How It Works

Here you will find explanatory journalism and other timely, useful information about how international organizations work.

Rights and children’s issues lead retweets

Among international organizations on social media, the U.N.’s new human rights chief and UNICEF were the Twitterverse’s undisputed champions.

Experts dash false hopes on climate change

The Nobel Prize-winning U.N. panel on climate change said it’s life or death for much of the planet as soon as 2040.

High seas treaty a step closer to reality

Diplomats, experts and international organizations are rushing to protect the rich biodiversity of open oceans against commercial pressures.

Counting the uncounted death toll in Syria

The brutality of Syria’s war has made it difficult to ensure accountability — a basic requirement of peace — such as keeping an accurate death toll.

A quiet force for civilian and political rights

Three times a year, a little-known expert panel gathers in Geneva and New York with a monumental task: upholding people’s civil and political rights.

Twiplomacy finds ‘all the world’s atwitter’

The U.N. and UNICEF are the most popular organizations on Twitter, where U.S. President Donald Trump overtook Pope Francis in the most-followed ranking.

U.N. holds first 21st century space summit

The U.N. is convening its first outer space conference in almost two decades, the celestial counterpart to its Earth-bound mission to prevent more wars.

Refugee crises push the limits of capacity

Conflicts around the world forced more than 65 million people to leave their homes. On average, 28,300 people a day flee conflict or persecution.

Promoting ‘game-changing’ social media

Forget flattery. For international organizations, it is social media — some of it paid promotion — that will get you everywhere.

Shaped by a history of waterways and wars

The first international organization dates to an 1804 treaty on the Rhine River. In the 20th century, they proliferated to find solutions and prevent wars.