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FOGGS at ACUNS Annual Meeting 2024

FOGGS took part in this year’s Annual Meeting of the Academic Council on the United Nations System (ACUNS), held on 20-22 June 2024 at United Nations University (UNU) Headquarters and the University of Tokyo Komaba Campus in Tokyo, Japan, and online. FOGGS and partners organised three roundtables at the meeting.

  • “Effectively addressing human security challenges: What would a Global Resilience Council bring” discussed the rationale, ways of establishing, mandate, structure and operating procedures of a Global Resilience Council (GRC) that would deal with threats to human security, such as climate change. The latest iteration of the GRC proposal would have the Council renamed to Systemic Crises Response Council (SCRC) to indicate the multidimensional and pervasive character of such crises. As a result of the discussion at this roundtable as well as in other parts of the ACUNS Annual Meeting, another iteration of the FOGGS proposal is expected to be released shortly.
  • “Assessing institutional capacities to deliver in a changing world” saw unanimous concern at the state of multilateralism today, with the UN itself as well as the G20, BRICS, G-7 and AU all failing their respective constituencies and the world’s peoples. Suggestions included Security Council reform that would see seats for regional groups such as the AU, and more equity in international relations through a recognition of BRICS and stronger G20 leadership and accountability.
  • “The UN Secretariat—Left-over of a bygone era or humanity’s advocate?” discussed the necessity of an impartial, dedicated and highly competent secretariat for the UN to be effective in advancing peace and security, human rights and sustainable development. Institutional memory, objectivity and continuity were key elements justifying the existence of the Secretariat but these elements were not always put to use, as a lot depended on the knowledge, vision, ambition and boldness of the UN Secretary-General.

The full programme of the ACUNS Annual Meeting 2024 can be found here.

Latest Article | Katoikos.world

Youth Exodus: Emigration, Nationalism, and the Fight for Progress in Bosnia and Herzegovina

The European Union has just witnessed a strong surge in support for far-right and nationalist parties in the June 2024 EU Parliament elections. Parties such as France’s National Rally, Germany’s Alternative for Germany, and Italy’s Brothers of Italy, have all gained sweeping victories in the EU elections. 

Read the full article here.

Digital with Purpose Global Summit 2024

FOGGS is advising and partnering with GeSI for the Education Track of Digital with Purpose Global Summit 2024, to be held in Cascais, Portugal on 9 – 11 July, 2024. To register and get more information, click here.

Katoikos.world Article

The Hidden Crisis of Lake Chad: How Environmental Degradation Fuels Boko Haram

Situated in Central Africa, Lake Chad was once a flourishing freshwater reservoir that sustained the lives of more than 30 million people across Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria. However, the lake has drastically shrunk by around 90% since 1963. This diminishing body of water crucial for irrigation, fishing and drinking is now at the heart of a crisis affecting humans and the environment.

Read the full article here.

FOGGS at Transnational Workshop of the Democrat Project in Dublin, June 2024

Dublin City University (DCU) hosted on 6-7 June 2024 the third Transnational Workshop of the Democrat Project, bringing together the project partners and local pilot projects (LPPs) from Finland, Spain, Poland, Ireland, and Estonia. See details and key takeaways here.

Open letter to UN principal organs for immediate action regarding the situation in Gaza

An open letter addressed to senior officials of the United Nations and requesting ”immediate and decisive action to address the crisis in Gaza” was issued by the Peacemaking Reflection Group (PRG) of former UN system staff, supported by FOGGS. The full letter, with the signatory names, can be found here.


Katoikos.world Article

Political theatre of the absurd: Ukraine Peace Conference in the Swiss Alps

In a few days’ time, high up in the Swiss mountains, where the glaciers are melting faster than ever before, there will be a “peace conference” of the most ambitious kind. It won’t be about climate change in the literal sense of the term but drastic climate change it is supposed to achieve. A conflict that has frozen for a couple of years now, since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, is expected to melt down and reveal a peaceful day after, where the good will prevail and the evil will be cooperative and remorseful. Or will it?

Read the full article here.

FOGGS at UN Civil Society Conference 2024 and parallel activities in Nairobi, Kenya

FOGGS Executive Board member Cilene Victor participated in the UN Civil Society Conference, held in Nairobi, Kenya, on 9 and 10 May 2024. The conference, attended by more than 2000 people, was held in the context of a world under constant pressure because of war, natural disasters, and humanitarian emergencies. It highlighted the crucial role played by civil society organizations and, in view of the upcoming Summit of the Future, set the tone for how global governance reform can be effective if it is collectively built. The Outcome Package of the conference can be found here.

While in Nairobi, Professor Victor also participated in several other activities on the sidelines of the UN Civil Society Conference, such as the event “Economic Emancipation of the Afro-Descendant Population – Challenges and Prospects for the Future” hosted by the Brazilian Embassy in Nairobi, in collaboration with GELEDÉS – Black Woman Institute. She also visited Kibera, the largest slum in Kenya, whose residents are obviously not benefiting from the the slogan “leave no one behind.” Nonetheless, with the support of civil society institutions, many of them faith-based, the population of Kibera challenges abandonment and tries to build its resilience, as seen in schools and small social projects to generate income for local families.

FOGGS at upcoming ACUNS Annual Meeting 2024, Tokyo, Japan

FOGGS will be taking part in this year’s Annual Meeting of the Academic Council on the United Nations System (ACUNS). The following three roundtables are organized by FOGGS and partners:

  • “Effectively addressing human security challenges: What would a Global Resilience Council bring”
  • “Assessing institutional capacities to deliver in a changing world”
  • “The UN Secretariat—Left-over of a bygone era or humanity’s advocate?”

It is still possible to register and attend the event, including the above-mentioned roundtables, though this link, where other information on the Annual Meeting is also available.

FOGGS Response to the new draft SOTF outcome

The Co-facilitators of the UN Summit of the Future (SOTF), the Permanent Representatives of Germany and Namibia to the UN in New York, recently produced the second version of the draft Summit of the Future (SOTF) Outcome, the Pact for the Future Rev.1. FOGGS Executive Director Georgios Kostakos prepared this response, which he intended to deliver at the online consultations with civil society convened by the Co-facilitators on 30 May 2024. Due to the lack of time the response was not delivered orally but has been submitted to the Co-facilitators in writing.


Democracy Talks | A Project DEMOCRAT Series

The first in the Democracy Talks series was held on 24 April 2024. Diana Treviño presented the DEMOCRAT project, funded by the European Union. As part of the project activities, FOGGS and partners will be hosting such talks twice a month on Wednesdays. The recording of the previous talk can be found here and the upcoming events can be found here. The next talk is scheduled for Wednesday, 05 June 2024.

Alternating between external experts and DEMOCRAT project partners, we will discuss a range of topics central to democracy, including education, civil rights, voting rights, democratic governance, and citizen participation. All Democracy Talks will be recorded and can be found on the Democrat Agora.

Katoikos.world Article

UN and peacemaking: It worked in the past. Why not now?

The quintessential goal of the United Nations, as clearly expressed in its constitutive document, the Charter of the United Nations, is the maintenance of international peace and security. The latter involves not only the management of conflicts, inter- or intra-state, and the absence of violence (negative peace), but also the prevention of conflicts, as well as the cultivation of positive peace, through the development of friendly relations, the cooperation in solving international problems of social, economic or humanitarian nature, and promoting respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Read the full article here.

Latest FOGGS Paper | The Russia-Ukraine War and the UN Charter provisions for the peaceful settlement of disputes

Authored by FOGGS Advisor board member, Tapio Kanninen and Executive Director Georgios Kostakos, this paper discusses the UN Charter provisions applicable to current Russia Ukraine war. The paper examines in depth the provisions of peaceful solutions, published in the Handbook on the Peaceful Settlement of Disputes between States (United Nations, 1992). The paper can be found here.

Open Letter to UN Secretary-General calling for a merit-based ERC appointment process

FOGGS partnered with UNA-UK, and the Blue Smoke initiative to facilitate an open letter to the Secretary-General by 60+ former UN officials, and civil society leaders calling calling on UNSG Guterres to champion a transparent, inclusive and merit-based appointment process for the UN’s next Emergency Relief Coordinator. Read the open letter here.

Katoikos.world Article

Peace and sustainability go together

An open letter written by Dr. Kerstin Leitner, former UN Resident Coordinator in China to Ambassador Dennis Francis, the President of UN General Assembly. 

Read the full article here.

Event Report: Zero Draft on the Future of Global Governance

In the dynamic and ever-evolving arena of global governance, the Summit for the Future, set for 22-23 September 2024 in New York, emerges as a critical juncture in the quest for sustainable development and enhanced multilateral cooperation. In preparation for delving into the intricacies of this pivotal event, this report endeavours to capture the essence of discussions and reflections that emanate from a gathering of esteemed minds under the Global South Perspectives Network (GSPN) on 1 March 2024.

Katoikos.world Article

Global diplomatic shortage?

From the EU-27 to the US to India, foreign services are chronically understaffed. Beyond resignations of current diplomatic staff for a variety of reasons, youth interest specifically towards the public sector and diplomacy seems to be declining, while political apathy appears to be on the rise.

Read the full article here.

FOGGS Written Submission for UN Pact for the Future

In response to a call to civil society stakeholders by the Co-facilitators of the UN Summit of the Future (SOTF) negotiation process, FOGGS provided at the end of 2023 a written submission with key reform proposals that we would like to see included in the SOTF outcome to be called “Pact for the Future”. The subsequently issued Zero Draft of the Pact for the Future repeats globally accepted positions, not yet venturing into more innovative proposals. FOGGS will continue to engage with the SOTF process and push for a Global Resilience Council and other elements of much-needed UN reform.


The Peacemaking Reflection Group of Former UN System Staff (PRG), issued a call to world leaders for immediate follow up on UNSC Resolution 2720 and the provision of urgently-needed humanitarian assistance to the population of Gaza. The call has been signed by 100+ individuals and organisations. The pdf version of the Call can be accessed here, and the full list of signatories can be found here. To add your signature, use this online form


FOGGS has joined MEGA – Mobilizing an Earth Governance Alliance, as a co-sponsoring organization. It is a coalition of civil society organizations working in cooperation with like-minded governments and other stakeholders to strengthen environmental governance.

Emerging Global Geopolitics and the United Nations

24 October has been globally designated as UN Day, in commemoration of the entering into force of the UN Charter and thus the official establishment of the United Nations Organization on 24 October 1945.

FOGGS hosted a UN Day event with a discussion amongst a number of experienced former staff members of the UN system, collectively known as the Peacemaking Reflection Group (PRG – see https://www.foggs.org/prg ), a network supported by FOGGS.

Katoikos.world Article

Expediency, brinkmanship and the absence of global leadership

Those of us worried about the state of the world and the explosive convergence of crises of military and non-military nature, cannot but be increasingly concerned by the expediency and brinkmanship demonstrated on a daily basis by countries and individual leaders, instead of advancing real solutions to the crises at hand.

Read the full article here.

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