FACT SHEET ON UN DELIVERING AS ONE
I. The ‘One UN’ initiative evolved from the reform agenda set by UN member states out of the need to generate new impetus in addressing the increasing challenges of global development. It was borne out of the realization that for the UN to deliver on its promises, radical reforms were necessary. The Secretary-General launched the initiative in January 2007 in eight pilot countries: Albania, Cape Verde, Mozambique, Pakistan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uruguay, and Viet Nam.
II. It is part of the UN system’s response to mandates from the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council and other governing bodies, most notably the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review resolutions of 2001, 2004 and 2007.
III. The main objectives of “Delivering as One” are to increase the impact of the UN system at country level by increasing national ownership of UN activities, to reduce transaction costs generated by UN organizations and to increase the UN’s effectiveness. In doing so, expertise from across the UN System is harnessed thus creating synergies between UN organizations.
IV. It is hoped that “Delivering as One” will increase the impact of UN operational activities in support of national priorities, help countries to attain the Millennium Development Goals and other development objectives.
V. Based on the agreements made by UN Member States at the 2005 World Summit, the Secretary-General formed a High-Level Panel on System-Wide Coherence to consider major reforms on how the UN system works in the fields of development, humanitarian assistance and the environment. Its report, “Delivering as One,” was released in November 2006. The High-Level Panel offered a number of recommendations. For development operations, the panel framed its proposals around four “ones.”
- One Programme
- One Empowered Leader and Empowered Team
- One Budgetary Framework
- One Office
VI. It is important to note that these “ones” were based on existing guidance from the General Assembly in the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review (TCPR). In many ways, they were an endorsement of what the UN system was already doing and a call to push further. The panel proposed the launch of “Delivering as One” pilot exercises in which selected UN Country Teams would put the four ‘ones’ into practice.
- The pilots are supported by the UN Development Group which unites the 33 UN funds, programmes, agencies, departments and offices that play a role in development. The group’s common objective is to deliver more coherent, effective and relevant support to countries. Established by the Secretary-General in 1997, the UNDG designs system-wide guidance to coordinate, harmonize and align UN development activities.
- In cooperation with UN Regional Directors Teams, the UNDG also helps country team members develop and apply innovative ways of working together. This includes special support for the eight “Delivering as One” pilot countries.
- The Development Operations Coordination Office (DOCO) supports both the UNDG and the eight pilots. It facilitates the preparation of annual stocktaking report for major stakeholders in the UN system and member governments. To cite an example, DOCO also helped execute the Maputo Seminar for the eight Delivering as One government and other reform countries.
- The eight pilots are making reforms based on four principles: One Programme, One Leader and Team, One Budgetary Framework and One Office. These changes respond to varied needs while drawing on all parts of the UN system whether based in the country or not.
- The exercise has already helped to align programmes and funding more closely to national priorities. In particular, it has strengthened government leadership and ownership.
- It is ensuring that governments have access to the experience and expertise of a wider range of United Nations organizations to respond to their national priorities.
- Several issues in which the UN focuses on have seen increased emphasis, most notably being support to the productive sector, employment, trade, protection of the environment, adaptation to climate change, the global food crisis and the financial crisis.
- This improvement has emerged from a process where UN agencies that aren’t physically present in the pilot countries have been able to spend more time advising their governments without having to set up costly offices.
VII. Zambia is not amongst the pilot countries; however, the ‘One UN’ concept is manifested in two key instruments.
United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) – the planning framework for the development operations of the UN system in the host country. It provides a collective UN response to the national priorities based on the CCA and plays a crucial role in articulating the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The UNDAF promotes joint planning and designing of programmes, thus increasing the impact of UN efforts.
The UNDAF has been instrumental in enhancing the UN system coordination and support to Zambia’s development objectives. It is central to promoting consultation between the range of Zambia’s development partners and the UN under the guidance of the Resident Coordinator (RC).
VIII. The UN System in Zambia is moving towards more coordinated and effective UN technical assistance, policy advice in support of national priorities and the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals and other internationally agreed development goals and treaty obligations.
At the UNCT Annual Retreat in February 2010, Heads of Agencies agreed on specific actions to be taken to strengthen coordination structures and mechanisms for effectively moving towards a self starter ‘Delivering as One’. To the effect, coordination structures and mechanisms for both UNDAF and Delivering as One have been put in place as depicted below: