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Experience and Challenges of North-East Asian Countries on Development Cooperation in the face of the COVID19 pandemic

Submitted by CMANSHOV on Fri, 19/02/2021 - 13:51
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Experience and Challenges of North-East Asian Countries on Development Cooperation in the face of the COVID19 pandemic

The North-East Asia Development Cooperation Forum is annual forum in partnership with research networks of North-East Asian countries to exchange views and experiences on development cooperation among researchers and practitioners in China, Japan, Republic of Korea and Russian Federation, as well as partner countries in ESCAP region.

The Forum in 2020 was virtually organized focusing on experience and challenges of North-East Asian countries in supporting the other countries to respond to the pandemic from the perspective of development cooperation. 

Humanitarian and emergency assistance beyond the scope of development cooperation prompted to new actors, new partnership, refocusing of development cooperation strategies, etc. Thus the Forum highlighted the supporting for pandemic response of development cooperation initiatives in broader perspective, such as development cooperation landscape of post-COVID in North-East Asia, non-traditional mechanisms deployed for facilitating humanitarian assistances, and assessing impact of COVID-19 in developing countries.

Knowledge products (Policy briefs)

Link to the meeting webpage

https://www.unescap.org/sites/default/d8files/event-documents/Policy%20Brief_KAIDEC%20Kilkon%20Ko.pdf

Watch on YouTube 

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Call for Papers: Transport and Communications Bulletin for Asia and the Pacific, No.91 “Gender and social dimensions of transport”

Submitted by SCHANCHA1 on Thu, 28/01/2021 - 11:29
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The Transport and Communications Bulletin for Asia and the Pacific is a peer-reviewed journal published every year since 1950 by the Transport Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.

 

Women are largest users of public transport and their transport needs are different. The Asia-Pacific population is ageing rapidly and the region has an estimated 690 million persons with disabilities. Addressing gender and social dimensions of transport is vital for socio-economic development as well as building inclusive and barrier free communities.

Yet gender and social concerns are not adequately reflected in transport policies and projects. Lack of disaggregated gender data, limited opportunity to transport jobs for women, lack of knowledge to mainstream gender and issues of vulnerable transport users are hindering development of gender inclusive and accessible transport system.

Transport policy makers, planners and stakeholders from the region need to address gender and social dimensions of transport to ensure universal accessibility, inclusiveness and security of transport systems and services. There remains greater opportunity to address different transport needs of women, differently abled and aged population while formulating transport policies and provide opportunities for women to join transport sector as policy makers, workers or users.

With this background, ESCAP is calling for original research papers addressing inclusiveness, accessibility, and gender and social dimensions of transport. Papers are expected to advance knowledge and innovative concepts and offer policy recommendations on gender and social dimensions of transport. Papers may cover one or more of the following topics:

  • Mainstreaming gender in national transport policy;
  • Planning for barrier free access and universal accessibility;
  • Addressing the transport needs of women, differently abled and ageing population;
  • Innovation in collection and utilization of gender sensitive transport data;
  • Gender analysis of transport policy/project;
  • Affordability, convenience and security of public transport;
  • Designing gender sensitive transport policies/projects;
  • Community engagement in planning of accessible and inclusive transport system;
  • Collaboration and partnership to develop socially inclusive transport system.

Papers can be qualitative and quantitative analytical study, regional, country, city or location specific case study, policy analysis, review, empirical analysis addressing inclusiveness, gender, accessibility and social dimensions of transport and directly or indirectly contributing towards the achievement of SDG 5 (gender equality), SDG 9 (resilient and inclusive infrastructure), SDG 10 (reduce inequalities) and 11 (affordable, accessible and sustainable transport systems). Evaluation will be based on analytical depth and/or novel perspectives. Only unpublished papers will be considered. All papers will be peer reviewed.

Interested authors are requested to send an abstract (no more than 200 words) to the Editor, Transport Division, ESCAP ([email protected]) and ([email protected]) not later than the 15 March 2021. Following an internal review, authors will be asked to submit their full papers. Completed papers may not exceed 7,500 words, and has to follow the format specified in the “Guidelines for contributors” (to be provided later). The Bulletin will be published online in the last quarter of 2021.

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ESCAP- OECD research project on Digital-trade regulatory integration in Asia-Pacific region

Submitted by CMANSHOV on Mon, 11/01/2021 - 20:17
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Application deadline 15 September 2020
ESCAP invites junior researchers who are interested in building their capacity through learning-by-doing and direct experience in working with experts in digital-trade regulatory analysis to submit applications for participation in the learning-by-doing training programme on “Digital-trade regulatory integration in Asia-Pacific region”.

The objective of the project is to develop an Asia-Pacific database on digital-trade regulatory restrictiveness as a knowledge product for the region. The research project is initiated by United Nations ESCAP, with technical support from OECD.

1. Participation: training and assignments
Successful candidates will be trained to collect and verify data and information on national regulations affecting digital trade environment of respective countries. Following the technical guidelines and close supervisions by international experts, including those from OECD, the candidates will be given an assignment to construct a dataset of national digital-trade regulatory restrictiveness.

Each successful applicant will have 4 months to complete the assignment by submitting the national digital-trade regulatory restrictiveness dataset and a 2- to 4-page summary of the country’s regulatory profile, which may be co-published by ESCAP and the researcher or its affiliated institution, as appropriate. Overall expected time commitment is about 1.5 work month, depending on experience of the researcher.

The national datasets produced under this initiative will have to follow technical guidelines and address peer-reviewed comments from the project supervisor and experts. The datasets will eventually be used as part of inputs for the ESCAP DigiSRII and OECD DSTRI databases.* The country-profile sheet will be subsequently published on the ESCAP website.

(Note: *ESCAP DigiSRII is available from https://www.unescap.org/resources/DigiSRII. OECD DSTRI is available from https://sim.oecd.org/Default.ashx?lang=En&ds=DGSTRI.)

2. Benefits
The selected candidates will each be given a research fee of USD 2,000-4,000, depending on scope of work in each country and level of expertise of the selected applicant, for their successful submissions of the project assignments for a country, through a consultant contract with ESCAP (outputs will need to follow the technical guidelines and address peer-reviewed comments received, including from project supervisors and experts). The country-profile sheets which will be published on the ESCAP website will also indicate the contributors’ name.

Participation in this project is a great opportunity for young professionals in developing countries – and the institution they are affiliated with - to build their capacity in research and analysis in the areas of digital trade related laws and regulations. The project participants will engage in practical training on legal-data collection, verification, and analysis. The participants will develop their technical capacity through, also, learning-by-doing, and interactions with experts in the areas through-out the project. This will give them opportunities to develop competencies in digital-trade regulatory analysis and networking with professionals in the areas.

3. Eligibility
The application is open to researchers with at least 2 years of experience in studying or analyzing trade-related laws. Knowledge of local and/or official languages of the country of assignment is required. Priority will be given to researchers from developing Asia-Pacific economies member of ESCAP, as well as to the following economies:

Brunei Darussalam**
Cambodia**
China
Hong Kong, China**
India
Indonesia
Japan
Kazakhstan
Lao P.D.R.**
Malaysia
Myanmar**
Republic of Korea
Russian Federation
Singapore
Thailand
Turkey
Viet Nam

(Note: **Applicants from these economies will be given particularly high priority.)

4. How to apply
To apply, please submit by email to [email protected] the following documents:
o Resume/CV
o Cover letter, indicating by countries where the applicant has interest or capability to conduct the research, if any, and reasons for being a suitable candidate.
o Professional/Academic recommendation

The deadline of application is 15 September 2020. The successful applications will be announced around 30 September 2020 by email.

5. Contract arrangement
ESCAP will enter into appropriate contractual arrangements with the successful applicants who have been selected for funding their participation in these research exercises. The contract duration will be 4 months.

6. Contact information
Please email Ms. Witada Anukoonwattaka, the project coordinator, at [email protected] if you have any question.

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Supporting Inequality Assessment for CRVS in Asia and the Pacific

Submitted by CMANSHOV on Thu, 07/01/2021 - 14:55
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  • A series webinars and EGM meetings
  • Opens to public for webinars and by Invitation for EGM meetings

A well-functioning civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) system helps to ensure that every person has a legal identity, facilitating access to the benefits and protections of the State. Despite national and universal efforts to “get every one in the picture”, disparities in coverage of hard-to-reach and marginalized populations remain. Therefore, the Regional Action Framework on CRVS goes beyond the measurement of civil registration completeness at the national level and includes inequality assessment as part of the essential tools for achieving universal and well-functioning civil registration systems.

While many countries expressed willingness to undertake inequality assessments, they often struggle to understand how these should be undertaken, especially where capacity is low. In particular, the assessment of inequalities in death registration is weak compared with birth registration for which more information tends to be available. The COVID-19 pandemic and the disparities in its impact have highlighted the importance of death registration to be able to measure and report on this. The pandemic underscored the importance of ensuring that the CRVS along with inequality assessments, are strengthened and improved, to respond better to any future pandemic, and have a better understanding of the ensuing mortality and morbidity.  

Cognizant of the importance of measuring inequality in the CRVS systems, the ESCAP Statistics Division in collaboration with international and national organizations, will be organizing a series of webinars and Expert Group Meetings (EGM) on inequality assessments for CRVS systems. With the overarching theme, “Inequalities in CRVS: Let’s really get every one in the picture!”, the ultimate aim of these activities is to provide practical and clear guidance for countries in Asia and the Pacific on measuring the inequalities in CRVS with the ultimate goal to narrow the gap in civil registration.

The webinars and EGMs will be organized based on three areas where progress can be made to support inequality assessments (date and time will be announced soon):

  1. Qualitative assessments and the Bali Process Toolkit
  2. Using secondary sources to assess inequality in civil registration
  3. Guidance on Indirect Demographic Methods for Measuring Completeness and Coverage for Low-Capacity Countries

Each webinar will be followed by an EGM.  Participation in the webinar will be open to anyone who are interested in learning more about inequality assessments in CRVS systems.  The EGM will be a closed meeting of invited experts which would synthesize and develop the material and discussions from the webinar. Each EGM will prepare summary information that will serve as inputs to the report which basically aims to provide practical guidance to countries on how to better assess completeness and coverage to inform inequality assessments.

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South-South Cooperation In Action: Launching Of The Technical Working Group (TWG) On Disaster-Related Statistics In The Last Quarter Of 2020

Submitted by CMANSHOV on Tue, 05/01/2021 - 20:35
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With the completion of the Disaster-related Statistics Framework (DRSF) and endorsement of the Committee on Statistics in 2018 and the Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction noting the work in 2019, the next task was to lead efforts in the implementation of the framework and capacity development in the region through a Technical Working Group (TWG).

Three meetings were held in 2020: the inaugural meeting last 28 October; in 25 November and 16 December. A regular agenda in the meetings is the sharing of good country practices in the region on the implementation of the DRSF. Among those presented were the “One Disaster Data Indonesia” and the “Bangladesh National Disaster Survey 2020”.

The Indonesia One Disaster Data is disaster statistics framework developed by the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) and BPS-Statistics Indonesia, integrating the myriad data sources from government agencies; and harmonizing and standardizing the concepts and methods of measuring cross disaster events. It is a measurement framework that is consistent and mutually agreed upon in policies, agreements, and coordination at the national and sub-national levels. It is regarded as the major data reference and information on disasters for the government’s policy making on disaster risk reduction and management.

The Indonesia One Disaster Data includes data management and statistics on disaster risk, occurrence, impacts and recovery, and financing of disaster management activities at all stages of disaster management in accordance with Law Number 24 of 2007.

Bangladesh is regarded as one of the world’s most vulnerable and disaster-prone countries. In 2015, the Bureau of Bangladesh Statistics (BBS) took the initiative to strengthen disaster and climate measures. This is by conducting the National Disaster Survey 2015 to generate the baseline data on household characteristics, disaster-induced losses in key sectors, health conditions, status of vulnerable populations, disaster / climate knowledge.

While Bangladesh has already addressed many disaster / climate challenges, there are still concerns with regards to mainstreaming disasters into development, partly due to: complex accountability among agencies, lack focal points, lack technical expertise and gaps in disaster data. The Bangladesh National Disaster Survey 2020 is being prepared to update the data of 2015 and address these concerns.

More detailed information related to the TWG on disaster-related statistics may be found here.

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The ‘Get Every One in the Picture’ initiative responds quickly to COVID-19

Submitted by SCHANCHA1 on Mon, 04/01/2021 - 11:20
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With only six months to go before the Second Ministerial Conference on Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS) in Asia and the Pacific, the ‘Get Every One in the Picture’ team took time out to support countries dealing with the impacts of the CoVID-19 pandemic on their civil registration systems.

Now more than ever, the importance of every person having proof of legal identity is important. Without such proof, how will they get access to social protection, or health and education services? How will we know how mortality is changing due to COVID-19 if deaths are not registered?

ESCAP together with UNICEF South Asia office and SPC initiated work on a set of recommendations for civil registration authorities on how to maintain services during these challenging times. To ensure a global reach for the recommendations, they were further enhanced and issued in collaboration with the United Nations Legal Identity Agenda Task Force and the Economic Commission for Africa.

In addition to the recommendations, the UN Legal Identity Task Force also launched a short survey in order to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the functioning of civil registration worldwide with support from ESCAP. Responses to the survey are available here: https://unstats.un.org/legal-identity-agenda/covid-19/

The UN LIA Task Force was established in 2019; it is co-chaired by UNDESA/Statistics Division, UNDP and UNICEF, and is tasked to promote and implement the United Nations Legal Identity Agenda, a holistic approach to civil registration, vital statistics and identity management.

Continuous and universal civil registration and the production of vital statistics are critical functions of government, as civil registration establishes the existence of a person under law. During national emergencies such as COVID-19, these functions should be maintained in order to continue the registration of births, deaths (including causes of death) and other vital events, as well as ensuring the production of accurate statistics on births and deaths.

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Islamic Republic of Iran newest party to the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific

Submitted by SCHANCHA1 on Mon, 04/01/2021 - 10:38
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Islamic Republic of Iran is now a party to the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific. Islamic Republic of Iran ratified the Agreement on 29 May 2020, following Azerbaijan (acceded in March 2018) and the Philippines (acceded in December 2019). Only 2 more countries now need to accede or ratify this inclusive and enabling treaty before it enters into force. The Agreement in Chinese, English and Russian languages is available on the website of the Treaty Section of the UN Office of Legal Affairs, along with an up-to-date list of countries who signed, ratified or acceded to the Agreement link.

All eligible countries should join to ensure implementation of the Agreement, which effectively builds upon the large number of bilateral and (sub)regional paperless trade initiatives, ensuring greater harmonization and interoperability between systems and promoting adoption of international standards. The Agreement has potential to cut trade costs by 25% and make contactless trade a reality where supply chains are resilient even in the time of pandemics such as the COVID-19. More information at: here

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China newest party to the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific

Submitted by SCHANCHA1 on Mon, 04/01/2021 - 10:33
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China is now a party to the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific. China ratified the Agreement on 22 November 2020, following Azerbaijan (acceded in March 2018), the Philippines (acceded in December 2019), Islamic Republic of Iran (ratified in May 2020) and Bangladesh (ratified in October 2020). This inclusive and enabling treaty will enter into force on 20 February 2021. The Agreement in Chinese, English and Russian languages is available on the website of the Treaty Section of the UN Office of Legal Affairs, along with an up-to-date list of countries who signed, ratified or acceded to the Agreement link.

All eligible countries should join to ensure implementation of the Agreement, which effectively builds upon the large number of bilateral and (sub)regional paperless trade initiatives, ensuring greater harmonization and interoperability between systems and promoting adoption of international standards. The Agreement has potential to cut trade costs by 25% and make contactless trade a reality where supply chains are resilient even in the time of pandemics such as the COVID-19. More information at: here.

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Social Development Policy Paper on "Older Women and Men as Providers and Recipients of Unpaid Care Work in the Asia-Pacific Region"

Submitted by SCHANCHA1 on Mon, 04/01/2021 - 04:37
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Using the National Time Transfer Accounts (NTTA) methodology, the paper analyses time spent by women and men of different age groups in six countries of the Asia-Pacific region on market work and unpaid care work. The analysis concludes that there are common trends across all countries, which include: (a) older persons are net producers of care, which means they produce more unpaid care work than they consume, (b) older women provide much of the care consumed by older persons, and (c) women of all ages produce the majority of unpaid care work. The paper further provides a policy agenda to recognize and value unpaid care work and provides policy examples from the Asia-Pacific region and other countries in the world. This includes increasing access to paid care; creating incentives to men to provide unpaid care; and social protection to unpaid care workers.

To access full version of Social Development Policy Paper on "Older Women and Men as Providers and Recipients of Unpaid Care Work in the Asia-Pacific Region", please visit here.

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