Measuring Violence, Crime and Peace: Indicators to Support Goal 16

Thursday, March 26, 2015
PeaceWomen Consolidated Themes: 
Conflict Prevention
United Nation Theme: 

Measuring Violence, Crime and Peace: Indicators to Support Goal 16

Date: Thursday 26 March, 2015

Time: 1:15pm- 2:30pm

Location: Conference Room 8, UNHQ

Organized by: The Permanent Mission of Australia to the UN, The Permanent Mission of the Democratic Republic of Timor Leste to the UN, the Global Alliance on Armed Violence (GAAV), Saferworld and Small Arms Survey

Panelists: H.E. Sofia Borges, Timor Leste’s Representative to the UN; Dr. Anna Alvazzi del Frate, Research Director, Small Arms Survey; Larry Attree, Head of Policy, Saferworld; Karen Bozicovich, Information and Knowledge Section Chief, Department of Public Security at the Organization of American States (OAS); Diego Fleitas, Director of the Association for Public Policy, Argentina

Chair: Peter Versegi, Minister-Counsellor, Australian Mission to the UN

Summary: This event examined ways to measure Goal 16 targets. It showcased indicator options with specific attention on ways to measure violence and violent deaths (Target 16.1) and illicit arms flows (Target 16.4). Speakers also shared practical experiences of using data to measure and monitor violence, peace and crime.

After welcoming remarks by H.E. Sofia Borges, Larry Altree started his presentation by asking: what are we measuring when we measure violence, crime and peace? He stated that to measure such so as to accomplish a reduction of violence; increased access to justice and livelihoods; voice and participation, we must build on existing capacities and include third parties in the process. Altree also supported the ‘baskets approach,’ that is, a basket of indicators which will give a balanced approach of progress. On measuring violence and violent deaths, Dr. Anna Alvazzi del Frate stated that given the rise of violent conflicts, there is a need to dismantle Target 16.4. She made recommendations on how to measure the illicit flow of arms and also suggested proxy indicators especially given the adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) by the UN in 2013.  

Karen Bozicovich spoke on her experiences at the Inter-American Observatory. She stated that when it comes to indicators related to violence and crime, regional political will and increased capacity to measure statistics on crime and violence is needed. Diego Fleitas, speaking on the Argentine experience, explained the country’s Gun Buyback Program. On Target 16.4, he stated that further mechanisms and accountability are needed.

Present also were Ms. Jeanne d’Arc Byaje, Minister Counsellor and Deputy Permanent Representative of the Rwandan Government’s Permanent Mission to the UN who briefly spoke on Rwanda’s experiences with measuring Goal 16 and; Ambassadors Michael Gerber and Guilherme de Aguiar Patriota of Switzerland and Brazil respectively. They spoke on the role and importance of the High Level Political Forum (HLPF) as the “centerpiece for sustainable development and governance.” Jan-Gustav Strandenæs spoke on the challenges of the HPLF structure and the importance of the HLPF Survey by Major Groups. Also present was Nikhil Seth, Director of the Division for Sustainable Development, Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) who, also speaking on the HLPF, stated that it is critical to hear the voices of civil society and Major Groups and these can work with the HLPF so as to assist with SDG implementation.