The first series of dialogues between Member States and the Assistant Directors-General for all programme sectors were held to discuss the Organization's new strategy. The discussions were conducted in both a constructive manner and a considerate atmosphere with each participant welcoming the initiative as a useful and innovative one. Moreover, the strong participation at the first series of dialogues demonstrated the special interest in this exercise.
The discussions focused primarily on the major trends and challenges that will affect UNESCO's work in the next ten years. These initial dialogues with Member States were an opportunity for the free exchange of ideas and the informal initiation of a joint reflection on the future of our Organization. They also established a forum for discussion in which Member States were able to put forward their questions and expectations with regard to the Organization’s Medium-Term Strategy.
Each Member State offered valuable reflections and proposed preliminary approaches to contribute to the joint identification of an effective strategy with the capacity to anticipate future challenges and meet the 2030 Agenda.
The Member States mentioned the Organization’s need for capacity building in the area of public policy and the need to increase policy instruments for the field offices, which are considered the operational guarantors of UNESCO’s programmes. This should lead to increased measuring of the impact of actions and ensure their follow up, and should also lead to greater collaboration with Member States.
In sum, innovation, anticipation, and inclusion were the watchwords for the Assistant Directors-General and the Member States, establishing the common ground on which they pledged to make every endeavour to ensure the success of this undertaking.
The active participation of Member States and the involvement of the Assistant Directors-General demonstrate the willingness to commit fully to joint reflection from the very outset of the process. This shared resolve is the key to UNESCO’s success, as so aptly put by the Deputy Director-General in his opening statement: “Your participation is not only important, but also a guarantee for the success of our process of strategic transformation”.
The Bureau of Strategic Planning (BSP) and the Strategic Transformation Support Unit, in collaboration with the programme sectors, organized this first series of dialogues within the framework of pillar 3 of the Organization’s strategic transformation. These initial dialogues will be followed by meetings, which will have cross-cutting and interdisciplinary themes, with Member States and their National Commissions for UNESCO, intergovernmental bodies, staff and any other actors concerned.
Bureau of Strategic Planning