16.04.2014 - ERI/NCS/NAC

Meeting of National Commissions on the occasion of the 194th Session of the Executive Board

9 and 10 April 2014, Room IV, UNESCO HQ

The traditional meeting of National Commissions for UNESCO on the margin of the 194th session of the Executive Board took place on 9 and 10 April 2014 from 8:30 am to 10:00 am at UNESCO Headquarters. Representatives from 54 National Commissions and 29 Permanent Delegations were present at this event. The meeting was opened by the Director-General, Mrs Irina Bokova. Main topics presented and discussed on this occasion were "Annual Report of National Commissions", "meetings of National Commissions" and "greater synergy between UNESCO field offices and National Commissions".


It is the first time in its history that UNESCO produces a report on activities of National Commissions. 120 National Commissions were presented in this product. This new information tool on best practices and experiences of National Commissions was unanimously welcomed. It is available now online Annual Report of National Commissions for UNESCO – 2013.


Mr Axel Meisen , President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO , proposed to maintain regular meetings during the sessions of the General Conference and in inter-sessional period. These meetings do not constitute decision-making bodies. Instead of numerous regional and subregional meetings and training seminars throughout the biennium that require huge financial and human investment, it would be appropriate to hold a global meeting per year with both interregional and regional sessions for the capacity-building and networking of National Commissions as well as sharing good practices between them. The participants agreed on the Canadian proposal. Ms Assel Utegenova , Secretary-General of the National Commission of Kazakhstan for UNESCO, has offered to host the first joint /global meeting of National Commissions in July 2014 in Astana, Kazakhstan. This generous offer of Kazakhstan was gratefully received by the participants. It was agreed that detailed information on this event in Astana will be communicated to all National Commissions and that they will be consulted on the topics of the meeting to establish a provisional agenda.


Discussion on a better synergy between UNESCO field offices and National Commissions was rich and constructive. It was agreed that discussion will be continued at the next meeting of National Commissions in Astana in July 2014 to update the "Guidelines for interface and cooperation between UNESCO field offices and National Commissions for UNESC " (174 EX/34 Annex), as recommended by the Action Plan of the Tripartite Working Group which was adopted by the General Conference (37 C/50 Annex).


  1. Agenda
  2. List of Participants
  3. Canadian proposal on meetings of National Commissions
  4. Guidelines for interface and cooperation between UNESCO field offices and National Commissions (174 EX/34 Annex)

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