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The OECD Insights series explains the important issues facing society in a way that is clear and comprehensible. The Insights blog gives you a voice in shaping those explanations. Insights posts may appear in the OECD Observer print edition.

About the OECD

Quick facts

History: established in 1961

Headquarters: Paris, France

Membership: 35 countries

Budget: EUR 370 million

Secretary-General: Angel Gurría

Secretariat staff: 2 500

Publications: 250 new titles/year


Annual report



Our mission

The mission of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is to promote policies that will improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world.

The OECD provides a forum in which governments can work together to share experiences and seek solutions to common problems. We work with governments to understand what drives economic, social and environmental change. We measure productivity and global flows of trade and investment. We analyse and compare data to predict future trends. We set international standards on a wide range of things, from agriculture and tax to the safety of chemicals.

We also look at issues that directly affect everyone’s daily life, like how much people pay in taxes and social security, and how much leisure time they can take. We compare how different countries’ school systems are readying their young people for modern life, and how different countries’ pension systems will look after their citizens in old age.

Drawing on facts and real-life experience, we recommend policies designed to improve the quality of people’s lives. We work with business, through the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD, and with labour, through the Trade Union Advisory Committee. We have active contacts as well with other civil society organisations. The common thread of our work is a shared commitment to market economies backed by democratic institutions and focused on the well-being of all citizens. Along the way, we also set out to make life harder for the terrorists, tax dodgers, crooked businessmen and others whose actions undermine a fair and open society.

The OECD’s core values

  • Objective:Our analyses and recommendations are independent and evidence-based.
  • Open:We encourage debate and a shared understanding of critical global issues.
  • Bold: We dare to challenge conventional wisdom starting with our own.
  • Pioneering:We identify and address emerging and long term challenges.
  • Ethical: Our credibility is built on trust, integrity and transparency.
2 Responses
  1. Pat Langa permalink
    October 17, 2012

    I am glad to learn more about OECD and was just now educated as to what you do via article of one of your editors, Kate Lancaster. Her story on “cow gas” was interesting. I think we do need to have solutions that are worked on locally and that are not mandated by central governments. Good for Vt. Here in Denton TX our school buses run on biofuel and we have an extensive recycling plant, not just for drop off but to recycle others discards. This month I will go and get my free tree from Keep Denton Beautiful and it will join other trees I’ve gotten over the years. We all need to do our part to protect our planet.
    Pat Alberts Langa

  2. Kate Lancaster permalink
    October 18, 2012

    Pat, thank you for your comment and the information about Keep Denton Beautiful. It’s always heartening to hear local success stories.

Comments are closed.