About the MOST Programme

The Management of Social Transformations (MOST) Programme is the only UNESCO programme that fosters and promotes social science research. This places MOST in a pivotal position in the overall promotion of UNESCO's goals.


The Programme, launched in March 1994, is part of the Social and Human Sciences Sector (SHS) of UNESCO. It was designed as a research programme to produce reliable and relevant knowledge for policy makers. The original mandate established a strong commitment to the promotion of research that was comparative, international, interdisciplinary and policy relevant. The programme was also designed to organize and promote international research networks, to give attention to capacity building and to establish a clearing house of knowledge in the social science field.

Reorientation of the Programme

In recognition of the increasing need to improve policy formulation, MOST has been reoriented, both thematically and in its modalities of operation. This was done in response to the Recommendations [PDF, 82 KB] that were made during the 6th session of the Intergovernmental Council of the MOST Programme (February 2003) and later approved by the 166th session of UNESCO's Executive Board (see 166 EX/41 [PDF, 20 KB] and 166 EX/Decision 3.1.4).

Its new focus is on building efficient bridges between research, policy and practice. The programme promotes a culture of evidence-based policy-making – nationally, regionally and internationally.


Back to top