WORLD FEDERATION OF UNITED NATIONS ASSOCIATIONS FEDERATION MONDIALE DES ASSOCIATIONS POUR LES NATIONS UNIES
A peoples’ movement for the United Nations
‘Two basic ideas at the heart of the NPT continue to have strong international support – that more fingers on more nuclear triggers would result in a more dangerous world, and that non-proliferation by the have-nots and disarmament by the haves will together lead to a safer world.’ (WMDC Report, 2006) Dr Hans Blix, President of the World Federation of United Nations Associations, in partnership with the World Academy of Art and Science, is launching a series of initiatives to engage students, from diverse academic disciplines, in preparation for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) 8th Review Conference, 2010 – the most important conference on global disarmament in coming years. The World Academy of Art and Science is an international association for exploring major concerns of humanity. Influential in founding this organization were Albert Einstein, Robert Oppenheimer, and Earl Bertrand Russell, who were deeply concerned about how the atom bomb and other scientific advances might be used – or misused.
Aims and objectives:
This initiative is built on the success of the World Federation’s 2006 global essay competition on the recommendations of the report of the Commission on the Weapons of Mass Destruction which was chaired by Dr Blix. (www.wmdcommission.org). It’s aims are:
To inspire students around the world to undertake independent research and analysis of the case for nuclear disarmament. To convene a conference at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, chaired by Dr Blix, on the theme of Students for a Nuclear Weapons-Free World. To bring to the attention of governments, particularly the nuclear weapons powers, the case for nuclear disarmament, as articulated by students
The World Federation of UN Associations, together with the World Academy of Art and Science, is planning to convene a Conference for Students for a Nuclear Weapons-Free World at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, in the summer of 2008.
The question for discussion at the conference will be:
“What do you think can lead governments to stay away from, or do away with, nuclear weapons? Students around the world are invited to participate in one of the following three activities:
- Write an essay of 1500 words
- Produce a video interview of 2 – 5 minutes
- Design a poster
To support these activities, the World Federation has created www.disarmament-forum.org, where students can find relevant up-to-date information and links to key online resources. They can logon to the online forum and join Dr Hans Blix and other UN disarmament experts in posting their thoughts and opinions on how to free the world of the threat of nuclear weapons. Essays should be sent to email@example.com where they will be assessed by members of the UN-NGO Committee on Disarmament. The final selection of the 5 best essays will be approved by The Hon. Douglas Roche, chairman of the Middle Powers Initiative, posted on www.disarmament-forum.org, and published as a reference document for the conference and for wider distribution. Short video-recorded interviews with prominent opinion leaders, be they politicians, professors, military personnel or civil society groups should be posted on YouTube and notification of the YouTube link sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. The 5 most viewed videos will be shown on www.disarmament-forum.org and screened at the conference. Posters should be sent to the Geneva office or as a jpeg file to email@example.com. where they will be displayed on the Forum gallery page. The selection of the 20 most compelling and thought provoking posters will be made by popular vote and exhibited at the conference. One poster will be featured on the front of the Conference Program. The World Federation of UN Associations will send the winning essays, videos and photos of the posters to governments, particularly the nuclear weapons powers, and invite them to respond. The students who submit the best essays, videos and poster will be awarded an airfare and accommodation to attend the Conference for Students for a Nuclear Weapons-Free World to be held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, in the summer of 2008. Details of the official rules and regulations will be outlined on the Forum website.
Major organizing partners:
The WFUNA Secretary General will supervise the implementation of this project, the New York office will maintain the website www.disarmament-forum.org, and process all the essay and video submissions and the Geneva office will process the posters and organize the Conference. The World Academy of Art and Science has committed to providing funds towards the cost of the project and will co-sponsor the Conference.
UN Associations will be encouraged to disseminate information about the project to schools and universities, and as necessary to translate the resource documents into local languages. They will all be invited to participate in the Conference for Students for a Nuclear Weapons-Free World. WFUNA-Youth will be encouraged to conduct events at schools and universities to raise awareness of the program for Students for a Nuclear Weapons-Free World and invited to participate in the Conference. The UN Department of Public Information will disseminate information about the program of activities through the UN Information Centers. Depending on the evaluation of the outcomes of the 2008 project, it may be repeated in 2009 and 2010.
Global Youth Action Network, Global Security Institute, Middle Powers Initiative, Parliamentary Network for Nuclear Disarmament, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, Nucleardilemma.org. Pugwash, The Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy, The Simons Foundation, Taking ITGlobal, UN Department of Disarmament, UN-NGO Committee on Disarmament.
Initiative launched by Dr Hans Blix on ‘UN Day’ 24th October 2007 Essays, posters and videos submitted to the Disarmament Forum or to the Geneva office by 15 April 2008 Winners announced by 30 May 2008 Conference held July 2008
Estimated Budget: $ 75,000 For further information please contact: Disarmament Coordinator, Marcus Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org