UNDP Civil Society Advisory Committee

Members of the Civil Society Advisory Committee with the Administrator Helen Clark, in April 2014. Photo: Dylan Lowthian/UNDP

The UNDP Civil Society Advisory Committee was created in 2000 as a formal mechanism for dialogue between civil society representatives and UNDP’s senior management. The Advisory Committee, which brings together a group of up to 15 civil society leaders, serves as a strategic advisory body and sounding board to UNDP senior management on key issues of policy and strategy. It meets annually in New York. Members serve for an average period of three years.

The Advisory Committee is of vital importance in forging a strong partnership between UNDP and civil society. The post-2015 development framework, changes in the aid architecture and the continuing challenges of conflict and inequality are just a few areas where it is critically important for the UN and UNDP to engage creatively with a range of partners and allies, including civil society in all its diversity.


Advisory Committee members

Current Advisory Committee members include:

  • Lydia Alpizar Durán (Costa Rica/ Mexico): Executive Director, Association for Women’s Rights in Development
  • Hossam Bahgat (Egypt): Chair of the Board, Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights
  • Myrna Cunningham-Kain (Nicaragua): President, Center for Indigenous People’s Autonomy and Development
  • Yao Graham (Ghana): Coordinator, Third World Network Africa
  • Helena Monteiro (Brazil/ Canada): Executive Director, Worldwide Initiatives for Grantmaker Support
  • Paul Okumu (Kenya): Head of Secretariat, Africa Civil Society Platform on Principled Partnership
  • Antti Pentikäinen (Finland): Executive Director, Finn Church Aid
  • Ivana Savić (Serbia): Executive Director, Centre for Human Rights and Development Studies
  • Alison Tate (Australia): Director of External Relations, International Trade Union Confederation and the associated Global Union Federations, Brussels Office
  • Jane Wales (USA): President, World Affairs Council and CEO, Global Philanthropy Forum

Former Advisory Committee members include (until 2014):

  • Nilda Bullain (Hungary): Vice President for Operations, International Center for Not-for-Profit Law, Washington D.C. Office
  • Joseph Ole Simel (Kenya): Executive Director, Mainyoito Pastoralists Integrated Development Organization
  • Sheela Patel (India): Director, Society for the Promotion of Area Resource Centres and Chair, Shack/Slum Dwellers International
  • Meenakshi Raman (Malaysia): Honorary Secretary, Friends of the Earth Malaysia, and Third World Network, Geneva Office

Selected Resources
  • Framework of cooperation between UNDP and the Civil Society Advisory Committee (2014) English
  • Member short biographies (2014) English
  • Members in the news (2014) English
  • Assessment of the Civil Society Advisory Committee (2008) English