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Library News

United Nations Budget
UN Photo
Thursday 7 November 2019

Topics: Resources

As part of the management reforms proposed by Secretary-General António Guterres, the UN is switching from a biennial to an annual budget on a trial basis, beginning with the programme budget for 2020.

Since budget documents can be hard to find, the Dag Hammarskjöld Library has put together some tips on locating documents related to the proposed programme budget for 2020. The tips are part of our popular Ask DAG service, a continuously growing collection of frequently asked questions about all things UN.

Not only has the budget cycle changed, but so has the format of the proposed programme budget. According to the report of the Secretary-General on improving and streamlining the programme planning and budgeting process, the new format “would present, for the first time in one document, the previous year’s original programme plan, the measurement of the previous year’s performance, the lessons learned and the programme plan for the proposed budget year. Performance would be measured not only in quantitative, but also in qualitative, terms. It is anticipated that information on results would be more meaningful and would more effectively communicate the added value of the Organization’s work” (A/72/492/Add.1).

For more in-depth information, check out our extensive budget research guide, which documents major changes to the budget process, explains the principal budgeting bodies and their role in the process, provides links to all the resolutions on the programme budget, and helps you find all relevant documents in the UN Digital Library. The guide also includes a special section on the financing of UN peacekeeping operations.

Second Floor Reading Room
Second Floor Reading Room (UN Photo)
Thursday 1 March 2018

Topics: Learning, Resources

The Second Floor Reading Room has gone through many transformations since 1961. For decades it was called the Woodrow Wilson Reading Room because it housed the U.S. president’s papers about the League of Nations.  Until 2008, it operated as the UN reference collection for the Library and contained the most consulted UN documents and publications.  It was closed in 2008 to accommodate the media outlets covering the UN during the Capital Master Plan. Construction damaged the ceiling and made it necessary to refurbish the room before it could be used.  It reopened in November 2016 and has been designated as a silent study space primarily for delegates and UN staff.

The Dag Hammarskjold Library was dedicated to the second Secretary-General after his death in 1961. At the time, the Library Building was written up in architectural magazines which described the room in glowing detail:

“All is movement in the slope of the wall and undulating ceiling [of the Reading Room]. The informal planking of the Idaho white pine ceiling and wall contrasts with the dark African wenge wood of the card catalog which follows the sloping line of the wall. The end walls are of Peruvian travertine…” Interiors Magazine, 1963

With the coming of modern information systems, the card catalog is now empty but the room is filled with the passion for learning and creativity so often attributed to the late Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld.

Learn more about the history of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library: https://library.un.org/content/our-mandate-history.