Terms of Reference
Background and Objectives
- In 2005, the Secretary-General established a High-level Group for the Alliance of Civilizations (AoC) initiative, under the co-sponsorship of the Governments of Spain and Turkey. The Group’s mandate was to explore the roots of polarization between societies and cultures today and to recommend a practicable program of action aimed at promoting mutual understanding and respect among diverse communities.
- The High-level Group submitted its Report to the Secretary-General in November 2006. The Report concluded that the roots of the polarization are political in nature and, in order to defuse these tensions, put forward a range of concrete and practical recommendations focusing on the areas of media, youth, education and migration.
- In compliance with the High-level Group’s Report, the Secretary-General appointed a High Representative to oversee the implementation of the recommendations made in the Report.
- The Secretary-General also has established a voluntary Trust Fund for Alliance of Civilizations, as recommended by the Report.
- The primary objectives of the Trust Fund are to support: a. the projects and activities of the Alliance of Civilizations; b. the activities and outreach initiatives undertaken by the High Representative in his official capacity; and c. the AoC Secretariat’s core operational and human resources needs.
Structure and administration
- The Trust Fund is to be administered by the United Nations in accordance with the United Nations Financial Regulations and Rules. The Fund shall be subject to the auditing procedures provided therein. Project management services will be provided by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS).
- The Alliance of Civilizations Annual Report will be submitted to the Secretary-General, who may present it to the General Assembly for information. This Report will include an update on the financial status of the Alliance of Civilizations, including details of contributions to and disbursements from the Fund.
- Contributions to the Trust Fund will be on a voluntary basis. The High Representative, assisted by the AoC Secretariat, will carry out outreach activities with key partners, including governments, foundations, donor agencies and the private sector, to draw attention to the work of the Alliance initiative. The Secretary-General will inform member states and, as appropriate, international organizations, about the establishment of the Trust Fund, and invite them to make contributions. The High Representative also will endeavor to raise funds from various sources.
- The arrangements set out above may be revised by the Secretary-General in consultation with the High Representative in the light of evolving needs and circumstances.