Our approach

 Haiti. Photo: UNDP Haiti

By working on Governance and Peacebuilding, UNDP focuses on the rule of law, justice, security, human rights, conflict prevention, inclusive political processes, and accountable and transparent institutions. This includes working with the most marginalized groups such as women, youth, indigenous peoples and Afro-descendants.

As we are driven by the belief that the real wealth of our nations are its people, UNDP supports people-centered development, ownership and capacity building, territorial development, human-rights and gender-equality approaches:


The pursuit of human rights and human development promotes the freedom, dignity and value of every person. When rights are fulfilled, the poor can participate in decisions that affect their lives. UNDP supports 'human rights for development' in more than 100 countries and connects partners to the global network.

Mainstreaming gender and human rights into development policies and programmes draws attention to those who are often left behind including ethnic minorities, indigenous peoples, women, children, the disabled and elderly.

UNDP works to ensure that the plans, policies and processes of development are anchored in the universal values of human rights and rule of law — guided by the Charter of the United Nations and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

For example, partnerships between UNDP and indigenous peoples and their organizations are critical to promote and to strengthen democratic governance and human rights, prevent and resolve conflicts, reduce poverty and sustainably manage the environment.


We strongly believe that expanding the richness of human life, rather than simply the richness of the economy, is the true goal of a development initiative. Thus, people must be at the centre of development, both as its beneficiaries and as its drivers, as individuals and in groups. This is what we, at UNDP, understand as Human Development.  People must be empowered with the tools and knowledge to build their own communities, states and nations.

Resilience is also an important part of human development. Resilience can be defined as the ability of a person or community to resist and adapt to shock, manage crisis and grow stronger. Resilience ensures that societies, communities and families can withstand crisis — whether it is a natural disaster or a food price shock —, bounce back with limited long-term damage, and be better prepared for the next crisis.

UNDP expresses its commitment to human development through its flagship publication, the Human Development Report (HDR). Some  reports related to the governance and peacebuilding thematic  are the following: Human Development Report for Central America 2009-2010 (only in Spanish), Caribbean Human Development Report 2012, Human Development Report for Latin America on citizen security 2013-2014.


UNDP strongly believes the local level is a driving force to achieve a more effective human development. Territories and local institutions should go beyond provision of services and play a development role in order to achieve sustainable results.

Through the territorial approach for development, different local institutions and actors work together to define development strategies that reflect a wide range of interests and priorities at the local level.

For UNDP, addressing the development challenges requires contextualized solutions and responses and the inclusion of all decision-making levels as well as economic, social and development actors.


The fulfilment of women’s and men’s civil, cultural, economic, political and social human rights is at the center of UNDP’s human development framework and is vital to achieving sustainable development.

By mainstreaming a gender perspective in our work, UNDP seeks to incorporate inputs from both men and women when implementing legislation, public policies and programs in all political, economic and social spheres. The objective is to benefit women and men equally from development initiatives and to achieve gender equality.

UNDP has a dual approach to gender mainstreaming: on one side, UNDP supports the empowerment of women and girls through gender-specific initiatives and, on the other side, we also address gender concerns in the development, planning, implementation and evaluation of public policies and programmes.

The gender equality strategy contributes to UNDP’s work on governance and peacebuilding by:

- Improving institutional responses to gender-based violence and promoting gender mainstreaming in security policies.

- Ensuring women’s and men’s equal participation in governance processes, and also their equal benefits from services, as a precondition for the achievement of inclusive and effective democratic governance.

- Engaging women at all stages of formal and informal peace processes, so that their priorities inform the agenda for conflict prevention, early recovery from crises, durable peace, resilience and sustainable development.

- Promoting gender responsive local economic development mainstreaming gender into national and local development policies and agendas for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

UNDP Around the world

You are at UNDP Latin America and the Caribbean 
Go to UNDP Global