Background

The Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) were invited to brief the Committee on the outcome of the recent discussion conducted by the Commission on its functioning and mechanisms, with a view to strengthening its relationship and improving cooperation with CEB and the organizations of the UN system.

The ICSC Chairman briefed HLCM on the Commission’s strategy and vision.  He highlighted the Commission’s commitment to change, and to seek new ways to form strategic partnerships with the organizations of the common system.  He stressed that leading change, building trust and maintaining the unity of the common system, as well as ensuring that sound and flexible HR systems are in place, were his top priorities.  The full statement of the ICSC Chairman is provided in Annex 4.

Discussion

Some of the initiatives which the Commission had already launched were highlighted by the Chairman. In July, Commission members met with Executive Heads of Geneva-based organizations prior to its summer session.  The Commission held a retreat to re-examine its role and seek ways to become more proactive.  It was also agreed to hold shorter sessions of two weeks and to hold more informal meetings, working groups and tasks forces in between sessions.

The Chairman recognized that, given the different mandates and functions of member organizations, a more flexible approach would be required to make sure that ICSC decisions serve the interest of all organizations. The Commission expressed the wish to work closely and in tangible ways with CEB, the organizations and the staff to improve the exchange of information and views.

Action

The Committee welcomed ICSC’s initiative for strengthening its partnerships with CEB, the organizations and staff representatives, as this would enable the Commission to focus on issues of higher value to organizations.

The Committee welcomed the decision to hold shorter ICSC sessions and emphasized the need for flexibility, given the different mandates and functions of member Organizations.  Appreciating the new outreach strategy outlined by the Commission, the Committee encouraged the ICSC to continue dialogue with its key stakeholders.