UN

Image of the flags of the United Nations member states flying in front of the Palais des Nations in Geneva in 2014
In front of the Palais des Nations in Geneva, home to the United Nations, the flags of the 193 member states line the "Allée des drapeaux". © UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

With its 193 member states the United Nations Organization (UN) is the only organization capable of providing a forum that allows all the nations and actors on the world stage to come together to discuss the many issues of worldwide importance that arise. The UN is universal in a sense unmatched by any other organization, both in terms of the subjects it deals with, its members, its involvement in decision-making processes, in creating international norms and standards and its unrivalled international presence. Despite certain shortcomings, it enjoys a unique legitimacy throughout the world.

74th UN General Assembly

Flags of the UN member states in front of the UN Headquarters in New York.
End of September the 74th General Assembly begins in New York. © Keystone

This year’s priorities – human rights, UN reforms and science diplomacy – are in line with Switzerland’s two key strategic areas for its commitment to the UN for the period 2012-22: peace and security, and UN reform.

Dossier

The range of challenges facing the world, notably security, peace, combating poverty, promoting human rights as well as safeguarding natural resources, make Switzerland’s involvement in the United Nations indispensable. Since joining the UN in September 2002, Switzerland has been an active and innovative member. Membership offers Switzerland the opportunity to participate in the search for solutions to global problems and to accept its share of responsibility for exerting a positive influence on world affairs. However, the UN also offers Switzerland the ideal forum within which to represent its own national interests.

The focus of Switzerland's activities at the UN is in three areas:

  • Launching and supporting its own initiatives
  • Strengthening the presence of Swiss nationals at all levels of the organization
  • The day-to-day activities of Switzerland’s permanent missions to the UN (Geneva, New York, Vienna) and of Swiss delegates with the United Nations' special organizations and programmes (Rome, Paris, Nairobi)

Geneva is the main seat of the United Nations in Europe and, with New York, is one of the two major centres of multilateral cooperation. Despite Switzerland’s relatively small size, thanks to “International Geneva” the Confederation is able to “box above its weight” in the international arena, making it that much easier to achieve foreign policy objectives.

Documents (12559)

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Mainstreaming the 2030 Agenda in Swiss International Cooperation

The Implementation Concept addresses all state and non-state actors associated with Swiss international cooperation.




The relation between international law and national law in Switzerland

By looking at examples, the brochure explains the interaction between international law and Swiss law. Where and when does which law apply and how does one influence the other?



Swiss Peace Supporter 2/2018

The latest edition of SPS focuses on 'Kosovo, a country in transition', with articles on SWISSCOY's move from a field camp in Prizren to Camp Novo Selo, dealing with the past and this young state's long path to democratization. In addition to the focus theme, this edition also includes current reports from Colombia, Western Sahara and the Central African Republic.



Report on Effectiveness: Swiss international cooperation in the field of gender equality 2007-2016

Gender equality is essential to achieving sustainable development. The study, which was carried out by a team of external experts, comprises an assessment of three distinct project and programme portfolios during the period from 2007 to 2016 that reflect our approach to implementing the FDFA’s gender equality policy.



Swiss Enlargement Contribution: Annual Report 2017

The ten countries that joined the EU in 2004 have completed their projects under the enlargement contribu-tion. SECO and the SDC have taken stock of the last decade and published the results in their 2017 annual report. The projects have made a significant contribution to reducing economic and social disparities in Europe. Switzerland was also able to use its expertise to make a meaningful contribution to a number of projects.



Swiss International Cooperation – Annual Report 2017

From vocational education and training to sustainable tourism to the use of satellite-based measuring instruments to calculate the extent of crop losses: Swiss international cooperation was also effective in 2017. The SDC and SECO annual report, which is now published only in electronic format, provides detailed information.


Better buildings equal less pollution: the SDC supports India in its efforts to combat climate change




Swiss International Cooperation – Annual Report 2018

Switzerland reduces poverty and hardship, helps people and national economies to develop, promotes peace and is helping to manage global challenges such as the impact of climate change. The 2018 annual report shows that Switzerland's international cooperation efforts are still vital.

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Videos (110)

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Publisher SDC

Financement et assurance des risques de désastre (fr)

Le changement climatique augmente les risques de catastrophes naturelles, qui déstabilisent souvent les finances publiques des pays concernés. La Suisse et la Banque mondiale ont lancé un programme qui vise à rendre les finances de ces pays plus résistantes aux catastrophes naturelles.


Publisher SDC

Microfinancement pour un meilleur accès à l'eau (fr)

Un meilleur accès à l'eau d'irrigation permet d'en faire un usage plus rationnel et améliorer la production agricole. La Suisse soutient en Afrique de l'Ouest une initiative qui répond aux besoins des paysans.



Publisher SDC

Beans improve nutrition in Sub-Sahara Africa

Beans are a significant source of income for rural households and play an important role in combating malnutrition. The Pan-African Bean Research Alliance's program contributes to improved nutrition and health food security in 28 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa.



Publisher SDC

"Realizing the potential of smallholder farming"

For smallholder farmers to be able to make a substantive contribution to food security, they must expand their production beyond their own needs to meet market demand. The film recounts the SDC’s efforts on behalf of smallholder farmers with regard to land rights, access to information and rural development.


Publisher SDC

Climate Change: Effectiveness Report 2014

The SDC and SECO regularly analyse the impact of their measures in selected thematic areas in the form of effectiveness reports. This English-language short film presents the range and scope of SDC/SECO development cooperation projects in the area of climate change during the period 2000–2012 and the results they achieved. The video complements the official report published in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish.



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