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International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)
History and Background

About IISD
IISD''s story began in 1988 when Prime Minister Brian Mulroney announced Canada''s plans to establish an international institute dedicated to advancing sustainable development at the United Nations. The idea for the institute was rooted in recommendations by a National Task Force on Environment and Economy (designed as a Canadian response to Our Common Future, also known as the Brundtland Report, by the United Nations World Commission on Environment and Development and published in 1987).

In 1990, Manitoba''s Premier Gary Filmon and Canada''s Environment Minister Lucien Bouchard signed the agreement that officially created IISD during the Globe Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. The institute was originally established under The Canada Corporations Act, Part II as a non-profit corporation guided by an independent, international board of directors.

Today, the institute is a non-partisan, charitable organization specializing in policy research, analysis and information exchange. Through its head office in Winnipeg, Manitoba and its branches in Ottawa, Ontario; New York, NY; and Geneva, Switzerland IISD applies human ingenuity to help improve the well being of the world''s environment, economy and society.

The institute champions global sustainable development through innovation, research and relationships that span the entire world. It is devoted to the ongoing communication of its findings as it engages decision-makers in business, government, non-government organizations and other sectors.

IISD is proud of its diverse, multi-talented team of over 100 staff and associates located in over 30 countries. Through its dynamic portfolio of programs and projects, the institute has partnered with over 200 organizations worldwide.

As a registered charitable organization in Canada, the institute has 501 (c) (3) status in the U.S. IISD receives core operating support from the Government of Canada, as provided through the Canadian International Development Agency, the International Development Research Centre, Environment Canada and the Province of Manitoba. The institute also receives project funding from numerous governments inside and outside Canada, United Nations agencies, foundations and the private sector.

To learn more about IISD programs and projects, click on the “IISD Corporate General Information Brochure” below and/or "Our Knowledge" button above. To follow our coverage of international negotiations on environment and development, visit IISD Linkages.


IISD''s Messaging

•Our vision Better living for all—sustainably.

•Our mission To champion innovation, enabling societies to live sustainably.

•Our role IISD promotes the transition toward a sustainable future; we seek to demonstrate how human ingenuity can be applied to improve the well-being of the environment, economy and society.

•Our tools are policy research, information exchange, analysis and advocacy.

•Our products are action recommendations based on careful analysis, knowledge networks to build the capacity of civil society and other organizations in both South and North, and timely reporting of international negotiations critical to the sustainability of the planet.

•Our audiences: are government, business and civil society.

•Our style: is to increase our influence by working collaboratively with other institutions –building long term strategic alliances, while retaining the institutional agility necessary to confront the challenges of sustainable development.

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