United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

Information meeting of UNESCO’s Executive Board

The second information meeting of UNESCO’s Executive Board for 2008 took place on 18 July, in order to prepare the Board’s 180th Session that will take place from 30 September to 17 October 2008.

In opening the debate, the Chairman of the Board, Mr Olabiyi Babalola Joseph Yaï, noted “the principle of dialogue that drives the nature, objectives and results expected from the information meeting” and underscored the “notable progress on the path that leads from ‘disensus’ to consensus.” The President of UNESCO’s General Conference, Mr George Anastassopoulos, followed, informing the assembly about the state of progress of the deliberations of the General Conference informal working group, which he had put in place. Mr Anastassopoulos paid tribute to the quality of the group’s work, indicating that his report was completed and that he had submitted it to the Chairman of the Board and the Director-General, Mr Koïchiro Matsuura.

The Executive Board’s information meeting was divided in two parts, one dealing with programme issues, the other concentrating on questions related to UN Reform, administration and management. The Director-General introduced each part by an address in which he described the state of the Organization’s priorities and responded in detail to the approximately sixty questions that the Member States had put to the Secretariat.

Regarding programme issues, Mr Matsuura focused in particular on Education for All, UNESCO’s strategy for Climate Change, the preparation for the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, recent normative activities in the field of Culture, the universal year of languages, and the follow-up to the World Summit of the Information Society.

In the second part of his address, the Director-General concentrated in particular on the UN Reform, Decentralization Policy, questions of UNESCO’s visibility, publications policy, and finally, the preparation for the 35 C/5 and the question of the budget for 2010-2011. He called for the next programme to benefit from at least a zero real growth scenario.

After Mr Matsuura concluded his interventions, a session of question and answers took place, allowing for a constructive dialogue on numerous new questions raised by the members of the Board.

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Author(s): Office of the Spokesperson - Source: Flash Info N° 095-2008 -  Publication Date: 22-07-2008

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