The Origins and Institutional Setting of the UN Special Conferences

  • Paul Taylor


This book examines a selection of the special conferences which have been organised through the United Nations’ system over the last 20 years and which have been concerned with some of the more pressing global problems of that period: the control of the growth of population, the problem of producing and distributing food, the issues of racial discrimination, disarmament and development, the protection of the environment, and the difficulties in the way of defining and promoting the rights of women. The most obvious question which occurs is: why did such conferences seem necessary then, particularly in the 1970s? It might have been expected, after all, that new problems would have been dealt with adequately through established arrangements, which were already very extensive in scope and competence. Despite this, however, special conferences were arranged; the peculiar circumstances in which this happened are discussed in this chapter. A number of related questions about the way in which the conferences were set up, how they worked, and their contribution to tackling specific problems, obviously also arise in this context. They are set out in the conclusions to this chapter, and are discussed, with special reference to the specific conferences, in later chapters.


Institutional Setting Special Session International Economic Order Special Conference Social Council 
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Copyright information

© Paul Taylor and A. J. R. Groom 1989

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  • Paul Taylor

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