Substantive NGO Committees

Guidelines in constituting, organizing and running NGO Committees under the auspices of CoNGO

The CoNGO Rules set the terms of organization and mode of work of the substantive NGO Committees. Here are the pertinent rules from the March 2018 edition.

  1. Committees may be established under the auspices of the Conference in order to promote and facilitate collective work among NGOs on the substantive issues related to programmes, policies and activities of the United Nations system. These committees may organise activities which provide opportunities for NGOs to debate such issues, to articulate their views, to advocate positions with respect to UN resolutions or programmes, and to mobilize public opinion.
  1. Committees may be established either by the General Assembly or by the Board at the request of twenty or more Members, which shall specify whether the committee is to be a standing or fixed-term committee. When a decision has been taken to establish such a committee, the Board shall notify the Members of the Conference and invite all Members to an initial meeting.
  1. Committees of NGOs in consultative status which have already been established outside the framework of the Conference may be accepted by decision of the Board as committees of the Conference provided they agree to accept the rules applying to committees of the Conference.
  1. Committees shall report regularly to the Board.
  1. Committees set up under the auspices of the Conference are required to establish rules and procedures for membership, for voting, for the periodic election of officers among the members of the Committee who are representatives of organizations in consultative status with ECOSOC, for the keeping of meeting records, for the handling of monies which will include an annual financial report to be made available to its membership and to the Board, and for the conduct of their work, in a manner consistent with the rules of the Conference, and with guidelines provided to them by the Board.
  1. Committees so formed shall not act, nor claim to act, in the name of the Conference, or of the Board.
  1. Committees having similar interests shall maintain close contact with each other, and shall coordinate their activities and programmes.
  1. Where a committee is engaged in the preparation of a non-governmental activity in connection with a particular United Nations event, there shall be close collaboration with other NGO groupings interested in that activity.
  1. According to the funds at its disposal, the Board may give financial assistance to a committee, which may also levy an annual subscription from its member or participating organizations.
  1. Where a Substantive Committee has ceased effective functioning, or is in breach of rules of the Conference, the Board shall have authority to dissolve such a committee.


To learn more about the NGO Committees–their leadership, aims and objectives and activities, visit here.