The Pakistan National Commission for UNESCO is an office of Ministry of Education of Government of Pakistan engaged in the coordination and promotion of the activities of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) in Pakistan. It is dealing with education, culture, science, and communication & information sectors. The scope of UNESCO’s activities is rather vast and encompasses subjects like education for sustainable development; inclusive education; elementary, secondary and higher education; technical and vocational education; peace education; preservation of biodiversity; climate change; World Heritage List; intangible cultural heritage; preservation of diversity of cultural expressions; oceanography and tsunami warning systems; ethics of biology; climate change and other sciences; human migration; inter-cultural dialogue/dialogue among civilizations; human rights; freedom of information and a number of other topics.
The PNCU is serving as a link between the ministries of education, culture, science and technology, information and broadcasting, environment, information technology, special education and social welfare and their corresponding departments in Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtoonkhawa, Baluchistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan, Federally Administrated Tribal Areas, and Islamabad Capital Territory on the one hand and UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, its offices in Islamabad, Tehran and Bangkok; ISESCO’s Headquarters in Rabat and its regional office in Tehran on the other hand. Both UNESCO and ISESCO conduct a number of meetings, seminars, workshops and symposiums throughout the year all over the world. As the PNCU makes nominations from Pakistan, in coordination with concerned ministries of the federal government and departments of the provincial governments/area administrations. Similarly, both of these organizations award various prizes and fellowships and the PNCU makes nominations for them through a similar process.
The PNCU is also coordinating ASPnet Schools in Pakistan which is a network of UNESCO Associated Schools and promotes dialogue, meetings and joint activities among these schools, on various educational themes UNESCO is currently working on, besides holding competitions among them for different awards, prizes and fellowships. This Commission also promotes their linkages with ASPnet schools of other UNESCO member states.
Coordination and cooperation with National Commissions and UNESCO’s Category-I and II institutes in other countries is another activity we are undertaking.
Achievement of six universally agreed goals of Education for All (EFA) Programme by 2015 is one of the major challenges Pakistan is currently faced with. Furthermore, United Nations Millennium Development Goals 2 and 3 are also inextricably linked to both UNESCO and ISESCO and the PNCU’s role as a conduit between these organizations and federal and provincial governments is of vital importance for chalking out effective strategies for their attainment by the latter. Success in this regard is of paramount importance from Pakistan’s point of view and we at the PNCU are trying our utmost in this regard.
I hope that the PCNU’s website would provide a vital link between all the individuals, groups and organizations working in the PNCU-relevant areas; and UNESCO, ISESCO and other related organizations. We would be earnestly waiting for your valuable proposals in this regard.