APCEIU 안과밖2015.03.18 10:03




On 6 March 2015, APCEIU, UNESCO and the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations co-convened the Information Meeting on World Education Forum (WEF) 2015 and Seminar on Global Citizenship Education (GCED) at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York.

APCEIU Director Mr. Utak Chung participated in both meetings in the presence of UN Secretary-General Mr. Ban Ki-moon, UNESCO Director-General Ms. Irina Bokova, and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea Mission to the UN Mr. Oh Joon.

This information meeting was organized in view of the WEF 2015 to be held in Incheon, Republic of Korea, from 19 to 22 May 2015, where the global community will take stock of achievements and shortfalls and agree on a joint position for the post-2015 agenda and how to realize it, ahead of the UN High-Level Summit in September. Also, this was in line with the effort of integrating GCED into the new Sustainable Development Goals.

In his opening statement, the UN Secretary-General recalled that "the World Education Forum will take place at an important time for the United Nations as we prepare to adopt a new development agenda and launch a new set of Sustainable Development Goals. We hope that the outcome of the Forum will be fully aligned with that effort so that there is a single education agenda that delivers for all."

In support of the Seminar on GCED that followed the Information Meeting, the Secretary-General stressed that "In an era of rising intolerance and extremist violence, global citizenship education will play a crucial role in promoting mutual understanding. It is essential to counter radicalization and the divisive, hate-filled narratives that extremists use to gain new recruits. The World Education Forum will be an important contribution to our efforts, and I wish to thank UNESCO for its leadership."

“Following Jomtien (1990) and Dakar (2000), the WEF in Incheon is the moment when the world will gather to set a new agenda for a better future for all,” said the UNESCO Director-General.

Thanking the Republic of Korea for its leadership, she underlined that the WEF 2015 is a landmark event. “It will be the moment to renew our vision and chart a new course, to put education first, to make sure no one is left behind,” she continued. “This is the moment for all of us to shape a new education agenda for the 21st century. A vision of education as a stand-alone goal in the future agenda, essential for the success of all other goals.” She appealed to every Member State to be represented at the highest possible level and for the engagement of all partners.

The Director-General went on to highlight the progress made across the world to improve access, advance gender equality and to strengthen education systems, affirming that “this shows what can be done when political will is matched with effective policy. But we must draw on the right lessons from this experience.” She called for a new focus on quality, to foster learning throughout life and help girls all the way through secondary education and beyond.  

“At times of uncertainty, in this period of turbulence, education is our best bet, for human rights and dignity, for more sustainable development, for more lasting peace,” she said.


Mr. Young-gon Kim, Secretary-General of the WEF 2015 Host Committee Secretariat at the Korean Ministry of Education, provided a presentation on the event logistics and a Q & A session moderated by Mr. Qian Tang, Assistant Director-General for Education of UNESCO, was followed to give participants more information on the objectives, expected outcomes as well as how to take part in this landmark Forum.  

Opening the seminar, the Director-General stated that in this turning point year for the Millennium Development Goals, when States are defining a new global sustainable agenda, “challenges are global ? we need to act globally in response. We need new skills for new times ? we need new forms of global citizenship.” She also recognized and appreciated an outstanding commitment of the Republic of Korea as one of the most active GEFI Champion Countries among its 16 members as well as a big contribution made by APCEIU towards the advancement of GCED.

“I make this appeal in the year when we celebrate the 70th anniversary of UNESCO,” said Irina Bokova. "More than ever, we need to bridge cultures through dialogue and respect, we need to learn to live together in solidarity, in harmony with the planet. More than ever, education must be more than transmitting information and knowledge.” She once again emphasized that all these are in the spirit of GCED, and this must be embedded in the heart of the new Sustainable Development Goals, which would be defined by all the Member States. In order to make it happen, she added that UNESCO has been continuously building efforts on the advances of previous achievements with APCEIU, Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP), and a number of other partners.

During the panel discussion moderated by the Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the UN, Mr. Hahn Choong-Hee, Ms. Jamira Burley of GEFI Youth Advocate, UNESCO Chairholder Prof. Carlos Torres of UCLA, Mr. Chris Castle of UNESCO, and Mr. Utak Chung of APCEIU presented on GCED with diverse focuses such as its concept, role, and practices.

In the end, the event encouraged an active engagement of each Member State as well as raised awareness of the importance of GCED as a critical aspect of the post-2015 development agenda which enabled the establishment of expanded partnerships among UN, UNESCO, all the states, and related organizations.
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