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Kiyotaka Akasaka
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Entries by Kiyotaka Akasaka

Sustainability Is the Sensible Alternative

(7) Comments | Posted March 26, 2012 | 1:24 PM

At every fork in the road, there is a road not taken. The 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro was one of those defining moments when the world had a choice of paths to pursue. The Earth Summit marked a milestone with agreement by more than 178...

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Women's Empowerment Principles Make It Clear: Equality Means Business

(0) Comments | Posted March 8, 2011 | 5:55 PM

March 8 marks the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day, an occasion for looking back on the past struggles and accomplishments of women, and for looking ahead to opportunities that await future generations. One hundred years after one million people attended rallies on that first commemoration, business leaders from all...

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UN Remembers Women and the Holocaust: Courage and Compassion

(0) Comments | Posted January 28, 2011 | 1:13 PM

Holocaust Remembrance Day has been observed at the United Nations on January 27th since 2006. This year, while snow blanketed New York City, closing schools as well as UN Headquarters, educational events about the Holocaust that had been arranged by my Department for that day sadly had to be postponed.

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The UN Academic Impact and Universal Values

(1) Comments | Posted December 8, 2010 | 1:45 PM

My father was the principal of a high school in Osaka in western Japan. That might not sound like the hippest job for a parent. But in Japan, as in many other countries, professors and teachers get a lot of respect and even reverence. I learned early on that teachers...

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Natural Value at Bargain Prices

(1) Comments | Posted October 29, 2010 | 4:35 PM

2010 was supposed to be the year that the world reversed the loss of biodiversity. Countries have failed to reach this target, however, and species are becoming extinct at far more than 100 times the natural rate. Worse, it has seemed like the political will to change course simply was...

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Millennium Development Goals: Drive to Combat Global Ills Gets a Boost at UN Summit

(0) Comments | Posted October 5, 2010 | 4:49 PM

If a major company were to set itself a number of lofty goals to be reached, let's say, within 15 years, wouldn't it make sense for it to bring its top leadership together way ahead of the target date to gauge progress?

That kind of stock-taking and forward planning...

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For Middle East Media, Can Peace Be the Message?

(7) Comments | Posted August 2, 2010 | 5:48 PM

Today's headlines were sprinkled with words that seldom go with breaking developments in the Middle East: "cooperate," "agree," "assist." The news told the story of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon setting up a panel of inquiry on the Gaza flotilla incident -- a decision that had been made after last-minute consultations...

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A Stronger Voice for Half the World: "UN Women" to Work for Gender Equality

(4) Comments | Posted July 14, 2010 | 3:33 PM

"What? Another UN organization?" That might have been the reaction by some to the recent action by the General Assembly. And yet the unanimous adoption of a resolution that established "UN Women," a new composite entity for gender equality and empowerment of women, was greeted with a loud chorus of...

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UN Vows to Make Voices of Poorest Heard at G20 Summit

(22) Comments | Posted June 25, 2010 | 6:50 PM

Amid news reports headlining the summit of a group of 20 of "the world's most powerful economies" in Toronto, Canada, some are wondering: What about the weaker ones? Others are asking if the G20's agenda, with its focus on financial systems and mechanisms, may not reflect the concerns of other...

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Ahead of World Cup, UN Teams Up With Soccer, Music Stars in Quest for Goals

(2) Comments | Posted June 9, 2010 | 2:09 PM

If an extraterrestrial polling organization were to get interested in a planet called Earth and then try to identify one common topic of conversation of its denizens circa mid-June 2010, it might have been puzzled by a curious phenomenon. In practically every corner of the planet, millions of its inhabitants...

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Greening the Blue

(3) Comments | Posted June 4, 2010 | 11:56 AM

When we talk about global problems, it sometimes seems very hard to see how a simple action by one person -- the proverbial man or woman in the street -- can make a difference. Like if you turn off a computer or a light when they are no longer needed,...

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UN Peacekeeping: 'Blue Helmets' Wear New Hats as Challenges Grow

(2) Comments | Posted May 27, 2010 | 3:53 PM

When an author I met today during an overseas visit gave me a copy of his recently published book, he said writing it was very special since it recounted his involvement in a project that he could be truly proud of. His sentiment was echoed by others in the room,...

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From Russia With Thoughts on 'the Right Kind of Advertising'

(2) Comments | Posted May 18, 2010 | 8:02 PM

You can't escape it. It's right there when you open a newspaper or turn on your TV, when you walk down the street or fly across the ocean. To paraphrase the famous slogan, you can't leave home without it. And it stays with you at home, too.

I'm referring,...

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Nuclear Non-Proliferation Talks Symbolize Hope

(4) Comments | Posted May 10, 2010 | 4:51 PM

The expression "fraught with symbolism" probably belongs to that class of overused phrases that dictionaries tend to dismiss as clichés. To me, however, those words seem to be a very fitting way to describe what was happening last week at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.


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Remembering World Press Freedom Day

(2) Comments | Posted May 3, 2010 | 3:31 PM

Walking to my office at UN Headquarters in New York this morning I passed by an intersection that bore a prominent street sign saying: "Mandela Corner." This is New York City's way of recognizing a fearless fighter for liberty in Africa and many other noble causes.

It reminded me that...

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