Sustainable Development Goals Current Affairs - 2019

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17 May: World Telecommunication and Information Society Day observed

On 17 May, World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD) was celebrated throughout the world. The year 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of WTISD.

About WTISD

  • Background: The World Telecommunication and Information Society Day was first observed on 17 May since 1969. The day marks the establishment of International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and also the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865 in Paris. Since 1969 it is being celebrated every year.
  • Objective: It seeks to help raise awareness about possibilities which can be brought to societies and economies with the use of Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT). It also promotes awareness about using ICT to explore ways to bridge digital divide.

About WTISD 2019

  • This year’s theme was: ‘Bridging the standardization gap’.
  • 2019 theme will allow International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Members and other stakeholders to focus on opportunities:
  1. To promote implementation of international standards in developing countries.
  2. To Increase participation of developing countries in ITU’s standards-making process.
  3. To empower local experts in standardization process at national, regional and international levels.

About ITU

  • ITU was established in 1865 and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
  • Function: It is the specialized agency of United Nations (UN) for issues concerning information and communication technologies (ICTs). The fundamental pillar of ITU’s mission is setting standards. ITU standards also help accelerate ICTs for all Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
  • It is a member of United Nations Development Group (UNDP).
  • Members: 193 countries and about 800 sector members including academic institutions and private sector entities has membership of ITU.
  • India: Since 1869 India is an active member of ITU. It became a regular member of ITU Council in 1952. In November 2018, India was reelected as a ITU Council’s Member for another 4-year term beginning 2019 to 2022.

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International Day of Families observed on 15 May

The International Day of Families is observed on 15 May every year. Its annual observance reflects the importance international community acknowledges and attaches to families and roles played by them in development.

Key Facts

  • About: The United Nations (UN) recognizes family as basic unit of society. Therefore, in 1992 the UN General Assembly (UNGA) with resolution A/RES/47/237 proclaimed 15 May as The International Day of Families. In many countries, this IDF serves as an opportunity to highlight various areas of interest and importance to families.
  • Objective: It seeks to promote awareness of issues relating to families and also aims to increase knowledge of demographic, economic and social processes affecting them.
  • Organized By: IFD observance is organized by ‘Division for Inclusive Social Development’ (DISD), which is part of UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) and Global Communications Civil Society.

About International Day of Families 2019

  • The Theme for IFD 2019: is “Families and Climate Action: Focus on (Sustainable Development Goals) SDG 13”. The theme commemorates the day to focus on various roles of families for achievement of Sustainable Development Goals from SDG1 to SDG5 and SDG 16.
  • Significance: The 2019 observance of IDF primarily focuses on families, family policies and major SDG 13 targets –
    • SDG-13 target 13.3: which states to raise awareness, improve education and human and institutional capacity on climate change early warning, adaptation, impact reduction and mitigation.
    • SDG-13 target 13.2: it states to integrate climate change measures by nations into their national planning, policies and strategies.
  • Importance: The Families and family-oriented policies and programmes are important for achievement of many of the SDGs, which were adopted by 193 member states of the United Nations (UN) in 2015.

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