- 1946- (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
Name of creator
As an organizational unit of UNESCO, the Office of the Director-General has in certain periods been considered to include the Director-General, the Deputy-Director General, the Executive Office and any services that report directly to the Director-General as opposed to an Assistant-Director General in charge of a sector. However, based on the status described in the Constitution, the Director-General is not a staff member of UNESCO, and so cannot be considered a part of any organizational unit. The Deputy Director-General, while periodically considered to be included in the Office of the Director-General, has also existed structurally within a separate Office of the Deputy Director-General. The idea of a Directorate has existed since 1959 when it was the unit within ODG which included the Executive Officer, Executive Secretary and other staff supporting the activities of the Director-General. This incarnation of the Directorate was renamed the Executive Office of the Director-General in 1962. The term Directorate, or ‘la Direction Générale,’ was then reintroduced in 1975 to describe the grouping of the Director-General, Deputy-Director General, as well as any special advisers and personal support staff. In 1982, the concept of the Directorate was expanded to include the Assistant Director-Generals and supporting staff were grouped into a unit called the Secretariat of the Director-General. By 1985, the term Directorate was used to refer to the Director-General, Deputy Director-General, their support staff, and the Executive Office of the Director-General and the units attached to the Executive Office. The Directorate (DRG) was most distinctly separate from the ODG in the period 1990-1999. During this period, the ODG referred to a smaller office supporting the Director-General. The Directorate was the larger body encompassing the units attached to two Deputy Director-Generals (for Programme and Management) from 1990 to 1993. The Directorate was overseen by an Assistant Director-General (ADG) beginning in 1994 and some of the services that formerly reported directly to the Director-General, then reported to the ADG/DRG. In 1999, the post of ADG/DRG was eliminated and the services attached to the Director-General were moved to appropriate programme sectors or central services.
The Executive Office of the Director-General (ODG), or ‘le Cabinet’ (CAB) in French, continues now to support the Director-General and the Deputy Director-General in the execution of their duties and to coordinate the central services of the Organization which report directly to the Director-General. ODG is led by an Executive Director.
ODG has had the following heads: Director René Maheu 1949-1953; Director Mahdi Elmandjra 1963-1965; Director Manuel Jimenez 1966-1969; Director Gérard Bolla 1969-1971; Director Pierre Henri Coeytaux 1972-1974; Director José Blat Gimeno 1975-1976?; Acting Director Chikh Bekri 1976; Director Chikh Bekri 1976-1986; Assistant Director-General Ernesto Melo Antunes 1986-1987; Director Luis Marques 1989- 1991; Director Georges Malempré 1992-1994, Assistant Director-General for Directorate and Director CAB Daniel Janicot 1994; Director Solomon Hailu 1995-1996; Director Georges Malempré 1997-1999; Executive Director/Assistant Director-General Françoise Rivière 2000-2006; Executive Director Elizabeth Longworth 2006-2009; and, Executive Director Ryuhei Hosoya 2010-.