United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

Standard-Setting Instruments

When, cultural differences and traditions notwithstanding, States agree to common rules, they can draw up an international instrument: an agreement or convention, which are legally binding, a recommendation or a declaration.

UNESCO participates in this effort through its standard-setting action, serving as a central forum for coordinating the ethical, normative and intellectual issues of our time, fostering multidisciplinary exchange and mutual understanding, working – where possible and desirable – towards universal agreements on these issues, defining benchmarks and mobilizing international opinion.

This site lists each instrument by type and by UNESCO sector of activity. For each instrument you will find HTML versions of the texts in English and French, and links to PDF files from our official documents in the six official languages of UNESCO.

More information :

DocumentsComprehensive report by the Director-General on UNESCO's standard-setting instruments (38 C/INF.6)
DocumentsThe Committee on Conventions and Recommendations - 2014 Edition
DocumentsBasic Texts - 2014 Edition
DocumentsThe Executive Board of UNESCO - 2012 edition
DocumentsUNESCO's procedure for the protection of human rights: the legislative history of the 104 EX/3.3 Procedure
DocumentsStandard-setting in UNESCO
DocumentsFramework Guidelines
Adopted by the Executive Board at its 177th session (177 EX/Decision 35 II) and amended at its 196th session (196 EX/Decision 20)  
DocumentsSpecific multi-stage procedure for the monitoring of the implementation of UNESCO conventions and recommendations for which no specific institutional mechanism is provided
Adopted by the Executive Board at its 177th session (177 EX/Decision 35 I) and amended at its 196th session (196 EX/Decision 20)  
DocumentsDocuments concerning the CR Committee since the 159th session of the Executive Board
© UNESCO 1995-2010 - ID: 12024