By decision of the 29th session of the UNESCO General Conference (November 1997) the UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (IITE) was established in Moscow. The establishment of the Institute in Moscow is a reflection of the recognition by UNESCO of Russia's education leading positions in the sphere of distance learning forms, and allows Russia to promote Russian communications technologies. At the present time Dendev Badarch, Director of the UNESCO Moscow Office, has been appointed an alternate director of IITE.
In 2009 a new Board of Governors of IITE was formed, which included Russia's representative - Deputy Director of Federal Education Agency Y.Y.Butko.
Annual meetings of the High-Level Group on Education for All are held, at which UNESCO makes the EFA Global Monitoring Report.
In the 2008/2009s UNESCO conducted a number of major world conferences on various aspects of education.
On November 25-28, 2008 in Geneva the 48th session of the UNESCO World Conference "Inclusive Education: The Way of the Future" took place, organized by the International Bureau of Education, which was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Ministry of Education and Science of Russia, Moscow Government, Russian UNESCO Chairs.
On March 31-April 2, 2009, Bonn hosted the World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development. The Russian delegation to the Conference was headed by Minister of Education and Science A.A. Fursenko (member of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO).
On July 5-8, 2009 the World Conference on Higher Education took place in Paris. The delegation was headed by A.V.Yakovenko, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation (member of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO).
On December 1-4, 2009, the 6th World Conference on Adult Education (CONFINTEA VI) was held in Brazil (Belem).
In Russia, every year a number of world conferences and seminars are held on various aspects of education within the field of UNESCO’s competence. In 2008-2009 the biggest of them were:
- The World Scientific-Practical Conference "The Role of a Family in Human Capital Preservation and Development" (Kazan, November 19-22, 2008), organized by the UNESCO Chair of the Academy of Management "TISBI".
- The World Conference “Inclusive Education: Problems of Improving Education Policies and Systems”(St. Petersburg, June 19-20, 2008). The conference was held on the basis of the UNESCO Chair in Sciences of Education of A.I.Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia. The event was attended by representatives of Russian regions and the CIS countries. The conference has become one of the stages of preparation for the 48th session of the World Conference on Education.
- The World Conferences of the UNESCO Associated Schools "Ob-Irtysh basin: Youth Studies and Keeps Natural and Cultural Heritage” (Khanty-Mansiysk, May 2008, May 2009). These conferences were held within the annual Ecological Action “To Save and Protect” under the auspices of UNESCO. Along with the Associated Schools of the Russian regions the events were attended by representatives of UNESCO schools of Brazil, China and Latvia.
- The World Conference of the UNESCO Associated Schools “We are Together for the Preservation and Enrichment of Natural and Cultural Heritage” (Yakutsk, July 7-9, 2009).
- The International Congress of UNESCO Chairs in Education for Sustainable Development (Khanty-Mansiysk, September 17-19, 2009). The main objectives of Congress have become: the unification of UNESCO Chairs’ global capacity for improving ways of sustainable development, forming educational policies and strategies for achieving the goals of the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development of the United Nations, creating a network of UNESCO Chairs in various areas of sustainable development (education, environment, social aspects). The Congress was attended by representatives of UNESCO Chairs in Education for Sustainable Development from 18 countries of the world.
Significance for Russia:
• Activities undertaken with the assistance of UNESCO, represents a unique opportunity to compare national approaches to education with practice and experience of other countries.