Cooperation with International Organizations (UNESCO,UNU)

April 1, 2024

1. Establishment, Location:

  • November 16, 1945 UNESCO Constitution adopted in London
  • November 4, 1946 UNESCO Constitution comes into effect. Headquarters located in Paris

(Japan joins UNESCO on July 2, 1951)

2. Purpose:

The purpose of the Organization is to contribute to peace and security by promoting collaboration among the nations of the world through education, science and culture, in order to further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations. (UNESCO Constitution , Article 1, Paragraph 1.)

3. Number of Member States:

194 Member States and 12 Associate Members

4. Amount of Regular Budget (for two years):

  • • 2022-2023: USD 1,447,757,820

5. Scale of Assessments of Major Countries (2024 Budget): Top Five Countries

USA (22%), China (15.364%), Japan (8.091%), Germany (6.155%), UK (4.407%), France 4.349%)

6. Japan's Share of Contributions:

  • 2023: Approximately 3,700 million yen

7. Secretariat:

(1) Director-General

Audrey Azoulay (former Minister of Culture and Communication of France)

Ms. Azoulay is the tenth Director-General. She was appointed to a four-year term in November 2017, and reelected to another four-year term in November 2021.

Irina Bokova (former Foreign Minister of Bulgaria)

Ms. Bokova is the ninth Director-General. She was appointed to a four-year term in November 2009, and reelected to another four-year term until November 2017.

Koichiro Matsuura (former Ambassador of Japan to France)

Mr. Matsuura is the eighth Director-General. He was appointed to a six-year term in November 1999 and reelected to a four-year term (from November 2005 to November 2009).

(2) Secretariat Staff (Note: staff from all sources of funding at all levels, as of December 2022)

  • Number of staff: 2,446
  • Japanese staff: 50

(Note: regarding the desirable number of staff members (professionals or above) by nationality (the total is 665), Japan achieves normal representation with 35 staff members, which ranks second after France, as of December 2022.)

8. Outline of Projects:

International intellectual cooperation (setting of international rules, international conferences of experts, liaison of international academic projects, information exchange, publications, etc.) in fields including education, science, culture and communication, as well as support projects in developing countries.

9. Japan's Contributions:

  • (1) UNESCO was the first UN organization that Japan joined after World War II. Japan's entry in 1951 marked its post-war return to the international community.

    Today, Japan shoulders the third largest share of the UNESCO Regular Budget. In addition to its financial contribution to UNESCO, Japan has directly contributed to the administrative operation of UNESCO as a member of the Executive Board of UNESCO.
  • (2) Furthermore, Japan is cooperating with various UNESCO activities. From 2018, the new “Japanese Funds-in-trust for UNESCO Programme” was made, based on the three existing Funds-in-trust, namely (UNESCO Japanese Trust Fund for the Preservation of the World Cultural Heritage, the UNESCO Japanese Trust Fund for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage and the UNESCO Japanese Trust Fund for Capacity-Building of Human Resourses). Under the new Funds-in-Trust, Japan supports important projects which serve its national interest among all UNESCO programmes ( education, culture, science, communications and information, natural science etc ) not limited to its previous areas of cooperation.

    Furthermore, to support UNESCO projects for the promotion of education and the capacity-building of human resources in developing countries, Japan established Funds- in-Trust within UNESCO such as the Japanese Funds-in-Trust for the Promotion of Education in Asia and the Pacific Region (since 2009) and Japanese Funds-in-Trust for Scientific Programme on Global Challenges in Asia and the Pacific Region (since 2007).
Back to Cooperation with International Organizations (UNESCO,UNU)