Improvements in Management Practices

NSIAD-93-159: Published: Mar 23, 1993. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 1993.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization's (UNESCO) management practices, focusing on: (1) UNESCO implementation of 12 GAO management recommendations; (2) UNESCO management improvement efforts; and (3) the UNESCO Participation Program.

GAO found that UNESCO: (1) has implemented or made progress on 8 of the 12 GAO recommendations; (2) has developed a decentralization policy, but it is based on administrative efficiency rather than on its international role as its governing bodies envisioned; (3) member states have not reached a consensus on how much to decentralize activities, but officials are including decentralization in their 1994 to 1995 budget; (4) has improved its program planning, evaluation, and tracking, but further improvements are necessary for the Participation Program since UNESCO lacks reliable information on it; (5) has improved its personnel system by rating employee performance, adopting a new promotion policy, reorganizing several units and eliminating positions, centralizing and improving information on its temporary staff, and implementing a flextime system; (6) is making improvements to its budget presentation as recommended by including tables comparing budgeted and actual expenditures and the impact of exchange rate fluctuations; and (7) has demonstrated a commitment to management reform by creating a deputy director general for management, giving management reform top priority, and implementing major reform initiatives.

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