The United Nations in Bonn

11.01.2024 - Article

In the Federal City of Bonn, there are currently 26 United Nations institutions based on the UN Campus.

Haus Carstanjen on the bank of the Rhine
Haus Carstanjen on the bank of the Rhine© Sondermann/Stadt Bonn

The development of Bonn as a UN location (beginning with UNHCR in 1951 and then with UNEP/CMS and many more since 1984) has been gaining momentum; there is major interest in setting up in the city. Germany provides the United Nations with some 50,000 square metres of office and conference space in the former parliamentary quarter on the banks of the Rhine. The Langer Eugen, the Altes Abgeordnetenhochhaus, the Climate Tower and the historical Haus Carstanjen make up the Bonn UN Campus with a staff of almost a thousand. Various federal ministries provide support to help attract, accommodate and run the institutions on the campus, as well as support for UN conferences and projects in Bonn. Meanwhile, the German Bundestag and the Federal Government support the further development and strengthening of Bonn as a UN location. The City of Bonn and Land North Rhine-Westphalia are also committed champions of Bonn’s UN Campus and the city’s international profile.

The Climate Tower on the Bonn UN Campus
The Climate Tower on the Bonn UN Campus© VN Bonn

Focal areas of the United Nations at the Bonn UN Campus are sustainability, the environment and climate as well as education, knowledge transfer and innovation. A further focus is currently emerging in the field of administration and personnel management.

With many other renowned and internationally operating governmental and non-governmental organisations also present in the city, Bonn has evolved into an international hub for implementing the 2030 Agenda. The motto of all UN institutions based in Bonn is “Shaping a sustainable future”. They each follow this motto in line with their own objectives and priorities. For example, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Action Campaign (SDG Action Campaign) works from its headquarters in Bonn to raise awareness of and support the realisation of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) around the world. To this end, it hosts the annual interactive Global Festival of Action, which does a great deal to help raise the profile of the 2030 Agenda and promote its implementation.

The United Nations University (UNU) plays a central role in research, education and innovation relating to the UN Sustainability Goals. It cooperates with the University of Bonn in this area, for example in the form of joint Master’s courses. The United Nations System Staff College based in Turin runs the UNSSC Knowledge Centre for Sustainable Development in Bonn, whose courses are also open to interested parties from governments, business and civil society. The United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) focuses on transformative change in its work to implement the 2030 Agenda.

The UNFCCC organises around 100 workshops and conferences in Bonn every year, and with the Climate Change Conference held in the city in 2017 (COP23), it staged Germany’s largest ever intergovernmental conference.

By hosting COP23, Bonn put itself on the map once and for all as an international conference location. The World Conference Center Bonn (WorldCCBonn) alone can host events with up to 7000 participants directly adjacent to the UN Campus. The Federal City of Bonn itself has long had a strong international profile and is home to people from more than 180 nations.

Further Information

Bonn: center for international cooperation and sustainable development




Related content

Top of page