UNOPS partners with global consultants Arup to strengthen infrastructure capacity
UNOPS implements projects for the United Nations system and other partners. One of its main focus areas is physical infrastructure development, often in some of the world's most challenging environments.
Arup first came to the world's attention for engineering the structural design of the Sydney Opera House. Since then, the company has extended its focus to include engineering, infrastructure and consultancy. At any one time, Arup is typically working on 10,000 global projects. Its work in infrastructure spans areas including communications, education, health, transport, energy and water.
This partnership is a logical match as UNOPS is committed to building the capacity and professionalism of the infrastructure sector across the developing world.
Infrastructure is a core component of development. Well-designed and constructed schools, roads, bridges, hospitals and police stations enable communities to achieve sustainable improvements in health, education, security and economic stability.
At the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the two organizations, Braye Sutherland, head of the UNOPS physical infrastructure practice said: "To achieve the Millennium Development Goals it is crucial that developing countries are able to run their own infrastructure projects.
"By strengthening local capacity to implement such projects in a sustainable and effective way, as well as creating useful tools and standards, UNOPS and Arup will help ensure the most effective use of public funds."
Jo da Silva, Director of Arup International Development, said: "We hope that this unique partnership with a UN organisation will further Arup's overall mission to shape a better world by enabling UNOPS to access Arup's global expertise in the planning and design of appropriate, sustainable infrastructure."
UNOPS has built schools, hospitals, laboratories, prisons, border crossing facilities, water supply networks, harbours and airports across the globe on behalf of a range of partners.
The organisation recently managed the construction and repair of hundreds of schools in Indonesia and has carried out extensive infrastructure projects in countries such as Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti and Sri Lanka.
Arup will work with UNOPS to provide more support to least developed and developing countries during the early stages of a project. This will be done by providing joint consulting and implementation services, and by developing effective standards.
Arup is a signatory of the Global Compact and the firm's international development group is non-profit.
The development group will be the focal point of the partnership and can draw on the resources of Arup's global network of designers, planners, engineers, consultants and technical specialists.
For more information, interviews and more pictures please contact Katy Laffan in the Communications Unit at UNOPS headquarters, on email@example.com or +45 3546 7572 or visit www.unops.org