Partnership is at the heart of everything UNDP does. We offer a nearly universal presence. Our substantial expertise—both intellectual acumen and practical experience—cuts across diverse development issues and settings. These valuable assets combined with our long legacy of trust have made us a global partner of choice.

Our partners include Government Cost-Sharing, Bilateral Donors, European Commission, International Financial Institutions (IFIs), Private Sector and Foundations, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and individuals.

UNDP benefits from its global presence in nearly 170 countries to bring together actors from a variety of backgrounds to share expertise, explore joint ventures and develop solutions for global and national development challenges. UNDP’s analysis and experience are highlighting where interventions are likely to have the greatest impact, while also ensuring that all action is adapted to each country’s context.

Working with local partners, UNDP ensures that all community members, in particular vulnerable groups, participate in taking decisions which affect their life and that of the community, thus linking local needs to the greater national development agenda.

Integrated development assistance helps connect countries to all the expertise they need to tackle complex challenges. Towards that end, UNDP manages and primarily finances the Resident Coordinator system, which encourages collaboration by country teams of UN organizations, and helps increase efficiency and effectiveness.

We also lead the UN Development Group, which provides guidance and coordination on the global level. UNDP’s own broad mandate is both the foundation for a strong UN development system, and integral to our ability to link issues and foster collaboration.

The private sector is an important strategic partner for UNDP in achieving its vision of empowering lives and building resilient nations, especially given that 90 per cent of formal and informal employment in the developing world is created by the private sector, and 50 per cent of the service-use for many needs related to the Millennium Development Goals is with private providers.

The private sector can make an important contribution to development by fostering innovation, providing funding and promoting entrepreneurship in developing countries. In many of our programme countries the preconditions for private sector development and the emergence of inclusive markets (i.e. markets that extend choice and opportunity to the poor as producers, consumers and wage earners) are not yet in place. To facilitate inclusive market development, UNDP focuses on connecting and integrating local producers with domestic and global markets. 

For UNDP, Civil Society Organizations constitutes the full range of formal and informal organizations that are outside the state and market. This includes social movements, volunteer organizations, indigenous peoples' organizations, mass-based membership organizations, non-governmental organizations, and community-based organizations, as well as communities and citizens acting individually and collectively.

UNDP partners with Civil Society Organizations in programme implementation and policy advocacy. At the country level, this often means working with them to provide basic services in the areas of health, education, water delivery, agricultural extension and micro-credit provision.