MOST Programme History

The Management of Social Transformations (MOST) Programme, launched in March 1994, is part of the Social and Human Sciences Programme (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 sciences.

In recognition of the increasing need to improve policy formulation, MOST has since been reoriented, both thematically and in its modalities of operation. This was done in response to the recommendations that were made during the 6th session of the MOST Intergovernmental Council (February 2003) and later approved by UNESCO's Executive Board at its 166th session. Its new focus is on building strong bridges between research, policy and practice. The programme promotes a culture of evidence-based policymaking – nationally, regionally and internationally.

MOST is the only UNESCO programme that fosters and promotes social science research. This places it in a pivotal position in the overall promotion of UNESCO's goals.

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