Seventy years ago this month, UNESCO was founded in London, mandated to be the United Nation’s Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation responsible for developing the “Intellectual and moral solidarity of mankind” as a means for building peace and intercultural dialogue. Today, UNESCO is undergoing a process of reform, which aims to strengthen delivery of its core mission of furthering peace, security and sustainable development.
Within this context, the UK National Commission for UNESCO (UKNC) undertook a UK-wide survey of UNESCO-affiliated organisations to explore what value UNESCO brings to the UK and how more value might be derived from UNESCO for the UK.

The results, captured in the report, are encouraging.

  • Financial value: UNESCO helped UK affiliated institutions and bodies to attract at least £100m in additional income from April 2014 to March 2015;
  • Support for UK government policy: UNESCO-supported activity in the UK complements a broad portfolio of UK-government and devolved administration policies.

The research also suggests that there is significant untapped potential for UNESCO in the UK, which York is looking to unlock with its new key projects for designation.