Guterres Leads Latest Poll for UN Secretary-General Again, but It May Not Matter

The latest Security Council straw poll pointing to the selection of the next secretary-general of the United Nations happened on Sept. 9, with the results leaving António Guterres of Portugal still the front-runner ever since the informal, anonymous balloting began in the Security Council in July. The latest poll is the fourth such vote; the … Read more

What Do UN Staff Members Want From the Next Secretary-General?

While the United Nations approaches a major change at the top in selecting a new secretary-general for the next five years and conflicts across the globe continue to erupt, criticisms of UN management seem only to grow. The topic of management skills of the next secretary-general came up repeatedly during the public hearings held by … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

Personalities Can’t Be Ignored in Candidacies for UN Secretary-General

What personal qualities are needed to become a successful United Nations secretary-general? The 2016 campaign to select a new leader features many novelties in the UN’s history: an official list of candidates, public job interviews by the General Assembly and informal panel debates in London and New York. Civil society coalitions and the current president … Read more

Only 1 Woman in Top-3 Winners Again in UN Secretary-General Vote

With 11 candidates left in the race this year for United Nations secretary-general, the Security Council held its second straw poll on Aug. 5, showing a slight shift in levels of support by the council’s 15 members, but placing António Guterres of Portugal at the top again. Yet once more, only one woman, this time … Read more

 

WORLDVIEWS

Why Feminists Shouldn’t Say the Next UN Secretary-General Must Be a Woman

Twitter proved more effective than papal smoke signals in getting out the results of the first straw poll of candidates aspiring to be the ninth secretary-general of the United Nations. This is one reason that although some confidentiality is desirable in what is currently a recruitment process rather than an election, the 1 for 7 … Read more

Men Voting for Men: UN Security Council Holds Its First Straw Poll to Pick a Secretary-General

United Nations Secretary General Straw Poll Webcast

The first straw poll to test the support of Security Council members for candidates vying to become the next United Nations secretary-general occurred Thursday morning. The vote took place amid strong interest by global media who report on the world body as well as the dozen candidates, the UN’s 193 member states and people who … Read more

Getting to Know the UN Secretary-General Candidates Better: A Wrap-Up of Two New York Forums

When it comes to the United Nations, the word “debate” takes on a civilized bearing, with no relation to heated contests among many sides. Over two nights this week at different settings in New York, UN secretary-general candidates campaigning to fill the shoes of Ban Ki-moon in January 2017 debated publicly. One event, held at … Read more

Less Politics and More Transparency: What New Leadership Will Mean for the UN

In a year when people who follow the United Nations are focusing on the election of the next secretary-general, the center of early action in that election has moved for the first time in history from the secretive deliberations of the Security Council to an unprecedented open campaign in the General Assembly, which normally has only … Read more

 

WORLDVIEWS

A Woman, a Bombast and a Socialist: The UN and US Elections

The major contenders for one of the highest public offices in the world include the first possible female candidate for the position; a slightly aggressive (and that’s what his friends say about him) surprise candidate; and a socialist who’s not really supposed to be there but has garnered enough support to possibly be a contender. … Read more

New Candidates for Secretary-General Make Their Cases at the UN

The field of nine candidates campaigning formally to become the next United Nations secretary-general grew by two on June 7, when Miroslav Lajcak, Slovakia’s foreign minister, and Susana Malcorra, who holds the same position in Argentina, spoke in public sessions lasting more than two hours each, taking questions from UN member delegates and civil society … Read more

The Field Grows and Shifts in the Race for UN Secretary-General

The second crop of campaigners making a pitch to replace Ban Ki-moon in January is now being assembled, and it looks like the first declared candidate on the list may well shake up the race. She is Susana Malcorra, Argentina’s foreign minister and a well-respected, internationally known former United Nations official. The next round of … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

UN Bureaucracy? No, Thanks

After more than 30 years of service, I retired from the United Nations as an assistant secretary-general, Special Adviser on Environment and Peace Operations, at the end of 2015, but to officially conclude my tenure with the UN, there was bureaucratic paperwork to contend with, to which Bartleby the Scrivener, Melville’s reluctant clerk, might have … Read more

 

A UN First After 70 Years: Open Campaigning for Secretary-General

It was a week unprecedented in the history of the United Nations. From April 12 to 14, nine candidates for the office of secretary-general were put on a public stage in front of the world to make their cases as to why they should be elected to follow Ban-Ki-moon when his term ends this year. … Read more

The Next UN Secretary-General: Views From UN Watchers

The results of the latest FUNDS survey of global experts, conducted during the winter of 2015-16, contains clear messages about the next United Nations secretary-general: s/he should be a world leader with integrity and political courage who will prioritize UN reform; and the election process should be open and transparent. There is more room for … Read more

A New Plan to Recruit Candidates for UN Secretary-General Emerges

For the first time in United Nations history, officially announced candidates for the secretary-general race, underway this year, will be interviewed publicly in the General Assembly along the lines of a standard democratic election. Mogens Lykketoft, the Assembly president and a Dane, is pushing the “unprecedented transparent process,” as he put it, in selecting the … Read more

New Snags for Women Running in the UN Secretary-General Race

The only official female candidate in the competition so far to become the next United Nations secretary-general may already be in flux. Just a few weeks have passed since the Croatian government sent a letter to the UN nominating Vesna Pusic, a former foreign minister, but her candidacy may be uncertain because of a change … Read more

Support nonprofit journalism →
Left Menu Icon

Don't Miss a Story:

Subscribe to PassBlue

Sign up to get the smartest news on the UN by email, joining readers across the globe.​

We respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously​