The Economic and Social Council - Procedure

In 1993, the Economic and Social Council undertook a major restructuring. Whereas it used to hold two sessions each year, one at UN headquarters in the spring and one in Geneva in the summer, it now holds only one substantive (4-week long) meeting per year in summer, rotating each year between Geneva and New York. A president and four vice-presidents are elected by the council for each year. The council also holds an organizational session in January to plan its program of work for the year.

Each of the 54 members of the council has one vote. The big powers possess no veto or other special voting privilege. A proposal or motion before the council may be adopted without a vote unless a member requests one. When a vote is taken, decisions are carried by a simple majority of the members present.

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