Symposium to support the realization of the 2030 Agenda in Small Island Developing States

The Government of the Bahamas with support from the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs hosted a Symposium for Small Island Developing States (SIDS) on 21-23 February 2017. The symposium addressed the specific challenges faced by Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in implementing the 2030 Agenda and their particular vulnerability to the impacts of climate change. The emphasis of the 2030 Agenda on “Leaving no one behind” calls for giving special attention to SIDS because of their special situation with regard to sustainable development.

The Symposium showed that many SIDS are rapidly moving ahead with the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SAMOA Pathway.  Participants shared insights on how they have adapted the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to their national situation and priorities and incorporated them in their development plans and policies.  The symposium also recommended that UN Member States commit to including the SDGs in education curriculums at all levels. The informal communiqué emanating from the symposium will inform the meetings of the UN oceans conference, high-level political forum on sustainable development, United Nations General Assembly, ECOSOC and UN Committee of Experts on Public Administration.

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The Committee of Experts on Public Administration (CEPA) will hold its sixteenth session at the United Nations in New York from 24 to 28 April 2017. This is the second year of implementation of the ambitious 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted in September 2015. At its fifteenth session, CEPA reflected on the implications of the implementation of the SDGs for public administration and provided policy advice to the Economic and Social Council on the issue. This year, the main subject of discussion will be “Ensuring effective implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals: leadership, action and means”.

Members of CEPA will present papers on various issues to support the Committee’s discussions. In addition, insights will be provided by the report of the expert group meeting which met in New York in preparation for the session. CEPA will adopt a report for the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) with conclusions and recommendations on transforming public institutions for implementation of the SDGs.

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The United Nations Public Service Forum will take place from 22 to 23 June 2017 in The Hague, Netherlands, under the theme “The Future is Now: Accelerating Public Service Innovation for Agenda 2030”. The Forum, which is held in honor of the United Nations Public Service Day, is organized by the Ministry of Interior and Kingdom Relations of the Netherlands and UNDESA/DPADM. It will include the ceremony on the UN Public Service Awards. The Forum will provide a platform to share experiences and discussion on public service innovation on, for example, youth, ageing, climate change, health, water or poverty and will allow ministers and other senior decision makers to reflect on how best to mobilize the public service and accelerate innovation for realizing the vision of the 2030 Agenda, the SDGs and to leave no one behind.  It will be a moment to reflect on common challenges and exchange lessons learned from the new approaches and innovations that are being experimented worldwide.

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In relation to the UN Public Service day, designated by the UN General Assembly, in its resolution  57/277  as 23 June, the 2017 UN Public Service Awards (UNPSA) call for nominations was announced in January 2017 and closed 17 March 2017. A total of 552 nominations were received from all 5 regional groups, with most cases coming from over 22 countries in the Asia-Pacific region. The UNPSA recognises excellence in public service at the global level. It was first launched in 2003 in order to promote and support innovations in public service delivery worldwide. In 2016, the UNPSA was reviewed to align with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SDGs.

A sub-committee of Experts in Public Administration (CEPA) will review and recommend the winners for the UNPSA 2017. These entries will then be subject to additional verification and validation. The awards ceremony will take place during the UN Public Service Day on 23 June 2017 and will form part of the events of the United Nations Public Service Forum that will be held in The Hague, Netherlands.

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