United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) | Social and Environmental Compliance Unit (SECU) & Stakeholder Response Mechanism (SRM)
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) was established in 1965 to serve as the UN’s global development network. It is headquartered in New York City, but works primarily through its offices in around 170 countries and territories. UNDP advocates for change and connects countries to knowledge, experience, and resources to help people build a better life, supporting their own solutions to development challenges and developing national and local capacities that will help them achieve human development and the Sustainable Development Goals.
United National Development Programme (UNDP)
Created In: 1965
Headquarters: New York, NY, United States
Mission: UNDP works to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. UNDP helps countries to develop policies, leadership skills, partnering abilities, institutional capabilities and build resilience in order to sustain development results.
The Accountability Office: Social and Environmental Compliance Unit (SECU)
Established in: 2015
Functions: Compliance Review
The Accountability Office: Stakeholder Response Mechanism (SRM)
Established in: 2015
Functions: Dispute Resolution
As of 1 January, 2015, projects and programs supported by UNDP must follow the UNDP’s Social and Environmental Standards (SES), the Social and Environmental Screening Procedure (SESP), and social and environmental commitments made by UNDP in the context of a specific project or program.
Prior to 2015, UNDP projects and programs had to follow commitments reflected in the project/program documents, and, for projects supported by the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF), the Common Approach to Environmental and Social Safeguards for Multiple Delivery Partners.
UNDP has published an Information Disclosure Policy on its commitment to making information about its programs and operations available to the public.
The Accountability Office
On 1 January, 2015, UNDP launched a new accountability mechanism to address concerns related to UNDP-supported projects and programs. The mechanism has both a compliance function and a dispute resolution function. Affected communities and individuals can choose to utilize either option or both.
- The Compliance Function: the Social and Environmental Compliance Unit (SECU) conducts investigations to ensure that UNDP complies with its Social and Environmental Standards and Screening Procedure. It recommends measures to UNDP to address findings of noncompliance. SECU issues a public report with this information. SECU’s Investigation Guidelines can be found here.
- The Dispute Resolution Function: the Stakeholder Response Mechanism (SRM) helps project-affected stakeholders and UNDP’s partners (such as governments, non-governmental organizations, and businesses) to jointly address grievances or disputes related to the social and/or environmental impacts of UNDP-supported projects and programs.
- Past Advocacy
Documents by Release Date
June 2012 – Accountability Counsel’s Comments on the UNDP Proposal for Environmental and Social Compliance Review and Grievance Processes
January 2014 – UNDP’s Draft Investigation Guidelines for the Social and Environmental Compliance Unit (SECU)
April 2014 – Comments made by Accountability Counsel and other organizations and individuals on the Draft Standard Operating Procedures for the UNDP Social and Environmental Compliance Unit
February 2018 – Letter to SECU from Accountability Counsel, Bank Information Center, and the Center for International Environmental Law supporting the mechanism’s ability to issue recommendations after an investigation
December 2018 – Letter to the UNDP Administrator from Accountability Counsel and 22 partners regarding delays in the Administrator’s review and approval of SECU investigation reports and recommendations