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World Social Protection Report 2014-15: building economic recovery, inclusive development and social justice

Social protection policies play a critical role in realizing the human right to social security for all, reducing poverty and inequality, and promoting inclusive growth – by boosting human capital and productivity, and by supporting domestic demand and structural transformation of national economies. This ILO flagship report provides a global overview of the organization of social protection systems, their coverage and benefits, as well as public expenditures on social protection. The report follows a life-cycle approach, starting with social protection for children, followed by schemes for women and men in working age, and closing with pensions and other support for older persons. It also assesses progress towards universal coverage in health. The report further analyses trends and recent policies, such as the negative impacts of fiscal consolidation and adjustment measures, and urgently calls to expand social protection for crisis recovery, inclusive development and social justice.

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Guidelines for integrated environmental assessment of urban areas

Planning and management for sustainable development require an understanding of the linkages between environmental conditions and human activities and encourage participation by all sectors of society in decision-making. This publication is a useful tool that will help strengthen institutional capacity to prepare environmental assessments and comprehensive reports on cities in Central and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia.

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Water and sanitation interlinkages across the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

This UN-Water Analytical Brief analyses the central role of water and sanitation to describe the links and interdependencies between the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 6 on water and sanitation and those of other Goals. It aims to stimulate United Nations Member States’ consideration of the water-related linkages within the Goals to facilitate an integrated approach to implementation. The Brief highlights the importance of mainstreaming water and sanitation in the policies and plans of other sectors, and how the management of interlinkages supports the social, economic and environmental dimensions of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

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Towards a worldwide assessment of freshwater quality

The world is facing a water quality challenge. Serious and increasing pollution of fresh water in both developing and developed countries poses a growing risk to public health, food security, biodiversity and other ecosystem services. Pollution is strongly linked to economic development – with population growth and the expansion of agriculture, industry and energy production all in turn producing wastewater, much of which goes into surface and groundwater bodies uncontrolled or untreated. Despite recent preliminary assessments of the current worldwide water quality situation, the magnitude of the challenge is still unknown. Better information is required on where the issues lie and what is needed to effectively and efficiently take action to protect and improve water quality. This Analytical Brief provides information about past assessments, outlines the challenge but also provides a plan for a world water quality assessment, which, if undertaken, would provide decision makers with the information they need to address this challenge. The Analytical Brief also explores the strong linkages between water quality and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). SDG 6, “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all,” includes a specific target (6.3) dedicated to water quality. Central questions include: ‘how can the water quality target be achieved?’; ‘How will worsening water pollution affect SDGs for health, food security, and biodiversity, among others?’; Or, conversely, ‘how can actions to protect and enhance water quality help meet other SDGs?’.

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Promoting livelihoods to build the self-reliance of urban refugees in Nairobi

The majority of the urban poor in Nairobi, including asylum seekers and refugees, find employment and self-employment opportunities in the highly competitive informal sector. Poor regulation, poor physical infrastructure and limited access to institutionalized business support services, limit the viability of the informal sector. Those without specialized skills or capital to start a business earn daily wages as casual labourers or as low-level employees. For asylum seekers and refugees the odds are worse, encumbered by a lengthy asylum seeking process, limited engagement with local administrative authorities which deprives them of critical protection and support, and a business community hesitant to engage them as a potential market. Without ownership of fixed assets those seeking to start or grow a business fail to meet the collateral requirements to access business loans. The March 2012 livelihoods baseline indicates that food alone comprises between 45 percent and 55 percent of monthly costs for the very poor. After spending on food and housing, very little remains for other essentials. Additional expenditure on limited health care, hygiene, energy and water deplete the modest monthly wage. UNHCR and the urban refugee’s livelihoods working group are implementing livelihoods projects targeting refugees and Kenyans. With limited funding and experience the UNHCR chaired urban refugee’s livelihoods working group is implementing a range of livelihood support projects. To improve the effectiveness of current livelihoods programming resources are required to build partner technical capacity in designing, implementing, and monitoring and evaluating interventions, institutionalizing the use of best practices and models that are proven to work, and scaling up to reach more beneficiaries.

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Who will be accountable? Human rights and the post-2015 development agenda

This publication is intended to help fill some of the more pressing accountability gaps that impede the realization of global and national development goals. We approach this challenge from the perspective of human rights, as a universal normative and legally binding framework embodying the minimum requirements of a dignified life, encapsulating universal values that a post-2015 agreement should strive to prioritize and protect as well as essential features of a road map to take us there.

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Women's rights are human rights

This publication provides an introduction to women’s human rights, beginning with the main provisions in international human rights law and going on to explain particularly relevant concepts for fully understanding women’s human rights. Finally, selected areas of women’s human rights are examined together with information on the main work of United Nations human rights mechanisms and others pertaining to these topics. The aim of the publication is to offer a basic understanding of the human rights of women as a whole, but because of the wide variety of issues relevant to women’s human rights, it should not be considered exhaustive.

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Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report 2016. Education for people and planet: creating sustainable futures for all

The Incheon Declaration for Education 2030 has been instrumental to shape the Sustainable Development Goal on Education to “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all”. It entrusts UNESCO with the leadership, coordination and monitoring of the Education 2030 agenda. It also calls upon the Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report to provide independent monitoring and reporting of the Sustainable Development Goal on education (SDG 4), and on education in the other SDGs, for the next fifteen years. The ultimate goal of this agenda is to leave no one behind. This calls for robust data and sound monitoring. The 2016 edition of the GEM Report provides valuable insight for governments and policy makers to monitor and accelerate progress towards SDG 4, building on the indicators and targets we have, with equity and inclusion as measures of overall success.

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Efficient and sustainable HIV responses: case studies on country progress

As the world economic landscape changes, so too does the HIV funding landscape. The limited resources available require more emphasis on value for money. This case study report consists of eight case studies. It highlights countries’ progress in making their HIV response more efficient or increasing domestic HIV funding, contributing to sustainability, increased scale-up and country ownership. Cambodia and Myanmar have re-allocated resources towards high-impact interventions. South Africa and Swaziland have saved millions by improving their antiretroviral drug tenders. Kenya, Namibia, Malawi and Kazakhstan have taken active steps for a future with fewer external funds. Each country has evolved strategies that other countries may apply to their particular context. The examples given here aim to catalyse country-driven action to make efficiency and sustainably funded HIV services the reality in the HIV response.

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Community-based antiretroviral therapy delivery: eperiences of MSF

This document presents experiences of how community-based antiretroviral therapy (ART) delivery can improve both the level of access to treatment and the quality of health outcomes for people living with HIV. These experiences illustrate that community-based ART delivery is efficient, effective and high quality. This document draws from several Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) reports and articles regarding its experiences with community-supported ART delivery.

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Empowering young women and adolescent girls: fast-tracking the end of the AIDS epidemic in Africa

Fast-tracking the end of the AIDS epidemic by 2030 requires strong political leadership and commitment to stop new infections and deaths among young women and adolescent girls and eliminate mother to child transmission of HIV. This requires building on, and extending Africa’s commitments on sexual and reproductive health and rights, expanding ministerial commitments on comprehensive sexuality education and stopping early marriage, adolescent pregnancy and expanding treatment service coverage.

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Communities deliver: the critical role of communities in reaching global targets to end the AIDS epidemic

This report draws on multiple sources to document the many ways in which communities are advancing the response to AIDS, and the evidence for the effectiveness of these responses. Core areas of community-based activities include advocacy, service provision, community-based research and financing; each of these areas is illustrated by examples of community-based actions.

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UNAIDS 2016–2021 strategy: on the fast-track to end AIDS

The 2016–2021 Strategic Leadership Agenda is deliberately organized within the SDG framework around five SDGs most relevant to the AIDS response. Fast-Tracking the response will require development efforts to ensure good health, reduce inequalities, achieve gender equality, promote just and inclusive societies and revitalize global partnerships. Other SDGs are, however, pertinent to the AIDS response. Ten critical targets have been set—measurable targets that have been modelled as those most critical to ensure that the ambitious Fast-Track goals will be met. The targets, however, do not represent the totality of concerted effort needed across the result areas. The result areas constitute core dynamic and cross-cutting programmes of work, which will contribute to the achievement of all the targets. Achieving a set of prioritized targets and results will translate into better social, educational and economic outcomes and into health, human rights and dignity for millions of people—a continuation of the role of the AIDS response as a pathfinder for social justice and sustainable development

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Sustaining the human rights response to HIV

The human rights response to HIV, largely implemented by civil society, has been crucial to the HIV response, but it appears that the funding for this work is insufficient and may be threatened further. Based on these concerns—and with the support of the Ford Foundation—UNAIDS commissioned research to better understand the current and future funding landscape as experienced by the civil society groups that are implementing key human rights programmes in the HIV response. This paper presents the results of this research and makes recommendations in an effort to ensure sufficient and sustainable funding for that crucial work until the end of the AIDS epidemic.

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Get on the fast- track: the life-cycle approach to HIV

The dynamics of the life cycle have been adopted by the business world to guide the development and improvement of products and services, and to explain the growth and decline of enterprises. The life cycle can also be used as a lens to better understand the complex dynamics of the HIV epidemic and the response. Innovations in data collection reveal how the risks of infection, the challenges of accessing services and the solutions to these challenges change at different stages of life.

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HIV, HPV and cervical cancer: leveraging synergies to save women’s lives

This report presents recent scientific evidence about the links between HIV, HPV and cervical cancer, and it supplies relevant epidemiological, screening, vaccination and innovation data. Ultimately, its goal is to (a) promote synergies between HIV and cervical cancer prevention programmes, (b) make the case for integrating cervical cancer prevention into existing HIV treatment and prevention programmes, (c) explain the opportunities for women’s health that exist in coordinating HIV and cervical cancer prevention, and (d) advance prevention and treatment literacy among affected populations.

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Cities ending the AIDS epidemic

Cities have inherent advantages in responding to complex health problems such as HIV. They are dynamic centres of economic growth, education, innovation and positive social change. Cities have large service infrastructures and—through the power of networks—have the potential to deliver services where they are most needed, in a way that is both equitable and efficient while respecting the dignity of its citizens.

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Sustainable health care financing in the Republic of Palau

Financing health care is challenging and costly in the Pacific developing member countries (DMCs) of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Financing sources are limited, and are dominated by general tax revenues. In the face of fiscal constraints, national health systems have been perennially underfunded, limiting the quality and equitability of health care. These problems, common to all developing countries, are compounded in most Pacific DMCs by their small, dispersed populations and by health care needs that are growing faster than in other regions. The Republic of Palau has for some time been among the Pacific DMCs looking to reform its health-care financing arrangements, with reform proposals dating back to 1995. Health-care delivery in Palau was satisfactory in many respects, but the cost was high and unsustainable. This policy brief describes the successful development in 2008-2009 of draft legislation aimed at reforming health-care financing in Palau, and its enactment by the legislature and signature by the President of the country in 2010. The brief was prepared by ADB to disseminate experience and lessons learned in Palau that may be found applicable elsewhere in the Pacific, in keeping with ADB's Pacific Approach 2010-2014.

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How inclusive is inclusive business for women? Examples from Asia and Latin America

Inclusive businesses are commercially viable business models that provide in-scale innovative and systemic solutions to problems relevant to the lives of low-income people. Inclusive business companies often involve women in their value chain and provide specific services that help low-income women. This report assesses the extent to which inclusive business models promote women's economic empowerment. Examples come from the inclusive business portfolios of the Asian Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and the International Finance Corporation.

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Bangladesh: consolidating export-led growth - country diagnostic study

Bangladesh has transformed its economy over the last 2 decades, graduating to middle-income status as average annual growth remained strong at 5%–6%. The country’s goal to become an upper-middle-income country by 2021 will require even stronger annual growth of 7.5%–8%. The study finds that the most critical constraints to growth are (i) insufficient reliable energy supply, (ii) policies that indirectly stunt development of economic activities unrelated to ready-made garment exports, and (iii) insufficient security about property and land rights due in part to inadequate registry systems. If policies are designed to urgently tackle these constraints, Bangladesh will be free to harness its potential for inclusive and sustainable growth.

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Human capital and urbanization in the People’s Republic of China

The relationship between human capital development and urbanization in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is explored, highlighting the institutional factors of the hukou system and a decentralized fiscal system. Educated workers disproportionately reside in urban areas and in large cities. Returns to education are significantly higher in urban areas relative to those in rural areas, as well as in large, educated cities relative to small, less-educated cities. In addition, the external returns to education in urban areas are at least comparable to the magnitude of private returns. Rural areas are the major reservoir for urban population growth, and the more educated have a higher chance of moving to cities and obtaining urban hukou. Relaxing the hukou restriction, increasing education levels of rural residents, providing training for rural–urban migrants, and guaranteeing equal opportunity for all residents are necessary for a sustainable urbanization process in the PRC. In terms of health, rural–urban migration is selective in that healthy rural residents choose to migrate. Occupational choices and living conditions are detrimental to migrants’ health, however. While migration has a positive effect on migrant children, its effect on “left-behind” children is unclear.

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Digital health infrastructure: the backbone of surveillance for malaria elimination

Elimination of malaria is not only technically feasible but also a public health imperative. With millions of people at risk from the disease across Asia and the Pacific, and malaria imposing an even bigger burden in Africa, the race is on to eliminate the disease in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS). The area is of particular concern because of growing resistance to artemisinin-based combination therapies. Resistance to this last line of simple-to-use and effective malaria drugs has been detected in Cambodia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), Myanmar, Thailand, and Viet Nam.

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Ensuring health care services for the poor during a financial crisis. The Medicard Program in Mongolia: experiences and lessons learned

The 2007–2008 global financial crisis severely affected the Mongolian economy. Poverty struck and access to basic services and medical care plummeted, affecting the health of women and children. The Medicard program was the Mongolian health sector’s first to apply the Proxy Mean Test to target eligible households. It contributed to ensuring government health and social program inclusiveness, and highlighted the critical role of political commitment in ensuring the sustainability of such programs. This paper provides information on the program design and implementation by comparing it with international best practices.

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Cobenefits and trade-offs of green and clean energy: evidence from the academic literature and Asian case studies

This paper assesses the positive cobenefits of promoting green and clean energy in Asia, and discusses four case studies where cobenefits have been delivered in practice in Indonesia, People's Republic of China, Japan, and Singapore. It first defines what is meant by “clean” energy across the four technological systems of cooking, renewable electricity, energy efficiency, and urban transport. It summarizes at least four general types of cobenefits to investing in these systems.

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A guide to sanitation safety planning in the Philippines

Sanitation safety planning is a preventive risk management approach that identifies potential risks that may arise during the operation of a sanitation system, including waste collection, transportation and conveyance, treatment, disposal, and reuse. After the highest priority risks have been identified, an incremental improvement plan establishes control measures to ensure that no one in the sanitation chain is exposed to the hazards related to wastewater, greywater, and excreta. This guide describes a six-step process for sanitation safety planning in the Philippines, based on the experiences of pilot projects by two water service providers, Baliwag Water District and Maynilad Water Services, Inc.

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