South–South cooperation in international organisations

Its conceptualisation and implementation within UNDP and UNHCR

Authored by: Naohiko Omata

Routledge Handbook of South–South Relations

Print publication date:  December  2018
Online publication date:  December  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138652002
eBook ISBN: 9781315624495
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter explores how South–South cooperation (SSC) has been conceptualised in international organisations and implemented through their assistance activities. South–South partnerships now occupy a central seat in the policy arena of international organisations and many of them have been increasingly promoting SSC as an ‘innovative and adaptable solution’ to address common challenges facing the global South. Notwithstanding the extensive advocacy and promotion of South–South initiatives within and across international agencies, there is a paucity of research that systematically investigates the concept and implementation of SSC within these organisations. Among a number of international organisations, this chapter focuses on two United Nations agencies: the United Nations Development Programme and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Through a comparative study of the UN’s ‘development’ and ‘refugee’ agencies, the chapter argues that the applicability of SSC differs among UN organisations depending on their institutional mandates and throws critical light on the extensive promotion of SSC among international organisations.

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