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Conferences - Thursday, March 22, 2007

The UN Secretariat: A Brief History

At a recent reception, IPI launched its latest book, The UN Secretariat: A Brief History, written by Dr. Thant Myint-U and Dr. Amy Scott.

In recent years, much debate at the United Nations has centered on the reform of the Secretariat and its management. This long-standing discussion, nearly as old as the UN itself, is certain to continue into the future. Yet the successes and failures of past reform attempts are often quickly forgotten and rarely written down.

With the publication of The UN Secretariat: A Brief History, IPA aims to fill a gap in existing literature about the UN by providing a concise history of the Secretariat and attempts to reform it. The book outlines the evolution of the Secretariat's role and its relationship to other organs of the UN, describes the history of its structure and management and delves into recurring issues, such as senior appointments and budget crises. Coinciding with the arrival of a new Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, IPA hopes that this book will encourage historically informed and engaged discussions on a UN organ critical to the organization's overall success.

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