United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
A specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945.
Its stated purpose is to contribute to peace and security by promoting international collaboration through education, science, and culture in order to further universal respect for justice, the rule of law, and the human rights and fundamental freedoms proclaimed in the UN Charter.
In total, 191 nations belong to UNESCO. The organization is based in Paris, with over 50 field offices and several institutes and offices throughout the world.
Most of the field offices are “cluster” offices covering three or more countries; there are also national and regional offices. UNESCO pursues its action through five major programmes: education, natural sciences, social and human sciences, culture, and communication and information.
Projects sponsored by UNESCO include literacy, technical, and teacher-training programmes; international science programmes; the promotion of independent media and freedom of the press; regional and cultural history projects, the promotion of cultural diversity; international cooperation agreements to secure the world cultural and natural heritage and to preserve human rights; and attempts to bridge the world-wide digital divide.