Veinna launched Human Development Report 2010

25 November 2010


On 25 November 2010, a presentation and panel discussion of the Human Development Report 2010 was co-organized by the United Nations Information Service (UNIS) Vienna and the Vienna Chapter of the Society for International Development (SID) in cooperation with the United Nations Development Programme and the Foreign Policy and United Nations Association of Austria. The event took place in Vienna.

UNIS Vienna assists students in organizing Model UN Conference in Bratislava

05 November 2010

Students participating in Model UN Conference in Bratislava

On 5 November, United Nations Information Service (UNIS) Vienna assisted students of the Gymna’zium Jura Hronca in coordinating the Bratislava Model UN Conference. The conference took place from November 5 to 7 and was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic and the National Council of the Slovak Republic in Bratislava, Vienna.

The conference started on 5 November with keynote from Mikuláš Dzurinda Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic.  He stated that “It is very promising to see that so many young people are interested in global issues and in the work of the United Nations,” he emphasized that the United Nations was central to Slovak foreign policy in seeking effective and timely solutions to global challenges.

In attendance were students from about 130 high schools in Slovakia and other countries as well as Policy Advisor to the Vice-Chairman of the National Council of the Slovak Republic, Ambassadors of the United States and United Kingdom; Director of the British Council Slovakia, Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport, Head of the International School, Secretary-General of the Conference and UNIS Vienna’s Deputy to the Director. Sonja Wintersberger UNIS Deputy to the Director said that an estimated half million or more students in more than 70 countries participated in Model UN conferences every year reflecting the commitment of young citizens to the goals and values of the United Nations.

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UN offices in Vienna team up to mark upcoming first World Statistics Day

15 October 2010

"There are lies, there are half truths but there are also transparent clean honest statistics" says one of the posters on display at the Vienna International Centre in an exhibition just opened in advance of World Statistics Day.

Three of the United Nations agencies based in Vienna including United Nations Information Services (UNIS) Vienna along with Statistics Austria have teamed up to mark the forthcoming World Statistics Day, which will be observed on 20 October 2010. World Statistics Day highlights the importance of statistics in shaping our societies. Mr. Fedotov spoke of the importance of United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) statistics to understand how the illicit drug market evolves and to measure criminal activity around the world. “The information we provide drives national, regional and international debates and policies on tackling drugs and crime,” he said.

The exhibition showcases the variety of statistical information, publications and services produced by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and UNODC, together with Statistics Austria, the Austrian national statistical office.

The Director-General of UNIDO, Kandeh K. Yumkella, reminded staff of the Charter of the United Nations and the philosophy behind it, saying “We are here to push for prosperity, to create stability, to create a world without poverty.” He continued, “The data we collect about poverty, is not to keep poverty, but to finish the fight against poverty.  We are not here to secure our jobs.”

Mr. Yumkella also spoke about how the Vienna-based UN organiz-ations and agencies were trying to harmonize their efforts and integrate their work.  At a recent meeting of the heads of the Vienna-based organizations he had joked that if UNIDO and the IAEA did not do their work properly then it would mean more work for UNODC in terms of fighting crime. 

The Director of the IAEA’s Division of Nuclear Power, Jong Kyun Park, on behalf of the Director-General of the IAEA, Yukiya Amano, said that at the IAEA good statistics was essential for getting things right, whether it was the right radiation dose when treating cancer or excellent quality control at a nuclear power plant.  “Good stat- istics and the men and women who produce them deserve to be celebrated,” he said. Around 100 staff, diplomats and statisticians agreed with this sentiment by attending the opening of the exhi- bition.  Their support was appreciated by the Chief of Statistics and Surveys Section of UNODC, Angela Me who thanked the speakers for coming and said that it was great to have their endorsement for a profession based on impartiality, relevance and objectivity.

International Day of Peace in Vienna

21 September 2010
Children releasing Peace doves

Children releasing Peace doves

To mark the International Day of Peace, the UN Information Service (UNIS) Vienna hosted a commemor-ative event jointly organized with the Confucius Institute at the University of Vienna on 21 September in the Vienna International Centre (VIC).

The highlight of the event was a performance by the Vienna section of the World Peace Choir, which is comprised of 20 boys and girls from the primary school of the famous Vienna Boy's Choir ("Wiener Sängerknaben").

The event was concluded at the Peace Bell near the Memorial Plaza at the VIC where children released white doves representing peace and took turns to ring the Peace Bell.