International Civil Service Commission

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The International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) is an expert body established by the General Assembly for the regulation and coordination of the conditions of service of the United Nations common system of salaries, allowances and benefits.


The ICSC was established in 1974, following the adoption of General Assembly 3042(XXVII) of 19 December 1972, to replace the previous International Civil Service Advisory Board. The General Assembly approved the ICSC statute in resolution 3357(XXIX) of 18 December 1974.

The functions and powers of the ICSC are enumerated in Chapter III of the statute, of which articles 10 and 11 are of particular note:

Article 10 The Commission shall make recommendations to the General Assembly on:

(a) The broad principles for the determination of the conditions of service of the staff;
(b) The scales of salaries and post adjustments for staff in the Professional and higher categories;
(c) Allowances and benefits of staff which are determined by the General Assembly;
(d) Staff assessment.

Article 11 The Commission shall establish:

(a) The methods by which the principles for determining conditions of service should be applied;
(b) Rates of allowances and benefits, other than pensions and those referred to in article 10 (c), the conditions of entitlement thereto and standards of travel;
(c) The classification of duty stations for the purpose of applying post adjustments.

For specialized agencies and other organizations to which General Assembly decisions do not apply, the statute specifies provisions as follows:

Article 24

1. Recommendations of the Commission under article 10 shall be communicated by the Secretary-General of the United Nations to the executive heads of the other organizations.
2. The decisions taken thereon by the General Assembly shall be communicated by the Secretary-General to the executive heads of the other organizations for action under their constitutional procedures.
3. The executive head of each organization shall inform the Commission of all relevant decisions taken by the governing organ of his organization.
4. The recommendations under paragraph 1 above shall be communicated to staff representatives.


The ICSC currently consists of 15 members, including full-time Chair and Vice-Chair with the status of Official other than Secretariat Official, which is supported by a secretariat headed by an executive director. The full commission meets twice a year.

Information on conditions of service for the Chair and Vice-Chair of the ICSC can be found in the article on conditions of service for officials other than Secretariat officials

Participation in the common system

In addition to the United Nations and its separately-administered funds and programmes, the following specialized and related agencies and other organizations within the United Nations system which formally participate in the common system are as follows:[1]

Organization Short form Date Administrative tribunal
International Labour Organization ILO 14 December 1946 ILOAT
Food and Agriculture Organization FAO 14 December 1946 ILOAT
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization UNESCO 14 December 1946 ILOAT
International Civil Aviation Organization ICAO 13 May 1947 UNAT
World Health Organization WHO 10 July 1948 ILOAT
International Maritime Organization IMO 13 January 1949 UNAT
United Postal Union UPU 1 July 1948 ILOAT
International Telecommunications Union ITU 1 January 1949 ILOAT
World Meteorological Organization WMO 20 December 1951 ILOAT
International Fund for Agricultural Development IFAD 15 December 1977
United Nations Industrial Development Organization UNIDO 17 December 1985 ILOAT
International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA 14 November 1947 ILOAT
World Tourism Organization UNWTO 23 December 2013
International Seabed Authority ISA 14 March 1997
International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea ITLOS 18 December 1997
Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization CTBTO 26 May 2000

In addition, a number of organizations utilize the common system but have not formally accepted the ICSC statute, including the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM)[2].

The Bretton Woods organizations (International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group) are members of the United Nations system but do not use the common system and follow a separate system of salaries, allowances and benefits.[3]

See also

  • Website of the International Civil Service Commission


  1. ICSC/1/Rev.2 ICSC Statute and Rules of Procedure
  2. ICSC/1/Rev.2 ICSC Statute and Rules of Procedure
  3. ICSC/1/Rev.2 ICSC Statute and Rules of Procedure