Official partnership is the privileged way of cooperation with the Organization. Official partnership with UNESCO is more than just an accreditation. It consists in a mutual engagement to cooperate and work together in the Organization’s fields of competence.
A more sustained cooperation
Official partnership arrangements include bilateral modalities of cooperation as well as collective modalities of collaboration.
Bilateral cooperation: the involvement of NGOs in programme implementation hinges on their expertise in one or more of UNESCO’s fields of competence. Bilateral cooperation is therefore essentially thematic and can intervene at different functional areas of activity (e.g. capacity building, advocacy, technical support; standard setting, consultation mechanisms, etc.).
Collective cooperation: the collective cooperation is reserved for NGOs in official partnership. Different mechanisms allow promoting exchanges among NGOs and coordinated actions:
- the International Conference of NGOs which brings together all NGOs in official partnership every two years to review the state of cooperation with UNESCO and to conduct collective consultation on the main lines of UNESCO’s programme;
- the NGO-UNESCO Liaison Committee, elected by the International Conference of NGOs, who represents the interests of all the NGOs partners with regard to UNESCO;
- the Executive Board’s Committee on Non-Governmental Partners where all NGOs in official partnership are invited to participate.
A better visibility and privileged exchanges
UNESCO uses several modalities to ensure permanent communication with its NGOs, official partners, and the visibility of this cooperation towards general public:
- A database of NGOs, foundations and similar institutions enjoying official partnership with UNESCO, publicly available;
- a regular monthly communication targeted specifically for NGOs, aiming at sharing information on major activities and events of the Organization and better involving NGOs in their elaboration and implementation;
- a web space specifically devoted to NGOs activities, publications and any other relevant information concerning partner organizations.