Global problems need multilateral solutions, says UN official
United Nations Under-Secretary-General (USG) Fabrizio Hochschild, who is overseeing the world body's 75th celebrations slated for next year, has said that only through cooperation can global problems be resolved at a time when the world is facing several challenges in a more interconnected era, Trend reports citing Xinhua.
The UN will launch a series of events in 2020 when the international organization will celebrate its 75th anniversary. Hochschild was appointed in April by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to oversee the events.
Highlighting "global conversation" and "international cooperation" in his recent interview with Xinhua, Hochschild called on people across the world to "join the conversation on your hopes for the future, on threats to that future... and on how international cooperation should be reinvigorated to better manage those threats and to better help countries deliver on the future the people across the world aspire to."
Echoing the UN chief's hope to launch conversations throughout the year in classrooms, in parliaments, in bars, in boardrooms, in governments around the importance of global cooperation, Hochschild said that the main aim of his job is "to try and help countries get those conversations off the ground."
The UN announced on Oct. 24 that next year's commemoration of its 75th anniversary will be the "biggest-ever global conversation on the world's future."
Starting in January 2020, the UN will hold dialogues around the world and across borders, sectors and generations. The aim is to reach the global public, to listen to their hopes and fears, and to learn from their experiences.
To make the conversations matter, Hochschild said that he hopes that member states will work together with the UN to try to encourage their citizens, especially the youth, to get involved.
"We want a strong youth participation in these conversations. We hope member states, for example, through the ministries of education, will dedicate one hour of classes for the 16- and 17-year-olds at some point in 2020 to discuss why global cooperation matters," he said.
Hochschild said the UN highly values the voices and participation of businesses, the private sector and the civil society, noting that their participation is "very important."
To bring more people into this global conversation, Hochschild said that efforts must be made to make good use of influencers, including UN good-will ambassadors from all over the world.
"We hope they will use their networks to promote these conversations around the future of humanity, the threats to the future of humanity, the dreams of humanity. We want to use their voices," said the UN senior official.
Referring to the trust deficit between countries which has become a big concern for the UN chief and many world leaders, Hochschild cited famous playwright Eugene Ionesco as saying that "Ideologies separate us. Dreams and anguish bring us together."
"What we want to do through this initiative (UN 75th anniversary celebration and global dialogue) is to bring out these common, very human anxieties and hopes around the future, to make more visible the common aspirations of humanity for a united future," he said.
"We hope, by making them more visible and more present, we will overcome or at least balance some of the political divides and political frictions that have so much made the UN paralyzed," he said.
Hochschild said that the UN is partnering with a global leading survey company, which will do a formal survey in a representative number of countries and "give us very scientific data" about people's fears, hopes and solutions.
"We also have a very simple survey tool, a one-minute survey that anybody anywhere can do in a minute's time, telling us their fears, their hopes, their expectations of multilateral cooperation," he said.
Hochschild said that the UN will also use artificial intelligence to do sentiment analysis based on readings of the media, including social media platforms.
"Through these multiple channels, we would hope to gather a major amount of views from people across the world in hopefully all the 193 member states of the UN around what people's fears are, what the hopes are and how they want the UN to perform better," he said.
"Global problems can only be solved through global cooperation," he said.