United Nations

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Key player in Paris: Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Denis Balibouse/Reuters

Paris climate summit: why more women need seats at the table

Including more women in international climate negotiations will lead to better results. Here are 15 climate champions already making a difference.
I’d like to build the world a home… Reuters/Eduardo Munoz

After seven chequered decades, we still need the United Nations

‎‎The United Nations was born 70 years ago, emerging from the horrors of World War II. After the failure of its predecessor, the League of Nations, the UN heralded the dawn of a new era, with the promise…
The Copenhagen talks generated huge interest - but an underwhelming result. EPA/Jens Norgaard Larsen

The Conversation heads to the Paris climate talks

The stakes could scarcely be higher at December's climate summit in Paris, described as the world's best chance of averting climate catastrophe. The Conversation will be there to see if the talks can deliver.
EPA/Rolex Dela Pena

Is an effective United Nations still the only hope?

Bombing Syria seems to have become obligatory for any aspiring great power. After all, what’s the point in spending all that money on sophisticated warplanes if you can’t actually use them on someone…
EPA/Matt Campbell

Australia’s bid for the UN Human Rights Council

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has announced that Australia is running for a seat on the UN Human Rights Council for the period of 2018 to 2020. The bid was originally made by the previous government, and…
Kevin Rudd is reportedly campaigning to take over as UN secretary-general when Ban Ki-moon’s term expires in 2016. EPA/Peter Foley

Is Kevin Rudd the very model of a modern UN secretary-general?

If history is a guide, the next UN secretary-general will be from Eastern Europe, working in their national government, and with strong foreign service experience.
Improving maternal mortality and ending preventable deaths in children are some of the health targets in the Sustainable Development Goals. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade/Flickr

More is less? Health in the Sustainable Development Goals

Health has secured its place as one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. But without clear mechanisms to report, finance or engage other sectors, could more end up as less?
Australia’s prodigious coal output is one of the factors that count against it in a new appraisal of sustainability among OECD nations. John Englart/Wikimedia Commons

Australia is among the most liveable nations, but it lags other countries on sustainability

A survey of OECD nations puts Australia 18th out of 34 on progress towards the world's new sustainability goals. It scores well on quality of life, but lets itself down on - you guessed it - climate.
Yahya Jammeh, president of Gambia, addresses the United Nations in September 2014. The dictator is notorious for human rights violations. Reuters/Lucas Jackson

Why Gambia is not ideal to host Africa’s human rights watchdog

President Jammeh has ruled Gambia with an iron fist since he seized power more than two decades years ago. He is responsible for gross human rights abuses, yet he hosts Africa's human rights watchdog.

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