Source description last updated: 14 April 2020
In brief: The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is a Vienna-headquartered UN agency which aims to assist UN member states in combating illicit drugs, organised crime and terrorism.
Coverage on ecoi.net:
Country opium surveys, Global Report on Trafficking in Persons, other relevant reports
Covered monthly on ecoi.net, for countries of priorities A or B.
“For two decades, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has been helping make the world safer from drugs, organized crime, corruption and terrorism. We are committed to achieving health, security and justice for all by tackling these threats and promoting peace and sustainable well-being as deterrents to them.
Because the scale of these problems is often too great for states to confront alone, UNODC offers practical assistance and encourages transnational approaches to action. We do this in all regions of the world through our global programmes and network of field offices.” (UNODC website: About the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, undated)
“UNODC works directly with Governments, international organizations, other UN entities, private sector and civil society groups to develop and implement integrated programmes that assist the countries and regions we work in to meet their international obligations under the drug control treaties; the UN convention on Transnational Organized Crime; and the UN Convention against Corruption; as well as the international instruments on terrorism prevention.” (UNODC website: Contributions in 2018, undated)
UNODC supports UN member states in “implementing a balanced, comprehensive and evidence-based approach” to handling drug problems by “analyzing and reporting data on drug trafficking trends, including arrests, seizures, price and purity of illicit drugs”. It also seeks to strengthen states’ ability to combat transnational organised crime by “collecting and disseminating data, disaggregated by sex, for policy analysis”, amongst others. (UNODC: Five normative areas of activity, undated)
“Voluntary contributions from Member States, multilateral organizations, private sector and other sources comprise the bulk of UNODC funding […].” (UNODC website: Partnerships and Funding, undated)
Scope of reporting:
Geographic focus: UN member states
Thematic focus: issues relating to drugs, organized crime, corruption and terrorism
The Opium Surveys are conducted by UNODC in collaboration with government authorities of the relevant country (see, for example, UNODC: Myanmar Opium Survey 2019; Cultivation, Production and Implications, 2020, p. 36 and UNODC: Afghanistan opium survey 2018; Challenges to sustainable development, peace and security, July 2019, p. 2). They collect and analyse “detailed data on the location and extent of opium poppy cultivation, potential opium production and the socio-economic situation in rural areas” (UNODC: Afghanistan opium survey 2018; Challenges to sustainable development, peace and security, July 2019, p. 2). Data may be gained from remote sensing techniques such as satellite images and aerial photography (see, for example, UNODC: México - Monitoreo de Cultivos de Amapola 2017-2018, March 2020, p. I) that may be combined with “field surveys to provide ground-truthing that supports the interpretation of opium poppy fields” (UNODC: Myanmar Opium Survey 2019: Cultivation, Production and Implications, 2020, p. 31). As for the latter, sample locations to be visited may be selected by random sampling, with interviews conducted on the basis of a questionnaire by surveyors “trained in techniques for approaching local community members and conducting interviews”, and the quality of data and progress of the survey monitored by UNODC and government authorities involved. (UNODC: Afghanistan opium survey 2018; Challenges to sustainable development, peace and security, July 2019, pp. 67-69)
The country profiles in the Global Report on Trafficking in Persons are based on statistics collected and disseminated by national authorities on the “number of trafficking cases investigated, offenders and their profiles, as well as the profile of the victims detected” as well as other published information (e.g. on the legal framework) (see, for example, Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2018, December 2018, pp. 15-16; see also, for example, the country profiles on West and South Asia and North Africa and the Middle East).
Languages of publications:
English, Spanish, Russian and other languages
All links accessed 14 April 2020.