Management of Social Transformations (MOST)

MOST Schools are capacity-building activities focused on strengthening the competences for evidence-informed decision making in Member States. 

Conceived on the basis of bottom-up demands arising from specific needs in concrete contexts, MOST Schools will prioritize interventions aimed at developing the capacity of researchers and decision makers to transfer knowledge into action, mainly in low- and middle-income countries. Their primary goal is to support long-term sustainable development in contexts where capacity gaps may be a major constraint to transforming research into action.

Most schools provide an effective response to social transformation challenges which is a longstanding need that requires commitment from the international community to develop comprehensive socially inclusive and evidence-based public policies. A key role in this respect is provided by the Management of Social Transformations (MOST) Programme and its Intergovernmental Council (IGC MOST) with social inclusion as one of its central priorities. The MOST mechanisms are geared towards stimulating policy-oriented research and streamlining a coherent and structured research-policy dialogue among a vast array of actors and stakeholders at national and international levels.

 Under this theme SHS ROSA:

  • Supports inter-disciplinary research, in particular Sustainability Science;
  • Supports evidence-based policies on the inclusion of migrants in Southern Africa; and
  • Develops the Southern African Arm of UNESCO LAB on Inclusive Policies. 


Recently implemented activities:

  • MOST School on Methodology elaboration piloting and evaluation of inclusive social policies 10-13 July 2017 Libreville, Gabon

The UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa (ROSA) supported the UNESCO Office in Libreville (Gabon), the Gabonese Ministry for Social Development and the National Centre for Scientific and Technological Research (CENAREST) in organising the first Management of Social Transformations (MOST) School in Central Africa on “Methodology for the elaboration, piloting and evaluation of inclusive policies”.

  • MOST School on Sustainability Science (with SC & Jakarta Office), 14-17 February 2017 - South Africa

The MOST School on sustainability science targeted government officials, representatives of civil society and community-based organizations, academics, and researchers from South Africa, and representatives from other Southern African countries including; Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe. The School training had a good turnout of 37 participants. Bringing together various stakeholders contributed to the understanding of priorities of policy makers in Southern Africa and challenges of civil society and academics in promoting evidence based knowledge. Participants developed and presented six concrete proposals on sustainability science, which will be presented to their governments for potential implementation in the region and actively contributed to the review and development of the Applied Sustainability Science Framework that was initially developed by the MOST School on Sustainability Science in Indonesia, in collaboration with the University of Southampton. An e-team on the inclusive policy lab was established to monitor the follow up. Bringing together various stakeholders contributed to the understanding of priorities and actions and facilitated the building of new networks and potential coordination. UNESCO will explore possibilities of organizing other MOST Schools in Southern Africa.

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