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NGO Participation at the United Nations: Barriers and Solutions

Posted on 30 Aug 2010 by: Communication and Outreach Branch [ Content posted by United Nations Secretariat, Agency, or Programme UN ENTITY ]

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NGO Participation at the United Nations: Barriers and Solutions

Non-governmental organizations (NGOs), also known as civil society organizations (CSOs), have existed for hundreds of years, but since the mid-nineteenth century they have been increasing in number and gaining international recognition, particularly among intergovernmental organizations (IGOs). NGOs were accepted and consulted with by the League of Nations during its existence, and were often able to participate in the League's meetings and committees. Due to this recognition, when the United Nations was created in 1945, NGO participation was included in the UN Charter under Article 71 of Chapter 10. Article 71 created the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), whose task was to consult with NGOs on matters that concerned it. This article opened the door for the 3,287 NGOs in consultative status today. This sizeable number is a clear indicator that NGOs find consultative status to be of value; otherwise they would not bother applying. However, the usefulness and level of participation of NGOs in the UN has been hotly debated since NGOs were first granted consultative status, which has led to a number of barriers. This paper will explore some of these barriers, and then discuss some recommendations proposed in the 2004 Cardoso Report that could help reduce them. It concludes with the assertion that if implemented, these solutions from the Cardoso Report could assist NGOs in playing their vital role of carrying out the mission of the United Nations.

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by Amis des Etrangers au Togo (A.D.E.T.) [NGO]
9 Apr 2014

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by International Federation of Translators [NGO]
2 Feb 2010
A very thorough paper thank you and covers the points that deter many NGOs (a shfting population, in many cases, as their boards change periodically) from becoming more actively involved in the civil society/ democracy process. Suggest that emails notify the existence of the invitations that build up in the My Pages section. That, or a Twitter ID dedicated to that aspect alone.

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