9th UNESCO Youth Forum 2015 - 26-28 October 2015, Paris, France
The 9th UNESCO Youth Forum will take place only a few weeks after the UN General Assembly will have debated and adopted the new Sustainable Development Goals – SDGs (September 2015) and one month before the 21st Conference of Parties (COP 21) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change - UNFCCC (30 November – 11 December 2015). This unique moment provides a strategic opportunity for UNESCO to offer a visible platform through which young women and men can voice their opinions that could also feed into the discussion around UNESCO’s future role, in the context of the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Organization.
The Forum will take place under the general theme “Young Global Citizens for a Sustainable Planet”, focusing on how young women and men, as global citizens, can contribute to building sustainability, from the global to the local level. This theme, in line with the Operational Strategy on Youth for 2014-20213, will allow a discussion of sustainable development challenges and their integration into UNESCO’s next Programme and Budget (2018-2021), while also maintaining a focus on climate change and the related global debates around COP 21. Online youth consultations were held between March and April 2015 to ensure that youth participate in shaping the Forum’s sub-themes within UNESCO’s mandate and around two main thematic areas: 1) Young global citizens in a post-2015 world; and 2) Young global citizens addressing climate change. Education and skills for sustainable development and employability, diversity and culture of peace, and rights and freedoms were selected as the top sub-themes relevant to the post-2015. In the area of climate, the priorities of youth are awareness-raising through media, mobilizing traditional knowledge and local environmental management practice, and youth solutions to address climate change.