After a conceptual examination of global values and their role in international law, this article examines the role of the United Nations, especially the General Assembly, in the translation of globally shared values into legally binding international commitments. This process already commenced with the United Nations Conference on International Organization, held in 1945 in San Francisco, where the UN Charter was born. The way this process functions is illustrated by using the global value of social progress and development as an example. First, it is shown how this value ended up in the UN Charter in 1945. This is followed by a description of this value's evolution, especially the inclusion of a ‘sustainability element’, which took place at the General Assembly and various global conferences organized under the auspices of the United Nations.