UNESCO Staff Associations

Identity area

Type of entity

Corporate body

Authorized form of name

UNESCO Staff Associations

Parallel form(s) of name

Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules

Other form(s) of name

Identifiers for corporate bodies

Description area

Dates of existence



The first Staff association of UNESCO (STA) was established in 1947. For the first 35 years of UNESCO existence, this organisation was the only association officially recognized by the Administration as representative of the UNESCO's staff.
In 1981 another staff association emerged: the ISAU (International Staff Association of UNESCO). Both associations, the STA and ISAU represent all different groups of UNESCO Staff members and have the same functions and activities.
In 1995/96 the STA changed its name from UNESCO Staff Association into UNESCO Staff Union (STU) in order to respond to a demand of FICSA (Federation of International Civil Servants' Associations). Despite the change of name, the organisation and activities of the associations stayed the same.

Over the years, there have been several attempts to divide the existing two staff associations in order to create associations who would be responsible for only the General or Professional Staff. But none of these attempts have been successful or would have been recognized as representative for UNESCO Staff.

In 1991, a new kind of association emerged: the AFUS (Association of former UNESCO Staff) who deals with all kind of questions concerning the former Staff members of UNESCO.


Paris, UNESCO Headquarters.

Legal status

Representative of UNESCO's staff.

Functions, occupations and activities

According to its statute the main objectives of UNESCO Staff Associations are:

  • to safeguard the collective and individual rights of its members in their professional capacity;

  • to preserve and strengthen the unity of the Secretariat as a body of international civil servants;

  • to help achieve the purposes set out in the Constitution of UNESCO;

  • to ensure that staff working conditions are satisfactory and in accordance with the principles set forth in the Constitution and the Staff Rules and Regulations;

  • to improve the status of staff members, maintain morale and aid those of its members who find themselves in difficulty;

  • to organize cultural and recreational activities for UNESCO staff.

The Staff Association participates in all joint consultative bodies dealing with the collective and individual rights and interests of the staff, and must be consulted by the Director-General and the Administration on all reforms concerning the management of human resources. It is authorized to take the floor before the Executive Board and the General Conference. It further provides advises to its members and can represent them before their supervisors, the Administration or joint bodies on issues related to compensation for damage, interpersonal conflicts or career advancement.

Mandates/sources of authority

Appendix 28A of UNESCO Administrative Manual.

Internal structures/genealogy

General context

Relationships area

Related entity


Identifier of the related entity

Category of the relationship


Dates of the relationship

Description of relationship

Access points area


Control area

Authority record identifier

Institution identifier

Rules and/or conventions used


Level of detail

Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Created by Julia Pohle, August 2009.




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