UNESCO - NatCom 60 Years of Partnership
1940s The governments of the United Kingdom and France convened a meeting in London where representatives of 44 countries drew up the Constitution of UNESCO in November 1945
UNESCO was officially established in Paris on 14 November 1946
The Philippines became a Member State of UNESCO on 17 November 1946
1950s Senator Geronima Pecson was elected to the UNESCO Executive Board and re-elected in 1958. She was the first woman elected to this international body.
1960s The Philippine instruments of ratification on the Convention against Discrimination in Education was presented to UNESCO Director-General Rene Maheu by Hon. Geronima Pecson and Mr. Pedro Abella.
The Philippine Social Science Council, through the initiative of Dr. Estefania Aldaba-Lim of NatCom, was organized in 1968 to improve social science teaching.
The National Committee for the International Association of Students in Economics and Commerce (AIESEC) was organized.
The Akademya (Linangan) ng Wikang Pilipino was organized on 6 April 1964. It led in the continued propagation of Pilipino through research and related activities that vitalized the national language.
The Drama Federation of the Philippines was organized in 1967. It won the CAM Award for Stage Presentation sponsored by the Citizens Council for Mass Media in 1968.
1970s Dr. Estefania Aldaba-Lim was elected to the 40-member UNESCO Executive Board at the 18th General Conference in Paris.
The Philippines won the UNESCO Science Prize for 1970 for outstanding contribution in the application of science and technology in the fields of research and education.
Undersecretary of Education Narciso Albarracin was elected to the Conciliation and Good Offices Commission of the Convention on Discrimination Against Education.
UNESCO Director-General Amadou-Mahtar M’Bow addressed the Tenth Biennial Conference of the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines and visited some of the UNESCO-assisted projects on 05-09 June 1977. He was conferred the degree of Doctor of Law, Honoris Causa by the University of the Philippines.
1980s Narciso Albarracin was appointed Secretary-General of the UNESCO National Commission in 1983.
Carmen Guerrero Nakpil, Director of the Technology Resource Center and Member of the UNCOP Executive Committee was elected Member of the UNESCO Executive Board in Paris in 1983.
Francisco Trinidad was appointed NatCom Secretary-General in 1986.
1990s The Philippines was elected to the World Heritage Committee at the 8th General Assembly of the State Parties to the Convention held in Paris during the 26th UNESCO General Conference.
Dr. Lourdes R. Quisumbing was appointed Secretary-General of the Commission with the rank of Ambassador in 1990.
The Philippines hosted the Regional Meeting of Experts in preparation for the 44th Session of the International Conference on Education held in Geneva in October 1994.
NatCom hosted the Regional Consultation of Asia-Pacific National Commissions on 14-15 August 1995 on the participation of NatComs in the implementation of the 28C/4 and the 28C/5 documents, preparation and participation in the 28th Session of the UNESCO General Conference. UNESCO was represented by Dr. Albert Sasson.
NatCom organized the First Regional Experts Meeting for Asia and the Pacific of the International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) to prepare for the sixteenth session of the IPDC Council, among others. Dr. Torben Krogh, Chairman of the IPDC Intergovernmental Council and Member of the UNESCO Executive Board opened the Forum.
The TAMBULI project was awarded the biennial UNESCO Prize for 1996 by the Jury of the International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) of UNESCO Paris.
UNESCO Director-General Federico Mayor visited the country on 25-27 January 1997, called on President Corazon C. Aquino at Malacanang Palace and held talks with top government officials.
The 1997 UNESCO Cities for Peace Award for Asia and the Pacific was awarded to Olongapo City through Mayor Katherine Gordon at the Intergovenmental Conference on Cultural Policies for Development in Stockholm, Sweden on 31 March 1997.
President Fidel V. Ramos and Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Governor Nur Misuari received the 1997 Felix Houphouet Boigny Peace Prize at the Centre International de Senegal in Dakar, Senegal on 18 June 1998 for their advocacy of peace, concord, fellowship and dialogue to resolve conflicts.
Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Rosario G. Manalo was appointed Acting Secretary-General of the UNESCO NatCom. Sworn into office on 07 July 1998 by President Joseph Ejercito Estrada, she was the Philippine Permanent Delegate to UNESCO in 1990-1994 and adviser in the Cabinet of the Director-General in1988-1990.
Baroque Churches of the Philippines and the Tubbataha Reef Marine Park were inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1993. The Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras was inscribed in 1995. The Historic Town of Vigan and the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park were inscribed in 1999.
Director-General Federico Mayor awarded the UNESCO Prize for the Teaching of Human Rights to Chairman Sedfrey Ordonez, on behalf of the Commission on Human Rights at the International Colloquium on the Right to Humanitarian Assistance in UNESCO Paris.
DFA Secretary Domingo L. Siazon hosted the formal launching of the Philippine candidature to the post of Director-General of UNESCO on 03 March 1999.
The Philippine Paleographs (Hanunoo, Buid, Tagbanua and Pala'wan) were listed in the Memory of the World Register in 1999.
President Joseph Ejercito Estrada signed on 05 July 1999 Proclamation No. 136 declaring 2000 as the Philippine Year for the Culture of Peace and Executive Order No. 118 providing the creation of a National Committee on the Culture of Peace.
2000s The Bureau of Non-Formal Education of the Department of Education, Culture and Sports won the International Noma Literacy Prize awarded by UNESCO for making education accessible to out-of-school youth and adults.
The UNESCO Chair in Integrated Management and Sustainable Develoment in Coastal Regions and in Small Islands (CSI) was launched at the University of the Philippines in Diliman on 21 July 2000.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo appointed Mrs. Preciosa S. Soliven as the new NatCom Secretary-General.
The International Conference on Terrorism and Media was held at the Westin Philippine Plaza on 01-02 May 2002 to observe the 03 May 2002 World Press Freedom Day.
Director General Koichiro Matsuura led the World Press Freedom Day Celebration at the Philippine Plaza Hotel and Malacañang Palace.
The Radio Broadcast of the Philippine People Power Revolution was listed in the Memory of the World Register in 2003.
Prof. Jose David Lapuz, Member of the NatCom Committee on Social and Human Sciences was appointed Member of the International Advisory Committee (IAC) of the UNESCO Small Grants Programme on Poverty Education in August 2004.
UNESCO honored the Hudhud chants of the Ifugao of northern Luzon in 2001 with the title "Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity." The Maranao epic chant, the Darangen, was also proclaimed as another Philippine masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage of humanity on 25 November 2005.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo together with NatCom Secretary-General Ambassador Preciosa S. Soliven, presented a Draft Resolution proposing the recognition of the Philippines as the UNESCO Southeast Asian Center for Lifelong Learning for Sustainable Development (SEACLLSD) at the UNESCO General Conference in Paris in October 2005.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed Executive Order (EO) 483 in December 2005 establishing the UNESCO CLLSD of the Philippines and designating Operation Brotherhood Montessori Center as the National Laboratory.
The Philippines was elected Member of the Intergovernmental Programme on the Development of Communication for a two-year term with Dr. Florangel Braid as Philippine Representative.
UNESCO Director General Koichiro Matsuura visited the Philippines in 2006. He was conferred Doctor of Laws (Honoris Causa) by the University of Santo Tomas, Philippines
The DFA Secretary and NatCom Chairman together with UNESCO Jakarta Director Hubert Gijzen led the commemoration rites of the 60th Anniversary of the Philippines’ membership to UNESCO on 23 February 2007. A month-long photo-exhibit featuring the milestones of the country’s participation in UNESCO programmes for the past decades was held.
The UNESCO publication “60 Women Contributing to the 60 Years of UNESCO: Constructing the Foundations of Peace” featuring former UNACOM Secretary-General Dr. Lourdes R. Quisumbing was launched.
The Philippines was elected Member of the UNESCO Executive Board. Sec. Jesli Lapus is the Philippine representative and NatCom Secretary-General as Alternate.
UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines hosted the 14th Quadrennial Conference of National Commissions for UNESCO of Asia and the Pacific Region on 19-23 May 2008. Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo delivered the Keynote Address before 39 Member States, 12 Field Offices Heads, 15 Observer-Institutions and 11 UNESCO HQ representatives.