Joint Funding Approaches


Observance of International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Sudan

UN Photo by Fred Noy

Joint funding (also known as pooled funding) is a UN interagency mechanism used to receive contributions from multiple financial partners and allocate these resources to multiple implementing entities to support a specific national, regional or development priority.

Joint funding promotes UN coherence and development effectiveness in addressing multifaceted issues—such as humanitarian crises, peacebuilding, recovery and development. These complex challenges demand the combined expertise and resources of multiple development partners.

UN and national pooled funding mechanisms do not follow a rigid template or provide a one-size-fits-all solution; programming priorities drive the selection of funding sources and governance, as well as the implementing and fiduciary arrangements.

Pooled funds have several functions and provide a value add in:

  • supporting policy and programme coherence by filling critical gasp and supporting underfinanced priorities.
  • encouraging consolidation by reducing fragmentation with respect to particular priorities.
  • providing specialized expertise on a particular thematic issue.
  • reducing risk to governments and financial contributors through a comprehensive risk and results based management system.
  • strengthening national systems.
  • providing a mechanism for clear attribution and transparency from innovative sources of finance.

The UN Development Group has approved a number of joint funding tools for use by UN agencies. The main tools are: Multi-Donor Trust Funds, One Funds, Joint Programmes and the UN-UN Transfer Agreement.