We are all called to lead, to act, to change. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development represents an imperative for change for the United Nations. Significant changes in the structure, leadership, accountability mechanisms, and capacities of the UN Development System are required to ensure it is positioned to provide countries with the support they need to achieve the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The UN needs visionary and principled leadership across the system to address today’s challenging world. The UN needs leaders who stand up for UN values—leaders who inspire through their commitment to peace, justice, respect, human rights, tolerance, and solidarity.

This course will enable senior UN leaders to develop specific approaches to respond to the call by member states for Repositioning the United Nations development system in the context of the QCPR review of operational activities for development of the UN system to deliver on the 2030 Agenda, working towards a new generation of Country Teams, tailored to the specific needs of each country.

Participants will deepen their knowledge and sharpen their political acumen through engaging discussions with UN senior officials and subject matter experts. There will be opportunities to share practices through interactive peer-to-peer learning and workshops that unpack inter-agency concerns as well as individual agency contexts and develop solutions that leverage each UN agency’s strengths and expertise. This programme builds demand-driven policy support, cross-sectoral thinking, stakeholder engagement, systems-thinking, collaborative leadership, and communications skills. The course will also present concrete ways to apply these skills and capabilities in complex, highly-demanding country contexts and provide examples of maximizing opportunities, minimizing disruptions, while leaving no one behind.

Experiential learning methods such as a site visit, as well as a full day media training at the professional studios of the German broadcaster Deutsche Welle will complement the intense training programme.



Upon successful completion of this course, participants will:

  • Have strengthened their knowledge of the vision and principles underlying the 2030 Agenda as well as approaches to its implementation through practical means and mechanisms to sustainable development;
  • Have gained a deeper understanding into the UN repositioning process of the UN Development System and the implications for UN agencies and Resident Coordinator Offices at country level;
  • Have gained a common vision of the UN SD Cooperation Framework as a partnership framework for delivering the UN Development System’s collective response in support of a country’s sustainable development needs and priorities;
  • Have improved their understanding of the defining characteristics of UN leadership and the various ways of working that exemplify these leadership characteristics
  • Have acquired knowledge of mechanisms and tools that enhance UNCTs' integrated policy support to countries;
  • Be ready to apply the art of effective and strategic communication to improve the quality of dialogue with partners and stakeholders, increase advocacy and highlight results

Course Methodology

Course Methodology: 

This face-to-face course combines inputs and lectures by subject matter experts and senior UN staff with opportunities for knowledge sharing and participatory exercises.

Participants apply their learning through experiential learning methodologies such as case studies, an engaging site visit, team discussions, and dialogues with speakers.

Course Contents

Course Contents: 

Sustainable Development Vision and Principles; Challenges and opportunities of repositioning the UN Development System; Improving political acumen and leadership skills; Strengthening strategic communication and advocacy skills.

Target Audience

Target Audience: 

UN Resident Coordinators (RC) and RC Candidates, Country Directors and representatives of UN agencies, funds, and programmes 

Cost of participation

Cost of participation: 

The course fee of $5,500 covers the following:

  • Five days of training, including lunches, coffee breaks, as well as an evening reception
  •  A full day media training at Deutsche Welle Academy to foster competencies to handle various kinds of interviews and press conferences effectively.
  • Exclusive access to UNSSC's online social learning environment with training and supporting background materials, and the opportunity to stay connected with colleagues.
  • All course materials, resources and contacts.

Participants are expected to cover all travel and lodging costs related to their attendance of the course.

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