1 Jun. 2017 Japan

Delivered speech at Symposium to Launch Human Development Report in 2016.


Akiko Mera of HFW, speaking about the Human Development Report from the perspective of an NGO.

Promoted HFW to those who have Influence on Japan’s International Cooperation Policies

‘The Symposium and Launch of the 2016 Human Development Report - Realizing “Human Development for Everyone,” Shining a Light on Those Left Behind’ was held on May 18th. The event was co-hosted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Research Institute.  Akiko Mera of HFW participated as a speaker. Out of many organizations, HFW was chosen to speak as one NGO that works with the people in regions where they are providing support. Mera talked about the significance and implementation of the report, as well as examples of HFW support for women and youth to create a world where “no one is left behind.” We were able to communicate HFW’s principles and activities to participants with whom a relationship will be vital for  HFW's advocacy activities in the future. These include those who have influence on Japanese international cooperation policy and those active in regions where international cooperation efforts are ongoing such as international organizations, research institutions, corporations, the mass media, and NGOs.

Selim Jahan, director of the Human Development Report Office and lead author of the 2016 report, explained in his keynote address that, in response to the goal of “no one left behind,” which was set forth as a sustainable development goal (SDG), the 2016 report looks at of who has been left behind and where they are. It also analyzes and researches the reasons why this happens, and suggests what should be done to leave no one behind. After the keynote address, Akiko Mera, as well as Robert D. Watkins, the UNDP Resident Representative in Bangladesh, Yasushi Katsuma, a professor at Waseda University and a member of the Human Development Report Advisory Panel, and Oscar Gomez, a research fellow at the JICA Research Institute, spoke about their activities in terms of the Human Development Report. A lively panel discussion and Q&A session followed.

*The Human Development Report is a report published annually by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Based on the belief that “Every human being counts and every human life is equally valued”, the report advocates for human-centric development that aspires to improve the health and standard of living for every individual. In addition to releasing a human development index for each country, which uses how people benefit as a measure, the report offers guidance based on careful consideration of the year’s theme. It is published in more than 120 countries, and is utilized mainly by government officials, international organizations, and NGOs those who involved in development.

Selim Jahan, lead author of the 2016 Human Development Report and director of the Human Development Report Office

81 participants (excluding organizing staff) from interested groups, including research institutions, corporations, students, the mass media, and NGOs.

Comments from the participants

“At school, I focus on actual case studies and read documents, but it was great hearing the stories of people who actually work overseas. It made everything easy to understand. I’m looking forward to devoting some time to reading the report.”

“The report provides data on people left behind such as minority groups, native populations, women, and people who have disabilities. However, I think we need to turn our attention to people who are vulnerable in multiple ways, for example a minority woman with a disability.”

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