Christmas is around the corner and so how about buying friends and family the Vienna Cafe Trilogy?

How often have you tried to explain what it is you do at the UN only to find friends and families eyes gloss over?
Do they really understand how important bracketing text is or a comma here or a full stop there?
Or perhaps you have friends who want to follow you into intergovernmental negotiations and experience the wonders of the Vienna Cafe!!

Well now they can!!
The Vienna Cafe trilogy is their opportunity to relive some of your wonderful moments.
Not to be confused with the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy trilogy, which is in five parts, the Vienna Cafe trilogy isn't in another galaxy just a cafe in the basement of the UN or other intergovernmental venues.

The latest volume of the trilogy is Negotiating the Sustainable Development Goals: A transformational agenda for an insecure world by Felix Dodds, Ambassador David Donoghue and Jimena Leiva Roesch.

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are of course a universal set of seventeen goals and 169 targets, with accompanying indicators, which were agreed by UN member states to frame their policy agendas for the fifteen-year period from 2015 to 2030. Written by three authors who have been engaged in the development of the SDGs from the beginning, this book offers an insider view of the process and a unique entry into what will be seen as one of the most significant negotiations and global policy agendas of the twenty-first century.

The book reviews how the SDGs were developed, what happened in key meetings and how this transformational agenda, which took more than three years to negotiate, came together in September 2015. It dissects and analyzes the meetings, organizations and individuals that played key roles in their development. It provides fascinating insights into the subtleties and challenges of high-level negotiation processes of governments and stakeholders, and into how the SDGs were debated, formulated and agreed. It is essential reading for all interested in the UN, sustainable development and the future of the planet and humankind.

The book that precedes it From Rio+20 to a New Development Agenda: Building a Bridge to a Sustainable Future  is by Felix Dodds, Jorge Laguna Celis and Liz Thompson.
Twenty years after the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, "The Earth Summit", the Rio+20 conference in 2012 brought life back to sustainable development by putting it at the centre of a new global development partnership, one in which sustainable development is the basis for eradicating poverty, upholding human development and transforming economies.

Written by practitioners and participants involved in the multilateral process of negotiations, this book presents a unique insider analysis of not only what happened and why, but also where the outcomes might impact in the future, particularly in the UN development agenda beyond 2015.

The book throws light on the changing nature of multilateralism and questions frequent assumptions on how policy is defined within the UN. It shows that Rio+20 was more than an international meeting; it represented a culminating point of decades of successes and failures and a watershed moment for seminal concepts, ideas and partnerships including the Green Economy, zero tolerance on land degradation, the introduction of Sustainable Development Goals, the creation of national measurements of consumption, production and well-being that are intended to go beyond GDP, the introduction of national green accounting and the commitment of billions of dollars for sustainable development partnerships, including Sustainable Energy for All.

The authors conclude by mapping out a new agenda for development in 2015, when the current Millennium Development Goals framework is due to expire. An agenda that will restore faith in the UN and inspire a global response to the demographic, economic and environmental challenges that will define our future in the decades to come.

The first book in  the series is of course Only One Earth written by Maurice Strong the father of sustainable development, Felix Dodds and Michael Strauss.

Forty years after the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm, the goal of sustainable development continues via the Rio+20 conference in 2012. This book will enable a broad readership to understand what has been achieved in the past forty years and what hasn’t. It shows the continuing threat of our present way of living to the planet. It looks to the challenges that we face twenty years from the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, "The Earth Summit," in Rio, in particular in the areas of economics and governance and the role of stakeholders. It puts forward a set of recommendations that the international community must address now and in the the future. It reminds us of the planetary boundaries we must all live within and and what needs to be addressed in the next twenty years for democracy, equity and fairness to survive. Finally it proposes through the survival agenda a bare minimum of what needs to be done, arguing for a series of absolute minimum policy changes we need to move forward.

You might also like to read Santa's Green Christmas: Father Christmas Battles Climate Change a great download for the kids of all ages written by Felix Dodds and Michael Strauss drawn by Marvel artists John Charles.

I hope these Christmas ideas help you with your Christmas shopping this year.

"Learning from the process that engaged so many stakeholders at national and international level is important for future multilateral negotiations. This contribution from three actors intimately involved in the process offers rare insights into a long, challenging and ultimately fruitful process. I hope many readers will enjoy the insights presented in this book and be inspired to realise that the impossible is possible through compromise, partnership and leadership."

– from the foreword by Mary Robinson, President of the Mary Robinson Foundation: Climate Justice, Former President of Ireland (1990–1997) and Former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (1997–2002)

"This is an important book that charts the journey we went on and the challenges faced in agreeing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. I hope it will help people understand what was achieved and help those now, and in the future, engaged in the implementation of this agenda."

– from the foreword by Ambassador Macharia Kamau, Permanent Representative of Kenya to the United Nations in New York, USA, co-chair of the negotiations for the Sustainable Development Goals (2012–2014) and co-facilitator of Transforming Our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2014–2015)

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