New publication offers creative solutions to development issues

01 Jun 2006

UNDP Nordic Office's new publication "Partnering for Development - Making It Happen" shares innovative ideas on the concept of partnering for development and the reasons for the public and the private sectors to engage in partnerships.

New Horizons - "Development is a very broad topic and so is corporate social responsibility. Part of the overlap between the two concepts is covered by the term 'partnering for development'. With an increasing public interest in the topic, but so far with limited experience with the concept, this booklet has been written for those interested in this overlap", writes Jakob Simonsen * , Director of UNDP Nordic Office, in his Preface. "Millennium Development Goals (MDG) face us with a task on a scale that is truly unprecedented and they hold such potential that we owe it to the less privileged of this world to make every effort to achieve them."

Prepared as a follow up on the previous publication "UNDP and the Private Sector", and including an Introduction by Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the principles of MDG, this new 61-page booklet mainly focuses on answering the question on why different actors should engage in partnerships in the developing countries. The publication covers such topics as the Global Context, why the United Nations needs the Private Sector, Why the Private Sector Should Bother, UNDP and Partnership Opportunities, and Actual Partnerships that are currently underway worldwide.

Among them are many public development projects being carried out in a myriad of countries from India, China, Philippines to Venezuela, Lebanon and Burkina Faso, by local UNDP chapters and private sector establishments. These partnerships are engaged in a wide scope of issues from improving living and working conditions of the poor, enhancing infrastucture of business and logistics, making information and communication technology work for the poor, to justice and human rights, enhancing awareness of environmental issues and combining supply strategy with poverty reduction.

Partnership case studies in the booklet include the "Coca Cola and UNDP Turkey" partnership, which aims to improve the social mobilization and empowerment of young people in Turkey. The ultimate objective of this partnership programme being human development, the "Plus to Life" Project (see: http://www.hayataarti.org/ ) addresses the need for supporting youth platforms' motivation to achieve individual capacity building and mobilize youth for increased social responsibility and improvement of the quality of life, sustainability and participation in governance. To this end, Coca Cola Turkey and UNDP Turkey have established a fund of $1.5 million for five years to support local youth platforms to address development challenges including the promotion of key principles and values. The project provides grants to youth groups to implement innovative projects related to environment, education, sports, culture and arts. The fund is given through the Youth for Habitat and Agenda 21 Association, which has already established local youth platforms in 75 towns in Turkey.

* Before being assigned to the post of Director of the UNDP Nordic Office as of June 2006, Jakob Simonsen had served as the UNDP Representative in Turkey.