UNESCO’s National Commissions is a unique system within the framework of the United Nations, as it included cooperation between the civic society and member states from its inception. The National Commissions are anchored in UNESCO’s Constitution (Article VII) and organised in line with the 1978 Charter of National Commissions for UNESCO. As constitutional parties, the National Commissions are the national representatives of UNESCO in each member state while also representing that member state to UNESCO when called for by them.
The Austrian Commission for UNESCO is the national coordinator and liaison office for all areas in which UNESCO is active in Austria.
It provides consultation to the federal government, state governments and other competent authorities on UNESCO matters, contributes to the implementation of UNESCO programmes in Austria, informs the public of UNESCO’s work and liaises between institutions, specialist organisations, experts and UNESCO. It ensures that UNESCO remains a presence in Austria and represents UNESCO in Austria as the holder of the copyright to its name and logo.
The Austrian Commission for UNESCO is financed by an annual membership contribution paid for by the Federal Ministry for Education and Women’s Affairs. This covers expenditures on infrastructure, staff and educational activities.