A cleaner and more equitable world will deliver real benefits for people and the planet. But everyone is not on a level playing field at the moment. And the pandemic has made things worse.
COVID-19 has shown how corrosive inequality is and how urgently we need to build more sustainable and inclusive economies. No country is immune.
IISD draws on three decades of international expertise to propose economic pathways that set the world on a sustainable trajectory.
We push for needed reforms to global economic governance systems, help emerging economies negotiate fair deals, and promote the benefits of sustainable infrastructure and nature-based solutions.
Investment Law & Policy
How can we ensure developing economies attract international investment that promotes sustainable development?
Depending on how trade policy is designed and implemented, it can either advance or be a hindrance to sustainable, low-carbon development.
Standards and Value Chains
Voluntary sustainability standards contribute to biodiversity conservation, poverty reduction, and gender equality.
Investment Policy Forum
IISD hosts the annual Investment Policy Forum, the world's only yearly assembly on investment negotiation exclusively for developing economy officials.
Investment Treaty News
IISD publishes Investment Treaty News, a quarterly journal offering news and analysis on the impacts of investment law and policy for sustainable development.
The Sustainable Asset Valuation (SAVi)
IISD developed the Sustainable Asset Valuation (SAVi) to demonstrate to governments, investors and citizens why sustainable assets can deliver better value for money and more attractive internal rates of return.
The Energy Charter Treaty
The Energy Charter Treaty is a regional trade and investment agreement in the energy sector that has grown into an obstacle to impactful climate and sustainability policies—IISD is leading the way on reform in this space to accelerate the green transition.
Tax Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) in Mining
Equipping resource-rich developing country governments with the knowledge, skills, and tools to optimize the financial benefits from mining.
State of Sustainability Initiatives
An international transparency and capacity-building project aimed at improving strategic planning and sustainable development outcomes related to voluntary sustainable standards.
Trade Solutions Are Needed to Tackle Climate Change Threat, WTO Says
The World Trade Report 2022: Climate Change and International Trade emphasizes the key role trade must play in climate change adaptation strategies and the transition to a low-carbon economy
Global sustainable cotton grew 39-40% CAGR between 2008 & 2019: IISD
Cotton produced in accordance with voluntary sustainability standards (VSSs) globally saw a 39 per cent to 40 per cent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2008 and 2019, according to a report by International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD). In 2019, about 92 per cent of VSS-compliant cotton came from Asia, led by India, China, and Turkey.
Insects as feed for livestock production
Livestock production makes up 70 to 80% of the world’s agricultural land use and yet only produces ∼18% of all calories and 25% of all proteins consumed by humans. To grow food for livestock uses 33% of the world’s cropland. Although lifestyle changes, such as vegetarianism and veganism, may help to achieve sustainability in food production, the global demand for meat consumption is still increasing, so it is also crucial to consider more efficient ways to rear livestock.
Sustainable cotton sector continues to grow
Consumers and companies across the planet are increasingly choosing cotton produced in accordance with voluntary sustainability standards (VSSs) such as Better Cotton or Cotton made in Africa, according to new research from the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD).
Organic Transitions Need Some Push and Pull to Bear Fruit
As farmers grapple with pressures ranging from rising input prices to supply chain disruptions, how can governments help reduce vulnerabilities and mitigate risks—and do so in a way that supports smallholders, communities, and the environment?
Global Market Report: Cotton prices and sustainability
Exploring production and consumption trends in the cotton sector and how voluntary sustainability standards can improve social and environmental results.
IGF Case Study: The Importance of Consultation and Engagement in Environmental and Social Impact Assessments
Highlighting good legal frameworks that cover a mine's life cycle and presenting illustrative cases from Canada and Peru.
Other related topics
In a circular economy, products are designed, produced, and used to reduce waste and regenerate natural systems.
Sustainable finance has gained considerable traction in recent years, becoming a significant trend in the financial industry.
Infrastructure is the backbone of sustainable development and a powerful driver of economic activity.
Government purchasing power should be leveraged towards buying the most sustainable goods, services, and works.
By adopting sustainable practices, companies can gain a competitive edge, increase their market share, and boost shareholder value.