Seoul stage for student discussions on disarmament

December 3rd, 2021

The United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) and its Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific (UNRCPD), in cooperation with the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) and Hanyang University School of International Studies (HYSIS), conducted a student-focused hybrid webinar event on disarmament and non-proliferation education. Hundred students and educators from universities worldwide joined theevent, which was held at Hanyang University in Seoul, the Republic of Korea, on the 13 November.

Thirty university students joined the event in person to discuss disarmament and non-proliferation education

Key speakers included Ms. Ji Yeon Rho, Associate Political Affairs Officer at UNODA and Mr. Steven Humphries, Project Coordinator at UNRCPD. They presented on topics that are relevant and important to disarmament and non-proliferation efforts, such as the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and responsible innovation in the field of science and technology. 

The link between security and development is well illustrated by the global goals, which essentially recognize that only peaceful societies will achieve their desired level of sustainable development. While most obviously evident in Goal 16, which focuses on peace, justice and strong institutions, adequate arms regulations are also relevant for successfully fulfilling other goals, including gender equality, safe and sustainable cities, economic growth, and quality education. 

ODA’s activities in the area of responsible innovation aim at engaging the next generation of industry leaders, engineers and scientists and providing them with the tools and frameworks necessary to innovate responsibly, and to consider how their work at the cutting edge of technological developments may affect international peace and security.  Responsible innovation is a key element of the Secretary-General’s Agenda for Disarmament, “Securing Our Common Future”, and central to the work of ODA and UNRCPD.

A slide presented during the lecture highlighting how disarmament is connected to the SDGs

Following the presentations, the participants engaged in a lively Q&A, asking questions on wide-ranging topics, including the Treaty on the Non-Proliferations of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), transparency in military expenditure reporting, as well as what daily working life looks like for United Nations officials. 

Ms. Ji Yeon Rho presented how disarmament and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals are interconnected
Mr. Steven Humphries talked about the need for responsible innovation in the field of science and technology