UN organizations started relying increasingly on costly Electronic Data Processing (EDP) equipment. Instead of purchasing their own equipment and anticipating major economies of scale, the three founders of UNICC, namely the United Nations (UN), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) decide to join forces to put in place a shared Electronic Data Processing (EDP) facility.
Owing to the sensitivity of the information dealt with, UNICC’s three founders opt for the creation of a shared facility within the UN family rather than relying on a private Electronic Data Processing (EDP) service. Pursuant to General Assembly Resolution 2741 (XXV) of 17 December 1970, UNICC is created as an inter-organization facility to provide a common EDP.
The initial agreement between UNICC’s three founding UN organizations explicitly encourages other Agencies in the UN system to join the newly born inter-Agency shared ICT services organization.
UNICC primarily provides mainframe services to its growing number of Partner Organizations. Low speed lines between UNICC and Partner Organizations’ premises are mostly used as dedicated links for accessing UNICC’s mainframe system.
During the early 1990s, low speed lines between UNICC and Client premises are gradually replaced by higher speed, multi-protocol trunks. UN organizations are beginning to deploy Local Area Networks (LANs).
At the same time, across the UN and within the growing UNICC family of Partner Organizations, dedicated mainframe terminals are replaced with PCs emulating costly and cumbersome mainframe terminals.
In 1994, UNICC installs an Internet gateway and access to the Internet is initially provisioned through the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) with an initial access bandwidth of 64 KBps.
In 1995, UNICC starts to offer Internet access as well as Gopher and World Wide Web hosting services. UNICC also installs a messaging hub which allows Clients to exchange emails.
UNICC opens a second office to support Clients located in New York, USA and North America. Later, in 2009, the organization establishes a data centre in Piscataway, New Jersey.
UNICC establishes a presence in Rome, Italy, to support Partner Organizations. Currently UNICC supports three organizations in Rome: World Food Programme (WFP), International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
UNICC starts Y2K compliance testing in 1998 and in 1999 completes the migration of its systems and services to a Y2K-compliant environment. From 31 December 1999 to 1 January 2000 UNICC carries out its Y2K transition plan successfully with no related issues.
UNICC opens its first operational Centre of Excellence in Brindisi, Italy. In the photo, UNICC Brindisi celebrates 15 years of service in 2017.
By 2006, UNICC develops its skills and know-how to run and support the three market-leading Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, namely SAP, Oracle e-Business and PeopleSoft. UNICC continues to host ERP systems for various Partners Organizations, enhancing and expanding the service.
UNICC signs a Memorandum of Understanding with the UN Department of Field Support – now called the UN Department of Operational Support – for the use of office space and data centre facilities in the United Nations Support Base premises in Valencia, Spain.
UNICC has positioned its footprint in Valencia as the ICT Centre of Excellence for the entire UN system for innovative solutions, including a UN-wide Security Operations Centre.
In 2013, UNICC introduces compliance with ISAE 3402 audit standards and receives ISO 27001 certification for information security management. In 2014 UNICC receives ISO 20000 certification for one Client in 2014, with certification for all of its shared services by the end of 2017.
UNICC wins an award for its Continuous Security Improvement Suite (CSI), a set of solutions to improve its information security management capabilities provided to its United Nations Partner Organizations.
UNICC sets up shop with UNDP at the Green One UN House (GOUNH) to support Asian Clients. The first work is to assist the Asian Development Bank’s Enterprise SharePoint administration.
The Spanish government contributes 6 million Euros to UNICC’s Spanish growth and commits to provide a new building for UNICC use at the Valencia base.
UNICC grows its footprint in Valencia, with many more staff and contractors centered there, strengthening its role as an ICT Centre of Excellence for innovative, digital business solutions for the entire UN family.
The UN Secretary-General sets about UN Reform with the strategic priorities of enhancing the UN’s contributions to sustainable development, reforming UN peace and security capabilities and ensuring more agile and effective capacities to better deliver the UN mandate.
At the behest of its Management Committee, UNICC takes this challenge up and adopts new technologies and re-tools teams to support change, including Client digital transformation strategies . The UNICC plan focuses on developing new capabilities, optimising the organization, building strategic partnerships, deepening Client focus and strengthening UNICC’s cultural values. The result is a fit-for-purpose shared services organization prepared for the UN challenges of tomorrow.
UNICC is honoured a second time with a 2020 CSO50 Information Security Award for its Common Secure Information Security Hub that includes over 30 Clients and Partner Organizations.
UNICC has had a vibrant and productive 50 years, with much to celebrate as we reflect back and look forward. With 2030 around the corner, UNICC has redoubled its efforts to achieve the SDGs, reduce the digital divide, optimise business through smart and cost-effective innovation and leave no one behind. Join us in UNICC’s celebration!
UNICC receives ISO 22301:2019 certification for its Security and Resilience and Business Continuity Management Systems, a widely recognised international benchmark which specifies the requirements to plan, establish, implement, operate, monitor, review, maintain and continually improve a documented management system to protect against, reduce the likelihood of occurrence, prepare for, respond to and recover from disruptive incidents when they arise.
UNICC is proud to have been a part of the warm welcome to Secretary-General António Guterres to the UN Support Base in Valencia to take part in the celebration of its tenth birthday. The Secretary-General recognised the work of the people at the base, where UNICC is the biggest Agency with nearly 300 personnel.
UNICC brings its look and feel up to date to match its state-of-the-art digital business solutions with a new logo that reflects who UNICC has been, is now and will continue to be.