U.S. Government Exchange Programs Are Not Being Coordinated in Japan and India

ID-81-41: Published: Mar 30, 1981. Publicly Released: Mar 30, 1981.

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As part of the 1977 Presidential Reorganization Plan and the Executive order implementing it, the International Communication Agency (USICA) was charged with the responsibility of coordinating the international information, educational, cultural, and exchange programs of the U.S. Government. Exchange programs in Japan and India are large and varied, and involve several Federal departments and agencies as well as private organizations and institutions. GAO evaluated the efforts of USICA missions in Japan and India to coordinate all Government sponsored international exchange programs.

GAO found that USICA missions in the two countries were not coordinating the exchange programs of all U.S. Government agencies and that coordination activities in the two countries remained essentially unchanged from those operating prior to the issuance of the Presidential mandate. The missions follow an informal, ad hoc approach in monitoring and sharing information on selected Government exchange programs. Although officials at the missions are involved with programs falling under USICA responsibility, GAO found that they had little information on or knowledge of many of the Government exchange programs operating at the missions. GAO believes it essential that USICA define the limits of the Executive order.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status:

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Director of USICA should draw up and implement a plan designed to achieve coordination in U.S. Government exchange programs as called for in the President's directive. At a minimum, such a plan should prescribe which Government programs are to be included and specific actions to be undertaken within the missions abroad as well as within the involved Washington agencies to bring about more effective coordination of Government exchange activities.

    Agency Affected: International Communication Agency


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