One of RLS–NYC’s major tasks is to work on issues of concern to the United Nations, particularly as they relate to the Global South. We seek to strengthen progressive actors to engage with and more effectively challenge unequal power relations in order to build a more just, democratic, and peaceful world. We want to develop and advance understanding of global power shifts so that social movements, unions, political actors, NGOs, intellectuals, and grassroots communities can more effectively advocate for new and better approaches to global governance institutions and more effectively work for conflict prevention and resolution. In doing so, we seek to contribute to and strengthen movements for a sustainable and just socio-ecological transition. RLS–NYC engages both with the UN’s formal structures and with those who challenge these structures when they fail to live up to the values of the UN Charter.
In order to advance understanding, RLS–NYC publishes studies and organizes events that present research and analysis on topics such as the UN’s use of private military and security companies, the rise of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa), and the struggle of the Global South to assert itself politically on the world stage.
As part of our work to strengthen and consolidate movements, we have co-convened Trade Unions for Energy Democracy, a global, multi-sector community of labor leaders working to address issues of climate change and energy poverty through public, democratic control of energy. We have helped bring indigenous women leaders to New York to participate in events around the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) and the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), and worked on projects with the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD). We have also initiated Urban Convergences, which brings together housing justice advocates from India, Brazil, and South Africa to share their experiences and visions of a socially just city in the twenty-first century.
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The Russian Revolution is usually considered a watershed between the “long” 19th and the “short” 20th century. What Eric Hobsbawm referred to as the “Age of Extremes” was consequently initiated by the events in Russia that obviously had a tremendous impact on the United States as well; especially when it comes to the U.S. perception of revolutions and communism as two determining and “dangerous” factors......
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