Director-General of UNESCO reports to Board on follow-up

14 September 2001 The Director-General of UNESCO, Koïchiro Matsuura, is to report to the autumn session of the Organization’s Executive Board on progress in following up the World Conference on Science.

In a 17-page document now available for consultation in UNESCO’s six official languages at the UNESCO website (document 162 EX/9), the Director-General cites examples of national and regional follow-up over the past 18 months and summarizes follow-up executed through UNESCO’s intergovernmental scientific programmes, the International Bioethics Committee, World Commission on the Ethics and Scientific Knowledge and Technology and the intergovernmental science centres in Trieste (Italy).

Latter sections of the report are devoted to ‘Developing partnerships’ and to outlining ‘Further steps to be taken’. The Director-General discloses that, in line with the recommendation contained in paragraph 96 of the Science Agenda, UNESCO and ICSU are nearing completion of an Analytical report to governments and international partners on the impact of the World Conference on Science, the execution of follow-up and further action to be taken. The result of consultation with Member States, UNESCO field offices and both international and regional organizations, the analytical report will be presented to partners at a series of regional meetings to be held in 2002, in order to ‘introduce any corrective measures needed and give further stimulus to action’.

In response to a recommendation by the Executive Board in October 2000, a feasibility study is currently being undertaken within UNESCO on the creation of an international programme in the basic sciences.

And at its forthcoming session, which begins on 26 September, the Executive Board will be considering the possibility of launching a second feasibility study on the celebration of a World Science Day for Peace and Development.

For further information, go to the UNESCO Executive Board Secretariat: http://www.unesco.org/exboard/documents.html