and neuroscience.
Duration: 1/2 day
- To raise awareness of behavioral insights and their usefulness for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs);
- To build participants’ understanding of common biases and barriers to optimal decision making;
- To build knowledge of tools in the Behavioral Insights toolbox;
- To encourage evidence-based mindsets for critical decision making.
"A BETTER PLANET: BIG IDEAS FOR A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE," THE YALE ENVIRONMENTAL DIALOGUE - Seminar Course
Leading scholars from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies hosted an engaging seminar on some of our most pressing global environmental challenges —and potential concrete solutions as spelled out in the new Yale book (edited by Daniel Esty), A Better Planet: 40 Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future. This educational event included a panel discussion with a diverse set of speakers on a wide range of pathways to a sustainable future including law, policy, business, science, and multilateral agreements. The seminar focused on various ways to advance sustainability through actionable strategies based on rigorous analytical research. Speakers for this event had recently contributed their cutting-edge thinking to the Yale Environmental Dialogue, which provides a platform for debating sustainable solutions. Diplomats and Delegates of the United Nations were invited to join in the discourse for what was a stimulating and thought-provoking event on global sustainability. Professor Dan Esty of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale Law School, and Yale School of Management delivered the event’s keynote address. Professor Esty has served in several senior positions in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and as Connecticut’s Commissioner of Energy and Environmental Protection (2011-14). He is the founding director of the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy and has published 12 books on issues connecting energy, environment, sustainability and development.
Duration: 1/2 day
- Understanding of important environmental challenges,
- Applying a multidisciplinary, “systems thinking”, approach to responding to a range of energy, environmental, and sustainability issues;
- Pathways for global cooperation towards a more sustainable future.