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Stephen Browne

Co-Director of the Future United Nations Development System;
Fellow, Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies, The Graduate Center, City University of New York

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Stephen Browne, Co-Director of the Future United Nations Development System discuses how UN Development systems could be and do better. He describes the objectives of the FUND project while examining the performance and relevance of the system. In order for the system to be improved, Browne stresses the need to concentrate on the system as whole, not just on individual organizations that comprise it. The need for reforms has been culminating as the end of the Millennium Development Goals of 2015 draws near. Browne argues that in order for the UN Development system to reform, it needs to overcome three critical challenges: marginalization, organizational coherence, and complacency. The UN deals with some marginal responsibility in helping independent nations to achieve their goals, but Browne states that the UN is too willing to say that they are responsible for the goals, when in reality, it should be the individual countries who should be held responsible for reaching their goals.

Works by Stephen Browne and Additional Resources

About Stephen Browne
Stephen Browne is a Fellow of the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies, the Graduate Center, City University of New York, and Director of the project. He worked for more than 30 years in different organisations of the UN development system, sharing his time almost equally between agency headquarters and country assignments in three different developing regions. In the 1970s he worked as an economic researcher in Thailand. In the 1980s, he was the humanitarian coordinator in Somalia. In the 1990s, he was the UN Representative, first in newly-independent Ukraine during its early transition, and then in Rwanda during a period of post-conflict reconstruction. More recently he was convenor of the UN system poverty task-force, and focal point in UNDP, New York, for poverty and social policy, finance for development and capacity development.  His last UN job was Deputy Executive Director of the International Trade Centre in Geneva, the city where he now resides. He was trained as an economist at Cambridge and Paris Universities and worked as an economic consultant in London before joining the UN. He has researched, written and published books and articles on aid and development throughout his career.

Recorded May 2013