Power of the United Nations

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This page is being edited by Ruth Donners EMBA09. In case of any questions/remarks contact me.

Description: Power and Influence of the United Nations

The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945 after the Second World War by 51 countries committed to maintaining international peace and security, developing friendly relations among nations and promoting social progress, better living standards and human rights. The hope was that such an organization would prevent conflicts between nations and make future wars impossible by fostering the idea of collective security. Due to its unique international character, and the powers vested in its founding Charter, the Organization can take action on a wide range of issues, and provide a forum for its 192 Member States to express their views, through the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council and other bodies and committees.

The work of the United Nations reaches every corner of the globe. Although best known for peacekeeping, peacebuilding, conflict prevention and humanitarian assistance, there are many other ways the United Nations and its System (specialized agencies, funds and programmes) affect our lives and make the world a better place. The Organization works on a broad range of fundamental issues, from sustainable development, environment and refugees protection, disaster relief, counter terrorism, disarmament and non-proliferation, to promoting democracy, human rights, governance, economic and social development and international health, clearing landmines, expanding food production, and more, in order to achieve its goals and coordinate efforts for a safer world for this and future generations [2].

One of the United Nation bodies is described more elaborately below as well: the World Health Organization (WHO). Regarding international health, the WHO is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system. It is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters, shaping the health research agenda, setting norms and standards, articulating evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries and monitoring and assessing health trends [3].


  • Fear for WWIII: World War II was something that no-one wanted to relive a international organization was set up. The name came partly from the one "United Nations Fighting Forces" used during the war by the Allied forces.
  • Cold war: We need some sense of security and coorporation
  • Rogue Nations and International Terrorism: Iran, North Korea, Iraq, etc. Together we can justify retaliating.
  • Globalization


  • Bureaucracy
  • Original charter is (too) old and ineffective now:
  • Member state governments: They have the real power:
    • Members ignore resolutions
    • Members proceed with actions withouth UN support/agreement
    • Local memberstate laws and regulations


  • Before: Attacking one country was a simple cost benefit analysis.
  • After: Attacking one country now involved waging war against all the UN members.


After the catastrophes of WWII.

"I don't know what weapons WWIII will be fought with, but WWIV will be fought with sticks and stones."

Albert Einstein


To be added