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'So what is the United Nations? What are its component parts and how do they operate? Who owns the organisation and to whom is it accountable? What are its true capabilities? This _No-Nonsense Guide_ provides an excellent start to answering those questions, and many others...Maggie Black has written a number of _No-Nonsense Guides_ to international issues, as well as books on water, development and children’s rights. Her straightforward, readable approach to the United Nations as it is in real life provides a valuable opportunity to comprehend the gap between the reality and the perception of the UN, and what may be needed to make it effective in the most difficult areas of international misunderstanding. I hope that as many people as possible will read it, and become aware of the huge mistake we shall be making if we do not nurture and improve this essential foundation for the next stage of human evolution' - Sir Jeremy Greenstock, former UK Permanent Representative to The United Nations.

In the first book to distill the entire history of the United Nations into one accessible volume, Maggie Black explains how this complex organization works and explores its successes, failings and current limitations.

It includes the UN creation and early history; how it is structured and whether it is well constituted in its functions. She considers possibilities for reform to make it more democratic, effective and fit for purpose.

  • Books on the United Nations abound but this is the first to distill its entire history into one accessible volume.
  • Includes the UN creation and early history; how it is structured and whether it is well constituted in its functions; relief, development and law.
  • Particular focus on core questions: How much can it do if its members are unwilling to provide the necessary resources, mechanisms, and mandate?
  • Ideal for courses in international relations, aid & development.

About the Author: Maggie Black has written books for OUP, UNICEF, and Oxfam. She has worked as a consultant for UNICEF, Anti-Slavery International, and WaterAid, among others, and has written for the Guardian, The Economist and BBC World Service.

Format: Paperback
Dimensions: 180 x 110mm
Page extent: 144 pages
Publication date: April 2008 (UK)
ISBN-13: 978-1904456-88-9

Date added: August 13, 2010

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