It is Kenya’s top advisory body to the Government on policies required to accelerate social and economic development of the country. The COUNCIL’S recommendations to the Government are geared towards reforming existing policies or design new ones. Its members are drawn from Government, Private Sector, Civil Society and Academia.
In carrying out its mandate, NESC assesses Government policies for their effectiveness in achieving economic and social transformation; provides a forum for partnership and dialogue for engaging diverse range of stakeholders, especially private and social sector players, for their input into policy recommendations; and mobilizes knowledge and technical resources from relevant knowledge networks, including research and education institutions.
The members serve on three years renewable honorary appointment. The COUNCIL (2004-2008) had 34 members and held 13 meetings. The second COUNCIL which was constituted in September 2008 had 49 members, about half of whom were Cabinet Ministers. His Excellency, the President is the Chairman, while the then Rt. Hon. Prime Ministers was the 1st alternate Chairman or in his absence the 2nd alternate Chairman is the Minister for Finance. The full COUNCIL meetings consider and make recommendations on strategic policies to the Government Ministries, Departments and various Agencies of government. COUNCIL members may constitute committees to deal with specific policy issue that require specialized attention. Such committees always report to the COUNCIL. The 2nd COUNCIL term expired in 2012, since then, no COUNCIL has been constituted nor their term extended.
In its strategic role of facilitating and fostering policy dialogue on economic and social issues in the country, NESC enjoys special links with a range of stakeholders that includes among others line-Ministers, Development Partners, the Private Sector, the Media, Research Institutions, Professional Groups, and the General Public. It is therefore well-positioned to hold consultative meetings on key issues facing the country whose recommendations could then be discussed by the COUNCIL.