The Secretariat


The permanent secretariat of the Convention was established in Article 23 of the UNCCD. It has been located in Bonn, Germany since January 1999.

In line with Article 23 of the UNCCD, the key function of the secretariat is to service the sessions of the COP and its subsidiary bodies. This includes a multitude of tasks, ranging from the preparation of substantive documentation to logistical arrangements for the sessions.

The ten-year Strategy specifies the mandate of the secretariat for the period 2008-2018. According to The Strategy, ..."

Successful implementation of this strategic plan requires a strengthening of the core servicing, advocacy and agenda-setting and representation functions of the UNCCD secretariat – with commensurate capacity and resources – in order to support Parties, the COP and the subsidiary bodies of the Convention in fulfilling their respective roles. The secretariat has a lead role for operational objective 1 [on advocacy, awareness raising and education] and specific outcomes of operational objectives 2 and 3 [on policy framework and science, technology and knowledge, respectively] as well as a support role in other operational objectives [on capacity building and financing and technology transfer]...".

Current priorities of the secretariat

Image of desertThe overall aim of the secretariat is to service the COP and its subsidiary bodies in a manner that enables well-founded decision-making and successful action in advancing the implementation of the UNCCD. Particular attention is paid to

(a) Increasing the political momentum: Active promotion of the UNCCD, notably by linking scientific findings with political decision-making, supports a growing global commitment to halt land degradation and rehabilitate already degraded land.

(b) Moving to meet global targets: Efforts toward national/regional land degradation neutrality and recognition of the critical role of land and soil in climate change adaptation and mitigation are essential factors for meeting the global development agenda that is summarized in the Sustainable Development Goals.

(c) Improving conditions for national implementation: Access to information, up-scaling of good practices, and opportunities for capacity-building are critical for progress in implementing the UNCCD at national level.

In order to efficiently carry out its tasks, the secretariat will build and further strengthen partnerships with programmes and institutions that have proven capacities in the areas covered by the UNCCD.

UNCCD Headquarters

Postal Address:

P. O. Box 260129
53153 Bonn, Germany

Office Location

Platz der Vereinten Nationen 1
53113 Bonn, Germany

Telephone No. 00 49 228 815 2800
Fax: 00 49 228 815 2898/99
E-mail: secretariat(at)