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United Nations Coherence

UNICEF Tools for Coherence


ASK - Achieving Strategic Knowledge

UNICEF works actively to make the UN increasingly coherent in development activities, considering this an improved way of working together to get better and faster results for children. Our work for increased coherence is guided by the Comprehensive Policy Reviews of the General Assembly - the most recent being the QCPR of 2012.  

Achieving Strategic Knowledge (ASK) is a tool created to strengthen UNICEF's organizational capacity by 1) providing better support to UNICEF offices (country, regional, national committees and HQ) as they work more coherently within the UN system and 2) establishing clear mechanisms for field offices to share experiences with their peers.  ASK will also serve as a means to capture systematically the lessons and implications of greater UN Coherence.

Since the TCPR recommendations of 2007, UNICEF has made considerable effort and progress towards meeting and achieving UN reform objectives.  Numerous country offices, particularly those piloting Delivering as One and establishing joint offices, have been working to harmonize systems and processes with other agencies in areas pertaining to the programme, leadership, budgetary framework, common services and communication. 

The function of ASK is not only to help those country offices resolve their issues, but to also ensure the sharing of experiences and lessons with other offices.  Promoting this type of knowledge-sharing across regions will enable us to take a more pro-active approach to developing a knowledge base that, as recommended by the Organizational Review, will create greater strategic coherence that will benefit all.  With a more systematic approach to addressing and resolving these issues and problems, country offices will be able to draw from the experiences of others, and regional offices and HQ will be better equipped to provide sound and timely advice.

Currently ASK serves as an email based Coherence "help desk" mechanism where UNICEF offices and staff can go to seek support on any issue related to Coherence, whether it is technical in nature or related to policy.  ASK facilitates the response through a group of global experts in programme guidance, operations, funding and budgeting, communication and partnerships who can provide advice on UN Coherence from their respective areas of expertise.


© UNICEF/NYHQ2006-1500/Giacomo Pirozzi


UNICEF's Handy Guide on UN Coherence:  Delivering Better Results for Children is a concise, easy to read handbook for UNICEF Staff.  It brings together information from across the organization and features a full spectrum of UN Coherence issues relevant to our field offices.  Examples include "Why UN Coherence"?, the Management & Accountability system, UNDG Strategic Priorities, System Wide Coherence, Programming Together, Joint Funding, Improving our Business Practices, Delivering as One, South-South cooperation and working in Middle Income countries.  This guide aims to ensure all UNICEF staff are aware of the latest in UN Coherence.



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