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An Activities Report from UNESCO MGIEP

What We’ve Been Up To At UNESCO MGIEP


UNESCO MGIEP launches its YESPeace Southern African Region Chapter

26 January, 2017, Cape Town, South Africa


UNESCO MGIEP along with 12 organisations from 6 countries in Africa (South Africa, Cameroon, Tanzania, Lesotho, Kenya and Namibia) launched the YESPeace Southern African regional chapter on January 26, 2017. After India and Malaysia, YESPeace South Africa is the third chapter of the Network. Prior to the launch, UNESCO MGIEP and ACTIVATE! Change Drivers jointly organised a strategic workshop from 23 – 25 January with youth organisations and youth from the Southern African region. The workshop provided a platform to showcase the work of each organisation and identify possible areas of synergies. The partners jointly developed an action plan focusing on issues of the region related to education for peace, sustainable development and global citizenship (EPSG).

The YESPeace Southern African Network was launched on 26 January at the Vineyard Hotel, Cape Town. The purpose of the launch event was to share details of the Network with various stakeholders including the media, youth organisations, young people and those working in the area of EPSG. Around 30 people from diverse fields attended the launch event, in addition to the representatives of the YESPeace Southern African Network.



A ‘Different’ understanding about ‘Difference Learning’

17 February, 2017, New Delhi, India


UNESCO MGIEP in partnership with Orkids hosted the first ‘Parents Empowerment Network’ for Learning Differences at the India Islamic Cultural Centre, New Delhi. The event brought together experts in the field of learning differences and nearly 200 parents of children with learning differences. The event commenced with a short video message by Mr. Manish Sisodia, Deputy Chief Minister, Government of Delhi as well as Jenna Ellis, Chair and Katrina Maestri, Board member of the Parent Education Network, USA – the inspiration partner for the event. It continued with numerous people sharing unique and heart-warming experiences of their respective journeys around learning differences. Further, UNESCO MGIEP launched Sixth Space (, an open source, digital one stop repository of all information related to difference learning. UNESCO MGIEP believes that this event is the first step towards creating a network of parents, who can come together with teachers to take action for a better future of their children.



Beyond Sound Awareness: A Webinar by Dr. Michael Hart

22 February, 2017, New Delhi, India

ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-1Dr. Michael Hart, a child psychologist with 25 years of experience addressed a webinar hosted by UNESCO MGIEP. Dr. Hart focused on the topic of “Dyslexia and Rapid Automatic Naming: Beyond Sound Awareness.” The talk assisted the participants learn about what Rapid Automatic Naming (RAN) is and how to understand the evaluation and plan for remediation for it. Dr. Hart also helped the participants understand and recognise RAN and how it could assist in understanding the complex cognitive processes that are involved in fluent reading and comprehension. Thereafter, Dr. Hart held a Q&A session that resulted in a diverse conversation with questions ranging from ‘the role of technology in increasing the motivation and engagement in reading’ to ‘lifestyle factors impacting the incidence of learning difference’.



Launch of World Rescue – a mobile-based game inspired by the SDG’s

5 – 8 March, 2017, Ottawa, Canada


At the UNESCO Week of Peace and Sustainable Development, UNESCO MGIEP released World Rescue – a mobile-based game inspired by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The game was officially released by Ms. Irina Bokova, Director-General, UNESCO and Dr. Anantha Duraiappah, Director, UNESCO MGIEP.

The research-based video game, takes the players across Kenya, Norway, Brazil, India and China where they take on the roles of five young heroes to solve global problems—such as displacement, disease, deforestation, drought, and pollution—at the community level to achieve a more sustainable world. World Rescue has been designed and developed by Pixel Perfect, a game development company based in Hungary that won UNESCO MGIEP’s first-ever International Gaming Challenge in 2015. The challenge received 104 entries from 36 countries, including 32 inter-country collaborations.

World Rescue is available for download on the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store and has already been downloaded more than 11,000 times since its launch.



Talking Across Generations on Education (TAGe) at UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development: Role of Education

5 – 8 March, 2017, Ottawa, Canada


At the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development: Role of Education in Ottawa, UNESCO MGIEP’s interventions gained recognition for enabling the youth to take centre stage at the Talking Across Generations on Education (TAGe) plenary.

In the months leading up to the conference, UNESCO MGIEP ran an extensive social media campaign engaging youth from across the globe in a discussion on EPSG. From the thousands of youth who participated, a cohort of 40 high-calibre youth from as many countries was selected for participation in the UNESCO Week. At the TAGe plenary, these youth came together with 15 high-profile policymakers and officials including Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Education Ontario and Ambassador Dessima Williams, Special Advisor for Implementation of the SDGs among others, to discuss the role of teachers in education for peace and sustainable development.

The session was streamed live on the web and was also followed extensively on social media, generating more than 20 million impressions in Twittersphere.



YESPeace Workshop: Mobilising youth and teachers to transform education for peace and sustainable development

8 March, 2017, Ottawa, Canada

ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-2The UNESCO MGIEP youth delegates came together in full force for the YESPeace workshop on 8 March at the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development in Ottawa, Canada. The aim of the workshop was to provide a platform for young people working in the area of formal, non-formal and informal education to share their work in the areas of peace, sustainable development and global citizenship and draw upon the discussions on the role of teachers. The format of the session was designed to drive an action-oriented and participatory approach involving group work. The youth were divided in projects and created projects as well as Action Plans to enhance teacher and youth synergies (of people and practitioners).



YESPeace: Introduction of the first ever YESPeace Champion at the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development

5 – 8 March, 2017, Ottawa, Canada
ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-3UNESCO MGIEP formally announced its first ever YESPeace Champion, Emmanuel Kelly, a professional recording artist, at the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development. At the UNESCO Week, Emmanuel moved the audience with his rendition of the song ‘Imagine’ and his story of triumph in the face of challenges. As the first YESPeace Champion, Emmanuel is empowered with great responsibility to inspire and aspire young people to create and help achieve qualities to foster more peaceful and sustainable societies.



Summer Reading Camp

15 May – 15 June, 2017, New Delhi, India


UNESCO MGIEP, in partnership with Saajha (a project, established by Pratham, New Delhi in 2013), organised a 4-week summer reading camp for students of schools from the Municipal Corporation of Delhi. Six camps were organised in North, South and East Delhi comprising of approximately 30 students each. Nearly 150 students, aged between 6 – 10 years attended the camp from 15 May – 15 June 2017.

The camp started with a facilitator training session organised on 12 May 2017. Subsequently, the reading camp comprised of weekly sessions for which the content was conceptualised and provided by UNESCO MGIEP. Pre-assessment and post-assessment tests were utilised for identifying children at risk and to understand the scope for improvement through effective intervention.



A study a visit with the UNESCO Tehran Office for delegates from Turkmenistan

4 – 5 April, 2017, New Delhi, India


UNESCO MGIEP co-organised a study visit with the UNESCO Tehran Office for senior officials from the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Mr. Abdylla Goklenov & Mr. Tachmyrat Jumayev) from Turkmenistan at the UNESCO MGIEP office in New Delhi, India from 4th – 5th April, 2017. The primary purpose of the visit was to introduce the delegation to various projects that UNESCO MGIEP focuses on towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4.7, centered on education for peace, sustainable development and global citizenship to foster peaceful and sustainable societies. The visit commenced with an overview of the Institute by Dr. Anantha Duraiappah, Director, UNESCO MGIEP and continued with presentations and interactive discussion sessions on the various programmes conducted by experts of the Institute. Post the presentation sessions, the delegation and senior management team of UNESCO MGIEP discussed the possibilities of future collaboration between the Institute and Turkmenistan in order to make collective progress towards the SDG’s.



Keynote address by Dr. Anantha Duraiappah at the 3rd Annual AFS Asia Pacific International Forum

21 April, 2017, Gurgaon, India

ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-4Dr. Anantha Duraiappah delivered a powerful keynote address at the 3rd Annual AFS Asia Pacific International Forum on the topic ‘Global Citizenship Education: Essential for Employability and the 21st Century Workforce’. The event was hosted by AFS Intercultural Programs, India in partnership with The World Bank Group and The Education World. Some of the other speakers included Angela Roye, Chair of the Board, AFS India and Fancisco Marmolejo, Lead Education Specialist, The World Bank Group, India and Matangi Gowrishankar, Director, HR for Asia Pacific – BP, India.

Dr. Duraiappah described the requirement for education systems to provide future generations with the skills and competencies to manage the uncertainties of the future. He discussed how the present education systems function like an ‘assembly line production’, developing skill sets in students, which may not necessarily allow them to deal with the challenges of the twenty first century. Dr. Duraiappah referred to the new paradigm of education as ‘neurobiological learning’, in which the learning process occurs through neuroplasticity. Based on the neurosciences, UNESCO MGIEP is building a ‘new integrative curriculum’ titled LIBRE that will focus on inculcating competencies of empathy, mindfulness, compassion and critical inquiry in future learners.



UNESCO MGIEP launches the YESPeace Pakistan Chapter and hosts its first workshop

17 – 19 April, 2017, Islamabad, Pakistan


The YESPeace Network organised its first workshop on peer capacity building and strategic planning in Islamabad, Pakistan. Initiated by UNESCO MGIEP, YESPeace is a network of networks which aims to mobilise youth on issues of peace and sustainable development. With existing chapters in India, Malaysia and South Africa, UNESCO Islamabad is leading the set-up of YESPeace Pakistan.

YESPeace Pakistan is a collective of youth organisations in Pakistan and is actively mentored by UNESCO MGIEP. The partner organisations include Pakistan Youth Alliance/Hive from Islamabad, College of Youth Activism and Development (CYAAD) from Islamabad and the Little Art from Lahore.

The three-day workshop included two days of capacity building and one day of planning – leading to the development of the YESPeace calendar, which will also include an ambitious YESPeace Youth festival towards the end of 2017. The final day saw the participants presenting the YESPeace plan to the Secretary General of Pakistan National Commission for UNESCO and Director of UNESCO, Islamabad.



UNESCO MGIEP Annual Retreat

27 – 28 April, 2017,  New Delhi, India


UNESCO MGIEP organised a two-day Annual Retreat for its team members at The Lalit, New Delhi in the end of April. The Retreat was focused on understanding UNESCO MGIEP’s organisational culture and focused on team building and collaboration. On the second day, the team focused on mapping its various programmes to define how these span across different age-groups and regions as also identifying how they intersect with each other. Various interactive team building sessions were conducted over the two days, resulting in heightened team engagement and collaboration.



UNESCO MGIEP launches a Virtual Reality Pedagogy Project in partnership with Google Inc.


ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-5In 2016, UNESCO MGIEP partnered with Google Inc. to launch the Virtual Reality Pedagogy project, an extension of Google’s globally renowned programme ‘Expeditions’. The programme takes experiential learning to the next level by providing an opportunity for students to experience the real world through virtual reality while sitting in the confines of their classrooms regardless of their geography. Use of virtual reality in classrooms makes the entire teaching and learning process more dynamic, interactive and joyful for the students, which is in-line with the broader philosophy of work at UNESCO MGIEP. The Institute facilitated the shoot at 9 different locations in India and developed a guide for the teachers, focusing on imparting not only basic information about the sites but also integrating the issues related to sustainability, peace, ecology and culture.



UNESCO MGIEP celebrates the World Day Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development

April – May, 2017 (Culminating on May 21), World Wide Web (Global presence)

ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-6UNESCO MGIEP celebrated the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development through a series of activities led by the Campus Ambassadors, a group of youth in the age group of 18 – 26 from UNESCO MGIEP’s Campus Ambassador’s programme, launched to advance UNESCO’s vision on cultural diversity and education.

Commencing 25 April, the Campus Ambassadors participated extensively in the ‘Ask me Anything’ (AMA) sessions on the topics of ‘Mindfulness’, ‘Compassion’, ‘Empathy’ and ‘Intercultural Dialogue’ with experts from these fields (such as Chade-Meng Tan, ex-Google and Chairman, Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute; and Rafael Tyszblat, Manager – Innovation & Program Design, Soliya) as well as other participants from around the world. The AMA sessions were held on UNESCO MGIEP’s digital platform ‘Knowledge Commons’ and generated engaging intercultural dialogue.

Additionally, the Campus Ambassadors co-organised, led and facilitated various activities in generating intercultural dialogue on campus and through social media such as facilitation and participation in a Facebook LIVE discussion of Dr. Anantha Duraiappah on Logical Indian, a social media news channel that brings forth unique stories usually not covered by traditional media.



UNESCO MGIEP launches ‘Textbooks for Sustainable Development:

A Guide to Embedding’

8 July, 2017, Bangkok, Thailand

ACTIVITY-BULLETIN_Small-7UNESCO MGIEP launched ‘Textbooks for Sustainable Development: A Guide to Embedding’, an international guidebook on embedding concepts of peace, sustainable development and global citizenship in textbooks of core subjects at the 3rd Asia Pacific Meeting on Education 2030 (APMED III) in Bangkok on the 4th of July. Commonly referred to as ‘The Embedding Guide’, the book was presented as a viable option to mainstream goal 4.7 (also the theme of APMED III) in education systems through the medium of textbooks. The book was released by Hannes Siege, Advisor, Engagement Global and Yosuke Kobayashi, Japanese National Commission for UNESCO along with Dr. Anantha K Duraiappah, Director, UNESCO MGIEP in the presence of the lead authors of the chapters of the guidebook.


Cover Story
Youth Voices

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THE BLUE DOT features articles showcasing UNESCO MGIEP’s activities and areas of interest. The magazine’s overarching theme is the relationship between education, peace, sustainable development and global citizenship. THE BLUE DOT’s role is to engage with readers on these issues in a fun and interactive manner. The magazine is designed to address audiences across generations and walks of life, thereby taking the discourse on education for peace, sustainable development and global citizenship beyond academia, civil society organisations and governments, to the actual stakeholders.

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Managing Editor
Akriti Mehra, UNESCO MGIEP

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Jagriti Sharma, UNESCO MGIEP

Firefly Communications


Jacob Anthony, National Brain Research Centre, India

Nandini Chatterjee, UNESCO MGIEP


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of UNESCO MGIEP.

The image used on the cover of this issue of The Blue Dot is purely representational and conceptual in nature.