International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development ICTSD

The International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) was established in Geneva in September 1996 to contribute to a better understanding of development and environment concerns in the context of international trade. As an independent non-profit and non-governmental organisation, ICTSD engages a broad range of actors in ongoing dialogue about trade and sustainable development. With a wide network of governmental, non-governmental and inter-governmental partners, ICTSD plays a unique systemic role as a provider of original, non-partisan reporting and facilitation services at the intersection of international trade and sustainable development … (about 1/2).

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ICTSD facilitates interaction between policy-makers and those outside the system to help trade policy become more supportive of sustainable development. By helping parties increase capacity and become better informed about each other, ICTSD builds bridges between groups with seemingly disparate agendas. It seeks to enable these actors to discover the many places where their interests and priorities coincide, for ultimately sustainable development is their common objective.

ICTSD’s Mission: By empowering stakeholders in trade policy through information, networking, dialogue, well-targeted research, and capacity building, to influence the international trade system such that it advances the goal of sustainable development.

ICTSD is accredited by the United Nations. In this context it enjoys Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC); Observer Status at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Industial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Codex Alimentarius Commission and at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The Centre has also been granted accreditation since 1996 by the World Trade Organization (WTO) to participate in all its Ministerial Conferences and other ad hoc activities. ICTSD is further accredited to the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD), the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Since July 2005, ICTSD is an accredited member of the Governing Council of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

ICTSD is a principal member of the Trade Knowledge Network (TKN); and the Frati Initiative on Intellectual Property and Development; and a founding member of the Geneva Environment Network (GEN); Concerted Action on Trade and Environment (CAT&E) and the Grupo Zapallar (GZ).

ICTSD leads the Trade and Development Symposium, an informal consortium of international organisations, research institutes and NGOs active around major trade and development events, and has served as a principal convener of the Global Biodiversity Forum (GBF) on Trade. Through its Executive Director, the Centre participates in the UN Millennium Project’s Task Force on Trade; the WTO Director General’s NGO Advisory Group and the Commission on Environmental, Economic and Social Policy (CEESP) of the World Conservation Union (IUCN).

On this section of the site, you will find comprehensive information about our history, work programme, staff, funding and governance. We welcome your interest in the Centre’s activities and invite you to become a part of our worldwide network of supporters.

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