UNDP’s Global Programme on Strengthening the Rule of Law and Human Rights for Sustaining Peace and Fostering Development (hereinafter the Global Programme on Rule of Law and Human Rights or the Global Programme) provides comprehensive support to conflict, crisis-affected and transition contexts throughout the world. It seeks to underpin broader UN efforts in achieving lasting peace and sustainable development and

contributes to establishing a culture of respect for the rule of law and embedding human rights principles in UNDP’s work to build integrated and sustainable solutions for people and planet.

The Global Programme works with governments, civil society, business entities, and through its partnerships within the UN family and beyond. It strives to make the rule of law and respect for human rights a global reference point, as a guarantee for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda. The Global Programme was launched in 2008, and in 2019 it became part of the UNDP Crisis Bureau, in line with the UNDP’s Global Policy Network (GPN).

This 2020 annual report highlights key achievements of UNDP’s Global Programme in over 40 fragile, crisis- or conflict-affected contexts in five regions: Africa, Arab States, Asia-Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Regional overviews present a brief analysis of the overall situation in 2020, focusing on developments in the spheres of the judiciary, accountability, legal protection, constitution-making, gender justice, and security sector reform.

Some of the Global Programme’s essential support is implemented through the Global Focal Point for the Rule of Law (hereinafter the GFP), an arrangement co-led by UNDP and the UN Department of Peace Operations (DPO). For this report, the profiles of five contexts have been selected to reflect the collective accomplishments within the GFP: Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, and South Sudan.

The Global Programme frames its activities within interlinked areas, such as political engagement, institution building, human rights, access to justice, gender equality, and community security. Eight thematic sections in this report detail UNDP’s signature initiatives, success stories and innovative approaches developed in synergies with the Global Programme’s partners.

Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, this report also covers the Global Programme’s response to an unprecedented health crisis. Yet, the pandemic is much more than a health crisis. It has the potential to create devastating social, economic, and political effects that will leave deep and longstanding scars. In too many places, national lockdowns disrupted the functioning of justice mechanisms and fuelled existing and emerging inequalities, increasing strains on those already left behind. The Global Programme’s actions in face of the crisis are reflected in a dedicated section on the COVID-19 response, as well as throughout the report and under the specific signature initiatives.

In 2021, the Global Programme continues working with its partners, implementing projects in capitals and remote villages, on islands and in deserts – for people and communities who need us the most.

The ultimate purpose of the Global Programme’s activities is to ensure that all people can exercise their rights and access justice, live in peaceful and safe environment, and enjoy economic security.

Messages from Our Leaders

The Global Programme benefits from steadfast support from UNDP’s organizational leadership. Click the buttons on the right to see what the UNDP Administrator and the Assistant Secretary-General, Assistant Administrator, and Director of the Crisis Bureau at UNDP have to say about the importance of the rule of law and human rights in crisis-affected settings. These messages reflect how we have adapted our programming to effectively address the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and ensure a people-centered approach, supporting efforts to build forward better.

Achim Steiner

Achim SteinerUNDP Administrator

Asako Okai

Asako OkaiAssistant Secretary-General
Assistant Administrator
Director, Crisis Bureau, UNDP

Highlights Brochure

The Global Programme provides rule of law and human rights assistance to over 40 contexts affected by crisis or conflict across five regions of the world. Our highlights brochure reflects the key achievements of country offices, presents signature initiatives within our eight thematic areas, gives an overview of the financial situation as well as partnership information for 2020.

Highlight Brochure