The FES invited 25 young activists from all over the world, from Indonesia to Peru, from Poland to Zimbabwe, to Berlin in October 2015 to spend one week discussing international climate politics and policies. The program included a face-to-face UN simulation game, trips to best practice climate projects, meetings with experts and an ideas lab in which participants developed ideas for an alternative climate policy.
Two video features summarize the week and present participants' statements:
Further information on FES activities during and in preparation of COP21 is available at http://www.fes-sustainability.org.
Somalia’s women’s rights records are among the worst worldwide. Especially young, single, politically active and migrant women face a high risk of gender-based violence, including forced marriage, female genital mutilation and politically motivated rape. The Elman Peace and Human Rights Center was the first non-governmental organization providing survivors and vulnerable women with legal and psychological support, health care and shelter. Its founder and director, Fartuun Adan, is the recipient of the FES Human Rights Award 2014. Our audio feature focusses on Adan's and her colleagues' courageous and difficult fight for women's rights and summarizes the Award ceremony.
(German, 10min18) or download the audio file.
Furthermore, we asked her how the murder of her husband and the every-day insecurity in Somalia affect her political work, how young women can be better protected and educated, inhowfar civil society can improve the situation and why intact staathood is needed, too.
(English, 9min30) or download the audio file.
Further information on the FES Human Rights Award is available at www.fes.de/themen/menschenrechtspreis.
One needs to recall the heated atmosphere in the region of the »western Balkans« around 1999 in order to measure the belief and convictions with which the »Center For Democracy and Conciliation« (CDRSEE) began work on their history textbooks for South-east Europe. Running for 14 years now, this project is aimed at enabling students to open their eyes to the history of the region, often referred to as the »Balkan powder keg«, which »produces more history than it can cope with«.
As was only to be expected, resistance to their approach was great. The prospect of talking to a brick wall did not deter those concerned and their supporters from pursuing their goals of reconciliation and democratisation, however. Today, the »Joint History Project« has convinced numerous pupils, teachers and politicians in the countries of South-east Europe that historical knowledge must be transmitted in new ways, if mutual stereotypes and prejudices are to be overcome.
The CDRSEE is the recipient of the FES Human Rights Award 2013. On the occasion of the award ceremony, we talked to CDRSEE Executive Director Nenad Šebek about the potentials of a transnational approach to history.
(English, 7min10) or download file
(German Voiceover, 7min10) or download file
Further information on the FES Human Rights Award is available at www.fes.de/themen/menschenrechtspreis.
Peter Gastrow stresses that organized crime today is a truly transnational business - with its opponents still acting mainly within national borders. Gastrow was a member of the South African parliament and the Cape Town director of the Institute for Security Studies (ISS). In 2009 he joined the International Peace Institute in New York as a Senior Fellow and Director of Programs, focusing on transnational organized crime.
Listen to the interview (3min12):
Carmen María Muñoz Quesada
Carmen Muñoz explains how organized crime has to be combatted on the local, regional, national and global level. As a Member of the Costa Rican Parliament for the Partido Accion Ciudadana PAC, she is the spokesperson of the faction for security policy, focus organized and transnational crime.
Listen to the interview in English (5min01):
Listen to the interview in Spanish (5min01):
Erwin Van Veen
Erwin van Veen stresses how organized crime today constitutes a massive challenge for development cooperation. As it fuels corrpution and violence, it is more harmful than other internal conflicts. Mr. van Veen works as a policy analyst on peace and security with the OECD in Paris.
Listen to the interview (7min17):
Hans Mathieu examines the diverse intentions of Latin American governments to combat organized crime, and stresses possible positive effects of legalizing drugs. Mathieu has been with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung for 21 years, working in Brazil, China, FES headquarters in Berlin, Dominican Republic/Cuba, and – since 2009 - Colombia. Since 2007 he also directs the FES Cooperation Program on Regional Security in Latin America and the Caribbean. More recently, the focus of his work has been on regional geopolitics and the impact of organized crime on democratic governance in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Listen to the interview (6min20):
Cleo Paskal on how climate change affects world politics
The geopolitical expert and Associate Fellow at Chatham House explains how nature gets back at the capitalist system – and at all other systems that took the environment for granted.
The interview is part of a conference series of FES and Urania e.V.
It is available in the FES youtube channel.
Would climate negotiations be successful if the youth would make the decisions?
Yes, says the international FES project »Shaping Globalization!«
Young leaders from 17 countries set up a young agenda for climate protection in Berlin. If they would be in charge, the states would agree on unconditionally limiting global warming to less than two degrees and on a 100% switch to renewable energies.
The video documentary of the project is now available on YouTube.
For further information, go to FES Sustainability.
Rahimullah Yusufzai, internationally renowned reporter from the Afghan-Pakistan border region and correspondent for BBC and ABC News, reports on the living and working conditions of journalists working in the crisis area during an interview conducted after the award ceremony. Furthermore, he talks about his experiences when conducting the last independent interview with Osama bin Laden.
Interview in English, 9min47
...or download the file
Safdar Dawar, chairman of the Pakistani journalist trust, explains how his organisation supports reporters in the fields. For its commitment to human rights, the TUJ was awarded the FES Human Rights Award 2012.
Interview in German, 11min32
...or download the file
With the upcoming UN climate change conference in Doha it becomes ever clearer that forerunners are needed to push forward binding commitments and ambitious targets. Kevin Rudd, Member of Parliament for the Australian Labour Party and former Prime Minister (2007-2010) has always been actively engaged in the fight against global warming. His first official act being elected as Prime Minister was to sign the Kyoto Protocol. Rudd was also a member of the UN Secretary Generals High-Level Panel on Global Sustainability, which launched its report Resilient People, Resilient Planet: A Future Worth Choosing in January 2012.
This interview with Kevin Rudd was recorded in the context of the Tiergarten Conference.watch the video at the FES Youtube Channel
While some lose faith in traditional politics and parties, others demonstrate against major state projects or political decisions. But how can raging citizens turn to courageous citizens? Claus Leggewie, professor of Political Sciences, head of the Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities (KWI) in Essen and member of the WBGU, explains how to realize participation and how to strengthen the responsibility of society as a whole.
Podcast Part 1:
Energy Transition - Lifestyle Transition (in German, 13min59)
Civic participation or deliberative democracy (in German, 22min03)
Future Chambers - a political phantasy (in German, 18min06)
With the discussion on June 5, 2012, FES encouraged an open exchange of alternative ideas on society and development for a sustainable future, together with international pioneers of thought like the laureates of the Alternative Nobel Prize.
The German-language audio-feature summarizes the discussion and the main statements.
Listen to the podcast (7min16, in German)
...you can also download the podcast here.
We also conducted video interviews with three experts. Dr. Vandana Shiva, winner of the Right Livelihood Award, stresses that the rights of humans and the rights of the earth are inseparable. Hauwa Umar-Mustapha, expert on climate change and poverty, urges women to combine the struggle for sustainability with the fight against inequalities. And Chico Whitaker, co-founder of the World Social Forum in Brazil, calls for a cultural and political revolution.
These and more videos are available at the FES-Youtube-Channel.
The Security Council is a closed, anachronistic club, says José Luis Díaz, representative of Amnesty International to the United Nations in New York. Anyhow, NGOs successfully use informal ways to provide the body's members with their expertise and view points. By that, they contribute to changing the Council's approach to massive human rights violations. Still, a thorough reform of the body is highly unlikely to happen soon, says Díaz.
Interview with José Luis Díaz (6min01)
...you can also download the interview here
During the last 18 months, the UN Security Council largely failed to protect human rights, says Joanna Weschler, research director of Security Council Report and former representatative of Human Rights Watch to the UN. The Council's rapid action in the case of Lybia was highly due to personal relationships among the diplomats. Anyhow, Weschler observes changes in working methods and approaches to massiv human rights violations, that are brought forward by creative and determined non-permanent members.
Interview with Joanna Weschler (7min24)
you can also download the interview here
When it comes to the Security Council's scope of action, our imagination is still trapped in Cold War parameters, says Andreas Zumach, freelance journalist at the UN headquarters in Geneva. In the end, the biggest problems are not the Council's structure, the veto-power or insufficient resources. What really prevents the body from consistently and rapidly responding to human rights violations is a lack of political will.
Interview with Andreas Zumach (6min52)
...you can also download the interview here
This FES podcast was produced alongside the workshop on July 7 and provides an overall overview of the discussions during the day and comprehensive summary of the main points of discussion.
Listen to the podcast (in English, 18min24)
...and the podcast "to go": download here
Richard Gowan, Research Fellow at the Center on International Cooperation at New York University and an expert on EU security and UN Peacekeeping Operations, describes the challenges lying ahead for UN Peacekeeping.
Listen to the interview with Richard Gowan (1min44)
The Chief of the Peacekeeping Best Practices Section of the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), David Haeri speaks about the reform process that was initiated to strengthen UN peacekeeping.
Listen to the interview with David Haeri (6min12)
Sharon Wiharta, Head of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) Project on Multilateral Peace Operations, talks about the north-south divide between the countries that provide troops for UN peacekeeping.
Listen to the interview with Sharon Wiharta (4min13)
As Secretary to the Peace and Security Council of the African Union Commission, Dr. Admore Mupoki Kambudzi has the perfect insight to describe the cooperation between AU and UN and their comparative advantages.
Listen to the interview with Admore Kambudzi (5min08)
Dr. Elisabeth Schöndorf, a Researcher at the International Security Division of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin, speaks on what the UN, but also what Germany can do about the deployment gap that still hinders peacekeeping operations.
Listen to the interview with Elisabeth Schöndorf (2min54)
On 24-25 February 2011, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung and the OHCHR commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Right to Development. Highlight of the public event on February 24th was the keynote address of Navanethem Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. We compiled the highlights of both keynote and discussion in a video:
The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung participated in the 10th World Social Forum in Dakar, Senegal 2011 and organized a set of seminars and workshops in cooperation with various partner organizations. We compiled the highlights of our activities in Dakar, that provided a platform for dialogue between representatives from trade unions, NGOs and other members of civil society, in a video:
On December 16, Angelika Spelten, Dr. Hans-Georg Ehrhart and Edelgard Bulmahn MoP discussed The Future of German and European Peace Policy.together with Andreas Zumach, taz. The podcast we produced in this context summarizes the most important statements with additional information on the recent developments in German - and European - Peace Policy:
FES Podcast on Peace Policy (11min, in German only)
As director and founder of an advice centre for domestic workers in Mexico CACEH (Centro de Apoyo y Capacitación para Empleadas del Hogar) Marcelina Bautista Bautista engages in the difficult struggle for better working conditions and or legal protection and trade union representation for domestic workers in Mexico - with remarkable success. Listen to Ms Bautista:
Interview with Marcelina Bautista Bautista (German voiceover version, 7min36)
Original Interview in Spanish (7min30):
The podcast produced at the event on 7 September presents, besides excerpts from the podium discussion involving Jens Martens of the Global Policy Forum and Thomas Fues, DIE, selections from interviews with Eckhard Deutscher, chair of the OECD's Development Assistance Committee (DAC), as well as the development-policy spokesperson of the SPD Parliamentary Group Sascha Raabe MP, which we were able to carry out on the fringes of the discussion. The full interview with Eveline Herfkens can be found below.
Listen to podcast (german, 11min13)
Often, there are simply too many donor organisations on the ground and the cost for the developing countries is enormous. Founder of the UN Millennium campaign and former Dutch Development Minister Eveline Herfkens, in her interview, cites clear priorities for the fulfilment of the Millennium pledges and advocates increased provision of budget assistance, also in order to foster a sense of responsibility among recipient countries.
Listen to the interview (15min45)
After the NPT Review Conference and before the development of the new NATO strategy we produced a podcast within the framework of two events that took place on 22 June 2010 at the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Berlin, which also presents the concrete assessments of some of the participants.
Listen to podcast (german, 16min53)
Disarmament and arms control, according to SPD foreign policy spokesperson Rolf Mützenich, should as a matter of urgency be restored to a prominent position in NATO policy. Mützenich makes clear in this interview conducted in Berlin on 22 June 2010 why he is calling on the German government to make a stronger commitment.
Listen to the interview (german, 4min47)
Amar Bhattacharya, head of the inter-governmental Group of 24 (G24) in Washington DC spoke about the need for reform of the World Bank and the IMF, as well as the lessons of the financial crisis in relation to development financing. He also called for the introduction of workout mechanisms which are intended to help in the event of debt crises.
The interview was conducted within the framework of the conference "Orderly and Fair Debt Workout Mechanisms" on 12 April 2010 at the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Berlin.
Listen to the interview
Nonkosi Khumalo, chair of the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), on the work of the TAC and the challenges facing the fight against HIV/AIDS in southern Africa. The interview was conducted following the bestowal of the FES Human Rights Award on the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), which Khumalo accepted on behalf of her organisation.
Listen to the interview with Nonkosi Khumalo (10min13)
Herta Däubler Gmelin, professor of international humanitarian law, former German Justice Minister and for many years chair of the Committee on Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid, on the challenges facing the fight against HIV/AIDS in southern Africa. The interview was held after the ceremony presenting the FES Human Rights Award to the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), at which she gave the eulogy.
Listen to the interview with Herta Däubler-Gmelin (german)
According to Roberto Bissio, head of the Third World Institute in Uruguay and coordinator of Social Watch, the Social Watch Report which appeared recently show that the situation in the developing countries is much worse than previous assessments had indicated. The more than 60 country reports contained in the Social Watch Report point to ways of highlighting the needs of people above all in the poorer countries.
Listen to the interview with Roberto Bissio
Head of the Policy Analysis and Development Branch at UNDESA's Financing for Development Office Manuel Montes talks about the difficulties facing developing countries as a result of the global economic and financial crisis, for which they were not responsible. Montes explains why it is so important to involve the countries of the South in processes aimed at averting further crises.
Listen to the interview with Manuel Montes
Neeta Hardikar is founder and director of the Area Networking and Development Initiative (ANANDI), an NGO which makes gender mainstreaming a core element of the treatment of development problems. Currently, it is conducting a programme focusing on microcredits and local self-governance. Hardikar talks about increasing participation and women's gender-specific leadership capacities, and not just in Gujurat.
Listen to the interview with Neeta Hardikar
The FES discussed the dilemma of elections and conflict with academics and practitioners from countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Kenya, Ivory Coast and Bangladesh. This podcast which resulted, which also contains the assessments of some of the event participants, provides an insight into the topic:
Podcast on Elections and Conflict (german, 14:46 min)
The first presidential election organised by Afghans themselves took place on 20 August 2009. Gunter Mulack, from September 2008 Executive Director of the Orient-Institute in Berlin was present on the ground as EU election observer and describes the difficulties encountered during these difficult days. The interview was recorded within the framework of the event "Risking Elections - Milestone or Stumbling Block for Democratization".
Listen to the interview with Gunter Mulack (german, 4:46 min.)
The interview with Angelika Spelten, senior researcher at the Institute for Peace and Development (INEF), University of Duisburg-Essen and FriEnt, about the challenges facing the organisation of elections in post-conflict countries, such as Afghanistan or Kenya was recorded within the framework of the event "Risking Elections - Milestone or Stumbling Block for Democratization?"
Listen to the interview with Angelika Spelten (german, 7:04 min.)
With a team of 25 experts from 17 countries FES Geneva worked out various scenarios depicting how the organisation of the global economy could develop in the future. These scenarios were presented at FES Berlin where they led to a lively debate among the experts.
View an edited version of the event here.
Jürgen Kaiser, policy coordinator of the NGO erlassjahr.de and one of the authors of the FES study, foresees considerable risks facing the poorest countries which could lead to another debt crisis. In an interview he explains what can be done today to prepare for the advent of such a crisis.
Listen to the interview with Jürgen Kaiser on the HIPC study (german)
Salma Bava teaches European Studies at the JNU School of International Studies in New Delhi, India, and is Associate Fellow of the Asia Network in New York. The interview was recorded within the framework of the North-South Dialogue "Global Governance for Global Markets - Moving beyond G8" which took place on 17 June 2009 in Berlin.
Listen to the interview with Professor Salma Bava, JNU New Delhi
Wang Heifeng is the head of the Institute for International Economic Research at the National Development and Reform Commission in Beijing (recorded within the framework of the North-South Dialogue "Global Governance for Global Markets - Moving beyond G8" on 17 June 2009 in Berlin).
Listen to the interview with Wang Heifeng
Olivier de Schutter, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, evaluates the price rises for basic foodstuffs and describes how, among other things, biofuels have an effect on the right to food. Recorded within the framework of a technical discussion on 11 June 2009 in Berlin.
Listen to the Interview with UN Special Rapporteur Olivier de Schutter
Virginia Dandan of the University of the Philippines is a long-standing member of the UN Committee for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and appeals for broad recognition of these rights. Recorded within the framework of a technical discussion on 11 June 2009 in Berlin.
Listen to the Interview with Professor Virginia Dandan.
On the basis of the international pact on economic, social and cultural rights an international expert group, led by Eibe Riedel, has developed a set of indicators which help in the monitoring of concrete progress in the realisation of these rights. Recorded within the framework of a technical discussion on 11 June 2009 in Berlin.
Listen to the Interview with Professor Eibe Riedel, University of Mannheim (german)
Former US Special Representative of the President for Arms Control, Non-proliferation and Disarmament, Ambassador Thomas Graham, Jr. describes with some urgency how crucial the current disarmament debate is. Recorded within the framework of the policy dialogue "New Momentum for Nuclear Disarmament" on 22 April 2009 in Berlin.
Watch the Video-Interview with ambassador Thomas Graham on YouTube
The interview with Dr Rolf Mützenich, Spokesman on Disarmament and Non-proliferation of the Social Democratic Group in the German Federal Parliament, Berlin on the current disarmament initiative was recorded within the framework of the policy dialogue "New Momentum for Nuclear Disarmament" on 22 April 2009 in Berlin.
Watch the Video-Interview with Dr. Rolf Mützenich on YouTube
The Indian disarmament expert Rajesh Rajagopalan on the chances of success and problems facing the new initiative. Recorded within the framework of the policy dialogue "New Momentum for Nuclear Disarmament" on 22 April 2009 in Berlin.
Watch the Video-Interview with Prof. Dr. Rajesh Rajagopalan on YouTube
is explained by Stephany Griffith-Jones in this interview, recorded at a lunch on 26 March 2009 in Berlin.
Listen to the Interview with Stephany Griffith-Jones
Recording of scenario presentation and podium discussion on 17 September 2008 in Berlin.