As stated in its Charter, the UN is committed to safeguarding the rights of future generations. In May 2023, it endorsed further guidance on this subject with United Nations System Common Principles on Future Generations.

For intergenerational equity (IGE) to become mainstream, we must change mindsets and build capabilities. UN Global Pulse partnered with UNESCO in a Foresight for Future Generations pilot to investigate “IGE readiness”. We carried out consultations in the UN and beyond to define what capabilities organizations need to apply IGE in their operations.

Our impact

The team published an inception report on IGE and developed an online toolkit with accessible foresight tools, designed to help UN and other interested parties strengthen their IGE capabilities. Global Pulse launched the toolkit at an event with UNESCO and UNICEF in 2023. 

We tested and validated the tools with different groups, including  the UN High-Level Committee on Programmes and also participants at the UNESCO Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University Symposium in June 2023. This brought together 100 foresight professionals to evaluate the framework for futures literacy and foresight. Feedback is still coming in and will help us to further develop capacities and tools.

Our lessons

  • As intergenerational equity is such a broad topic, it was beneficial for Global Pulse to work with UN partners to get an all-round picture. Cooperation with UNESCO alone generated priceless opportunities for us to raise our profile when it comes to shaping the IGE agenda. 
  • Around the world, more and more member states are enshrining the rights of future generations in their national laws. The UN must address IGE not just through principles and skills but also by making it part of its standard procedures and accountability frameworks. For UN Global Pulse, this means including IGE as a cross-cutting indicator in our Monitoring and Evaluation

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