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United Nations Coherence

Improving how the UN works

Implementing the 2012 QCPR Resolution

© UNICEF/NYHQ2012-0156/Nyani Quaryme

The Quadrennial Comprehensive Policy Review (QCPR) resolution was adopted by the General Assembly in December 2012. It provides the framework for the operational activities of the UN for the period 2013-2016. UNICEF particularly welcomes the QCPR’s emphasis on results-based management and the streamlining of programming and business processes in order to reduce transaction costs. Likewise, the strong emphasis on improving the functioning of the Resident Coordinator system is expected to reinforce the way agencies work together at country level to deliver results.    

Together with the UN Development Group (UNDG), we are developing a common Action Plan to implement and monitor the QCPR.  UNICEF Deputy Executive Director, Yoka Brandt, will play a key role in driving this process as the new Chair of the UNDG Advisory Group in 2013. The resolution contains some 178 mandates requiring action by different actors,  of which 42 actions are time-specific. Among these, 29 require reporting, 20 involve the establishment of policies/processes, and 11 are called for by the end of 2013.  

In parallel to the development of the UNDG Action Plan we are already moving on the following fronts:   

  • UNICEF will ensure that the upcoming Medium Term Strategic Plan (MTSP) for 2014 -2017 is consistent with the QCPR. In order to streamline reporting processes, UNICEF intends to reflect key indicators of QCPR implementation in the 2014-2017 MTSP. This is expected to simplify reporting.   
  • UNICEF is actively involved in the development of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for countries that volunteer to adopt the Delivering as One (DaO) approach (see article on page 3). The SOPs are expected to improve the way we work to deliver results.   
  • UNICEF is committed to supporting the functioning of a cost-effective Resident Coordinator (RC) System through cost-sharing modalities. Since 2012, UNICEF has been actively engaged in the UNDG to develop a cost-sharing formula for a cost-effective RC system that supports the UN Country Team to accelerate results on the ground.  

UNICEF looks forward to working with partners and Member States to further enhance coherence of UN operational activities in order to accelerate results for the most vulnerable children.  

© UNICEF/NYHQ2012-0184/Olivier Asselin


Following the Stocktaking meeting on Delivering as One held in Tirana (June 2012) and the adoption of the QCPR resolution adopted in December 2012, UNICEF has been actively engaged in the UNDG to develop Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). These provide an integrated package of guidelines to facilitate implementation of the DaO approach. In the process of developing the SOPs, a set of policy and procedural changes were identified to support DaO that require Headquarters actions.

The SOPs cover all 5 pillars of DaO, namely One Leader, One Programme, One Common Budgetary Framework, Operating as One and Communicating as One. They represent a step forward in standardization and simplification of programming and operational practices while allowing for flexibility to facilitate adaptation to national contexts. The SOPs address areas of weakness identified in the 2012 independent evaluation of DaO, taking into consideration the lessons learned and good practices. For example, the independent evaluation identified as an issue the high transaction costs for the development of the One Programme.

The SOPs therefore suggest a simplified approach to programme development. The SOPs show that significant gains are possible in the streamlining of programmatic and operational processes to strengthen the focus on results and reduce transaction costs. This would directly contribute to implementing some of the recommendations in the QCPR, such as the need to simplify the UNDAF process.



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