Financing the United Nations Development System: Current Trends and New Directions


The Dag Hammarskjold Foundation recently released a report analysing and assessing UN financial resources and mechanisms in order to strengthen UNDS capacity. Read the report summary below, or view the entire report here.


In 2014 the resources of the United Nations system amounted to US$ 48 billion, from a wide spectrum of sources and through different financing mechanisms. Understanding and analysing the characteristics and potential of these contributions and mechanisms is critical to ensure a better and smarter resourced UN Development System (UNDS) in implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

At the same time, traditional and new approaches need to be leveraged, catalytic connectors across the UN system strengthened, and an openness for innovative financing embraced. There is much to build on from what is already underway within the different UN entities, but also needed is the boldness to challenge outdated systems and procedures and a willingness to test new approaches.

With this report, we aim to contribute to current debates on the future of financing for the United Nations, and also to stimulate more innovative approaches and, as the title of the report says, new directions. It provides an overview of sources and instruments of financing, analyses the implications of financing trends, and through a collection of essays, including from a number of senior UN officials, highlights some new thinking around financing the UNDS.