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The Council Committee on NGOs: An analysis of the reports of the Council Committee on NGOs between 2005 and 2015

Author:

Simone Vromen

Abstract

The Council Committee on NGOs (hereafter: the Committee) recommends the Economic and Social Council (hereafter: the ECOSOC) on whether or not to grant an NGO ECOSOC consultative status. The Committee has often been criticized for having a politicalized decision-making process. As obtaining ECOSOC consultative status is seen as one of the most prominent ways for NGOs to gain access to the UN,  such a politicalized decision-making process can be problematic. This paper examines the work of the Committee over the past decade and aims to map out the grounds on which consultative status is granted, not granted or withdrawn. The work of the Committee is tested against the criteria in Resolution 1996/31, the resolution that governs ECOSOC consultative status. It is concluded that these criteria are often interpreted broadly, which gives rise to a great deal of debate among the Committee members. In some cases, grounds that are used for recommendations are hard to trace back to the criteria in Resolution 1996/31. This leads to a decision-making-process that seems to be rather arbitrary. As a consequence, NGOs that promote issues that are not approved by all the Committee members find themselves having a hard time being granted consultative status.
DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/ulr.373
How to Cite: Vromen, S., (2017). The Council Committee on NGOs: An analysis of the reports of the Council Committee on NGOs between 2005 and 2015. Utrecht Law Review. 13(1), pp.82–98. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/ulr.373
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Published on 30 Jan 2017.

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