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Discorso pronunciato dall’Italia in occasione della Prima Sessione Regolare dell’Executive Board UNICEF

Thank you, Mr. President.

Let me congratulate you and all the new bureau members on your appointment. Please allow me to also congratulate the Executive Director on his speech.

Mr. President,

in 2016 Italy will continue to maintain a strong, longstanding commitment to UNICEF’s mandate and activities, supporting them through voluntary contributions. From maternal-infant health, to food and nutrition security, basic education, protection of minors in conflict situations, and assistance of unaccompanied minors fleeing from conflicts areas, we see UNICEF as a fundamental partner.

In 2015 the world experienced a steep rise in the number of political and humanitarian crisis. Many of these emergencies are still ongoing, and UNICEF is playing a critical role in the international response. Italy is glad to support the Fund’s efforts in all crisis areas, particularly its delivery of services for children affected by conflicts in Syria, Iraq and neighbouring countries.

With reference to the humanitarian action, Italy considers coordination as a key aspect. Coordination at all levels: in prevention activities, in emergencies, in development programs. Coordination among all UN Actors, in accordance with their respective mandate, is a priority.

Mr. President,

research and data sharing are crucial to translate in practice lessons learned from the past and to mobilize financial resources in an efficient way.

Therefore, Italy would like to underline the need for a clear strategy on how UNICEF positions the research function and uses research in its planning and priorities, as it starts to prepare for the next Strategic Plan.

We note the progress made in research quality and governance as a result of the work of the Office of Research-Innocenti, based in Florence, in collaboration with other components of DRP, including, for example, the important work on Ethical Standards for Research with Children.

We believe the Office of Research-Innocenti may have a key role in strengthening a culture of research and evidence-seeking in UNICEF.

We therefore would like to reiterate our proposal for the Executive Board to receive direct reports from the Office of Research-Innocenti, in order for the Board members to follow the development of UNICEF’s research agenda, the key results achieved, and how the research activity contributes to the overall mission of the Fund.

Thank you, Mr. President.