United Nations Government Information

Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), handles economic, social, cultural, human rights, and health matters. ECOSOC also has a coordinates work of the United Nations and the specialized agencies. It consists of 54 members, who are elected by the General Assembly. It has organizational sessions in the spring and a substantive sessions in July. The substantive sessons have five parts: high-level segment, operational activities segment, coordination segment, humanitarian affairs segment and general segment (See Rules of Procedure of the Economic and Social Council and Repertory of Practice of United Nations Organs for further info on the operations of the Security Council). There is a set procedure to conduct business in this U.N. organ.

1. Programme of Work and Agenda

2. Summary Records

3. Resolutions

4. Report of the Economic and Social Council

 

Other important items for ECOSOC

Subsidiary and Ad Hoc Bodies

Other Research Aids for ECOSOC

PROGRAMME OF WORK AND AGENDA

Programme of Work is a goal statement for two-year periods. The Agenda lists what is going to be discussed and major documentations that are scheduled to be submitted.

About This Resource

When searching online, you can limit your search by using U.N. Doc Symbols.

Programmes are listed E/year/1

Provisional agendas are listed E/year/2

Substantive issues are listed E/year/100

Digital Paper

UNBISnet: has full-text for these items back to 1994.

AccessUN has an index from 1944-present and microfiche from 1990 onward. Please read these quick instructions to help you find what you want.

Official Records of the United Nations, Economic and Social Council from 1946 to 1990.

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SUMMARY RECORDS

General summaries of what is said by who are given for each meeting of ECOSOC.

About This Resource

When searching online, you can limit your search by using U.N. Doc Symbols.

Before 1977, the numbering system was E/SR.consecutive number. For example, E/SR.2051 "Summary record of the 2051st plenary meeting, on 25 April 1977"

After 1977, the numbering system was E/year/SR.consecutive number . For example, E/2002/SR.45 "Summary Reocrd of the 2051st Plenary Meeting, on 25 April, 1977."

Digital Paper

UNBISnet has full-text copies back to 1992.

AccessUN, an index back to 1944 (See AccessUN instructions for more search information and Document Type for more information about U.N. documents).

Official Records of the United Nations, Economic and Social Council from 1946 to 1990.

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RESOLUTIONS

The major document type for the ECOSOC is the resolution, which describes the situation and the actions that will be taken, such as providing disaster relief. It is the will of the organization. A Decision, on the other hand, is the will of the organization about an internal affair affecting the U.N. only, such as elections or appointments.

Resolutions have a certain structure. They have a Preamble and Operative Part:

About This Resource

When searching online, you can limit your search by using U.N. Doc Symbols.

Before 1978, the numbering system was E/RES/sequential number/(organizational code) . For example, E/RES/1296/(XLVI) is an ECOSOC resolution numbered 1296 from the regular session.

From 1978, the numbering system was E/RES/year/sequential number. For example, E/RES/1996/31 is an ECOSOC resolution from the 1996 session numberd 31.

Digital Paper

United Nations Bibliographic Information System (UNBISNET) has full-text back to 1979. To search for General Assembly resolutions, type e/res in UN Doc Symbol field. (See UNBISNET for more search information).

AccessUN , an index of resolutions back to 1944 and full-text back to 1980. To search for General Assembly resolutions, type e/res in the field in Document Number. (See AccessUN instructions for more search information and Document Type for more information about U.N. documents).

Official Records of the United Nations, Economic and Social Council from 1946 to 1990.

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REPORT OF THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL

ECOSOC reports annually to the General Assembly

ANNUAL REPORTS
About This Resource

When searching online, you can limit your search by using U.N. Doc Symbols.

The UN Doc. Symbol is A/year/3. So, "A/2005/3" is ECOSOC report in the Official Records of the General Assembly in 2006 which is the 3rd supplement.

Digital Paper

UNBISnet has full-text copies of the General Assembly's agendas and addenda back to 1989 (44th Session).

Official Records of the General Assembly from 1946 to 1990.

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SUBSIDIARY AND AD HOC BODIES

Subsidiary and ad hoc bodies that report to ECOSOC, for example World Trade Organization (WTO), World Health Organization (WHO), and International Labour Organization (ILO). In the U.N. Organizational Chart , click on the body's name to be taken to its website. Many of these bodies have sessional reports that they submit to the ECOSOC, for example the Commission on Human Rights report number is E/CN.4/year , E/ICEF/year is UNICEF and the Division on Sustainable Development is E/CN.17/year.

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Other Research Aids for ECOSOC

Official Documents of the U.N.: Advanced Search allows searches of all documents provided by the U.N. online. Use the Full-text search field to search for words in the text of the documents.

United Nations Bibliographic Information System (UNBISNET) has bibliographic records going back to 1979, and full-text back to 1992. However, they are constantly digitizing more older records. Use "e*" in UN Doc. Symbol field to search for ECOSOC Documents.

AccessUN , an index of U.N. material back to 1944, allows you to search by organ. If you put in ' e ' for Document Number , only ECOSOC documents will be retrieved. (See AccessUN instructions for more search information and Document Type for more information about U.N. documents).

Press Releases are a good source of basic information about U.N. activity. Search under ECOSOC in the Subject field. You can then delimit by keyword.

Documents Rearch Guide The U.N. has published online a very good and detailed research guide for the General Assembly.

Yearbook of the United Nations is an annual publication of the U.N. that gives a very good summary of the events and documents produced that year at the U.N.

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Don't forget! You can always consult me, Tom Stieve , or send an Interlibrary Loan request for the item if it's not here.

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