Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

United Nations

Finding UN documents and information about the UN.

UN Structure

UN organizational chart

The UN is composed of six main bodies:

  1. The General Assembly - the UN's main body for discussion and deliberation. Each member state has 1 vote in the GA (assuming their contributions are paid up!). The GA has six committees, organized by topic, and meets annually.
  2. The Security Council - a group of member states responsible for international peace and security. UN sanctions, peacekeeping, and military action is supervised by the SC. The SC has 5 permanent and 10 rotating members.
  3. Economic and Social Council - ECOSOC sets UN development goals and crafts UN policy on economic, social, and environmental topics. ECOSOC has 54 members, allocated according to geography.
  4. The UN Secretariat - The Secretariat, led by the UN Secretary-General, is the executive office of the UN and administers its work.
  5. The International Court of Justice - The ICJ decides questions of international law and adjucates disputes between member states. The Court has 15 judges, elected to nine-year terms, and sits in The Hague.
  6. The Trusteeship Council - oversees UN trust territories and prepares them for self-government. (The UN has not administered any territories since 1994.)

The UN also has many specialized agencies, programmes, and subsidary bodies.

UN Websites

More Information about the UN

Books and E-Resources about the UN

League of Nations

The UN was preceded by the League of Nations (1920-1946). Information about the League:

Lauinger also has an extensive set of League documents in microfilm.

Creative Commons   This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial 4.0 International License. | Details of our policy