United Nations (1 - 10 of 290 items)
Intellectual Property: Patent Office Should Strengthen Search Capabilities and Better Monitor Examiners' Work
GAO-16-479: Published: Jun 30, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 20, 2016.
Experts and U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) examiners described a variety of challenges in identifying information relevant to a claimed invention—or “prior art”—that can affect examiners' ability to complete a thorough prior art search in the time allotted and their confidence in their search efforts. These challenges include, among others, the quantity and availability of prior...
Iran Nuclear Agreement: The International Atomic Energy Agency's Authorities, Resources, and Challenges
GAO-16-565: Published: Jun 9, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 14, 2016.
As outlined in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was asked to verify and monitor Iran's implementation of a range of nuclear-related commitments. IAEA is using its safeguards authorities and conducting additional activities agreed to by Iran under the JCPOA to do so. Iran's commitments include limits on uranium enrichment levels and on en...
Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: U.S. Assistance to Combat This Harmful Practice Abroad Is Limited
GAO-16-485: Published: Apr 27, 2016. Publicly Released: May 19, 2016.
U.S. and United Nations (UN) studies since 2010 have identified a variety of factors contributing to the persistence of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C). In many communities where FGM/C is prevalent, FGM/C is an influential social norm that ensures social acceptance and is commonly perceived as a religious obligation. In addition, medicalization of the practice— when it is performed by...
SEC Conflict Minerals Rule: Insights from Companies' Initial Disclosures and State and USAID Actions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo Region
GAO-16-200T: Published: Nov 17, 2015. Publicly Released: Nov 17, 2015.
According to a generalizable sample GAO reviewed, company disclosures filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the first time in 2014 in response to the SEC conflict minerals disclosure rule indicated that most companies were unable to determine the source of their conflict minerals. Companies that filed disclosures used one or more of the four “conflict minerals”—tantalum...
International Trade: The United States and European Union Are the Two Largest Markets Covered by Key Procurement-Related Agreements
GAO-15-717: Published: Jul 29, 2015. Publicly Released: Jul 29, 2015.
The United States is a party to, or is currently negotiating, international agreements covering government procurement with 60 countries. From 2008 through 2012 these countries together spent on average about $4.4 trillion annually to procure goods and services and to fund capital projects. This represented about a quarter of their total general government expenditures, and includes spending at th...
United Nations Renovations: Original Scope Reduced and Project Over Budget, but Lessons Learned Could Improve Future Projects
GAO-15-414: Published: May 14, 2015. Publicly Released: May 14, 2015.
The Capital Master Plan (CMP) intended to modernize, secure, and restore the United Nations (UN) Headquarters Complex, is substantially complete. However, the project is 3 years behind schedule primarily due to unplanned security upgrades and is projected to be over budget, while the UN has removed two buildings from its scope due to lack of a feasible solution to security concerns. As of February...
North Korea Sanctions: United States Has Increased Flexibility to Impose Sanctions, but United Nations Is Impeded by a Lack of Member State Reports
GAO-15-485: Published: May 13, 2015. Publicly Released: May 13, 2015.
U.S. executive orders (EO) and the Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act target activities for the imposition of sanctions that include North Korean (Democratic People's Republic of Korea) proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and transferring of luxury goods. The EOs and the act allow the United States to respond by imposing sanctions, such as blocking the assets of persons inv...
United Nations: Key Compensation Elements Should Be Reviewed to Address Costs and Sustainability
GAO-14-546: Published: Jun 26, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 26, 2014.
Benefits and allowances offered by the United Nations (UN) and the U.S. government are generally similar, and GAO found that each provided certain benefits or allowances with greater monetary value than the other. Similar UN and U.S. benefits include retirement plans and health insurance, while similar allowances include hardship and danger pay. Where comparable data were available, GAO found that...
Cruise Vessels: Most Required Security and Safety Measures Have Been Implemented, but Concerns Remain About Crime Reporting
GAO-14-43: Published: Dec 20, 2013. Publicly Released: Jan 13, 2014.
The cruise industry and federal agencies have implemented 11 of 15 Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA) provisions, but implementation of 4 provisions requires the development of regulations and policy, and is underway. Officials from all five cruise lines GAO met with said most required measures were in place when the CVSSA was enacted. According to U.S. Coast Guard officials, a notice o...
Foreign Assistance: U.S. Programs Involving the Palestine Investment Fund
GAO-13-537: Published: Jul 25, 2013. Publicly Released: Aug 26, 2013.
U.S. agencies and implementing partners participate in various programs with the Palestine Investment Fund (PIF) or PIF-owned entities that include home mortgage financing, loan guarantees, and educational initiatives. First, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) along with PIF and other entities have committed to lend $485 million to the Affordable Mortgage and Loan Company (AMAL) to...