Economic and Social Council Reform

*As the issue of ECOSOC reform has been settled for the time being, the Center for UN Reform Education will only continue reporting on this issue sporadically.

Latest Updates

ECOSOC Resumes Today, Recently Launched New Mechanisms
by, 12 September 2008
The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) meets today for its resumed substantive session. The meeting follows the conclusion of the Council’s two newest functions – the Development Cooperation Forum (DCF) and the Annual Ministerial Review (AMR) – during the Council’s June/July 2008 substantive session.

UN Webcast
DPI, 20 February 2007
Ambassador Munir Akram of Pakistan, Chair of G77, on the group's agenda and UN Reform.

UN Webcast
DPI, 13 December 2006
Ambassador Ali Hachani of Tunisia, President of the Economic and Social Council on ECOSOC reform.

Agreement reached on Draft Resolution for the Strengthening of ECOSOC
14 November 2006
On November 14, 2006, Member States reached agreement on a draft resolution for the strengthening of the Economic and Social Council.

"A Strengthened United Nations’ Economic and Social Council.
Agreement on draft resolution still delayed" - UN REFORM WATCH No. 20

by Irene Martinetti, 26 October 2006
A Resolution on the strengthening of the United Nations Economic and Social Council is expected to be adopted by the end of October. A draft resolution was distributed as early as January 2006, but its adoption has been delayed by disagreements amongst Member States on some key issues such as allocation of additional resources, the collaboration of ECOSOC with the Peacebuilding Commission, and its enhanced role in humanitarian affairs, among others.

At the World Summit in September 2005 UN Member States agreed to reform and strengthen the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) by enhancing its existing mandates as well as by assigning it new key functions.

The new functions to be entrusted to the ECOSOC are enshrined in paragraphs 155 and 156 of the World Summit Outcome Document. Recognizing the need for a more effective organ for coordination, policy review, policy dialogue and recommendations on issues of economic and social development, Member States suggested that the Council should "serve as a quality platform for high level engagement" between States and financial institutions, private sector and civil society on emerging global trends. Member States requested that a biennial high-level Development Cooperation Forum be held to review trends in international development cooperation and to promote coherence amongst development's actors. The ECOSOC will also be entrusted with the function of following up the outcomes of the major UN conferences and summits through, inter alia, annual ministerial-level reviews to assess progress. Member States also asked the Council to "support and complement international efforts aimed at addressing humanitarian emergencies" and that it play a bigger role in the coordination of funds, programs and agencies in order to ensure better coherence and avoid duplication of mandates.

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