The afternoon session of the 2019 High-level Segment of ECOSOC will focus on future-oriented trends, projections and scenarios around the ECOSOC theme of “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality”. The theme encompasses several dimensions, including trends and scenarios related to inequality, and trends and scenarios related to participation of people in decision making.
The findings of the United Nations World Economic Situation and Prospects 2019 reveal that even though global economic growth appears stable, it is masking underlying risks and imbalances, and concealing fragilities and setbacks in many developing economies. Inequalities are growing, as many low-income earners have not seen any growth in their disposable income for many years and more than half the world population has no access to social protection. This situation pushes the targets of eradicating poverty and creating decent jobs for all further from reach, and also impacts the achievement of other SDGs.
This session will also address trends related to the empowerment of people, including the poorest and most vulnerable. It will aim to reflect on future trends related to inclusive institutions as well as trends related to ensuring responsive, inclusive, participatory and transparent decision-making.
In addition, the session will also examine trends related to inequalities and the implications of rising inequality in the long run.
The report of the Secretary-General on the theme (E/2019/65) will provide background for the session. The discussions could draw upon relevant work on inequalities, institutions and participation. It could also include examples from the VNRs to identify driving forces behind inequalities (such as the impacts of conflict, migration, non-inclusive economic growth and environmental degradation), as well as trends in making public institutions more inclusive and participatory.
Background note is available here
Proposed guiding questions:
How can future trends in economy, society, public institutions and technology be used to empower people and engage them in decision-making?
What do scenarios tell us about policy choices to ensure shared prosperity and empower people to live dignified lives?
What do inequalities mean for countries in special situations, including fragile countries and vulnerable groups?
H. E. Ms. Inga Rhonda King, President of Economic and Social Council
Ms. Claire Melamed, Executive Director, Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data
Ms. Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, Chair of the Committee of the Experts on Public Administration (CEPA), former Minister for the Public and Administration of South Africa, and Chancellor of Nelson Mandela University
Ms. Isabelle Durant, Deputy Secretary-General of UNCTAD
Ms. Isabelle Pypaert-Perrin, Executive Director of the International Movement ATD Fourth World
Mr. Charles Kenny, Senior Fellow and the Director of Technology and Development, Center for Global Development
Ms. Sophie Howe, Future Generations Commissioner Wales
Ms. Doreen Bogdan Martin, Director of the Development Bureau of International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
Ms. Paulette Metang, Executive President of Association Camerounaise pour la Prise en Charge des Personnes Agees, (MGoS)
Followed by interactive discussion
Mr. Elliott Harris, Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development and Chief Economist, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs