In 1945, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)was created in order to respond to the firm belief of nations, forged by two world wars in less than a generation that political and economic agreements are not enough to build a lasting peace. Peace must be established on the basis of humanity’s moral and intellectual solidarity. UNESCO strives to build networks among nations that enable this kind of solidarity, by:
- Mobilizing for education
- Building intercultural understanding
- Pursuing scientific cooperation
- Protecting freedom of expression
UNESCO is known as the "intellectual" agency of the United Nations. At a time when the world is looking for new ways to build peace and sustainable development, people must rely on the power of intelligence to innovate, expand their horizons and sustain the hope of a new humanism. UNESCO exists to bring this creative intelligence to life; for it is in the minds of men and women that the defenses of peace and the conditions for sustainable development must be built.
UNITWIN/UNESCO Chairs Program
Launched in 1992, the UNITWIN/UNESCO Chairs Program promotes international inter-university cooperation and networking to enhance institutional capacities through knowledge sharing and collaborative work. The Program supports the establishment of UNESCO Chairs and UNITWIN Networks in key priority areas related to UNESCO’s fields of competence – i.e. in education, the natural and social sciences, culture and communication.
Through this network, higher education and research institutions all over the globe pool their resources, both human and material, to address pressing challenges and contribute to the development of their societies. In many instances, the Networks and Chairs serve as think tanks and as bridge builders between academia, civil society, local communities, research and policy-making. They have proven useful in informing policy decisions, establishing new teaching initiatives, generating innovation through research and contributing to the enrichment of existing university programs while promoting cultural diversity. In areas suffering from a dearth of expertise, Chairs and Networks have evolved into poles of excellence and innovation at the regional or sub-regional levels. They also contribute to strengthening North-South-South cooperation. Today, the Program involves over 650 institutions in 124 countries.
From UNESCO Website: http://en.unesco.org