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“the execution of” vs “execution of”

English Language Learners Asked by giga2712 on January 2, 2022

Please, have a look at the following sentences:

  1. Executing agency (also referred to as “executing entity”) shall mean the entity responsible for execution of UN-Women programme activities as defined in regulation 27.2.

  2. The funds generated through the round tables should be allocated directly to UNDP, or to the United Nations and specialized agencies, or to the beneficiary Governments responsible for execution of these projects, in order to reduce the number of intermediaries and shorten time-lags.

  3. The Executive Director of UNEP shall be responsible for the execution of the functions of UNEP under this MOU.

  4. Judges responsible for the execution of sentences must be appointed; meanwhile, criminal judges must perform this function.

  5. The manufacturer shall be responsible for the execution of the approved plan of remedial measures.

Could you please explain why the zero article is used in the first two sentences before the word “execution”, while in the other three sentences there is the definite article before the same word?

One Answer

The rule for using the definite article "the" is that it has to point to something definite, or specific.

In your example, it is referring to "execution of UN-Women programme activities".

The question is - does "UN-Women programme activities" refer to something specific? Is it a descriptive noun, or just a general description? If the answer is yes, it is a noun, then there can be a specific execution of these. In fact, "the execution" can be a property of the programme activities. If the answer is no, and it is a very loose description of something, then the execution of them can only be spoken of in the same broad terms, so the definite article is not appropriate.

Answered by Astralbee on January 2, 2022

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