The United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) has launched a new website which will be very helpful to those working in social development and social work.
UNRISD is an autonomous research institute within the UN system that undertakes multidisciplinary research and policy analysis on the social dimensions of contemporary development issues. These issues are also reflected in The Global Agenda for Social Work and Social Development being promoted by IFSW and our global partners.
UNRISD is 50 years old in 2013. It was established in 1963 as an autonomous space within the UN system for the conduct of policy-relevant, cutting-edge research on social development that is pertinent to the work of the United Nations Secretariat; regional commissions and specialized agencies; and national institutions.
UNRISD research has frequently challenged mainstream development ideas, providing alternative development visions and policy options. As a result, over almost half a century, its research has shaped major shifts in thinking on critical development issues including: social indicators of development, gender, participation, civil society and social movements, identity and conflict, corporate accountability, social policy and the social impacts of globalization.
A conference held in May 2013 entitled ‘Voices for Social and Solidarity Economy’ explored the links between the economic system and social pressures.
Through its work UNRISD aims to ensure that social equity, inclusion and justice are central to development thinking, policy and practice. UNRISD aims to:
- focus on the often neglected social content and impacts of development processes and the role of social institutions, relations and actors in shaping development policies and pathways;
- engage researchers, policy makers and civil society actors from around the world in generating and sharing knowledge, in order to shape policy within and beyond the UN system;
- mobilize and strengthen the research capacity of individuals and institutions in developing countries through collaborative inquiry; and
- provide a space for the exchange of ideas, giving prominence to marginalized viewpoints, often challenging mainstream development thinking and offering alternative policy options.