Edited by

Anna Maria Rossi




Improving biosecurity through prudent and responsible use of veterinary medicines in aquatic food production. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2012, 224 p. (FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Papers; 547) ISBN 978 92 510 6975 2 FAO number: 111834 - US $ 58.00. The FAO/AAHRI Expert Workshop on Improving Biosecurity through Prudent and Responsible Use of Veterinary Medicines in Aquatic Food Production was convened in Bangkok, Thailand, from 15 to 18 December 2009, in order to understand the current status of the use of antimicrobials in aquaculture and to discuss the concerns and impacts of their irresponsible use on human health, the aquatic environment and trade. Safe and effective veterinary medicines need to be available for efficient aquaculture production, and their use should be in line with established principles on prudent use to safeguard public and animal health. The use of such medicines should be part of national and on-farm biosecurity plans and in accordance with an overall national policy for sustainable aquaculture.

The state of food and agriculture 2012. Investing in agriculture for a better future. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2012, 180 p. ISBN 978 92 510 7317 9 FAO number: 111844 - US $ 75.00. Investing in agriculture is essential for reducing hunger and promoting sustainable agricultural production. Those parts of the world where agricultural capital per worker and public investments in agriculture have stagnated are the epicentres of poverty and hunger today. Demand growth over the coming decades will place increasing pressure on the natural resource base. Eradicating hunger sustainably will require a significant increase in agricultural investments, but also an improvement in their effectiveness. Farmers are the largest investors in developing country agriculture and must be central to any strategy for increasing investment in the sector, but if they are to invest more in agriculture they need a favourable climate for agricultural investment based on economic incentives and an enabling environment. Governments also have a special responsibility to help smallholders overcome the constraints they face in expanding their productive assets and to ensure that large-scale investments in agriculture are socially beneficial and environmentally sustainable. Government investment in agriculture is a crucial component of providing an enabling environment for private investments in the sector. Governments need to channel scarce public funds towards the provision of essential public goods with high economic and social returns.

For more information visit the FAO publication catalogue



Managing water under uncertainty and risk: executive summary. Paris: UNESCO, 2012, 68 p. (The United Nations World Water Development Report; 4). Released every three years since March 2003, the United Nations World Water Development Report (WWDR), a flagship UN-Water report published by UNESCO, has become the voice of the United Nations system in terms of the state, use and management of the world's freshwater resources. The report is primarily targeted at national decision-makers and water resource managers, but is also aimed at educating and informing a broader audience, from governments to the private sector and civil society. It underlines the important roles water plays in all social, economic and environmental decisions, highlighting policy implications across various sectors, from local and municipal to regional and international levels. Coordinated by the World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP), this fourth edition of the WWDR is the result of a concerted three-year effort by UN-Water agencies, in collaboration with dozens of scientists, professionals, NGOs and other UN-Water partners. The report addresses the most salient strategic and technical aspects relating to how and why we need to use, manage and allocate water to meet multiple, often competing goals, from all major policy directions - from poverty alleviation and human health to food and energy security and environmental stewardship. More at:

Gender equality, HIV and education. Paris: UNESCO, 2012, 92 p. (Good policy and practice in HIV and health education; booklet 7) ISBN 978 92 3 001119 2. Education, HIV and gender equality are deeply interrelated aspects of personal and global development. This booklet presents evidence and experience on gender, HIV and education from a variety of perspectives, taking an analytical look at key issues that continue to impede progress in HIV prevention, in access to care and services, and in ensuring that all children have access to a full and good quality education, emphasizing the need for a holistic approach that includes commitment from all the different sectors. The discussion papers contained in this booklet, and the related case studies, are written by leaders and experienced practitioners in the fields of HIV, education and gender, and contribute to a growing body of evidence on the importance of a strong and evidence-based education sector response to the HIV epidemic. This booklet is the seventh in a series of booklets produced by UNESCO on good policy and practice in HIV and health education. It is intended for policy-makers, planners and professionals in the education sector, as well as those working on HIV and gender equality. We welcome any feedback and encourage users to contribute to the development of the series by sharing their input and experiences. More at:

For more information on UNESCO's work in HIV, health promotion and education refer to the website:



Mercury: Time to act. Geneva: UNEP, 2013, 44 p. ISBN 978 92 807 3310 5. Stock Number: DTI/1623/GE. This report speaks directly to governments involved in development of the global treaty on mercury. It presents updates from the UNEP Global Mercury Assessment 2013 in short and punchy facts and figures backed by compelling graphics that provide governments and civil society with the rationale and the imperative to act on this notorious pollutant. The report underlines the fact that mercury remains a major global, regional and national challenge in terms of threats to human health and the environment, especially but not uniquely to the health of pregnant woman and babies world-wide through the eating of contaminated fish for example or marine mammals in places like the Arctic. It also underlines that the burden of disease in many ways is shifting towards developing countries such as those in areas of the world where a growing burning of coal is increasing emissions of mercury to the atmosphere.

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Global report: UNAIDS report on the global AIDS epidemic 2012. Geneva: UNAIDS, 2012, 110 p. ISBN 978 92 9173 996 7. In 2012, 186 countries submitted comprehensive reports on progress in their national AIDS response. With 96% of the 193 United Nations Member States reporting in 2012, the Global AIDS Response Progress Reporting system has among the highest response rates of any international health and development monitoring mechanism - a vivid reflection of the breadth and depth of global commitment to the response to AIDS. Drawing on information provided by countries, this report summarizes the current situation in the effort to reach the 2015 targets set forth in the 2011 Political Declaration. In addition to providing a snapshot of the current situation for each target, it identifies key trends. Using a scorecard approach on key indicators, the report allows individual countries to compare their own achievements with those of others. Regional breakdowns enable comparison of progress between different parts of the world. This report highlights instances where recommended policies and programmes have yet to be implemented. As part of global AIDS response monitoring, countries have completed extensive surveys on national AIDS policy frameworks. The National Commitments and Policies Instrument obtains information on the process of national strategizing on AIDS, engagement of civil society and other key constituencies as well as policy approaches for HIV prevention and treatment. The results summarized in the report are encouraging, since progress achieved to date conclusively demonstrates the feasibility of achieving the targets set in the 2011 Political Declaration. However, the findings also reveal that, to reach most of those targets by 2015, a significant additional effort is required. More at:

Women out loud: How women living with HIV will help the world ends AIDS. Geneva: UNAIDS, 2012, 110 p. ISBN 978 92 9173 995 0. Women may make up half the world's population, but they do not share it equally. This is especially evident when it comes to HIV. Half of all people living with HIV are women, yet many are underserved or do not know their status. Despite the many successes we have seen, women still face inequalities that will keep the AIDS response from reachingits full potential. Women out loud amplifies the voices of women living with HIV so that their knowledge is shared and acted upon. This is essential to achieve the 10 targets of the 2011 United Nations Political Declaration on HIV and AIDS. Those who collaborated on this report present a snapshot of the diversity of women living with HIV. They are grandmothers, wives, mothers, transgender women, migrants and students. They include women who use drugs, women who have engaged in sex work, women who have been in prison and young women born with HIV. They are women working in grass-roots networks, international nongovernmental organizations, academia and the United Nations. They are leaders in their own right and living proof that women living with HIV can build better futures for themselves, their loved ones and their communities. This report reinforces UNAIDS' efforts to strengthen the AIDS response's focus on women. As this report testifies, women's leadership, resilience and good practices to transform societies are widespread. What is needed now is stronger support for women's full participation in the response to HIV, and better data to track progress as it relates to women. This requires a concerted effort to promote and protect the rights of women and of all people living with HIV. When women speak out, we must listen carefully, and act with solidarity and commitment to transform words into action. More at:



European action plan to reduce the harmful use of alcohol 2012-2020. Geneva: World Health Organization. 2012, 75 p. (Nonserial publication) ISBN 978 92 890 0286 8 Order number: 13400127 - $ 36.00. The European action plan to reduce the harmful use of alcohol 2012-2020 was endorsed by all 53 Member States in the WHO European Region in September 2011. It includes a range of evidence-based policy options to reduce the harmful use of alcohol. This publication also includes WHO Regional Committee for Europe resolution EUR/RC61/R4, a list of indicators (with definitions) linked to the indicators used in the European Information System on Alcohol and Health, and a checklist or set of questions for Member States. The action plan is closely linked to the 10 action areas of the global strategy to reduce the harmful use of alcohol adopted by the World Health Assembly in May 2010. The primary audience for the action plan is the national authorities in the WHO European Region responsible for alcohol policy, mainly the health and other ministries (including finance, education, social welfare, transportation and criminal justice), nongovernmental and civil-society organizations, researchers, the private sector and international partners.

McQueen DV, Wismar M, Lin V, et al. Intersectoral governance for health in all policies. Structures, actions and experiences. Geneva: World Health Organization. 2012, 227 p. (Observatory Studies Series; 26) ISBN 978 92 890 0281 3 Order number: 13400124 - $ 48.00. Many of the policies and programmes that affect health originate outside the health sector. Governments therefore need to address population health using a strategy or policy principle that fosters intersectoral action. Health in all policies (HiAP) does just that, encouraging intersectoral approaches to management, coordination and action. This publication captures the research on how intersectoral governance structures operate to help deliver HiAP. It offers a framework for assessing: how governments and ministries can initiate action, and how intersectoral governance structures can be successfully established, used and sustained. This publication provides accessible and relevant examples to inform policy-makers of the governance tools and instruments available and equip them for intersectoral action. The European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies and the International Union for Health Promotion and Education have worked with more than 40 contributors to explore the rationale, theory and evidence for intersectoral governance. This publication contains over 20 mini case studies from Europe, the Americas, Asia and Australia on how countries currently use intersectoral governance for HiAP in their different contexts. It also highlights nine key intersectoral structures and sets out how they facilitate intersectoral action, including: cabinet committees and secretariats; parliamentary committees; interdepartmental committees and units; mega-ministries and mergers; joint budgeting; delegated financing; and public, stakeholder and industry engagement.

Assessing mental health and psychosocial needs and resources. Toolkit for humanitarian settings. Geneva: World Health Organization. 2012, 80 p. (Nonserial publication) ISBN 978 92 415 4853 3 Order number: 11500850 $ 36.00. Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) is a term used to describe a wide range of actions that address social, psychological and psychiatric problems that are either pre-existing or emergency-induced. These actions are carried out in highly different contexts by organizations and people with different professional backgrounds, in different sectors and with different types of resources. All these different actors - and their donors - need practical assessments leading to recommendations that can be used immediately to improve people s mental health and well-being.

Although a range of assessment tools exist, what has been missing is an overall approach that clarifies when to use which tool for what purpose. This document offers an approach to assessment that should help you review information that is already available and only collect new data that will be of practical use, depending on your capacity and the phase of the humanitarian crisis. This document is rooted in two policy documents, the IASC Reference Group s (2010) Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Humanitarian Emergencies: What Should Humanitarian Health Actors Know? and the Sphere Handbook s Standard on Mental Health (Sphere Project, 2011). This document is written primarily for public health actors. As the social determinants of mental health and psychosocial problems occur across sectors, half of the tools in the accompanying toolkit cover MHPSS assessment issues relevant to other sectors as well as the health sector. This document should help you to collect the necessary information to assist people affected by humanitarian crises more effectively.

Istituto Superiore di Sanità Roma - Rome - Italy