Saturday 13 November

Last update: April 21, 2022
75th celebration

Today - Programme of meetings

10 amPlenaryI
General Policy Debate
10 amED CommisionII
Fourth Meeting
Item 8.3Item 9.2Item 5.6
Item 9.3Item 9. 1 Item 5.5
Item 5.18Item 5.19
10 amAPX CommisionXI
Fifth Meeting
10 amNOM CommisionIV
Fourth Meeting
Item 1.4Item 14.1 Item 14.2 to 14.15
3 pmED CommisionII
Fifth Meeting


  • More than 20 Heads of State and Governments, together with a renowned group of diverse global artists, singers and musicians joined the Director-General in an exceptional event celebrating UNESCO's 75th anniversary. World leaders took the floor, reflecting on UNESCO’s enduring achievements accomplished during their countries’ long-standing membership to UNESCO. They all reiterated that in todays’ post-COVID world, UNESCO’s mandate and functions are more relevant than ever. By continuously serving as a hub for innovation, fostering global reflections on the futures of education, establishing common standards for open science, ethics of artificial intelligence, cultural heritage and diversity of cultural expressions, promoting freedom of expression and access to information, UNESCO strives to promote peace and sustainable development.

  • The annual meeting of the Global Education Coalition Acting for recovery, resilience and reimagining education took place yesterday. Ministry representatives from various Member States discussed the challenges that remain in rebuilding education systems and highlighted the invaluable contributions of the Coalition in the past 18 months, while partner organizations shared lessons learned. Mr Borhene Chakroun, Director for the Division for Policies and Lifelong Learning Systems and Coordinator of the Global Education Coalition, concluded from the course of discussions that the Coalition is needed and offered clear directions and ideas for action in the future. He added that UNESCO remains committed to nurturing the Coalition as an agile platform to achieve SDG 4 and called on all Coalition members and Member States to continue working together to “unleash the full potential of the unique partnership”, for which the digital transformation education remains the main focus.

  • The high-level policy dialogue event ‘SDG 4 benchmarks, visualizations and data gaps linking global, regional and national levels’ co-hosted by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) and the Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report took place today. During this high-level event, education policy makers from Bangladesh, Senegal and the European Commission reflected on key developments on the setting of national benchmarks for SDG 4. Framing the discussion was the latest findings and analysis from the UIS’s new observatory on benchmarks, which will be a focal point on the follow-up process. With national benchmark values submitted by 39% of countries, the representatives provided insights into ongoing efforts to accelerate progress towards the development of the national benchmarks and how this new processes has been shaping policy priorities and reforms. A recording of the session will be available shortly on the GEM Report’s website.

  • On 11 November 2021, during the plenary session, members of the Latin American and the Caribbean Group (GRULAC) elected three new members of the Governing Council of the UNESCO International Institute for Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (IESALC). Representatives of Cuba, Honduras and Jamaica will take office for a four-year term.

Monday 15 November 2021

  • The ceremony for the 2020 Carlos J. Finlay UNESCO Prize for Microbiology will take place from 13:00 to 14:30 at Room X and will be followed by a reception from 14:30 - 15:30 at Bar des Conferences. This a biennial scientific prize was established by the Government of Cuba together with UNESCO to acknowledge the importance of microbiology for human health and to honour one of the most important microbiologists in history. Finlay was a Cuban epidemiologist who made an outstanding contribution in the field of microbiology, specifically on yellow fever. The prize is awarded in odd years during the UNESCO General Conference and since the first prize in 1980, it rewards the efforts of individuals, or institutions, non-governmental organizations, or other entities, which through research and development, have made an outstanding contribution to the field of microbiology and its applications. Through awarding this prize, the Government of Cuba and UNESCO aim to encourage research and development of Microbiology. 

  • The Fit for Life Official Launch Event will take place from 13:15 to 15:00 at the Restaurant on the 7th floor. “Fit for Life” is designed to accelerate COVID-19 recovery and enhance the well-being of youth through smart investments in sport as a driver of health, education and equality outcomes from policy to practice. This side event presents a unique opportunity to learn about the planned activities within “Fit for Life”, as well as emergent findings from UNESCO’s survey on quality physical education. Representatives of Member States, athletes, young leaders and high-level personalities will be invited to provide testimonials on the power of sport and to engage in a series of panel discussions. Member States and interested partners will learn how they can join this new initiative.   

  • The Award Ceremony of the 2021 edition of the UNESCO-Russia Mendeleev International Prize in the Basic Sciences will take place from 19:30 to 21:00 in Room I and webcast will be available. This award was established as a follow-up of the International Year of the Periodic Table of Chemical Elements in 2019 to foster scientific progress, science popularization and international cooperation in the basic sciences. It honours the remarkable scientific heritage of Dimitri Mendeleev, father of the Periodic Table, whose work was fundamental to the development of chemistry, physics, biology, aeronautics, hydrodynamics, meteorology and astronomy as well as what is now termed sustainable development.   

Previous issues

The election of Members of the Executive Board will take place on Wednesday 17 November 2021 in Room V from 09:00 to 13:00.