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Collection of research on UNESCO

Collection consists of relevant research on the Organization (dissertations, papers, articles etc.), mostly done by scholars who used the archives for their research work. Researchers are asked to send a copy of their work back to the Archives which then registers it sequentially under the three series in this Collection.

Legal Instruments

In the course of its activities, UNESCO enters into legal agreements with member states, international and regional organizations, non-governmental organizations, universities, foundations, private companies and individuals. UNESCO’s General Conference also adopts international standard-setting instruments, including, so far, twenty-nine conventions, thirty-two recommendations, and thirteen declarations. In addition to this, UNESCO can be the designated depository for instruments adopted by other intergovernmental conferences. Member states then issue and send legal instruments to UNESCO in reponse to these standard-setting instruments. The Collection consists of legal instruments transferred to the Archives and registered by Archives staff in one of the following three series: A) Instruments signed with member states; B) Instruments signed with organizations, companies and private individuals; and C) Donations, bequests and legacies.

Central Registry Collection

The collection consists of UNESCO records that were routed to and organized by a centralized Registry Section. The principal and system of classification used by the Registry was Universal Decimal Classification. The collection is further organized into three series based on three chronological periods: 1946-1956; 1957-1966; and 1967 to roughly 1989.

UNESCO. Registry Section

UNESCO Web archives

Since 2004, the UNESCO Archives and Records Management Unit crawled the UNESCO portal and archived approximately three snapshots of the UNESCO Internet and Intranet per year with some snapshots of field office websites as well. From 2010 onwards, the regularly scheduled snapshots have ceased and captures are now done on request of the unit or office. The snapshots contain the html-contents of the portal while all other file formats, such as .pdf, .doc, etc. are excluded from the crawls. The structure is then reconstructed by sector or office. The collection is arranged in two main series: Intranet pages and Internet pages.

Electronic records

In 2004 UNESCO launched an electronic records management initiative in order to archive the growing number of e-mails and electronic documents. The collection is arranged based on the Secretariat's classification system for electronic records.

UNESCO Publications

Works published by UNESCO itself under its own imprint (complete until December 1971, afterwards some publications might be missing or only be available in the UNESCO library)

Publications of UNESCO Staff associations

Periodicals of the UNESCO Staff Associations until 1980:

Published by the STA/STU

  • Mercury, from 1946-1948

  • UNESCO Staff Association Bulletin, from 1949-1955

  • Opinion, from 1955-1980 (at UNESCO Archives), copies of all exemplars until today kept by the STU

  • Consenus, Newsletter of the ISAU, kept in their archives

  • Lien/Link, Newsletter of the AFUS, kept in their archives