Human Rights Council Thirty-seventh session

26 February–23 March 2018

Agenda item 3

Resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council on 22 March 2018

37/7. Promoting human rights and the Sustainable Development Goals

through transparent, accountable and efficient public services delivery

The Human Rights Council,

Guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations,

Recalling the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenants

on Human Rights and other relevant international human rights instruments,

Reaffirming the importance of the United Nations Convention against Corruption,

Recalling all relevant United Nations resolutions, including Human Rights Council

resolutions on good governance and corruption,

Recalling also resolution 6/8 entitled “Prevention of corruption by promoting

transparent, accountable, and efficient public service delivery through the application of

best practices and technological innovations” adopted by the Conference of States Parties to

the United Nations Convention against Corruption at its sixth session,

Recalling further General Assembly resolution 70/1 of 25 September 2015, entitled

“Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, including

Sustainable Development Goal 16, which encourages Member States to promote peaceful

and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and

build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels,

Recalling General Assembly resolution 69/313 of 27 July 2015 on the Addis Ababa

Action Agenda of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, which

is an integral part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,

Noting the importance of multilateral platforms and public-private partnership

mechanisms that foster good governance policies and the implementation of the Sustainable

Development Goals, such as the Open Government Partnership, which aims to promote

transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption and harness new technologies to

strengthen governance,

Recalling the report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on

the role of public service as an essential component of good governance in the promotion

and protection of human rights,1

Recognizing that a professional, accountable and transparent public service

upholding the highest standards of efficiency, competence, integrity, accessibility and non-

discrimination is one of the essential components of good governance,

Recalling article 21 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and article 25 of

the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, according to which every citizen

has a right to have access, on general terms of equality, to public service in his or her

country, without unreasonable restrictions or distinctions of any kind mentioned in article 2

of the Covenant,

Acknowledging that the promotion and protection of human rights and the 2030

Agenda for Sustainable Development are complementary and mutually reinforcing,

Concerned about the negative impact of widespread corruption on the enjoyment of

human rights, and recognizing that corruption constitutes one of the obstacles to the

effective promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms,

Acknowledging that non-discriminatory, efficient, accessible, accountable and

transparent public services delivery consistent with citizens’ needs and feedback is one of

the key components in building an anti-corruption environment in the public sector and

contributes to the promotion and protection of human rights and the implementation of

2030 Agenda,

Underlining that the increased application of technological innovations and

electronic services in public services delivery can play an important role in reducing

corruption by promoting transparency and accountability and can improve the environment

and tools necessary to foster public access to information on preventing and combating


Stressing in that regard the important role of Governments in the effective use of

information and communications technology in the design of public policies and in the

provision of public services responsive to national needs and priorities, including on the

basis of a multi-stakeholder approach, to support national development efforts as stipulated

by the General Assembly in its resolution 69/204 of 19 December 2014 entitled

“Information and communications technologies for development”,

Acknowledging the important role that civil society and other stakeholders can play

in the design, delivery and promotion of transparent, accountable and efficient delivery of

public services,

Stressing the need to incorporate transparent, accountable and efficient public

services delivery models into local, national and regional development plans,

Highlighting the significance of access to relevant information as one of the key

components of efficiency in the delivery of public services, and emphasizing the

importance of respecting, promoting and protecting the freedom of expression, as stipulated

in article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, including the

freedom to seek, receive and impart information,

Noting that everyone, including those residing in remote areas of a country, should

have access to simple and consumer-oriented public services delivery, as appropriate,

including through the availability of online and mobility services, as well as e-applications,

Recognizing the importance of quality control of the delivery of public services on

an ongoing basis with a view to ensuring accountability,

Acknowledging the need for the voluntary exchange of relevant information,

experience, knowhow and technology on mutually agreed terms and at all levels on

1 A/HRC/25/27.

successful national practices in the efficient, transparent and accountable delivery of public


Noting the importance that multi-sectoral regional and national centres of public

excellence can have in deliberating on public service innovation trends and applications,

enhance evidence-based institutions and peer-to-peer learning,

1. Recognizes the important role of the Government, as service provider, and of

all other stakeholders, including the private sector and civil society, in the promotion and

protection of all human rights and, as appropriate, in the implementation of the Sustainable

Development Goals and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda;

2. Notes with appreciation the application of innovative approaches, in

particular the use of science and technological innovation by States, in the delivery of

public services, ensuring the fullest access by all to public services and seeking to minimize

risks of corruption;

3. Stresses the importance of efficiency, accountability and non-discrimination

in the delivery of public services, and in this regard encourages efforts, with the

participation of all relevant stakeholders, to strengthen the capacity of national statistical

offices and data systems;

4. Encourages States with effective models for the delivery of public services to

share their best practices with other States, especially with developing States, through

bilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation frameworks, and calls upon all States to

establish, taking into account best practices from other States, as appropriate, a transparent,

accountable and efficient public service system;

5. Welcomes the initiatives of States to promote the delivery of public services

as an aspect of the topic of human rights and good governance by organizing regional and

international events;

6. Encourages international cooperation and national efforts, including by

strengthening capacity-building and the training of public servants, to cover such areas as

human rights, the rule of law and good governance within the public service, and the

provision of technical assistance, such as the voluntary exchange of knowhow and

technology on mutually agreed terms;

7. Underlines the important role of the United Nations Public Service Awards

as the most prominent international recognition of excellence in public service within the

United Nations system in identifying and promoting innovations and new concepts in

public administration that minimize the risks for corruption, and encourages United Nations

entities and other international organizations to continue to promote and reward such

initiatives and their replication;

8. Notes with appreciation United Nations Public Service Day, held on 23 June

to celebrate the value and virtue of public service to the community, highlights the

contribution of public service in the development process, recognizes the work of public

servants, encourages young people to pursue careers in the public sector, and encourages

States to organize special events on that occasion;

9. Invites the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to mark

United Nations Public Service Day at every June session of the Human Rights Council with

a view to raise awareness about the human rights dimension of public services delivery.

53rd meeting

22 March 2018

[Adopted without a vote.]