13.02.2014 - UNESCO

Executive Board’s first Information Meeting with the Director-General for 2014

Wednesday, 12 February: Member States asked nearly 100 questions in their first information session with the Director-General this year – demonstrating their deep commitment to the Organization.

Led by the new Chairperson of the Executive Board, Ambassador Mohamed Sameh Amr, the day-long discussion addressed two broad themes: implementing the expenditure plan approved by the last General Conference and UNESCO’s role in shaping the new global sustainable development agenda to follow 2015.

“After over two years of hard work and tireless efforts, we are nearing the completion of UNESCO's reform process. This is indeed positive and offers new prospects.” declared the Chairperson of the Executive Board as he opened the debate.

The Director-General stated that the expenditure plan of $507 million for the biennium posed serious challenges for the Organization, including for UNESCO staff. But, she emphasized, implementation was on track, thanks to a reform effort that was reducing costs and increasing efficiency.

The discussion explored the impact of the expenditure plan on staff and on the ability of UNESCO to deliver results in the Field. In response, the Director-General provided detailed insight into both staff restructuring and enhanced delegation of authority to Field Offices, including field network in Africa.

The Information Meeting was an opportunity to present the full scope of UNESCO's contribution to shaping the post 2015 agenda, across all its areas of competence. Discussion followed on a range of UNESCO actions currently underway and to be undertaken over the next few months-- including for Syria, accelerating EFA, and promoting culture for development.

“Our main task now is to concentrate on the full implementation of the programme, to enhance our delivery and to sharpen all our work --to focus on areas where we can make the biggest difference for Member States, for lasting peace and sustainable development,” Director-General said.

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