Strengthening knowledge and institutions is one of the four strategic priorities of UNIDO, which was introduced in the Organization’s medium-term programme framework 2018-2021.
This priority is essential to better identify and showcase the contribution of UNIDO’s mandate on inclusive and sustainable industrial development to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It is different from the other three priorities – i.e. advancing economic competitiveness, creating shared prosperity, and safeguarding the environment – in that it refers to an outcome rather than a thematic focus.
More specifically, strengthening knowledge and institutions is a prioritized outcome that is elevated over other high-level results. It describes the Organization’s strategic direction towards strengthening the knowledge base for inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID) at the project, programme, country and international level, as well as the institutional capacity at the technical, policy and normative level.
On the one hand, this priority describes activities that are, to some degree, already being undertaken by UNIDO; be it within other strategic priorities, in identified cross-cutting areas or through analytical and statistical work. Elevating these activities to a higher priority level shows UNIDO’s intention to increasingly focus on these activities and their associated development results. This will allow the Organization to better support countries in achieving inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
On the other hand, strengthening knowledge and institutions prioritizes knowledge and institutional support activities that do not fall within any of the other three strategic priorities, but that are instrumental to advance ISID and to fulfil UNIDO’s enhanced role in a new and dynamic development context.
This fourth strategic priority thus both strengthens and complements the three “thematic” priorities. It allows UNIDO to better integrate its activities across its functions and to achieve a greater contribution to the 2030 Agenda.