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This chapter examines the path from the origins of the United Nations and its Charter to the 2030 Global Agenda on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and charts the interconnectedness of fundamental concepts that underpin the human rights movement to today’s implementation of the SDGs. Specifically, we explore how the twentieth-century origins of the United Nations transformed into twenty-first-century platforms of action and advocacy through support from psychological research. Early concepts provided by key historical figures are linked to the evolution of those concepts to form the current global agenda. For example, how do the basic pillars of the UN system form a conceptual foundation for planning and advocating for human rights? The chapter illustrates the inter-relatedness of these foundations and presents perspectives to create support for successful implementation through the value of psychological science to facilitate behavior change in formal educational settings, in community settings, and with technology. We address ways in which informing civil society plays a vital role in achieving success in addition to financial support from Member States. Finally, the chapter describes how the education of citizens globally is essential to the implementation of the SDGs and presents the promise of psychological research to potentiate the effectiveness of educational models.
This handbook demonstrates the central role psychological science has played in the past, and continues to play, in addressing some of the world’s most pressing problems. It addresses the following questions: How has psychological science contributed to the realization and respect of human rights since the inception of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)? How can psychological science be used to help state parties and the global community attain the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
This handbook was conceived to celebrate the seventieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), yet imposing human rights challenges continue to persist throughout the world today. From a global migration crisis to extreme poverty, from the damaging effects of climate change to the dehumanizing impacts of racism and discrimination in communities of color, from the trafficking of human beings to the bioethical issues raised from the explosion of scientific innovation, humanity continues to struggle to achieve the aspirations set forward in the UDHR in the aftermath of World War II.