Regional and Country Coordination

UN Member States have called on UN organizations providing regional and national development programmes to coordinate and harmonize their efforts, including to support the achievement of national gender equality priorities.

On the regional level, UN Women and UN regional commissions assist efforts to uphold agreed gender equality norms, working through regional coordination mechanisms and UN Development Group teams of regional directors. On the national level, UN Women engages with other UN entities through UN country teams, gender theme groups, joint programmes and the preparation of UN development assistance frameworks.

Delivering as one

In eight pilot countries, UN country offices have agreed to “deliver as one” through common programmes and operations. The countries include Albania, Cape Verde, Mozambique, Pakistan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uruguay and Viet Nam.

UN Women plays a leading role in ensuring the centrality of gender equality, such as through the inclusion of gender equality measures in programmes, the participation of women’s advocates, and the adoption of indicators to measure performance on gender equality and track funds dedicated to achieving it.

We have helped bring UN consolidated support behind national women’s mechanisms to influence national development agendas, and to manage coordinated responses across different government ministries so they collectively contribute to gender equality goals. A 2012 independent evaluation concluded that the One Programme model adopted under Delivering as One has allowed the UN system to more effectively address gender equality.

In 2011, UN country offices in Tanzania launched the first common development plan in UN history, covering all activities. Through the advocacy of UN Women and other champions of women’s empowerment within and outside the UN system, the plan adopted gender equality as a core programming principle against which every key action has to be monitored. It established specific activities and results for women, and made 20 per cent of the allocation of common funds dependent on demonstrating gender equality results.

Joint development programmes

Joint development programmes are another avenue for UN coordination. In 2012, UN Women partnered with other UN entities in implementing 104 joint programmes around the world. One in Ethiopia brought us together with the UN Population Fund, the UN Development Programme, the UN Children’s Fund, the UN Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization and the International Labour Organization.

Grounded in support for the Government’s national development plan, the programme prioritizes education and economic empowerment for women and girls, along with measures to end gender-based violence. In 2011, it trained 6,000 women on business development and management skills, and extended credit and savings services to another 8,000 women to begin or expand businesses.

Gender theme groups

By 2012 gender theme groups have become forums in 106 countries for UN organizations and government counterparts to plan and organize gender equality initiatives. In Cape Verde, for example, the Gender Theme Group conducted a scorecard analysis that highlighted the need to better define joint UN gender priorities and advocacy, and enhance mechanisms to coordinate implementation. A joint UN gender strategy is now being developed to tackle these issues.

The participation of Gender Theme Group members in the preparation of the latest UN development assistance framework in Senegal resulted in the full integration of a series of strong commitments to gender equality, such as a new joint programme on fighting gender-based violence.