“Secretary-General Guterres’s Reform Agenda: aligning the United Nations Development System with Agenda 2030”
By Luciana R. Campos

Member States admit the urgent need to overcome the acute institutional fragmentation of the UN system in order to effectively deliver UN operational activities and avoid inefficiencies, such as the duplication of projects and the competition for funds among UN agencies.

In order to optimize reform impulses – which often emerge in the initial stages of an incoming Secretary-General’s mandate – Guterres’ proposals to reposition the United Nations Development System need to build on previous consensus and reforms lessons by following-up and reinvigorating successful initiatives, while also addressing unintended consequences of the changes introduced by his proposals.

A system-wide harmonization of UNDS is in line with the integrated and horizontal nature of the Agenda 2030, giving momentum for a much needed investment in reforms. The Agenda 2030 call for partnerships for development must also resonates within UN and be translated into greater and better interactions among its own agencies .

A more cohesive and effective UNDS that is able to deliver its mandate will reinforce the UN’s relevance in a context where the organization’s values are threatened by the crisis of the liberal multilateral order.

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About the Author
Luciana R. Campos is a PhD candidate in International Relations at the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais – Brazil, with a visiting period at Balsillie School of International Affairs – Canada. Her research interests include the nexus between International Politics, Development Cooperation and Public Policy, with emphasis on the research and teaching of institutional arrangements and their reforms. Luciana’s research currently focuses on the influence of tensions between institutional and material resources within UN system over its reform dynamics, especially the emergence and diffusion of Delivering as One Initiative, having experience with World Health Organization in Vietnam, one of the initiative pilot countries.

Feature image credit UN Photo/Cia Pak