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  1. UNICEF’s Social Policy AgendaGaspar Fajth Chief, Social Policy and Economic AnalysesPolicy, Advocacy and Knowledge Management SectionUNICEF Division of Policy and Practice, New York

  2. Themes • Is social policy engagement new for UNICEF? • Global challenges and opportunities • UNICEF’s social policy agenda: 2006-2009 • The Global Study and some other HQ initiatives

  3. UNICEF's mission statement – a closer look • UNICEF is mandated … to advocate for • the protection of children's rights, • to help meet their basic needs and • to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential. • UNICEF insists that the survival, protection and development of children are universal development imperatives that are integral to human progress. • UNICEF is committed to ensuring special protection for the most disadvantaged children • UNICEF mobilizes political will and material resources • to help countries, particularly developing countries, ensure a "first call for children" and • to build their capacity to form appropriate policies and deliver services for children • and their families.

  4. Global challenges and opportunities • Global agendas • Sustainable Development • Market Reform/Structural Adjustment • Nations State/Democracy • Human Development • Human Security • MDGs/Global Poverty • Governance reform

  5. Global challenges and opportunities • Global trends • Integration through trade and capital flows • Rising inequalities • Demographic change, migration • New patterns of economic growth and employment • Environmental risks, climate change • Commodity boom/price hikes • More volatility

  6. Global challenges and opportunities • Global opportunities • The international agendas… • South-led development • Creating welfare states/inclusive societies in the south • Evidence-based, child-sensitive policy making (inc. policy transfers) • Networking.

  7. UNICEF Priorities (Focus Areas) Young child survival and development Basic education and gender equality HIV/AIDS and children Child protection from violence, exploitation and abuse Policy advocacy and partnerships for children’s rights The MDGs Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger Achieve Universal Primary Education Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women Reduce Child Mortality Improve Maternal Health Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other Diseases Ensure Environmental Sustainability Develop a Global Partnership for Development UNICEF’s priorities (2006-2009 Strategic Plan) and the MDG’s

  8. Focus Area 5: Policy advocacy and partnerships for children’s rights 2006- • Four key result (activity) areas • collecting data and information • supporting research and policy analysis • engaging in advocacy and policy dialogue with decision makers • supporting participation by children and young people • Current thematic agenda: • Child poverty and disparities • Social protection • Social budgets • Decentralization • Migration • Legislative reforms for children’s rights

  9. UNICEF’s ‘implicit’ social policy objectives • The right to a family upbringing is realized for all children. • All children have access to basic social services (nutrition, WES, health, education, protective environment including family support/community services). • Equity-enhancing mechanism are in place (including gender-equity!) • Children/families/communities are protected from and/or empowered to cope with conflict, crises, and dislocations, including those stemming from migration or instability of income and resources. • Children/families/communities participate in resources allocations and strategic decisions and policymaking affecting them. Underlying assumption  current international policy frameworks and growth, investment, trade trends associated with globalization (or with the lack of it) will either be slow or ineffective in addressing all these objectives!

  10. HQ Initiatives on Social Policy Analyses and Community of Practice • Examples • Global Study on Child Poverty and Disparities • Budget Networking • Social Protection • Migration • etc

  11. Work on Child Poverty and Disparities Builds on recent training courses esp. “Public Policy and Advocacy for Children’s Rights” and “Social Protection” FA5 Thematic funding (new round in May) Started in September 2007 by launching the “Guide” and the web-link Downloadable from:

  12. The Global Study Guide Note: Flexibility and adaptation to local context encouraged!

  13. Work on Public Budgets – HQ initiatives Training courses “Budget Policies and Investments for Children” FA5 Thematic funding (new round in May) Global advocacy: • International conference on Budgets in Madrid (October) to share UNICEF and partner experience of budget work for children’s rights. • Side Event on national budgets and children at Doha Financing for Development meeting Knowledge sharing: • Budgeting for Children’s Rights Intranet page - including reference material, country examples, OR proposals, learning materials, external references and more • Eyes on the budget monthly newsletters (March, April) • “Two pager” on UNICEF, Budget work and Children Development of a Community of Practice (forthcoming)

  14. Budget Work: More about the Community of Practice Who is it for? • UNICEF staff and partners engaged in budget work What would it do? • Capture existing UNICEF experience, knowledge and expertise • Systematize key internal and external reference materials • Connect people to information and people to people • Provide a mutual support network • Identify support needs, knowledge gaps and barriers to success • Help pool our efforts to address them • Build our knowledge base through network queries • Provide inputs to organizational strategy, policy, advocacy, fundraising, partnerships How would it work? • Dedicated collaborative e-space • Active, full time facilitation from HQ and with support from ROs • Face to face meeting to discuss priorities and needs (combined with International Conference in October)

  15. Budget Work: What do we need from you? • Your experiences • Your expertise and knowledge • To know what you need from us • To give us feedback on how we should help/do better • Your engagement to make this work! Contact person on Budget networking: Ian Thorpe/PAKM/DPP You can also contact us at

  16. much of this is new for UNICEF…thank you for joining us and help move forward!