Education Sector Staff

The Education Sector at UNESCO has constantly grown since the creation of the organization. From only 10 people in 1946, the Sector now comprises more than 200 people at its Paris headquarters, another 178 in its field offices and over 50 in its Institutes and Centres.  

As highlighted by the following organizational charts from 1950, 1960, 1970, 1980 and 1995, the structure of the Education Sector has evolved over time as well.

Since 2000, the Education Sector has been regularly restructured in order to adapt to new priorities and meet the challenges of the 21st century:

Institutes and centres

International Bureau of Education


The International Bureau of Education (IBE) is an information and documentation centre specializing in comparative education. Founded in Geneva in 1925, the IBE became the first intergovernmental organization concerned with education in 1929. In 1969, the IBE became an integral part of UNESCO, but retained broad intellectual and operational autonomy. More

International Institute for Educational Planning

UNESCO established the International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) in Paris in 1963. Modelled along the lines of a small university institute, with complete intellectual freedom, the Institute immediately became a focal point for research and planning not only by virtue of its academic studies, but also through its outreach work and training activities. More

UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (formerly the UNESCO Institute for Education)

In 1951, UNESCO founded three international institutes in the Federal Republic of Germany. The UNESCO Institute for Education (UIE), along with two other Institutes for Youth and Social Sciences, was created to promote human rights and international understanding. More

UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education

Located in Moscow (Russian Federation), the UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (IITE) was established as an integral part of UNESCO by the General Conference of UNESCO at its 29th session (November 1997). At the same session, the Statutes of IITE were adopted. More

International Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training


The International Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (UNESCO-UNEVOC) was established in 2000 and was inaugurated in Bonn in 2002 to help UNESCO’s 193 member states strengthen and upgrade their TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) systems. More

UNESCO Institute for Statistics

Based in Montreal (Canada), the UNESCO Institute for Statistics was established in 1999 to meet the growing need for reliable and policy-relevant data. It is the primary source for internationally comparable statistics on education, science and technology, culture, and communication for more than 200 countries and territories. More

International Institute for Capacity-Building in Africa

The UNESCO International Institute for Capacity-Building in Africa (IICBA) was officially established by the UNESCO General Conference in October, 1999. Its establishment was part of UNESCO’s drive to decentralize its functions and commitment to capacity-building in Africa. IICBA is headquartered in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and presently has two nodes, one situated within the UNESCO Regional Office in Dakar, and the second one within Pretoria University, South Africa. Through these three centres, IICBA provides services to some 20 countries. More

International Institute for Higher Education in Latin America

In 1971, the fourth Conference of Ministers of Education in Latin America and the Caribbean recommended the establishment of a Regional Centre for Information on Higher Education in the region (CRESALC). It was transformed in 1998 into an International Institute for Higher Education in Latin America (IESALC). More

European Centre for Higher Education

Following the recommendations of the Sixteenth Session of the General Conference of UNESCO and the offer to host the centre by the Government of Romania, the UNESCO European Centre for Higher Education (CEPES) was inaugurated in Bucharest on 21 September 1972. It was the only intergovernmental Centre for Higher Education with pan-European coverage, including North America and Israel. More


Centres under the auspices of UNESCO

International Research and Training Center for Rural Education

In order to realize the goal of Education for All (EFA), especially Education for All in rural areas, INRULED was jointly founded by Chinese government and UNESCO on November 8, 1994, following the resolution adopted in the 27th Session of the General Conference in 1993. INRULED was commissioned to initiate and facilitate activities focused on exchange and popularization of experiences for international rural education, and to serve extensively the UNESCO member countries, especially the global developing countries. More

Asia-Pacific Centre of Education for International Understanding

In 1997, the Government of the Republic of Korea proposed the establishment of APCEIU at the 29th General Conference and was inaugurated three years later. Just before its tenth anniversary, the Centre was relocated from Myeongdong to Guro District. The Centre’s mission is to promote Education for International Understanding and serve as a centre of excellence for education, training, research and development of curricula for EIU in the Asia-Pacific Region. More

Guidance, Counseling and Youth Development Centre for Africa

UNESCO approved the establishment of the Centre in Malawi. In 1998, the architectural plan was designed and approved by the Office of the Urban Planning in Malawi and the construction began in February 2000. The Centre is an academic training Centre, set to train tutors, teachers and social workers to help young people know more about entrepreneurship and civic development, and to promote creativity and learn how to find sources of raw materials for small scale enterprises. More

International Centre for Girls and Women’s Education in Africa

In the framework of the World Conference on Education for All in Jomtien (Thailand), Burkina Faso proposed the creation of a West African Centre whose mission was to serve as a reference centre. But instead of a West African centre, the Director General of UNESCO advised the creation of an international Centre for Girls’ and Women’s Education, in 2001. The Agreement granting CIEFFA the status of a UNESCO category II centre was signed in Paris on 19 April, 2006. More

The South-East Asian Centre for Lifelong Learning for Sustainable Development

From January 2005 to December 2006, the idea of establishing the UNESCO Centre for Lifelong Learning for Sustainable Development in Southeast Asia (CLLSD) was presented in various consultation meetings. The Philippines submitted an official proposal to the UNESCO Executive Board regarding the establishment of the Centre, which was approved at the 35th session of the General Conference on October 14, 2009. The Centre’s mission is to be an LLSD standard setter, and a research and resource management centre. More

The Regional Centre for Early Childhood Care and Education in the Arab States

The DG of UNESCO, Ms. Bokova signed an agreement with the Syrian Arab Republic for establishing a regional training centre in the field of early childhood care and education. This agreement was officially signed during Bokova’s visit to the Syrian Arab Republic (22—25 April 2010). This centre aims to strengthen national and regional capacity building initiatives for developing the field of early childhood care and education (ECCE) in the Arab Region. This training centre is the first of its kind in the Arab States. More

Regional Centre for Educational Planning

The mission of RCEP is to generate and share educational planning knowledge while at the same time to build educational capacity of the countries in the Gulf Region. RCEP plans to pursue its mission by the provision of relevant training to senior educational personnel and teaching staff of institutions, supporting research and studies on educational policy-making, planning and management and the dissemination of the results of its work among policy-makers. More

Back to top