United Nations Statistical Commission

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United Nations Statistical Commission
Formation1947; 76 years ago (1947)
TypeIntergovernmental organization, regulatory body, advisory board
Legal statusActive
Shigeru Kawasaki (Japan)[1]
Parent organization
United Nations Economic and Social Council
SubsidiariesUnited Nations Statistics Division

The United Nations Statistical Commission (StatCom) is a Functional Commission of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, established in 1947.[2] The Statistical Commission oversees the work of the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD). Its 24 member states are elected by the Economic and Social Council on the basis of the following geographical distribution: African states (5), Asian States (4), Eastern European States (4), Latin American and Caribbean States (4), Western European and other States (7). Since July 1999 the Commission meets every year. As set forth by the Economic and Social Council, in the terms of reference,[3] the Commission shall assist the Council:

  • "In promoting the development of national statistics and the improvement of their comparability;"
  • "In the coordination of the statistical work of specialized agencies;"[4]
  • "In the development of the central statistical services of the Secretariat;"
  • "In advising the organs of the United Nations on general questions relating to the collection, analysis and dissemination of statistical information;"
  • "In promoting the improvement of statistics and statistical methods generally."

One of the best known subunits of the Statistics Division is the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN), also known as the United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names (UNCSGN). This unit attempts to standardize the names of locations across languages, alphabets, and cultures.

The sixth UN Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names was in 1992 (New York), the seventh in 1998 (New York), the eighth in 2002 (Berlin), and the ninth in 2007 (New York). One issue addressed at these conferences was the Sea of Japan naming dispute.

The Bureau[edit]

The officers are the Chairman, 3 Vice-chairmen and the Rapporteur, elected for a one-year period by the members of the Commission at the beginning of a session. Since 1999, its role is more of a steering one; the Chairman may seek for complementary assistance from other members (Friends of the Chair).

2020 51st  Japan Shigeru Kawasaki
2019 50th  Kenya Zachary Mwangi
2018 49th  Kenya Zachary Mwangi
2017 48th  Brazil Wasmália Bivar
2016 47th  Brazil Wasmália Bivar
2015 46th  United Kingdom John Pullinger
2014 45th  United Kingdom Jil Matheson
2013 44th  Hungary Gabriella Vukovich
2012 43rd  Hungary Gabriella Vukovich
2011 42nd  Oman Ali Bin Mahboob
2010 41st  Oman Ali Bin Mahboob
2009 40th  South Africa Pali Lehohla
2008 39th  South Africa Pali Lehohla
2007 38th  Mexico Gilberto Calvillo Vives
2006 37th  Mexico Gilberto Calvillo Vives
2005 36th  USA Katherine Wallman
2004 35th  USA Katherine Wallman
2003 34th  Hungary Tamás Mellár
2002 33rd  Hungary Tamás Mellár
2001 32nd  Japan Shigeru Kawasaki
2000 31st  Botswana Guest Charumbira
1999 30th  Botswana Guest Charumbira
1997 29th  Mexico Carlos Jarque
1995 28th  United Kingdom Bill Mclennan
1994 Special session  Poland Jozef Olenski
1993 27th  Netherlands Willem Begeer
1991 26th  Netherlands Willem Begeer
1989 25th  Argentina Luis Alberto Beccaria
1987 24th  Ghana Emmanuel Oti Boateng
1985 23rd  Ireland Tom Linehan
1983 22nd  Hungary Vera Nyitrai
1981 21st  USA Joseph W. Duncan
1979 20th  Soviet Union Mikhail Antonovich Korolev
1976 19th  India V. R. Rao
1974 18th  United Kingdom Claus Moser
1972 17th  France Jean Ripert
1970 16th  France Jean Ripert
1968 15th  Australia Keith Archer
1966 14th  Norway Petter Jakob Bjerve
1965 13th  Norway Petter Jakob Bjerve
1962 12th  Ireland Donal McCarthy
1960 11th  Ireland Donal McCarthy
1958 10th  New Zealand George Wood
1956 9th  India P.C. Mahalanobis
1954 8th  India P.C. Mahalanobis
1953 7th  United Kingdom Harry Campion
1951 6th  United Kingdom Harry Campion
1950 5th  Netherlands Philip Idenburg
1949 4th  Netherlands Philip Idenburg
1948 3rd  Canada Herbert Marshall
1947 (August) 2nd  Canada Herbert Marshall
1947 (January) 1st  Canada Herbert Marshall
1946 Nuclear session  USA Stuart A. Rice

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bureau". UN Statistical Commission. Retrieved 10 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Introduction". UN Statistical Commission. Retrieved 10 January 2021.
  3. ^ Background information on the Statistical Commission and practical information on its functioning
  4. ^ refer also to Committee for the Coordination of Statistical Activities (CCSA)
  5. ^ Chairs of past sessions

Further reading[edit]

  • Hausner, Isolde: Die „United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names“ (UNGEGN) und die Standardisierung geographischer Namen. In: Kainz, W. / Kriz, K. / Riedl, A. (eds.): Aspekte der Kartographie im Wandel. Festschrift für Ingrid Kretschmer zum 65. Geburtstag. Wien 2004 (= Wiener Schriften zur Geographie und Kartographie).
  • Kerfoot, Helen: Role of the United Nations in the standardization of geographical names: some fifty years on. In: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Statistics Division (ed.): Manual for the standardization of geographical names. United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names. New York 2006: 83-97. ISBN 92-1-161490-2

External links[edit]