Each year, hundreds of thousands of young people participate in Model United Nations (MUN) simulations across the globe. Reaching students at all levels, MUNs offer a popular way to learn about the UN - and for the Organization to reach tomorrow's leaders. As part of its Education for Justice (E4J) initiative, UNODC is looking to tap into the power of MUNs to educate students on the concept of the rule of law and how this issue is discussed and dealt with at an international level.
Around this, an Expert Group Meeting was held in Vienna to help further develop a forthcoming UNODC Guide for organizers of MUNs. Bringing together a diverse group of people, the meeting included students who had previously taken part in MUNs and organizers from different parts of the world in order to take into account unique perspectives.
In mid-March, Ecuador's Council for Public Participation and Social Control ( Consejo de Participación Ciudadana y Control Social - CPCCS), in collaboration with UNODC, organized a series of anti-corruption capacity-building events in Quito. These included two academic seminars for professors and students as well as a seminar for private sector actors. During all three, UNODC presented the Education for Justice (E4J) initiative, emphasizing the forthcoming integrity and ethics university modules. The presentation was designed to introduce E4J and particularly its focus on integrity and ethics education, to encourage the formation of networks of integrity and ethics academics, and to highlight tools and materials that are available to ethics educators. All three seminar presentations were followed by an open discussion.
In using education to promote a culture of lawfulness, UNODC's 'Education for Justice' (E4J) initiative held its latest Expert Group Meeting from 7-8 March. Focussing on tertiary education - and following the hosting of primary and secondary-level educators and experts in February - the meeting brought together over 80 key academics from around the globe to draw on their expertise in teaching on crime prevention, criminal justice and the rule of law.
The meeting - held at the UN's offices in Vienna - generated a set of practical recommendations to support stronger teaching in the fields of corruption, organized crime, trafficking in persons, smuggling of migrants, terrorism, cybercrime, crime prevention and criminal justice and firearms trafficking, as well as on integrity and ethics.
The integration of crime prevention and criminal justice into all levels of education is essential in building long-term approaches to countering crime and violence. It is also critical in ensuring that the rule of law is respected from an early age in order to build safe and prosperous societies for all. Recognizing this, the Doha Declaration, highlights the fundamental importance of universal education for children and youth to prevent crime, terrorism and corruption and promote sustainable development.
Within this area, E4J is holding a series of Expert Group Meetings in Vienna, bringing together experts with a variety of backgrounds from across Governments, civil society, academia, the private sector and international organizations.
Each year, on 9 December, the world marks International Anti-Corruption Day. We treat this not only as a means to raise awareness, but also as an opportunity to showcase innovative ways that people and organizations can work together to counter this scourge.
Corruption affects each and every one of us: our healthcare suffers when funds for medical equipment are stolen; our education systems are hit when school budgets are illegally siphoned off; and our political institutions are undermined when bribes are paid and kickbacks sought.