The declaring of a pandemic by the WHO in March 2020 constitutes a great example of this. The pandemic and the actions taken to tame the virus had a great effect on the world economics. There is, however, many other examples as well. IOs often sign agreements with big corporations to gain expertise and money in order to fulfil projects. As already noted on the "Setup-page" the ideological shift towards more capitalistic views in the 1980s taken in conjunction with the increased need for funding have increased the partnerships between IOs and the private sector.
One or a few companies are better off and competitors are not - the markets are affected.
The A6 Alliance, an alliance of some of the main European Air Navigation Service Providers which collaborates with Eurocontrol Network Manager to improve the network performance, in terms of capacity, efficiency and sustainability.
"These discussions at executive level are important to prepare summer 2023. The EUROCONTROL Network Manager is there to support the air navigation services providers and all other operational stakeholders with our tools and services and we are continuously working to coordinate joint actions for most efficient, sustainable air traffic in the Network."
Iacopo Prissinotti, Director Networl Management, EUROCONTROL
© A6 Alliance and the EUROCONTROL Network Manager reinforce their commitment to the modernisation and digitalisation of Air Traffic Management
The International Coffee Organization (ICO) is the main intergovernmental organization for the coffee sector. Its highest authority is the International Coffee Council of representatives of each Member State.
“In September 2018, the International Coffee Council (ICC) adopted Resolution 465 on “coffee price levels” during the 122nd session in London. This led to a Sector Dialogue organized by the ICO, engaging the relevant sector stakeholders and broader international community in the dialogue on coffee price levels. This culminated in the development of a joint Declaration of Intent of stakeholders from both the private and public sector in the form of the “London Declaration” which was signed the next year in September 2019 by 12 private sector companies and welcomed by the 125th ICC Session, which also adopted resolution ICC-125-10 requesting the ICO to set up a Coffee Public-Private Task Force (CPPTF).”
Private sector members include Starbucks, Nestlé, or Lavazza.
© The Coffee Public-Private Task Force
In September 2022, the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) and Solvay, the Belgian multinational chemical and science company, launched the CERN-Solvay education programme. This programme seeks to inspire young people around the world to get involved in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects and related careers.
“At Solvay, we believe that STEM education has a crucial role to play in reinventing progress. It is by encouraging students’ enthusiasm for science and technology today that we can create the great researchers of the future […] Through working with a leading science organisation like CERN, which shares our passion for STEM education, we aim to inspire the next generation of scientists by giving them knowledge, confidence and hands-on experience in the exciting field of particle physics.”
Ilham Kadri, Solvay CEO
© CERN and Solvay launch STEM education programme for high school students
The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit southeast Turkey in February 2023 severely impacted local businesses, which threatened to have a lasting effect on the Turkish economy. In response, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) partnered with local businesses to provide emergency relief efforts to affected communities.
By working together, the UNDP was able to tap into the local businesses' knowledge of the area and leverage their resources to make a meaningful impact. The collaboration helped build trust and fostered relationships between the public and private sectors, demonstrating the importance of public-private partnerships in addressing complex challenges.
"As the private sector focal point, I act as a neutral broker between the private sector and humanitarian partners. The private sector wants to help. My role is to facilitate connections with different actors to make sure we reach affected people in the most efficient way possible.”
Rhiza Nery, CBi (Connecting Business initiative) Network Coordination Specialist
© In Türkiye, local businesses on the frontline of the earthquake response
The United Nations Development Programme partnered with Norrsken Foundation in 2021 to launch the global Impact Accelerator targeting to help early-stage start-ups who contribute to solving global challenges such as poverty, climate change and food security. In the framework of the Impact Accelerator, mentors include 50 founders of unicorns and companies such as Klarna, Minecraft, Soundcloud, Good American, Kry, Meltwater, Voi, Rekindle and Brilliant Minds.
“UNDP looks forward to contributing to the Norrsken Impact Accelerator. Much like Norrsken Foundation, UNDP believes that unlocking the power of innovation and entrepreneurship is vital to stepping up the pace and progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals”
Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator.
© UNDP partners with Norrsken Foundation to support the world’s most promising impact start-ups & The Norrsken Impact Accelerator
“Samsung is committed to delivering meaningful solutions that bring communities together, and we are proud to extend our commitment to a new group of inspirational young activists”
Generation17 is a partnership established in 2020 between the United Nations Development Programme and Samsung Electronics. It aims to inspire “an entire generation of tech savvy young individuals to achieve the Global Goals in less than 10 years” through Young Leaders from all around the world.
“Samsung also equipped the Young Leaders with the latest Galaxy technology to better connect them with their peers and raised awareness of their work across its global network using personalized content and the reach of its online channels.”
© UNDP and Samsung welcome four young leaders to expand their commitment to the Global Goals & Generation17
Avfall Sverige, the Swedish Waste Management Association, previously partnered with the United Nations Development Programme on a project which “gave 25 municipalities on four continents a platform for cooperation and sharing experience on streamlining waste management, reducing waste and reaching several of the global sustainability goals.”
In 2022, both organisations have entered a partnership and agreed to collaborate on waste management in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
“There are many and great challenges for municipal waste management globally. Therefore, we want to help build both legal and financial control instruments to create sustainable business models and develop public-private partnerships to support UNDP's work”
Tony Clark, CEO of Avfall Sverige
©UNDP and Avfall Sverige enter into agreement on global waste management cooperation
The United Nations Development has partnered with Generali, one of the largest insuring companies in the world. The objective of this project is to help developing countries access insurance and risk finance solutions to improve the resilience of local businesses. Within this partnership, Generali has committed technical and financial resources to the UNDP’s Insurance and Risk Finance Facility.
“Financial protection, business development and human rights all go hand in hand. Private and public institutions must work together to better understand how insurance solutions can be accessible and affordable for the people who need them the most. Insurance can contribute to socioeconomic stability and, in the event of natural catastrophes, can lead an effective and accelerated recovery.”
Philippe Donnet, CEO of Generali Group.
© UNDP and Generali partner to develop insurance and risk finance solutions
The UN World Tourism Organization had been working with Google on the Tourism Accelerator Programme to put digital technologies at the heart of countries’ tourism strategies. Following the impact of the Covid19 pandemic on global tourism, this program will be extended to a global scale.
© UNWTO & Google Acceleration Programme
Additionally Google and the UNWTO will host trainings for Destination Management Organizations (DMOs), using a new Capacity Building Curriculum developed by Google. “These sessions will empower destinations to switch to digital, with the training adapted to reflect their specific circumstances and the unique challenges every destination currently faces.” “The new Capacity Building Curriculum will also complement existing joint initiatives, and a data sharing agreement for Google’s Travel Insights to power a portion of the UNWTO's tourism recovery tracker.”’
“The strong partnership between UNWTO and Google will help put innovation and digital at the centre of tourism’s recovery. By working together, UNWTO and Google will empower destinations, businesses and tourism workers to realize the power of data and market intelligence, both increasingly important as global tourism looks to restart and recover.”
Zurab Pololikashvili, UNWTO Secretary-General
© UNWTO and Google Launch Global Partnership to Lead Tourism Recovery
The European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation's European Cybercrime Centre signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2020 with Capgemini, the French multinational consulting company.
“When it comes to enhancing cybersecurity throughout Europe, collaboration between the private and the public sector is essential for improving digital resilience and exchanging intelligence. With this MoU, Capgemini and Europol have established and agreed to foster collaboration on various activities. This includes the development of cyber simulation exercises, capacity building, and collaborating on prevention and awareness campaigns.”
© Europol and Capgemini Netherlands seek pioneering solutions to tackle cyber threats
The partnership agreement between the Food and Agriculture Organization and MasterCard seeks to develop inclusive payment systems to support small-scale farmers and poor families by looking at ways at providing credit or money to households for purchases of basic needs and farming inputs on local markets. This project aims to facilitate the use of financial tools by the economically marginalized and in turn support local communities.
“The effort will benefit from the complementary strengths of each organization: MasterCard’s expertise in payments technology and FAO's global reach and track record in combating hunger and malnutrition.”
© FAO and MasterCard announce new partnership
The Food and Agriculture Organization’s LEAP Partnership is a multi-stakeholder initiative that involves many private actors and industry representative organizations. It "is committed to improving the environmental performance of livestock supply chains, whilst ensuring its economic and social viability.” Private sectors members include the International Feed Industry Federation, the International Dairy Federation or the International Meat Secretariat.
"The LEAP Partnership is founded on a voluntary and collaborative process between FAO and three main stakeholder groups and is based on the principles of equity and balance of constituencies. Three stakeholder groups, the private sector, FAO member countries and non-governmental organizations form the basis of this initiative. FAO is the convener of the Partnership. Being listed as LEAP partner in this page does not necessarily make the entity an FAO partner."
© LEAP Partnerships & and LEAP Partners
The Hand-in-Hand Initiative, launched in 2019, is a flagship of the Food and Agriculture Organization and one of its core priority programme areas. This initiative seeks to eradicate poverty, end hunger and malnutrition, and reduce inequalities by “accelerating market-based transformation of agri-food systems to raise incomes, improve nutrition, empower poor and vulnerable populations, and strengthen resilience to climate change.” As of May 2022, the Initiative supports 52 developing countries.
One of its core concepts is Partner Matchmaking through the Initiative’s Investment Forum to bring together “national and local authorities, donors, international financial institutions, private enterprises, producer organizations, civil society organizations, and research institutions. Partners are sought for their ability to provide critical means of implementation — technology, data and information, capacity development, funding and financing [...]”
© Hand-in-Hand Initiative Core Concepts
According to the FAO, the Hand-in-Hand initiative creates an “innovative business model and a unique opportunity through which partners across the public, private and other sectors can work together to end poverty and hunger and build prosperity in developing countries.”
© Hand-in-Hand Initiative creates a new business model for partners to work together to end poverty and hunger
In 2020, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and CropLife International have renewed their commitment to work together. CropLife International is a trade association which promotes agricultural technologies such as pesticides and plant biotechnology and whose members include Bayer and Syngenta. The objective of this collaboration is to “transform agri-food systems and promote rural development through on the ground investment and innovation.”
"Digitalization is a real engine to transform agri-food systems, from production through processing to the market"
FAO Director-General QU Dongyu
© FAO and CropLife International strengthen commitment to promote agri-food systems transformation
This partnership has drawn heavy criticism from organizations representing farmers, fisherfolk, agricultural workers and other communities, as well as human rights, faith-based, environmental and economic justice institutions
“This proposed alliance is deeply inappropriate and directly undermines FAO’s goals of supporting food systems that are healthy, resilient and productive while safeguarding the sustainability of the environment […] CropLife’s purpose, on the other hand, is to advocate for continued use of the pesticides that its members sell. These hazardous and antiquated chemical solutions pose deadly obstacles to the urgently needed transition to innovative, knowledge-intensive ecological approaches to farming.”
Sarojeni Rengam, Director of Pesticide Action Network (PAN) Asia Pacific.
© Global outrage at FAO plans to partner with pesticide industry
"I am convinced that transforming our food systems to feed the world will be achieved with a digital agriculture [...] We need to make digital technologies accessible to everyone."
FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu
Google and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) signed a partnership agreement in 2015 to make environmental data more accessible thanks to digital technology, particularly geospatial tracking and mapping products. Since then, the FAO and Google have developed Earth Map, a geospatial platform accessible to everyone, that provides information on climate, environment and agriculture. This new platform illustrates the will of the FAO to transform its approach from data ownership to data sharing.
"That's what makes big data big, and why partnerships will have an increasingly central role in pursuing the Sustainable Development Goals."
FAO Chief Economist Maximo Torero
© Google and FAO launch new Big Data tool for all
FAO and Agrarco LLC have signed a cooperation agreement to enhance the efficiency and sustainability of Azerbaijan's hazelnut sector. The collaboration aims to implement good practices in sustainable bioenergy use, address aflatoxin contamination, and build the capacity of hazelnut farmers. The agreement, supported by various stakeholders including government agencies, emphasizes the importance of public-private partnerships in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
“In FAO, we welcome strategic partnerships between the private sector and public authorities in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular, creating opportunities for private sector cooperation contributes to food security and the sustainable diversification of food systems.”
Melek Cakmak, FAO Representative
© FAO, Agrarco LLC agree to cooperate on boosting Azerbaijan’s hazelnut sector
The Global Nuclear Safety and Security Framework (GNSSF) is “the institutional, legal and technical framework for ensuring the safety of nuclear installations throughout the world. The objective of this [framework] is to lead to a world where all nuclear installations are operating safely.”
Strengthening the Global Nuclear Safety Regime, INSAG Series No. 21
© The Global Nuclear Safety and Security Framework
Networking is a cornerstone of the effectiveness of the GNSSF. The International Atomic Energy Agency Global Nuclear Safety and Security Network is a global, regional, national and online network seeking to promote international cooperation by connecting stakeholders including nuclear industry actors and has partners such as Areva (now Orano).
© The IAEA Global Nuclear Safety and Security Network
"Connectivity is transforming the world, yet those who have the most to gain are too often the last to benefit. The potential to redress this situation is particularly acute in the classrooms of the world’s refugee children."
Andrew Dunnett, Vodafone Group Director, SDGs, Sustainable Business and Foundations
© Why Vodafone Foundation’s partnership with UNHCR has never been more important
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the Vodafone Foundation established the Instant Network Schools in 2013 to provide teachers in refugee situations in sub-Saharan Africa with digital technology, tablet-based learning and internet access to improve the quality of education of children.
© Kenya: Instant Network Schools & Instant Network Schools
"We are happy with this partnership, which brings technology to our education system. Education is central in the lives of refugees since it is the most important thing that they can carry home. We are committed to ensure the success of the project."
Raouf Mazou, UNHCR Representative in Kenya
© Innovation: UNHCR and Vodafone bring tablet-based learning to 18,000 Somali refugees
In 2014, the International Renewable Energy Agency and renewable energy stakeholders partnered to create the IRENA Coalition for Action which aims to promote “the wider and faster uptake of renewable energy technologies.” Today, this partnership gathers 130 actors such as private sector companies, industry players, NGOs, and governmental actors.
© About IRENA’s Coalition for Action
"Scaling up renewable energy deployment depends on continuous public-private dialogue. Recognising this, IRENA facilitates discourse and dialogue between its Member States and the Coalition for Action. As a basis for such discussion, the Coalition puts forward action-oriented white papers building on participants’ various perspectives and experiences."
© Coalition for Action Flyer
The Italian multinational oil and gas company Eni and the International Renewable Energy Agency recently signed a partnership aimed at advancing energy transition, developing renewable energy and identifying barriers to private sector investment in renewable energy.
"We have reached a critical moment in the energy transition, one that requires the commitment and active participation of energy actors from across the spectrum. It is in the interests of big oil companies and fossil fuel exporting nations to embrace the transition and seek a leadership position in it. The partnership between Eni and IRENA will reinforce our common efforts to advance the low-carbon agenda in the decade of action."
IRENA’s General Director, Francesco La Camera
© Eni and IRENA Launch a Partnership to Accelerate the Energy Transition
IRENA also recently signed a partnership with Snam, an Italian energy infrastructure company to develop “green hydrogen” and support global energy transition.
"Under the new cooperation, Snam and IRENA will encourage public-private partnerships to accelerate hydrogen demand on industrial scale and will promote research and development initiatives to bring down costs as well as support technology developments."
© Snam and IRENA to Collaborate on the Development of Green Hydrogen Worldwide
"Industry is a key player in cyberspace, since the private sector owns the majority of the world’s information systems and provides technical solutions for cyber defence. Simply put, industry is often our first line of defence; it is industry that has the ‘tanks and the soldiers’ for cyber defence."
Alexander Vershbow, former NATO Deputy Secretary General
© NATO Industry Cyber Partnership’s Stakeholders
Objectives of the NATO Industry Cyber Partnership include “facilitate access by Allies to a network of trusted industry/enterprises”; “help build access and trust between NATO and the private sector”; and “leverage private sector developments for capability development”. Within the framework of this partnership, the NATO Communications and Information Agency signed a cyber-operation agreement with Microsoft in 2015 and Fortinet in 2016.
"NATO is facing new and increasingly dangerous threats to cybersecurity across the world and these threats could affect national economies and citizens. To avoid it, NCI Agency strongly believes in rapid and early information sharing on threats and vulnerabilities with leading companies worldwide, such as Microsoft. Trust is the key to success."
Koen Gijsbers former NCI Agency General Manager
© Objectives and Principles of the NATO Industry Cyber Partnership; NCI Agency and Microsoft Sign Cyber Operation Agreement & NATO Signs Cyber Partnership Agreement With Fortinet
"The Alliance builds on closer cooperation with young entrepreneurs and innovators, as well as partnerships with industry thought leaders such as Boeing, to retain its technological edge while adapting to emerging security challenges. "
In January 2022, NATO, Boeing, the government of the Netherlands, Designing with Delft and the Unmanned Valley field lab collaborated to launch “PROJECT X”. This competition engages student teams from Dutch universities to design a prototype to find ways to better deliver technologies for the Alliance.
"Allied forces are increasingly operating in areas affected by extreme weather events such as storms and flooding, cold and heat waves. In this context, the challenge for the student teams will be to develop autonomous systems that can remotely access and evaluate situations inaccessible to human life."
© PROJECT X empowers young innovators to build technologies for the future & Student event Design Sprint: Unmanned Valley, NATO & Boeing present: Project X
NATO 2030, an initiative launched by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, aims to enhance the Alliance's military capabilities, political strength, and global approach. As part of this effort, NATO engaged in a series of six webinars with the private sector to explore the evolving nature of NATO-private sector relations. The dialogues focused on various topics such as the future of warfare, private sector contributions to Alliance security, sustainable defense innovation, climate change, geopolitical competition in the information landscape, ethical deployment of new technologies, and the security of critical infrastructure and supply chains. By fostering collaboration and leveraging the private sector's expertise, NATO seeks to strengthen partnerships and address emerging security challenges effectively.
"Dialogues with private sectors are so important because the world and the security challenges we face are complex. Think for example of emerging and disruptive technologies, and of the challenges and opportunities they pose, we can only address those concretely, effectively and successfully if we work hand in hand with the private sector..."
Benedetta Berti-Alberti, Head of Policy Planning, NATO Secretary General's Private Office
© Why is it important for NATO to engage industry leaders on their contribution to alliance security?
NATO is increasing its focus on new technologies, including with a Defence Innovation Accelerator for the North Atlantic (DIANA) and a multinational NATO Innovation Fund, to invest 1 billion euros in early-stage start-ups and other venture capital funds. NATO’s new Strategic Concept sets out how Allies will work together to adopt and integrate new technologies, cooperate with the private sector, protect innovation ecosystems, shape standards and commit to principles of responsible use that reflect the Alliance’s democratic values and human rights.
@ NATO steps up engagement with private sector on emerging technologies
"The idea is to use governments’ purchasing power to ultimately trigger a thriving market for greener steel and concrete."
© World’s largest steel and concrete buyers make game-changing push for greener solutions
The Industrial Deep Decarbonisation Initiative is a public-private collaboration organized to stimulate demand for low carbon industrial and construction materials. It seeks to “standardise carbon assessments, establish ambitious public and private sector procurement targets, incentivise investment into low-carbon product development and design industry guidelines”. The initiative is coordinated by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), led by the UK and Indian governments and includes governments, private coalitions such as the Leadership Group for the Industry Transition and other private-led organisations. In the Leadership Group for the Industry Transition, we find industrial companies such as LafargeHolcim, ThyssenKrupp, or Vattenfall.
© UNIDO IDDI & Leadership Group for the Industry Transition’s Members
"Many of our heavy industry partners are already on this journey and assurances from governments are exactly what they need now to boost their efforts to ultimately make low-carbon steel and concrete the norm. We are committed to getting as many governments as possible onboard."
Li Yong, Director General of the UNIDO.
© World’s largest steel and concrete buyers make game-changing push for greener solutions
The United Nations Industrial Development Organization is a UN specialised agency whose aim is to assist its members in their industrial and economic development. It actively seeks partnerships with private sector actors in different areas such as the provision of good and services or the support of local entrepreneurship and SME development.
"Working closely with companies and foundations, UNIDO builds partnerships that advance inclusive and sustainable industrial development while simultaneously driving business value. […] UNIDO and the private sector are natural partners for prosperity."
© UNIDO Southern Africa Regional Office
UNIDO has partnerships with Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard to develop information and communication technology in developing countries, stating that "Governments, development agencies and multinational companies have to complement each others’ efforts to increase the benefits for developing countries."
© UNIDO and Private Sector
UNIDO also has a partnership with ENI, the Italian oil and gas company illustrating yet another public-private collaboration that not only benefits the international organisation but also private actors, particularly concerning their brand image and reputation.
"The hindsight of decades of industrialization and the lessons learnt along the journey must be brought to bear on aspiring Countries keen to grow in an inclusive and sustainable way. This is the goal that Eni and UNIDO have set themselves when deciding to walk together towards the 2030 Agenda."
Li Yong, director general of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization.
© ENI and UNIDO Co-operation
The World Food Programme has been partnering with Kerry Group, a global nutrition company, on several projects to improve the diet of vulnerable people in Burundi and Honduras while providing help to dairy farmers. The latest project, Project Amata aims to sustainably bring more milk to children in the Gitega province.
“Thanks to Kerry’s Group financial and technical assistance, WFP is supporting small-scale producers and processors, increasing their skills, efficiency, and helping them gain access to valuable market opportunities. WFP Burundi is grateful to Kerry Group for this innovative and strategic partnership and is looking forward to strengthening and expanding this collaboration on similar food systems projects in the coming years.”
Claude Kakule, WFP Senior Programme Policy Officer
© How Project Amata supports dairy farmers and helps feed vulnerable schoolchildren in Burundi
The World Food Partner has a strong strategy of partnerships with private sector actors and 6 of these partners have entered Fortune’s Change the World List. The WFP’s partners are : DSM, the Dutch health and science multinational company; Tencent, the Chinese multinational technology company; Unilever, the British multinational consumer goods company; Amcor, the Swiss packaging company; Sodexo, the French food company and Tableau Foundation, the philanthropic foundation of Tableau Software, an American data visualization software company.
© 6 partners helping us to Change the World
“Fortune’s Change the World list is dedicated to the idea that the creative tools of capitalism—the perpetual quest for a better mousetrap, fueled by the profit motive—makes business uniquely suited to addressing society’s biggest challenges.”
© Change the World
Michael Kors, the global fashion house, has helped the World Food Programme deliver 16 million meals to children in hunger-stricken areas around the world through the company’s Watch Hunger Stop campaign, launched in 2013.
© Michael Kors and the WFP & Watch Hunger Stop
The World Food Programme and Mastercard’s global collaboration aims to reverse the spiral of poverty by raising funds and providing 100 million meals.
“WFP’s Executive Director, David Beasley, said that over the years of the partnership, Mastercard has helped the organisation change the way it does business, reaching more people with a more efficient and agile approach. “Mastercard’s work toward ending hunger is an inspiring example of how the private sector plays a vital role in social good,” he said. “Their new commitment to 100 million school meals is the next phase of an already very successful journey with WFP to reach Zero Hunger. This contribution to saving lives, changing lives and feeding dreams for kids is truly priceless.””
© Mastercard And The World Food Programme Announce 100 Million Meals Commitment
In 2022, the World Food Programme and Royal DSM, the Dutch multinational corporation specialised in health and nutrition, have renewed their partnership to improve the availability and accessibility of nutritious foods by vulnerable people around the world.
"Partnerships like the one with Royal DSM are critical because they help WFP reach millions of vulnerable people with the nutrition they need to survive – and thrive."
David Beasley, WFP Executive Director
© DSM and the World Food Programme partner to improve nutrition around the world & WFP and DSM
“With over one billion mobile money accounts worldwide, the use of digital technology – specifically mobile money services – can provide the foundation for rapidly scaling cash transfers to safely and effectively deploy desperately-needed resources.”
John Giusti, Chief Regulatory Officer, GSMA
The GSMA, the global mobile network operators industry organisation is collaborating with the World Food Programme in a partnership that “primarily focus on the use of mobile money to deliver digital assistance through cash-based transfers to save lives in global emergencies.” The GSMA will provide support to the WFP to access mobile money industry initiatives.
For both the partners, digital assistance is fast and efficient and “offers better security, tracking, transparency and, therefore, accountability. It also boosts financial inclusion by offering vulnerable people access to a range of digital financial services and more flexible choices about how to spend their assistance, which can, in turn, boost local businesses.”
"The GSMA and WFP call on other humanitarian organisations to consider the use of mobile technology in their strategies. Well tested mobile services, such as mobile money, allow for the safe delivery of support, particularly in fragile environments."
John Giusti, Chief Regulatory Officer, GSMA
© GSMA and UN World Food Programme accelerate the use of mobile financial services for humanitarian assistance
The Enhance Project, initiated by Capgemini brings together in a partnership, the World Food Programme, the Johns Hopkins University and the Zero Hunger Lab of Tilburg University. The aim of the project is to use data science, AI, and advanced analytics to evaluate and optimize diets to fight against hunger on a global scale.
“Using state-of-the-art models and insights straight from the scientific world, we can balance factors like affordability, nutritional contents, healthy diet criteria and sustainability– directives that we as global citizens need to consider solving world hunger once and for all. Both at a policy level and at a consumer level.”
© Project ENHANCE: The Tech4PositiveFutures entry of Capgemini Netherlands & Zero Hunger Lab
"We are grateful for our strong partnership with Mastercard and Amazon who are joining hands with us during the Holy month of Ramadan to ensure that vulnerable kids receive a nutritious meal and are empowered to continue their education and thrive in life."
Mageed Yahia, WFP Representative
"For every Amazon.ae or Amazon app transaction made by customers in the UAE using a Mastercard during Ramadan, Mastercard will donate the value of one school meal through the World Food Programme."
"Together, Mastercard and WFP are helping communities around the world take important steps towards breaking the cycle of hunger and poverty for future generations. We are proud to be a force for good and make a truly life-changing impact on the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children in our society through initiatives like these. We are grateful for the support of our partners at Amazon in making a difference this Ramadan."
Mustapha Kassem, Vice President, Marketing and Communications, Middle East & North Africa, Mastercard
© Mastercard and World Food Programme partner to feed 1 million vulnerable schoolchildren this Ramadan, with support from Amazon
The United Nations World Food Programme and its partners are selecting African entrepreneurial ventures in the field of food security to provide them with financial support. The candidates, such as start-ups or SMEs, must be working to contribute “towards food security in areas such as resilience to shocks and stress, access to safe and nutritious food, optimizing food supply chains, empowering smallholder farmers, and advancing food security for all.”
© WFP Innovation Hub for Eastern Africa
The aim of the project is to “foster locally-driven solutions to tackle food systems challenges.”
"The biggest challenge for many entrepreneurs in Eastern Africa is not only access to funding, but also technical support that furthers their concepts. Through this generous support by USAID, we are confident that we will be able to reach many bright and talented entrepreneurs in the region who might have been left behind."
Jeremie Pigé, head of the WFP IGNITE Innovation Hub for Eastern Africa
© WFP and Impact Hub Kigali launch programme to support food system innovations in Rwanda
"Launched in South Sudan on 19 November 2021, the IGNITE Food Systems Challenge sought to discover and promote locally driven solutions to food systems challenges. Food systems are the sum of interactions that make up the food value chain starting from crop production, livestock, and fish to transport, processing, wholesaling, and preparing food for consumption."
© A boost for food security in South Sudan as nine ventures bag US$200,000 in WFP-UNDP’s IGNITE Food Systems Challenge
The World Food Programme has partnered for many years with the Boston Consulting Group, the American global management consulting company. Joint initiatives include transforming WFP's school feeding program, or developing alternatives to traditional food assistance.
“BCG has also helped WFP enhance its organizational effectiveness. By calculating the return on investments in emergency preparedness, we have helped WFP prove the value of preparedness and attract more governments and donors to act on this critical effort. And finally, we have helped WFP develop its knowledge management capabilities.”
© BCG’s Partnership with the World Food Programme
The World Food Programme (WFP) partners with many private actors within the framework of its activities, many of them provide technical expertise and at the same time financially contribute to the funding of the organization. In its private-sector partnerships and fundraising strategy (2020-2025), the WFP remarks that “the private sector is increasingly responsive to employee and consumer demand for the utilization of a company’s expertise, reach and influence to achieve wider societal impact”
"94 percent of consumers are likely to switch to brands that demonstrate a social conscience."
© WFP Private Sector & Private-Sector Partnerships and Fundraising Strategy
A list of the WFP’s partners can be found on their website (WFP Private Sector); examples include Balenciaga which raises funds by selling clothing reading “WFP supported by Balenciaga” or “Balenciaga supports WFP”. Another example is the partnership with the PepsiCo Foundation that invests in a “healthier future for people.”
© Balenciaga and WFP & PepsiCo Philantropy
As for the partnership with Mastercard, according to the WFP, it has allowed the organization to “change the way it does business.”
"Mastercard’s work toward ending hunger is an inspiring example of how the private sector plays a vital role in social good."
WFP’s Executive Director, David Beasley
© Mastercard and WFP
The innovative collaboration agreement between the FC Barcelona and the UNICEF was signed in 2006. In an interesting use of the UNICEF brand, players of the FC Barcelona team wore the UNICEF logo on their jerseys not because the UNICEF was sponsoring and financially contributing to the football team, as it is the norm, but to publicise the engagement of the FC Barcelona towards the welfare of children.
"FC Barcelona has a strong focus on children and young people, not only through our millions of fans and those who love the game, but also through the FC Barcelona Foundation, which works for the welfare of children, especially the most vulnerable."
Maria Valles, Director General of FC Barcelona Foundation.
© UNICEF Webpage & FC Barcelona Webpage
In addition, the partnership has also involved regular financial contributions from the Barça to the UNICEF and further collaboration on some UNICEF projects, such as recently in a research project on the impact of sport on children’s development.
© Sport for Development Research
"The ClimCam project is a unique opportunity offered by the UNOOSA & Airbus to install the first Camera system equipped with a Machine learning algorithm onboard the international space station. This project will have a significant impact on monitoring climate change effects in Eastern Africa.”
Ayman Ahmed, Project Coordinator from the Egyptian Space Agency
This project is the first international cooperation between Egypt, Kenya and Uganda; it is supported by UNOOSA and Airbus within the framework of the Access to Space for All initiative. Its aim is to install a compact camera on board the ISS Bartolomeo Platform to monitor climate change effects in Eastern Africa.
© ClimCam Project
The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs is a UN organization charged with the promotion of international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space. It particularly works on the development of space law and access to space by developing countries. With its initiative Access to Space for All, it seeks to provide technology and infrastructure to facilitate access to space by collaborating with private actors, such as Avio and Sierra Nevada Corporation.
© UNOOSA Space for All partners
"The space arena is growing increasingly diverse as private industry actors become more involved in space technologies and exploration. It's great to see a company like SNC bring their expertise to UNOOSA's holistic approach to capacity building and our goal of bringing the benefits of space to all."
UNOOSA Director Simonetta Di Pippo
© United Nations and Sierra Nevada Corporation Sign Agreement
"Avio’s commitment to structured collaboration with the United Nations highlights its focus on supporting, through business excellence and Research and Development, the use of the resources offered by space to benefit the entire international community. We will therefore contribute – through launching micro and nano-satellites and against a backdrop of constant technological innovations – to making the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals more achievable."
Giulio Ranzo, CEO of Avio
© UNOOSA and Avio Provide Space for All
On the 3rd of December 2021 China filed a complaint against the U.S. to the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space concerning its long-term space station Tiangong currently being constructed in Earth’s low orbit. On the 1st of July and 21st of October 2021 Tiangong was compelled to take preventive collision avoidance measures because of two close encounters with Starlink’s satellites which had manoeuvred to change orbits. In its note China refers to article V of the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space providing “States Parties to the Treaty shall immediately inform the other States Parties to the Treaty or the Secretary-General of the United Nations of any phenomena they discover in outer space [...] which could constitute a danger to the life or health of astronauts ”. China also insisted on article VI of the Treaty stating that States are responsible for the activities carried on by their national non-governmental entities.
© UNOOSA’s General Assembly Note
Starlink is a division of Elon Musk’s SpaceX and has received permission from U.S. authorities to launch 12, 000 satellites. These incidents illustrate a new reality concerning the use of outer space by private companies.
"There’s more debris and there’s more active satellites. Things are just getting a lot busier and a lot more crowded up there. It’s a commercially dominated space age … where we’re stressing the space environment for the first time."
Jonathan McDowell, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
© Rhoda Kwan and Jon Henley, China berates US after ‘close encounters’ with Elon Musk satellites, The Guardian, 28 December 2021
The multiplication of satellites and "space junk" is also causing a number of problems in astrophysics, and optical and radio astronomy. Therefore, the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and International Telecommunication Union (ITU) are being called upon by many to step in and provide more regulation on these issues
© Daniel Clery, Starlink already threatens optical astronomy. Now, radio astronomers are worried, Science, 9 Oct 2020
The World Health Organization’s Member States have recognised “the potential of digital technologies to improve public health, promote universal health coverage and advance the Sustainable Development Goals.”
"WHO is working with Google to share health advice through new and innovative platforms. This is part of WHO's broader ambition to work closely with the digital world to promote and protect the health of all people."
“Through the Google Fit app, WHO is looking to reach more people with its recommendations on physical activity, and showing why moving more is good for health.”The Google Fit App aims to coach people “to a healthier and more active life.”
© Digital Health
Country Responses and the Reaction of the Stock Market to COVID-19—a Preliminary Exposition. This is an article by Dinh Hoang Bach Phan & Paresh Kumar Narayan.
© Dinh Hoang Bach Phan & Paresh Kumar Narayan: Country Responses and the Reaction of the Stock Market to COVID-19—a Preliminary Exposition, Taylor and Francis online (published online 25 July 2020)
The World Health Organization (WHO) in December 2020 listed the Comirnaty COVID-19 mRNA vaccine for emergency use, making the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine the first to receive emergency validation from WHO since the outbreak began a year ago. This validation is a clear benefit for Pfizer/BioNTech. See the second link for more information.
© WHO Webpage, 31 December 2020
“IOM’s partnership with Google highlights the private sector’s contribution to returnees’ sustainable reintegration in Nigeria.”
In 2019, the International Organization for Migration partnered with Google Nigeria to conduct Digital Skills Training for returnees and potential migrants interested in setting up small-scale businesses, mentorship and job placement opportunities.
“This training is aimed at helping participants start a career in digital marketing, be encouraged to build digital start-ups, and advance in the workplace”
Temitope Saliu, Growth Tribe Africa trainer for Google Digital Skills Programme
© IOM Nigeria Partners with Google to Train Returnees in Digital Skills
In 2013, the International Organization for Migration partnered with Deloitte, the international service network providing audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk advisory, tax, and legal services to companies and organisations. The objective if this new Humanitarian Innovation Program was to find technology solutions to help face the world’s most challenging issues. A key focus for innovation was the IOM's Displacement Tracking Matrix, used to gather and share information on displaced communities.
“IOM is hopeful that the collaboration will lead to innovative technology-based solutions which will improve the way international aid organizations communicate, coordinate, and deliver help on the ground during crises.”
© IOM and Deloitte turning to technology to aid response to humanitarian disasters
“Deloitte believes that when the private and public sectors combine their skills and work together – in new and innovative ways – we can better tackle the big issues facing society today. It’s a responsibility and a privilege to bring what we do best to the vital work of these organizations”
Barry Salzberg, Global CEO, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.
© Deloitte teams with humanitarian groups to prepare for crises
In 2019 The International Organization for Migration and the H&M Group entered a partnership destined to promote cooperation and mutual assistance in relation to the ethical recruitment and protection of migrant workers.
"IOM is delighted to enter into this partnership with H&M Group today. With this MOU, the company shows its true commitment and leadership in the fashion industry. We look forward to bringing our mutual strengths to tackle the complex challenges facing migrant workers in supply chains."
IOM Deputy Director General Laura Thompson
© IOM, H&M Group to Promote Ethical Recruitment and Protect Migrant Workers
The International Organization for Migration signed a partnership in 2018 with Mastercard to provide financial education and develop “tailor-made” financial products for refugees and migrants in Romania.
"We are confident that this partnership and support can empower migrants and refugees to become contributors to their host communities, which brings not only economic benefits for all, but also improves integration and social cohesion […] Involving the private sector in supporting integration is the next step in this holistic approach […]"
Mircea Mocanu, Head of IOM’s Office in Romania
© Mastercard, UN Migration Agency Team Up to Help Vulnerable Migrants, Refugees in Romania
The Internation Organization for Migration has entered several partnerships with private sector actors, using their expertise, innovation and networks in order to promote humanitarian and development objectives.
IOM Finland has partnered with the Finnish company Logonet to improve maternal health in Somalia with Finnish Baby Aid Kits. Especially developed to be used in difficult situations, the Finnish Baby Aid Kit is a childbirth and nursing kit containing essential materials for childbirth and nursing a new-born. This is a clear example of an IO affecting the market.
© IOM Finland Web Page & IOM UN Migrations Webpage
The IOM also has a long-running collaboration with Microsoft and this partnership contributed to the development of the Counter Trafficking Data Collaborative Global Data Hub on Human Trafficking. Within the scope of the accelerator programme of the Tech Against Trafficking coalition IOM and Microsoft contribute to providing critical information and data about the profile of victims of human trafficking.
“We are grateful to IOM for our deep partnership in developing a new approach to data sharing that is grounded in the needs of the anti-trafficking community. By protecting the privacy and safety of victims with synthetic data, and empowering policymakers to view, explore, and make sense of data through rich interactive dashboards, we are showing one of the many ways in which research and technology can support the global fight against human trafficking.”
Darren Edge, Director of Societal Resilience at Microsoft Research and project lead.
© IOM-Microsoft Collaboration Enables Release of Largest Public Dataset to Bolster Fight Against Human Trafficking
Other partners of the IOM include, for instance, Deloitte, Adidas, Asiacell, Google or VF Corporation.
In the realm of international migration, the collaboration between intergovernmental organizations (IOs) and the private sector has been steadily evolving over the years. The International Organization for Migration (IOM), with its rich history spanning seven decades, has been at the forefront of fostering these partnerships. With the unveiling of its Private Sector Engagement Strategy for 2023-2027, IOM has entered an exciting new phase in its mission to harness the potential of human mobility while upholding migrants' rights.
Under the first pillar, aptly named 'Impact,' IOM is committed to facilitating the transformation of corporate policies, practices, and values within the private sector to align with human rights and labor standards. This signifies more than just a financial partnership; it's about driving a deeper impact by advocating for human rights and equitable labor practices within the private sector. These endeavors not only safeguard the rights of migrants but also elevate corporate standards globally. Through this strategic focus, IOM seeks to create enduring positive change by instilling human rights principles at the heart of the business community, ensuring a more inclusive and equitable future for all.
As IOM forges ahead with its Private Sector Engagement Strategy, it seeks to harness the innovative capacity of the private sector to address pressing migration challenges. Through these pillars of impact and innovation, IOM is fostering a symbiotic relationship that creates lasting change while furthering its mission of advancing the well-being of migrants and their communities. In doing so, it reinforces the idea that, in today's interconnected world, the private sector is indeed an indispensable partner in shaping a more inclusive and equitable future for all.
© Private Sector Engagement Strategy 2023-2027
"Living your dream also means defending your rights. This is why the International Labour Organisation, alongside FIFPRO and the Didier Drogba Foundation, has mobilised to promote decent work for young professional football players"
Frédéric Lapeyre, Director of the ILO Country Office for Côte d'Ivoire, Benin, Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Togo
The International Labour Organization partnered with former Ivorian international footballers Didier Drogba Geremi Njitap, Didier Otokoré and Marc Zoro, and the International Federation of Professional Footballers' Associations to launch a campaign to raise awareness of the risks associated with the emigration of young footballers.
“The objective of this campaign, which comes a few days after the signing of the first global agreement on working conditions and rights of professional football players between the social partners of the sector, is to raise awareness among young Ivorian footballers of the risks of discrimination, exploitation and human trafficking linked to poorly prepared migration.”
© The ILO, FIFPRO and the Didier Drogba Foundation launch a campaign against the risks linked to the emigration of young football players
“Given the scale, complexity and urgency of the environmental, social and economic challenges the world is facing, taking a holistic approach to confronting these challenges is not an option but a necessity.”
The Green Jobs Programme of the International Labour Organization seeks to promote the creation of jobs that contribute to preserve and restore the environment while promoting social and economic development. The ILO’s framework allows for the provision of leadership and technical advisory guidance and brings together the different stakeholders including the private sector.
“Through the Green Jobs Programme, the ILO is proud to be driving this agenda and leading the world towards greener and decent jobs. The programme collaborates with many organizations and institutions including the Partnership for Action on a Green Economy (PAGE), the Green Growth Knowledge Platform (GGKP), the One UN Climate Change Learning Partnership (UNCC: Learn) and the Green Growth Working Group of the Donor Committee for Enterprise Development, amongst others.”
© The Green Jobs Programme of the ILO & Green Jobs Programme Website
"The LEED+ project builds on successes of the Local Empowerment through Economic Development (LEED) Project. From 2011–2018, LEED has helped to reduce poverty, create sustainable jobs and build the peace in northern Sri Lanka.
The impact of the market approach is sustained and scaled outcomes. Thereby the project will achieve lasting change among both public and private actors by playing on their incentive and capacity to adopt new ways of working, so impact continues long after the project has ended. With constraints to economic growth removed, change can be replicated and mainstreamed across sectors rather than only be confined to the individual actors the project is working directly with."
Partners: Ministry of Labour & Trade Union Relations, Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, Department of Cooperatives, Department of Agriculture, Department of Fisheries, Cooperatives, Producer Organizations, National Chamber of Exporters, Sea Food Exporters Association, District and Provincial Departments.
Many of these partners, such as the National Chamber of Exporters, are working thightly with the private sector. The second link leads to the web page of the National Chamber of Exporters (Sri Lanka), where you easily will find information about all their partners.
© ILO Web Page & National Chambers of Exporters Sri Lanka Webpage
The partnership between UNESCO and Globo TV for the Criança Esperança project exemplifies the significance of public-private partnerships (PPPs) in addressing social issues and promoting sustainable development. Through this collaboration, both organizations leverage their respective expertise, resources, and networks to achieve shared goals. The involvement of a major media conglomerate like Globo TV provides extensive visibility and outreach, enabling the campaign to mobilize large-scale fundraising efforts and engage Brazilian society in supporting civil society organizations.
"UNESCO is very proud to be a partner of TV Globo through Criança Esperança, which we hope will continue to produce excellent results, helping reduce inequalities, promote social inclusion and leave no one behind."
The Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay
© UNESCO and Globo TV renew cooperation agreement for Criança Esperança youth project
“The world urgently needs Digital Anthropology to make data more human, and help leaders better understand the needs and experiences of people across the digital world.”
Gabriela Ramos, Assistant Director-General for the Social and Human Sciences of UNESCO
In 2021, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization launched a four-year collaboration with the Liiv Center, an American company specialising in ethical technology and research into the impact of the digital revolution on human behaviour. The aim of this partnership is “to identify innovative digital tools and methods, academic programs, career opportunities, and awareness raising of digital anthropology’s power to create a more ethical and equal society.”
© UNESCO and LiiV to launch a global partnership to advance the science of Digital Anthropology & UNESCO and the Liiv Center have embarked on a global partnership to advance digital anthropology
“Talent is universal, but opportunity is not, especially for a generation of young women whose education has been severely affected by the pandemic. By joining the Global Coalition with an initiative that empowers and carries promise for the future, the Dior Couture House is sending a strong message of commitment and confidence, giving young women from disadvantaged backgrounds the chance to fulfill their dreams”
Stefania Giannini, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education
Women@Dior is an international mentoring & educational program created in 2017. It aims at teaching self-confidence to young women, selecting participants from various business, engineering, art and fashion schools spanning across almost 58 different countries.
© UNESCO & WOMEN@DIOR
Christian Dior Couture and UNESCO have also co-organized the “Dream for Change” e-conference to “reinforce their partnership for education and gender equality and celebrate the graduation of the class of 2020 Women@Dior mentoring programme.”
In addition, Dior is a member of the Global Education Coalition, established by UNESCO in March 2020 to “support learning continuity during the COVID-19 pandemic and accelerate the transformation of education systems around inclusion, resilience and sustainability.”
© UNESCO and Christian Dior Couture celebrate young female talents engaged for gender equality
In 1994, the World Heritage Committee launched the Global Strategy for a Representative, Balanced and Credible World Heritage List. Its aim is to ensure that the List reflects the world's cultural and natural diversity of outstanding universal value. To be included on the World Heritage List, sites must be of outstanding universal value and meet at least one out of ten selection criteria. It is not far-fetched to think of this listing performed by Unesco as market-affecting. Areas with sites included on the list have a better chance to attract tourists and visitors, which certainly affects private sector actors.
© Unesco Webpage
The UNESCO also has a number of partnerships with private actors. In 2020, it has signed an agreement with the Vietnamese group SOVICO led by Nguyễn Thị Phương Thảo.
"Allowing Madame Phuong Thao to give back to the city of her youth, under the partnership SOVICO Group will collaborate with UNESCO, UNIDO and UN Habitat to support Ha Noi's development as a UNESCO Creative City for design through the preservation and restoration of cultural heritage, revitalization of craft villages and support for young creative talent of Ha Noi. Guided by the values of sustainability and respect for local culture, the partnership supports Ha Noi’s City’s new vision as "Creative Capital", where development finds inspiration from its creative past and the energy of its youth."
© UNESCO Signs Agreement in Viet Nam
UNESCO also collaborates with the LVMH group. In 2019, LVMH and the UNESCO have signed a 5 year partnership to promote biodiversity. within the framework of the « Man and Biosphere » programme. With Guerlain, part of the LVMH group, the UNESCO promotes women engagement and biodiversity through the Women for Bees programme.
© LVMH Announces Five-Year Partnership with UNESCO & Women for Bees Programme
Another example is the partnership between the UNESCO and ARMOR on a project to support education in Togo by supplying solar kits and equipment to school children.
© ARMOR and UNESCO Sign Partnership
"We venture by the present circular to invite the heads of Meteorological Institutes, the Meteorological and other Learned Societies, as well as private scientific men and practical observers in the domain of Meteorology, to this consultative meeting, which is to be held in Leipzig …"
From the invitation letter to the Meteorological Conference at Leipzig, August 1872
© Public Private Engagement Open Platform
In the last years, like many other IOs, the World Meteorological Organization has increasingly developed collaborations with a variety of partners, including the private sector, to promote greater engagement of the different actors in the global weather enterprise.
The WMO Open Consultative Platform is a consultative mechanism to collaboratively address global challenges with all stakeholders concerned, public and private. Within this framework, in 2021, Microsoft presented an innovation webinar: “Microsoft and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – A deep dive into digital technologies and innovations to accelerate climate, water and weather goals."
“We believe technology is a positive force in transforming our world and people’s lives when it is developed and used in trusted, responsible, and inclusive ways. […] That is why we are putting technology in the hands of those who are addressing our most pressing societal challenges—so they can have a greater impact. We believe technology is a powerful force for good, and all of us here at Microsoft are working together to foster a sustainable future where everyone has access to the benefits it provides and the opportunities it creates.”
© WMO Webpage Public Private Engagement & OCP Innovation Webinar Microsoft
Some projects implemented by the WMO also directly involve private actors such as, the Aircraft Meteorological Data Relay (AMDAR) for Kenya which has for partner Kenya Airways, or the Coastal Inundation Forecasting Demonstration Project in Fiji partnering with Tonkin and Taylor.
© Aircraft Meteorological Data Relay (AMDAR) for Kenya & Coastal Inundation Forecasting Demonstration Project Fiji
"Cooperation with the private sector is essential, not only to prevent and control cybercrime, but also to protect privacy and other fundamental rights. I am pleased to continue and develop the partnership with Microsoft that we started in 2006."
Thorbjørn Jagland, Council of Europe Secretary General
© Council of Europe Press Release
In 2013, The CoE signed an agreement with Microsoft to collaborate on cybersecurity in the framework of the Octopus project, aimed at supporting the implementation of the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime. The project was renewed in January 2021.
© Council of Europe Octopus Project Webpage
According to this IO's web page:
"Active collaboration with the private sector ensures the Center’s research can reach a broad base of farmers. Seed companies benefit from access to the World Vegetable Center Genebank; they can obtain the Center’s breeding lines to use as parent lines or as a source of traits for backcrossing programs. The companies’ strength in commercial seed multiplication and marketing helps to rapidly spread beneficial research outcomes to farmers."
© World Vegetable Center Webpage
The World Vegetable Center is working with the private sector in order to strengthen the efficiency of the vegetable-based agriculture-sector in developing countries. This naturally has an effect on the markets.
© Chris Ojiewo, Abdou Tenkouano, M.O. Oluoch, Ray-Yu Yang: THE ROLE OF AVRDC -THE WORLD VEGETABLE CENTRE IN VEGETABLE VALUE CHAINS, Research Gate
Since 2000, National Contact Points (NPC) for Responsible Business Conduct (RBC) have had the mandate to act as non-judicial grievance mechanisms under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. With globalised corporate activity intensifying and related developments, such as climate change and global inequalities accelerating, RBC and access to remedy are more relevant than ever.
The OECD Guidelines undoubtly have an effect on the private sector and the NPC-requirements further enhance the meaning of these.
© OECD Webpage: National Contact Points for Responsible Business Conduct (mneguidelines.oecd.org) & OECD Webpage: More about NCPs
"More must be done by businesses globally to accelerate corporate sustainability and responsible business practice. Our strategy and ambition are to grow and take our participants on a journey of demonstrated continuous improvement in the impact that they create."
- Sanda Ojiambo CEO & Executive Director UN Global Compact
Both the OECD and the UN have aimed to regulate multinational corporations' conduct through non-binding recommendations and standard setting. The OECD encourage the participation of multinational and the implementation of its recommendations through the NCPs as explained above.
© OECD Guidelines for multinational entreprises
The UN Global Compact seeks to encourage businesses to behave in a more responsible and sustainable way in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. It has recently revealed its Africa Strategy 2021–2023 which “aims to accelerate and scale the impact of the private sector to drive progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals across the African continent.” By involving key actors and, large and smaller businesses as well, its ambition is to accelerate responsible businesses’ practices and to grow the impact of the UN Global Compact. It is described as a “call to action for all companies everywhere to align their operations and strategies with Ten Principles in the areas of Human Rights, Labour, the Environment and Anti-Corruption.” Companies are seen as active partners in the realization of the UN SDGs. This soft-law approach can be considered as promoting the establishment of a virtous circle where companies engagement encourages more companies to engage making it more difficult to not follow the strategies for fear of reputational damage.
© UN Global Compact Webpage & UN Global Compact Africa Strategy
In their article Lucio Baccaro and Valentina Mele are prudent in assessing whether codes of conduct issued by IOs could improve the behavior of businesses in the long term. By evaluating the impact of the OECD guidelines and the UN Global Compact on non-state actors, they, however, emphasize that these approaches are most efficient when they are part of a wider mix of international regulations approaches.
© Lucio Baccaro and Valentina Mele: For lack of anything better? International Organizations and Global Corporate Codes, Public Administration, Vol 89 (2), June 2011
The first article discusses the growing number of arrangements between public and private actors, i.e. Public-private partnerships (PPPs) in the fight against climate change.
"Public-private partnerships can be defined as agreements for collaborative governance between public actors (national governmental agencies, subnational governments, or IOs) and nonstate actors (foundations, firms, advocacy organizations, or others), which establish common norms, rules, objectives, and decision-making and implementation procedures for a set of policy problems. PPPs thus involve the institutionalization of hybrid authority at the international arena, beyond traditional forms of interaction between state and nonstate actors such as lobbying, consultation, or subcontracting. The rise of hybrid authority raises fascinating questions about the evolving role of states, nonstate actors, and IOs in global environmental governance. What political factors drive this institutional diversification? Do partnerships undermine the authority of intergovernmental and state institutions? Why is the environmental arena particularly conducive to collaborative governance? What are the resulting patterns of PPPs and how do they contribute to sustainability? To address these questions, the paper examines the politics and patterns of PPPs for the environment in the multilateral system..."
© Andonova, Liliana B: Public-Private Partnerships for the Earth: Politics and Patterns of Hybrid Authority in the Multilateral System, Global Environmental Politics, Volume 10, Number 2, May 2010, pp. 25-53.
The second article discusses PPPs as a tool of international governance in general.
© Börzel, Tanja A. and Risse, Thomas: Public-Private Partnerships: Effective and Legitimate Tools of International Governance?, Prepared for the Edgar Grande/Louis W. Pauly (eds.), Complex Sovereignty: On the Reconstitution of Political Authority in the 21st Century.
The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is discussed quite a lot in the above-mentioned article, as one example of an IO involved in PPPs. Ever since its establishment on the eve of the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, the GEF has been a key actor in the battle against environmental problems. The GEF provides grants to developing countries and countries with economies in transition.
It goes without saying that cooperation with the private sector is absolutely necessary in order to make the switch from fossil fuels towards renewable energy sources smoother. The GEF is, therefore, also naturally cooperating with the private sector in an attempt to expand the use of non-grant instruments and mobilizing the private sector. This constitutes a great example of an IO whose collaboration with market actors, at least by first look, is vital and easy to justify. It is also quite obvious that the GEF and its intense work of trying to put pressure on and influence the private sector has an effect on businesses.
© GEF Web page (thegef.org) & 58th GEF Council Meeting June 2 – 3, 2020 Virtual Meeting Agenda Item 06
In May 2020, a 2-year partnership agreement was signed between Qatar Airways and UNHCR on the delivery of pandemic aid to vulnerable people. The parties emphasize the great importance of this partnership, especially to eliminate the negative consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are proud to join efforts with UNHCR to provide relief aid to people and communities most in need. By having a robust international network to over 160 destinations worldwide, we are pleased to be able to give a helping hand to support this great cause. We are committed to making a difference and by working together we hope to challenge the current adversities with strength, solidarity and resilience.”
Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways
© UNHCR – Qatar Airways
“As the depths of COVID-19 continue to take the world captive, we never imagined the magnitude its impact would have, or just how many lives it would touch. Our primary focus at UNHCR is to safeguard the rights and wellbeing of the most marginalised and vulnerable members of society. It is times like these when we must take action and strive to find lasting solutions which is why our partnership with Qatar Airways is crucial. With limited access to water, sanitation systems and health facilities, refugees are particularly at risk right now and that is why we are developing key responses to mitigate these challenges, alongside our respected partners Qatar Airways. Together, we must drive action.”
Khaled Khalifa, Senior Advisor and Representative to the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries at UNHCR
© Qatar Airways and UNHCR Establish Partnership to Deliver Vital International Aid Supplies for the Displaced Globally
Since 2021, the Mastercard foundation has been one of the main supporters (under their COVID-19 Recovery & Resilience Programme) of the steps taken by UNHCR to counter the threats to the availability of education as a result of COVID-19. This partnership mainly serves the higher purpose of making education equal and accessible to every single learner all around the world.
“UNHCR’s partnership with the Mastercard Foundation in support of refugee learners in Kenya is a significant move towards aligning our work for greater impact. The Mastercard Foundation is an innovative leader in Education and Financial Inclusion, and UNHCR is grateful to be working together on uplifting displaced youth.”
Alex Tom, Head of Private Sector Partnerships, UNHCR Canada
© UNHCR - Mastercard Foundation
“We want to further stimulate private sector participation in refugee inclusion and give the private sector the space to engage and drive change for refugee inclusion alongside refugee and displaced populations.”
Karen Meyer, Regional Lead, Refugees and Displaced Populations at the Mastercard Foundation
© Bridging the Gaps to Create Opportunity for Refugee Inclusion
In 2008 the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees partnered with Google and launched a new online mapping programme, “Google Earth Outreach.” This programme provides a view of some of the world’s major displacement crises to give humanitarian agencies the ability to show their work on behalf of millions of refugees and vulnerable populations.
“We’re very excited to participate with UNHCR […] The idea is to take an abstract concept - refugees in some country that people have never visited and may in fact never visit and take them there virtually - so that they can get an intuitive understanding of what the real issues are”
Rebecca Moore, manager and founder of Google Earth Outreach
© UNHCR and Google Earth Unveil Programme for Humanitarian Operations
"#TheWorldNeeds calls on creators, artists, and communities to spread a message of global support for refugees calling for safe and legal access to asylum for all."
The UN Refugee Agency and TikTok, the Chinese short-video hosting platform, have launched a global hashtag challenge and live concert series called #TheWorldNeeds. This project seeks to promote solidarity with refugees around the world and to promote the work of the UNHCR.
"With the support of Warner Recorded Music, Warner Chappell Music and BMG, Dionne Warwick’s iconic track “What The World Needs Now (Is Love)” is the centrepiece of the #TheWorldNeeds global hashtag challenge. UNHCR invites the TikTok community to join the challenge and bring their creativity to life to show their support and solidarity for those forced to flee."
© UNHCR and TikTok launch campaign in solidarity with refugees from Ukraine and beyond
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is a UN agency working for refugees and homeless people. Ever since the refugee crisis originating from the Kosovo war in the late 1990s, the UNHCR has been operating with Microsoft in worldwide places during different crisis. Microsoft has contributed in developing better information management techniques and providing education opportunities about digital skills and has adopted an active role in the implementation of the projects while doing so.
This once again poses as a perfect example of an IO and a multinational corporation working together on serious issues that effect the entire globe. A partnership like this would have been quite unlikely before the idelogical shift towards more neoliberalistic views in the 1980s. It is also a more cost-effective way for an IO to promote its strategies and work for its goals.
© UNHCR Webpage (unhcr.org) 12.5.2021; UNHCR Web page (unhcr.org/partners) 12.5.2021 & Usa for UNHCR (unrefugees.org) 12.5.2021
"Together with UNHCR, we will harness our combined expertise, resources, and advocacy to empower young women and men refugees with access to digital skills, computer science and certified training. Refugees are one of the most digitally excluded populations in the world and our goal is to take part in delivering a sustainable global solution that fosters youth employment and entrepreneurship opportunities."
Mary Snapp, President of Microsoft Philanthropies
© UNHCR and Microsoft
Established in 1865, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is the oldest existing intergovernmental organization. Since 1947 the ITU is part of the UN family, as its specialised agency for telecommunications. The widespread transfers in ownership of national telecommunications to the private sector that have taken place during the second half of the 20th century has from the 1980s onward directed the focus of the ITU towards the private sector. This increased concentration to businesses and the markets has been discussed in a quite critical manner in the article Privatisation in the United Nations system: Patterns of influence in three intergovernmental organisations found on the setup-page of this web page. The article describes the ITU as an IO giving private sector interests a big role, a circumstance that challenges the claim that these forums are concerned primarily with apolitical issues. This is of course a claim that could be said to apply to many IOs.
An intergovernmental organization such as the ITU is an organization composed primarily of sovereign states. IGOs are established by a treaty that acts as a charter creating the group. Treaties are formed when lawful representatives (governments) of several states go through a ratification process, providing the IGO with an international legal personality. IGOs are in other words founded on interests sprung from the public sector (governments). Are the public sector interests being hollowed out by the increased private sector involvement in the multilateral system? On the other hand, since the branch of telecommunications is so market-based today, why shouldn't the private sector be involved?
Check out the links to the left for further information about the private sector interests embedded in the operations of the ITU.
© ITU Web page (itu.int) "development"
The Commonwealth of Nations, or the Commonwealth, is a political association of 54 member states, almost all of which are former territories of the British Empire. The chief institutions of the organisation are the Commonwealth Secretariat, which focuses on intergovernmental aspects, and the Commonwealth Foundation, which focuses on non-governmental relations between member states. The Commonwealth does a lot of things, this international organisation for instance helps boosting trade between member countries, to create prosperity. Naturally they cooperate with the private sector as well, which affects the markets.
© The Commonwealth Webpage & Commonwealth Secretariat Strategic Plan 2017/18 – 2020/21
When IOs grow strong and powerful so do the money and interests involved in their missions. Because of the tragic weaknesses of human nature this may lead to extreme cases of malfeasance. The importance of transparency and openess has already been discussed under the second research angle, but as this case visualizes the affect on the private sector, this particular failure is discussed under the third research angle.
The Oil-for-Food Programme (OIP) was established by the United Nations in 1995 as the largest humanitarian initiative in UN history with the mission to allow Iraq to sell oil on the world market in exchange for food, medicine, and other humanitarian needs for ordinary Iraqi citizens without allowing Iraq to boost its military capabilities. The objective had at least to some degree a nobel cause - help the Iraqi civilians that suffered because of the sanctions imposed on Iraq by the UN Security Council. Yet due in great part to mismanagement and fraud, the OIP led to hefty profits for Saddam Hussein, hundreds of foreign companies, and several UN officials. The illegal profit for Saddam’s regime alone was about $2 billion. According to the independent think-thank organization, the Council on Foreign Relations, nearly half of the 4,400 companies involved in the program participated in bribery and kickbacks to benefit from the program. Over hundreds of western banks participated in the shady dealings and the former head of the OIP, Benon Sevan, himself received vouchers for at least 11,000,000 barrels (1,700,000 m³) of oil, worth some $3.5 million in profit.
This shameful conduct certainly shook the hole UN up and poses as a sad example of how partnerships between IOs and the private sector can lead to shameful briberies. A UN summit in September 2005 addressed several management reform initiatives, including reforms for: ensuring ethical conduct and strengthening internal oversight and accountability in the UN programmes and initiatives.
© Grigorescu Alexandrue: Horizontal Accountability in Intergovernmental Organizations, Ethics and International affairs volume 22, issue 3 (2008), Wiley Online Library
© Robert McMahon: The Impact of the UN Oil-for-Food Scandal, Council on Foreign Relations Web page (cfr.org), published May 11, 2006 5:01 pm (EST)
© George Bartsiotas: An expanding role: internal auditors in intergovernmental organizations are seeing an increase in their governance responsibilities, Internal Auditor (Vol. 65, Issue 2), April 2008
While access to information is considered a human right and while democratic states have strict rules about the right to access to information this is, however, not the case when it comes to IOs. These organizations are not bound by the same rules as states are and yet they often exercise the same sorts of powers - IOs are composed mainly of sovereign states and are a very important aspect of public international law. On top of this, IOs are often considered quite bureaucratic, which is sometimes problematic as IOs exercise a great amount of power. Check out the article by Alasdair Roberts to the left for more information on this particular subject.
© Alasdair Roberts: A Partial Revolution: The Diplomatic Ethos and Transparency in Intergovernmental Organizations, Public Administration Review (PAR), volume 64, issue 4, Wiley Online Library, 16 July 2004
Speaking of the importance of transparency in the section above, the World Bank Group has already in 2001 established its own institution that investigates allegations of fraud and corruption in the World Bank Group activities. Even though the INT has solved a big number of such cases ever since its establishment, the world bank group has still been accused of being secretive, unaccountable and ineffective and several World Bank officials have been under investigation for skimming millions of dollars from an African job creation program. Steps towards the right direction have been taken, but it is apparent that this IO still has some way to go...
© World Bank Web page (worldbank.org) "Integrity Vice Precidency" 25.4.2021 & World Bank Web page (worldbank.org) "Access to Information" --> "Overview"
© Danaher, Kevin: 50 years is enough, The Case Against the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, South End Press Boston MA, 1994
© Woods, Ngaire: Unelected Government: Making the IMF and the World Bank More Accountable, Brookings Web page (brookings.edu), 1 March 2003
©The Guardian Web page (theguardian.com), 18 May 2007
On December 17, 2019, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and Grundfos, one of the world's top pump – and water solutions providers, officially signed an agreement that will gather their technological and humanitarian expertise around a clear and shared target: Bringing safe water to the world's most vulnerable.
We are aware that the ICRC is actually an NGO and not an IGO, but this example still provides a great example of an international organization affecting the private sector.
© ICRC Webpage
The UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) has launched a project to promote successful public-private partnerships (PPPs) in drug control. The project includes a guidebook and digital roadmap with recommendations for three specific areas of drug control: drug supply and demand reduction, combatting narcotics trafficking and drug-related financial crime, and preventing the diversion of illicit chemicals. These recommendations highlight the importance of collaboration between the public and private sectors and recognizing individual roles to achieve effective solutions. The project was inspired by a resolution from the 63rd session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs that promoted effective partnerships with private sector entities. The UNODC's project aims to provide better information and tools to establish new partnerships and document good practice examples.
"The basic idea behind PPPs is to work for a common good while ensuring a maximum level of efficiency. In short, the aim of PPP is the division of labor, with the private partner taking responsibility for the efficient production (and management) of goods and services, while the public sector ensures that goals oriented towards the common good are observed."
© Compendium – Public Private Partnerships in the Drug Control Area, Vienna, 30 December 2021