The organizations of the United Nations system work together within the context of the mandates provided to them by Member States and under the direct oversight of their respective governing bodies. CEB and its three pillars aim to ensure overall coherence in the efforts by United Nations system organizations to collectively respond to intergovernmental mandates and system-wide challenges. The Board agrees on the importance of ensuring timely and open sharing of information and regularly reports to the Economic and Social Council on its collaborative work, for example, through the present annual overview report.

Recent efforts by the United Nations system to strengthen its engagement in the work of the Economic and Social Council include two panel discussions during the coordination segment of the substantive session of the Council in 2009 on: (a) the role of the United Nations system in sustainable development, highlighting the food and energy crises and climate change; and (b) the impact of the financial crisis on sustainable development, including its social consequences. During the reporting period, Member States have been updated on the progress made under the Joint Crisis Initiatives. The CEB issues paper on the Joint Crisis Initiatives was distributed at a panel discussion on the crisis in the Economic and Social Council on 22 April 2009. In pursuance of its decision 2009/258 on the follow-up to paragraph 56 of the outcome document of the Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development, the Economic and Social Council held informal consultations on 19 October 2009 to consider the report of the Secretary-General on the nine Joint Crisis Initiatives of CEB, “The promotion and enhancement of a coordinated response of the United Nations development system and the specialized agencies in the follow-up to and implementation of the Outcome of the Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development” (E/2009/114).The secretary of CEB briefed delegations at the consultations, and Member States shared their views on the report and on how to move forward with the United Nations response.