Overview of the Harare Office

Harare Field Office in Zimbabwe

© UNESCO
Harare Field Office in Zimbabwe

UNESCO Office in Harare was established in 1986 as a sub-regional office for education in Southern Africa, with special emphasis on higher education, following a recommendation of the 5th UNESCO Conference of Ministers of Education in Africa (1982). Since then, and in response to the dynamism and impetus for cooperation created by the social, economic and political developments in the sub-region, the Office has developed into an integrated, interdisciplinary and inter-sectoral unit.

Consequently, its capacity has been enhanced to mobilize and co-ordinate UNESCO’s programme strategy and action at sub-regional level, in close co-operation with headquarters, other field offices and National Commissions for UNESCO.

Located at 8 Kenilworth Road in Newlands, Harare, Zimbabwe, UNESCO Office in Harare is a Regional Office for Southern Africa covering Namibia, Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Swaziland and Lesotho  

It is also the Organization’s focal point for cooperation between UNESCO and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) as well as for the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA).

The Office hosts the National Education Statistical Information Systems (NESIS) project and the Southern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Education Quality (SACMEQ).

Mission and Vision

Guided by the principles of cultural diversity and human dignity; in collaboration with partners, governments and institutions within the sub-Saharan region, the UNESCO Cluster Office in Harare seeks to advocate for and build members' capacity for:

  • The provision of universal access to quality basic education and expanded access to pre-basic, post-basic and continuing education
  • The development and application of scientific and technological knowledge for social development
  • The promotion of cultural diversity and the preservation of the world’s cultural heritage
  • The expansion of access to information and communication technologies

The Harare Office undertakes these actions by focusing on poverty reduction, HIV/AIDS prevention and the mitigation of its impacts, especially among women and young people.

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