Areas of Work

Peace and Development

Peace is not only an enabler of development; it is a development objective in itself.  QUNO's approach to peace and stability, in the context of sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), is rooted in the acknowledgment of violence as a fundamental dimension of human suffering. The need to address the drivers of violence is most clear in the case of societies impacted by chronic instability and violent conflict, where development objectives cannot be achieved without paying attention to issues such as governance, strengthening institutions, and inclusion, as well as a range of external factors. However, the universal nature of the new goal framework requires us to consider approaches to promoting peace across all societies.

Ongoing Activities

  • QUNO is working in coordination with civil society organizations from around the world to promote  recognition of the central role of peace and stability in the new framework for sustainable development. This includes hosting events, making presentations, bilateral discussions with member states and UN officials, and strategy coordination.

Recent Timeline Events

March 2020

In & Around the UN

Read QUNO New York's newsletter, In & Around the UN, featuring articles on:

  • Bridging the Gap between Peace and Human Rights
  • Civil-Society UN Prevention Platform Launches a Discussion Series on Prevention
  • Future of the Peacebuilding Fund

and more from New York.

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February 2020

QUNO co-hosts the third annual civil society briefing with Under-Secretary-General Menéndez

On 4 February, the Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform (the Platform) held its third annual informal, off the record briefing with Under-Secretary-General (USG) and Senior Policy Advisor, Ms. Ana María Menéndez. Ms. Menéndez has played a central role in Secretary-General António Guterres’s focus on prevention since starting the position in June 2017. 

Convening actors across pillars and sectors of the broader UN system and finding channels to bring in outside voices is central to achieving QUNO’s vision. Facilitating strategic discussions between civil society organizations and the UN through co-facilitation of the Platform is one way QUNO works towards this vision. Building on the past annual meetings, this year’s gathering with USG Menéndez provided an opportunity for open and constructive dialogue on how civil society can contribute to the Secretary-General’s prevention agenda in an evolving UN system. 

USG Menéndez briefed civil society on the Executive Office of the Secretary-General’s current approach towards prevention and provided reflections on her office’s work over the past year. She shared insights from her recent trips to visit UN country teams in Asia, Africa, and the Americas, focusing especially on the interactions of UN country and regional teams with civil society. The discussion at Quaker House also provided an opportunity for reflection on the first year of implementation of the UN-wide reforms, which have significantly restructured many aspects of the peace and security, development, and management systems to promote the Secretary-General’s vision for sustainable peace and prevention.  

The Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform, established in 2016, continues to support the commitments made by the Secretary-General to a renewed prevention focus within the UN. We are pleased with Ms. Menéndez’s office’s commitment to meaningful engagement with civil society including through this meeting and during her field visits. The Platform continues to stand ready to assist in whatever way possible to nurture and grow the partnership with her office and will continue to collaborate with the UN and civil society to support inclusive prevention efforts.

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February 2020

QUNO co-hosts first of a series of discussions on Prevention

In February, QUNO was pleased to co-host the launch of the Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform’s  discussion series on prevention. The Platform’s timely discussions aim to support and contribute to building the collective capacity of the UN community in New York and beyond to advance prevention particularly as it relates to the Secretary-General’s vision for prevention.

During the series launch discussion held at Quaker House, civil society, UN colleagues, and member states took stock of the overall field of prevention, collectively considering emerging trends and opportunities for advancing the prevention agenda. The discussion provided reflections on the evolution of the conceptualization and operationalization - the ‘what’ and the ‘how’- of prevention from the UN Charter’s signing in 1945 through today. In addition to highlighting the key role of civil society, speakers addressed several important UN tools and mechanisms for promoting prevention, such as the role of peace and development advisors (PDAs) in country settings, Regional Monthly Reviews at headquarters, human rights mechanisms, coordinating work of the Peacebuilding Commission, the role of regional organizations, and the impact of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform aims to support the UN’s prevention agenda through strengthening coordination and information sharing between civil society organizations (CSOs) and the UN at all levels. As co-facilitator of the Platform, QUNO looks forward to the future discussions in this series, which will include topics such as analyzing prevention through the inclusion of youth and women, mediation efforts, and upstream prevention.

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