The Committee’s competence in this sphere dates back to the 15th session (1968) of the General Conference, which decided (15 C/Resolution 12.2) to entrust the examination of the implementation of conventions or recommendations to a subsidiary organ of the Executive Board.
The Committee’s terms of reference, however, covered only the examination of those reports expressly entrusted to it. For instance, at its 71st session (1965) the Executive Board required the Committee to examine periodic reports relating to the implementation of the Convention and Recommendation on Discrimination in Education; at its 82nd session (1969) the report of the Joint ILO/UNESCO Committee of Experts on the Application of the Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers; at its 105th session (1978) reports on the implementation of the Convention and Recommendation on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Export, Import and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property.
It should be noted, in this connection, that only periodic reports were submitted to the Committee for examination, the initial special reports Member States were required to submit at the first ordinary session of the General Conference following the adoption of the Convention or Recommendation in question being examined by the Legal Committee of the General Conference.
At its 32nd session, the General Conference, by 32 C/Resolution 77, decided that henceforth it would entrust to the Executive Board, and in particular to the Committee on Conventions and Recommendations, the examination of the reports that it requested from Member States on conventions and recommendations. Accordingly, the distinction between periodic reports and special reports no longer exists. The reports adopted by the Committee following its examination will be submitted to the General Conference with the reports of Member Sates or (if so decided by the General Conference) the analytical summaries thereof, together with the Executive Board’s comments.
In the framework of the strengthening of the first feature of the Committee’s mandate, the Executive Board adopted at its 177th session a Specific multi-stage procedure for the monitoring of the implementation of UNESCO Conventions and recommendations for which no specific institutional mechanism is provided. At that very same session, the Board also adopted framework guidelines for the preparation of reports on the implementation of conventions for whose monitoring the CR Committee is responsible. This legal framework, modified at the 196th session of the Board, applies to the following 2 conventions and 15 recommendations :
- the Convention against Discrimination in Education (Paris, 14 December 1960)
- the Convention on Technical and Vocational Education (Paris, 10 November 1989)
- the Recommendation against Discrimination in Education (14 December 1960)
- the Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers (5 October 1966)
- the Recommendation concerning Education for International Understanding, Cooperation and Peace and Education relating to Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (19 November 1974)
- the Revised Recommendation concerning the International Standardization of Educational Statistics (27 November 1978)
- the Recommendation concerning the Status of the Artist (27 October 1980)
- the Recommendation on the Recognition of Studies and Qualifications in Higher Education (13 November 1993)
- the Recommendation concerning the Status of Higher-Education Teaching Personnel (11 November 1997)
- the Recommendation concerning the Promotion and Use of Multilingualism and Universal Access to Cyberspace (15 October 2003)
- the Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape, including a glossary of definitions (10 November 2011)
- the Recommendation on adult learning and education (13 November 2015)
- the Recommendation concerning Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) (13 November 2015)
- the Recommendation concerning the protection and promotion of museums and collections, their diversity and their role in society (17 November 2015)
- the Recommendation concerning the preservation of, and access to, documentary heritage including in digital form (17 November 2015)
- the Recommendation on Science and Scientific Researchers (13 November 2017)
- the Recommendation on Open Educational Resources (OER) (25 November 2019)