The Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe has a vast portfolio of activities to provide operational support, raise awareness and develop capacities of different stakeholders, including from governments and the civil society.
Science & Culture for Sustainable Development
We are a key player in cultural cooperation in the region, providing support of Member States in achieving SDGs 5, 8, 10, 11, 16 and 17, though a variety of activities. Our projects aim to: improve the management of World Heritage properties and the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage for sustainable development; assess the impact and promote the role of culture for development in South-East Europe; promote coexistence, respecting diversity, increasing participation, awareness and influence of youth in political dialogue; improve emergency preparedness and response to natural and human-induced hazards, including support to post-disaster recovery; fight against the illicit trafficking of cultural property in, from and through the region; support regional platforms for cultural cooperation and joint action, to enhance stability and reconciliation in the region; and, protect and promote museums and collections, and their role in societies.
In line and in support of UNESCO custodian role in SDG 6 - Clean water and sanitation, we have provided active support to the establishment of the “Global Network of Water Museums” (IHP). The bureau promotes the role of Biosphere Reserves, as contribution to SDG 14 and SDG 15, and has organized the 2017 MAB Youth Forum, the first of its kind. with youth delegates from over 85 countries. The bureau successfully participates in EU-funded project such as I-REACT, CHEAP-GHSPs, GEO4CIVIHIC and SHELTER to develop disaster risk management tools and promote the use of renewable energy and mitigation approaches to climate change as a contribution to SDGs 7 and 13.
Other activities under UNESCO's mandate
This bureau contributes to Preventing the Violent Extremism through Education (PVE-E), within SDG 4.7 Education for sustainable development and global citizenship, through regional work, in-country activities and dissemination of PVE guidelines in local languages. Further action is envisaged pending funding.
As a way to contribute to SDGs 4 - Quality Education and 14 - Life Below Water, we are developing a global Ocean Literacy programme. The bureau has organized a Plastic Free initiative, published an Ocean Literacy Toolkit that will be testedis being tested in schools part belonging to the UNESCO of ASPNnet and is an active contributor to the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030).
UNESCO’s Contribution to the UN Reform
In 2017, UN Secretary-General António Guterres advanced detailed proposals for reforms to the UN development system (UNDS) in line with the Quadrennial Comprehensive Policy Review (QCPR) mandates. This process is part of the Secretary-General’s broader reform agenda, aiming to enhance the UN’s contribution to sustainable development, ensure the effective reform of the peace and security and management reform, and increase the UN system’s impact on the ground.