Countries in special situations
This session will address the challenges and opportunities faced by least developed countries (LDCs), landlocked developing countries (LLDCs), middle-income countries (MICs), African countries, and countries in conflict and post-conflict situations in aligning their existing national priorities and plans to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

As stated in the 2030 Agenda, “Each country faces specific challenges in its pursuit of sustainable development. The most vulnerable countries and, in particular, African countries, LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS deserve special attention, as do countries in situations of conflict and post-conflict countries. There are also serious challenges within many middle-income countries.”

The success of efforts to implement the 2030 Agenda will be measured against the progress of countries in special situations. The theme of leaving no one behind effectively focuses the initial strategies and efforts of the international community to address the needs of the most vulnerable populations within these countries.

The discussion will examine how LDCs and LLDCs are working to build synergy and coherence between the 2030 Agenda and existing agreements, including the Istanbul Programme of Action for LDCs (IPoA) and the Vienna Programme of Action for LLDCs (VPoA).

The outcome of the recent Mid-term Review of the IPoA reported that “progress towards the MDGs and other internationally agreed development goals was slowest in the least developed countries in conflict and post-conflict situations; those countries require context-specific approaches, including targeted national policies and international support.”

The unfinished business of reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) will also be addressed. In the 2030 Agenda, as Member States recommitted to “the full realization of all the MDGs, including the off-track MDGs, in particular by providing focussed and scaled-up assistance to least developed countries and other countries in special situations, in line with relevant support programmes.”

Possible questions for discussion:
  1. How can context-specific approaches, targeted national policies and international support be pursued to ensure that countries in special situations are not left behind? What efforts are needed to build national capacities and foster domestic resource mobilization?
  2. What are the key challenges to building capacity for effective data collection and analysis for monitoring and follow-up of the SDGs, which is a critical need for countries in special situations? How can these challenges be overcome?
  3. Countries in special situations are highly vulnerable to both internal and external shocks; how can we ensure resilience against various kinds of shocks and crises?

Chair:
  • H.E. Mr. Hector Alejandro Palma Cerna, Deputy-Permanent Representative of Honduras to the UN and Vice President of ECOSOC

Moderator:
  • Mr. David Steven, Senior Fellow and Associate Director at the Center on International Cooperation, New York University, USA

Roundtable members:
  • Mr. Youba Sokona, Special advisor on sustainable development of the South Centre LDC Independent Expert Group, IPCC, South Centre
  • Mr. Jean-Marc Châtaigner, Deputy Executive Director of the French Research Institute for Development (IRD)
  • Ms. Marina Djernaes, Director of the EcoPeace Center of Environmental Peacebuilding, EcoPeace Middle East
  • Mr. Claudio Huepe Minoletti, Professor and Coordinator of the Energy and Sustainable Development Centre, Universidad Diego Portales
  • Mr. Stephen Chacha Tumbo, Founder of the Africa Philanthropic Foundation and member of Africa CSOs Working Group
Biographies (alphabetical order)
Mr. Claudio Huepe Minoletti
Professor of Universidad Diego Portales, Chile
Mr. Claudio Huepe Minoletti

Professor of Universidad Diego Portales, Chile

Claudio Huepe Minoletti is currently the coordinator of the Energy and Sustainable Development Centre at the Universidad Diego Portales, in Chile. During his career, he has worked in the public and private sector as well as in academia. He worked as a consultant on environmental and resource regulation issues for over 10 years. In the public sector, he was Director of the Environmental Department at the Ministry of Mining and Head of the Long Term Studies Division of the Ministry of Energy in Chile, where he led prospective analysis and energy technology policy. Mr. Huepe holds a M.Sc. in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics from the University College, London. His Economics degree was earned at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

Mr. David Steven
New York University, USA
Mr. David Steven

New York University, USA

David Steven’s work is centered on development policy and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. He is a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and leads CIC's joint work with Brookings on the geopolitical implications of climate change and natural resources. He has advised UNDP and a number of UN member states on the 2030 Agenda and has partnered with UN ECOSOC, the MacArthur Foundation, the Bertelsmann Stiftung, Forum for the Future, and the Skoll Foundation. He is also Director of Research for Pakistan Task Force on the Next Generation and co-edits Global Dashboard, the foreign policy website.

Mr. Jean-Marc Châtaigner
Deputy Executive Director of the French Research Institute for Development (IRD)
Mr. Jean-Marc Châtaigner

Deputy Executive Director of the French Research Institute for Development (IRD)

Jean-Marc Châtaigner is a Foreign Affairs counsellor of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, with expert knowledge of international development, crisis recovery, and the organisation of the multilateral system. As part of the development assistance committee at the OECD, he co-chaired the “Fragile states” group and the Heiligendamm process development group, which brought together members of the G8 and the G5. He holds a degree in politics from the Institut d’études politiques (IEP) in Bordeaux, France.

Mr. Stephen Chacha Tumbo
Founder of the Africa Philanthropic Foundation and member of Africa CSOs Working Group
Mr. Stephen Chacha Tumbo

Founder of the Africa Philanthropic Foundation and member of Africa CSOs Working Group

Stephen Chacha is a development professional with extensive knowledge of sustainable development, poverty, health, food security, biodiversity, climate change and environmental issues. He has extensive experience in localizing and implementing the MDGs in Tanzania, served as the Beyond 2015 Regional Coordinator for Africa, and was actively engaged in shaping the 2030 Agenda at national, regional and global levels. He is an active member of civil society movements on sustainable development in Africa and globally, including: CSOs High Level Group to champion the implementation of Agenda 2030; Interim African CSOs Technical Committee to oversee the institutionalization of Civil Society and other Stakeholders in Africa; Africa CSOs Working Group-AWG; African Roundtable on Sustainable Consumption and Production; Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance; Africa Philanthropic Foundation; and Tanzania national SDGs civil society platform. Mr. Chacha holds post-graduate degrees in business administration, and in diplomacy and management of foreign relations.

Mr. Youba Sokona
Special advisor on sustainable development of the South Centre LDC Independent Expert Group, IPCC, South Centre
Mr. Youba Sokona

Special advisor on sustainable development of the South Centre LDC Independent Expert Group, IPCC, South Centre

Dr. Youba Sokona was elected Vice-Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in October 2015. Prior to this, Dr Sokona was Co-Chair of IPCC Working Group III on the mitigation of climate change for the Fifth Assessment Report after serving as a Lead Author since 1990. He serves as the Coordinator of the African Climate Policy Centre (ACPC) and as Executive Secretary of the Sahara and the Sahel Observatory (OSS). Dr. Sokona is a Member of the Board for the Institute of Development Studies, a Visiting Professor at the University of Surrey, an Honorary Professor at the University College London (UCL), and a Special Advisor to the African Energy Leaders Group.

Ms. Marina Djernaes
Director of the EcoPeace Center of Environmental Peacebuilding, EcoPeace Middle East
Ms. Marina Djernaes

Director of the EcoPeace Center of Environmental Peacebuilding, EcoPeace Middle East

Marina Djernaes is the Director of EcoPeace’s Center for Environmental Peacebuilding that will be set up in Washington DC in the fall of 2016 after having been the Executive Operating Officer of EcoPeace Middle East with responsibility for operational development and strategic planning since 2014. She has in excess of twenty years of experience in sustainable international development and strategic management in Middle East, USA, Latin America, Asia, Africa, Central and Eastern Europe. Recent publication includes Evaluation of Environmental Peacemaking Interventions Strategies in Jordan-Israel-Palestine in the Journal of Peacebuilding & Development. As co-author to a World Bank policy framework on climate change impact, she worked on risks, environmental impact, and adaptation strategies in the Arab World considering human development, sustainable livelihoods, capacity building, good governance, land and water use, biodiversity, and natural resources. Prior work include among others being director at Greenpeace, and co-founder of an educational enterprise New Advisory Group. She has a Master of Environmental Science from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA from the American University in Washington DC.

Statements
Statements
Persons with Disabilities
Presentations
Mr. Jean-Marc Châtaigner, French Research Institute for Development (IRD)
Mr. Youba Sokona, IPCC, South Centre
Ms. Marina Djernaes, EcoPeace Middle East