Development Reform

Better results for everyone. Everywhere.

Our promise for dignity, prosperity and peace on a healthy planet. The 2030 Agenda requires bold changes to the UN development system (UNDS) for the emergence of a new generation of country teams, centred on a strategic UN Development Assistance Framework and led by an impartial, independent and empowered resident coordinator.

Amina J. Mohammed (UN Deputy Secretary-General) on the Reform of the UN Development System.

A Decade of Action to Deliver the SDGs

“It was about us becoming fit for purpose to carry the 2030 Agenda. This is a whole of society pitch to try to make everyone’s life matter and be included in the development process.”  

Repositioning the UN development system

Development Reform Resources

  • The Business Innovations Strategic Results Group (BIG) of the United Nations Sustainable Development Group is tasked with building on the Secretary-General’s broader reform measures to ensure we have more efficient UN country teams operations, so that more resources are allocated to development programmes and less to administrative structures.
  • The Business Operations Strategy (BOS) is a framework guiding UN business operations at the country level. The BOS facilitates the strategic planning, management, monitoring, and reporting of the UNCT’s joint support to programme delivery through common business operations.
  • The Development Coordination Office (DCO) has been included in the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list of Official Development Aid (ODA)-eligible organizations. The Special Purpose Trust Fund (SPTF) has been established to receive, consolidate, manage and account for all contributions and financial transactions of the new RC system, in a transparent and effective way. Visit the SPTF portal to view in real-time all commitments, contributions and expenditures recorded for the fund.


A new vision for the resident coordinator


The Voices of Reform series continues with more Resident Coordinators sharing their views, hopes, and experiences on the impact of reform. 

Photo of Secretary-General António Guterres

“Reform is not an end in itself. The purpose of reform is simple and clear: to best position the United Nations to deliver on humanity’s boldest agenda: the sustainable development goals.

To better serve people:
People in need. People with hope. People who look to us to help improve their lives and also to improve our world at a time of spiraling challenges and rapid, dramatic change. ”

UN Secretary-General António Guterres

Why stronger coordination works

Report of the UNSDG Chair on the Development Coordination Office

1 January 2019 marked a landmark moment for the United Nations development system and its commitment to deliver on the promise of the 2030 Agenda. We switched on the lights of a new Resident Coordinator system and a new era of development coordination. 

Impact Stories

How data is guiding the UN’s COVID-19 response and recovery efforts

The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the world to its core. It has presented us, the United Nations, with a multi-facetted challenge to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

8 ways the UN reform is helping to kick-start the Decade of Action

One year on, check out eight ways UN Reform is boosting our support for the Decade of Action, so countries can achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

Finding common ground to tackle climate change and conflict

To tackle challenges that transcend their borders, such as climate change and conflict, the Governments of Kenya and Uganda partnered with the UN and broke ground on a new bi-national agreement for sustainable peace and development.

Senegal: tech helps boost access to health to leave poverty behind

Supported by a reinvigorated UN country team, the Senegalese government has made significant progress on its digital transformation and leaving no one behind across multiple sectors.

SDG resources across the UN

  • The Decade of Action calls for accelerating sustainable solutions to all the world’s biggest challenges — ranging from poverty and gender to climate change, inequality and closing the finance gap.
  • Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform - 17 Goals to Transform Our World. Campaigns. Advocacy. Partnerships. SDGs are a call for action by all countries – poor, rich and middle-income – to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. 
  • The United Nations Sustainable Development Group (UNSDG) unites the 40 UN funds, programmes, specialized agencies, departments, and offices delivering together for sustainable development.
  • The UN Secretariat for SDGs helps governments and stakeholders make the SDGs a reality, providing substantive policy support and capacity-building for the goals and their related thematic issues. The Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) in the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) acts as the Secretariat for the SDGs.